Monthly Archives: March 2012

Is it wrong to eat Macadamia nuts off the floor?


If it is, then I am every kind of wrong!  My name is Little Chef Meals and I am a nut-o-holic.  Nuts have been an obsession since I was a little girl.  At my very wonderful primary school, where we were fed like Kings and Queens, we were only allowed to bring in fruit or nuts for morning break time, this was before the no nuts in schools policy.  I was a very disorganised child (quite possibly still am) and therefore had nothing to delight my senses at break time, apart from the milk in the cute little bottle that we drank through strawers.  The milk was lovely for exactly half of the school year, when it was autumn or winter and it was handed out by the milk monitor in a chilly little bottle, scrumptious.  However, in the height of summer, when the temperature might be hitting the mid 20’s, it turned into a challenge to swallow.  Warm milk is not nice! 

Anyway, I digress.  Back to the matter in hand; nuts!  Please, no jokes.  Mostly the children would bring in a satsuma or a sad banana that would make your whole bag smell but one day, I clearly remember this, a friend brought in a tiny handful of salted peanuts.  I have lots of school memories but it generally all melts into one big memory, the nut day was different.  This friend, must have been a good person as they were sharing their tiny handful of nuts around, I probably only had three or four peanuts but I remember that moment was the moment I started my love affair with nuts.  I am sure of something else too, I clearly remember licking the salt off my hand afterwards.

And here we are 20 something years later and I am still licking the salt off my hands.  I am not one of those lovely healthy types who exude radiance and goodness therefore I am not such a big fan of raw, un-roasted, un-salted, un-flavoured nuts.  Really I just think raw nuts are actually un-loved.  No-one cared for them enough to make them taste more delicious. 

So, when I realised I had a house full of un-loved nuts, it was time to take action.  I had a quick peruse of the internet and found a few recipes and then took a little bit of each of them and made up my own recipe.

Little chef’s lovely nuts

450 g Mixed nuts

1/3 cup Brown sugar

2/3 cup White sugar

1 tsp Sea salt

2 tsp Ground cinnamon

1 tsp Mixed Spice

1/4 tsp Smoked Paprika (more if you like it spicy)

1 Egg white

  • Preheat oven to 160 degrees c
  • Combine sugar, salt, spices in a large bowl until evenly mixed.
  • In a separate bowl, whisk one eggwhite with 1tbsp water until foamy but not stiff.
  • Pour nuts into eggwhite, stir until all the nuts are thoroughly covered
  • Now sprinkle sugar and spice mix over nuts and stir thoroughly.
  • Line two baking trays and divide nuts equally, spread them out trying to keep well spaced
  • Put into the oven and cook for roughly 30 mins, stir every 1o mins, keep an eye on them so they don’t burn.
  • If you’re not sure if they’re cooked, take one out, let it cool for a few mins and then taste, if it tastes good and is crunchy, they’re ready!
  • Cool thoroughly and then keep airtight, do not leave out unopened as the caramel starts to go sticky and melt. 



These nuts are super easy to make and are a great gift.  You can put them into little glass jars and decorate the jars or just take some to a dinner party or just quietly eat the whole stash as I was tempted to do.  When I was taking the photo I kept accidentally eating lots and then ate some off the floor!  Oops…

P.s. Apologies for the bad photo’s, had to use my phone, I’m in a camera famine!



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Nigella, I’m not angry, I’m just disappointed…

I’m not angry, I’m just disappointed.  This was a phrase I became very familiar with when I was a schoolgirl.  Parents evening would roll around and I would spend the entire evening with a feeling of dread welling up inside me.  On my parents return home, I would wait in the sitting room, for them to come to me.  You don’t run to greet bad news.  They would walk into the room and one or both of them would give me the look.  Finally my father would speak.  ‘I’m not angry, I’m just disappointed.  You are capable of so much more Amelia.’  Disappointed is so much worse than angry, when faced with anger, you can get angry in return and storm off in a strop. 

Nigella, you disappoint me.  As my parents sat and listened to the words of all my teachers, ‘she’s a bright girl, she’s got such potential but she just doesn’t apply herself.’  These words apply to you too Nigella.  Your recipe that I tried for flourless chocolate brownies was just plain lazy.  I was reading the recipe before I started, thinking that it didn’t quite add up but foolishly, I decided to trust you.  It was a silly assumption that your recipe’s would be tested several times to make sure they work, I’m sure you’re a busy girl Nigella but really, there’s no excuse for this kind of sloppiness.  One of the reasons I decided to write about this kitchen nightmare was not just to shame Nigella (although that does have a certain appeal) but to show you, my readers that just because a recipe is in a cookbook, it does not mean it works. 

We all have drama’s in the kitchen, it happens to everyone.  No-one is immune from following a recipe to the letter and it failing miserably.  Usually if something isn’t up to scratch, I won’t bother to tell you guys about it but this recipe was just plain wrong and when I went back to the recipe online, I saw that there were lots of negative comments about the recipe.  I put a lot of love and a lot of good chocolate into these brownies and they were bad, they did not want to set at all, they were oozing fat and you know I love fat but this was gross.  There was a lot that was wrong with them and the moment I realised that they must be irretrievably doomed was when I found them in the back of the fridge, a week later.  Good old Mr T will eat just about anything, especially if he’s just got home from work after a hard day on his tractor but these terrible little excuses for a brownie sat untouched in the fridge.  Poor sods! 

So, this is a lesson my friends, don’t always assume that you are the problem.  Sometimes in the kitchen, things just don’t work out but as in life, you’ve got to pick yourself up and find a better brownie recipe.  Or at least I have to, I’m still hankering for a good brownie!  I’ve included a picture of the yummy white chocolate I so foolishly wasted on you Nigella… Sigh

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