Cheap and Easy Garlic Bread Recipe!

Garlic Bread has one of the most distinctive smells of any food. It’s also incredibly popular and can be eaten on its own or with pretty much any saucy dish.

So here’s a cheap and easy way of impressing your tinder date with your mad garlic bread skills – although I would advise mints after.

What you need:

  • 3 Bread Slices – Any type. Can be loaf, baguette etc.
  • Butter – Any type, for a vegan recipe use Sunflower Spread.
  • 3 Garlic Cloves – This is for a medium garlic taste, use more or less cloves if you want a stronger or weaker flavour.
  • Frying Pan
  • Grill
  • Mushrooms – Optional
  • Italian Herbs – Optional

 

Step 1.

  • Preheat grill on medium heat for later.
  • Crush and peal the garlic. Finely chop the inner parts of the garlic. Slice up 2 mushrooms into tiny bits if using.

Step 2.

  • Add the garlic and 2 heaped teaspoons of butter into a preheated pan.
  • Cook the garlic and butter in a high heat until the butter is a golden liquid and garlic very lightly browned.
  • Add mushrooms and Italian herbs if using.

Step 3.

  • Cook the mixture in the pan for a further few minutes or until the mushroom pieces have softened. Keep mixing.
  • If not using mushrooms cook for a further few minutes anyway. Keep stirring.

Step 4.

  • Spread the garlic and mushroom butter onto 3 slices of the bread of your choosing.
  • Place the bread under the grill. This allows the bread to toast and the garlic mixture to seep into the bread – at this point you can add some grated cheese for cheesy garlic bread if you wish.

Step 5.

  • When the bread looks golden or is toasted to your liking remove it from the grill.

Step 6.

  • Serve and enjoy as a snack or with your meal
  • garlic
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The Raven – Glasgow

Recently I was searching online for a cheap restaurant with a menu that took my fancy. I happened to accidentally stumble upon The Raven when I pressed the wrong link on my phone. This was one of the few mistakes in my life that I really do not regret.

Situated on Renfield Street, The Raven is a venue I must have walked past many times without actually noticing it. The Raven has a spacious open plan bar and restaurant area with a chill feel to it.

To start I decided to try the baby back ribs. I have never been tempted by ribs before but I decided it was tfooodime to try. They were marinated in a honey glaze and served with BBQ sauce (my not-so-guilty-pleasure.) I’m incredibly glad I chose the ribs because they were beautiful. Succulent and full of flavour, the ribs were my meal highlight. The sweet-sticky taste was a delight to the taste buds. The meat was cooked perfectly and just fell off the bone – so there was no awkward fork tugging or finger eating.

For my main I had a beef chili burrito with sweet potato fries. For those who do not know the ins and outs of the burrito it is a flour tortilla filled with with rice, beans, cheese & salsa, and meat or veg of your choice. So basically it’s like the perfect combo. For only £6 you get a huge (!!) and stuffed burrito (that my boyfriend couldn’t even finish) and a large helping of delicious sweet potato fries. The main on its own would be enough to fill a person up.

As an added bonus The Raven provide a large selection of condiments placed on every table to accompany your meal, plus a roll of kitchen towel for anyone who decides to choose the main course half rack or full rack of ribs.

EXTRA added bonus – they serve cocktails!

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The Black Sparrow – Glasgow

The Black Sparrow is a grand hidden gem tucked into an unsuspecting underpass at Charing Cross. The out-side appearance is that of a traditional old pub- but this place is anything but traditional.

With ceilings that stretch to infinity, huge paintings and a classic mirrored bar, the restaurant is quite a visual delight. I had never heard of this place, but as my consumerist brain had taught me to believe that I must go out to dinner on Valentine’s Day, me and my partner chose this as our restaurant of choice.

To start I had the mussels in a white garlic and parsley sauce and crusty soda bread. Mussels are an acquired taste and due to their fiddly nature many people are put off. However I would endeavour anyone – sea food lover or not – to try these beautifully cooked, fresh and mouth-watering mussels. I suggest saving the soda bread until the mussels are finished and soaking it in the garlic and parsley sauce. It was phenomenal.

I chose the venison casserole with braised red cabbage, and creamy mash as a main course. Choosing a main was the toughest part of the meal. With an impressive list of fine and interesting courses, even the fussiest of eaters are catered for. The casserole was delightful. It was hearty, rich and there was plenty of it. The venison was full of flavour and almost melted in the mouth, the cabbage was aromatic and crunchy and the mash was light and creamy. I couldn’t have asked for any better.

sparrow

The delicious casserole. Its size was impressive.

For dessert I had the apple and caramel tarte with cinnamon ice cream. The tarte it’s self was fairly mediocre but the cinnamon ice cream more than made up for the shortcomings of the tarte. The ice cream was thick, creamy and masterfully flavoured to allow the light cinnamon flavour to come through rather the bitterness you get tasting straight cinnamon.

I will most definitely be back.

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Proud Mary Glasgow – Ping Pong and Booze, What’s Not to Love?

Certain things in life just fit together so perfectly. Jager and Red Bull, students and pasta, fry-ups and hang overs, late night bars and ping pong…wait, what was that last one?

Last month Glasgow’s first ever late night ping pong bar and restaurant opened at the bottom of Queen Street. With a spacious restaurant area on the top floor, leading down to the basement area with its own bar, ping pong tables and a secluded ping pong area which caters to parties and events.

The menu is deliciously modern and is perfect for the self-confessed ‘foodie’.

platterI would urge anyone to try the sharing platters. We tried the one called ‘Here Comes Heaven Again’. This consisted of a (generous) block or Camembert, breads, olives, home-made chutney, and pickled beetroot. The Camembert was melted in the middle to create a spreadable delight, and mixed with the chutney they made one of those destined mixtures that fit so perfectly together.

 

sandI then tried the Scottish twist on the croque monsieur. This contained ham and cheese (obviously) with red onion and traditional Scottish black pudding on ciabatta. The sandwich was really tasty and the black pudding gave it a real edge and texture which I enjoyed.

Our side dish was aubergine chips with a blue cheese sauce. Blue cheese is my weakness so I couldn’t resist. The sauce was thick, creamy and mouth-watering. A+.

Proud Mary also has its own fabulous cocktail menu, so if the food doesn’t tempt you the cocktails definitely will.

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The 13th Note

Glasgow is king for the beloved restaurant/music venue mix. The minimalist restaurant and bar mixed with the grungy basement venue make for a great evening out.

The 13th Note in Glasgow’s Merchant city is one of these beloved phenomenon. Boasting a fantastically bright and open bar area, with high ceilings and friendly staff. Don’t get me wrong the openness of the room doesn’t take away from the intimacy of the restaurant which is provided by the cosy booths, dark wood tables and various art installations throughout the bar area.

The food served at 13th Note is vegetarian and vegan. I can hear you sign friends, but 13th note do some of the best food in Glasgow, and I would even speculate that they have the best vegetarian burgers in town.

So far I have visited 13th Note twice. After seeing a facebook friend tag themselves there and doing a little further research I realised it was a place I wanted to visit, so on a whim I grabbed patient boyfriend and set off. The second time I went was to celebrate a loved one’s birthday. Both times I was utterly impressed with their food.

Food what we had:

  • Ginger, Lemongrass and Risotto Cakes with a Thai Green Curry
    • This was the first thing that caught my eye on the menu. The crunch of the shell, the softness of the rice, the fieriness of the curry, and the fresh taste of the lemongrass and ginger made the meal a total delight. The meal was served with a generous slice of doughy flat bread.

 

  • Spicy Veggie Burger with Hummus, Fried Onions, Fries and a Fresh Salad.
    • Literal best veggie I have ever had. The mix of a soft fried veg patty, the crunchy toasted bun, crispy fried onions and creamy hummus was fab. A total contrast from the normal soft bun/chewy patty of a meat burger. Filling and less likely to kill you than other burgers.

 

13th Note also has an extensive range of vegan and vegetarian beers for those meat-haters who still like a good bevvy. For those of you who think beer tastes like death (me) there is also a fantastic cocktail menu.

Head on down to 13th Note.

 

rice cakes

Risotto Cakes  

burgers

Awesome Burgers – Sorry for the shit photo. 

 

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Crushed Hopes

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The 5 Second Rule is a Lie!

We all know it. We’re all guilty of breaking it. It’s the 5 Second Rule.

If for some unimaginable reason you haven’t heard of the 5 Second Rule then you may be a little grossed out by it. Basically, if you drop a food item on the floor you have 5 seconds to pick it up before it becomes covered in bacteria. I’m not talking about things like spaghetti or yogurt. Please refrain from picking them up off the floor. They are gone.

According to a recent study conducted by American High-School student, Jillian Clarke, during a placement at a microbiology laboratory, E.coli (a bacteria that can cause vomiting, diarrhoea and stomach cramps) can fully contaminate a piece of food the size of a gummy bear within 5 seconds of it hitting flooring that may contain the E.coli bacteria. Ew.

It has been concluded that dryer foods such as nuts, crisps and biscuits have a decreased chance of becoming infected, but there are many food scientists who believe that when food is dropped on the floor it should stay there. This is a massive blow for those of us who are either too lazy or too poor to buy more food.

The NHS have a whole web page devoted to the rule – no, really. The page explains how the amount of time food is left on the floor is not as significant as how contaminated the surface is.

So basically I recommend not eating a anything dropped on the surface you recently cut raw meat  on, however if you drop it on a recently hoovered carpet you’ll probably live. Probably.

My dropped Skips that inspired me to write this post :(

My dropped Skips that inspired me to write this post 😦

Sources 

http://www.mirror.co.uk/usvsth3m/five-second-rule-lie—5467858

http://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2015/sep/28/is-the-five-second-food-rule-really-true

http://www.nhs.uk/Livewell/homehygiene/Pages/does-the-five-second-rule-really-work.aspx

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Himalaya Café – Edinburgh

“Himalaya is colour, Himalaya is love, Himalaya is flavour, Himalaya is therapy, Himalaya is Community.”

This quote features on the Facebook Information page for the famous Edinburgh eatery Himalaya Café. Often said to serve the best Chai tea in Edinburgh, Himalaya Café resides at number 20, South Clerk Street and offers authentic, home cooked Indian, Nepalese, and Tibetan cuisine.

Himalaya Café provides a serene and relaxing environment away from the constant bustle of the Edinburgh streets, with soothing Tibetan music and tranquil authentic décor, the café really places itself well above all other places like it.

The café has an interesting history. It was founded by a woman named Reka whose dream had been to open a shop. After meeting the Dalai Lama in 2005, his words  inspired her to open the wonderful Café in 2007.

Mango Lassie

Mango Lassie

I often frequent Himalaya Café when in Edinburgh. Thick, creamy and topped with cinnamon, their mango lassies are a delightful and refreshing treat. Their menu is full of feel-good food that tastes delicious and it is obvious when looking and tasting that much care and thought has gone into preparing every meal.

I would recommend trying one the Himalaya’s delicious wraps.

Stuffed and packed full of flavour with a delicious home-made salad and a pot of crisps on the side, these wraps will leave you feeling full and happy.

himHimalaya café also sells hand-crafted jewellery, bedding, stationery, clothing, pottery, and incense. This means there is now no excuse to not visit this lovely place. The staff are knowledgeable, happy to talk, and very efficient and friendly.

Himalaya Café’s aim is to “Bring a piece of Tibet to Scotland” And they have achieved this beautifully.

Wrap Menu - Himalaya Cafe

Wrap Menu – Himalaya Cafe

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Yo! Yocoko

I realised very quickly after leaving home, bound for university, that my expensive taste in food was going to be a habit I had to shake off quickly. So now wherever I find myself I’m always on the lookout for places to eat that are cheap and look friendly.

Portion size is also of importance to me. I have the ability to shock people with the amount of food I can ingest. Put me in a room with 100 people and I’m sure I could out-eat at least 80% of them, probably more.

This is why Yocoko noodle bar in Edinburgh was fantastic for me.  Situated in South Bridge, Edinburgh, just around the corner from the famous Chambers Street Museum, Yocoko has an extensive menu filled with authentic Asian style cuisine.

As on the day we visited our budget was low, we opted to both go for noodles. I chose chicken satay wok fried noodles, and my vegetarian friend chose the vegetable satay noodles.  It’s fair to say my mouth literally watered when the food arrived. Laid down in front of me was a filled plate of the most fantastic smelling food. The portion was huge. Filled with tender chicken and crunchy vegetables and topped with a slightly spicy peanut satay sauce. I was left feeling full and very happy with my choice of lunch for that day.

Chicken satay noodles and vegetable satay noodles at Yokoko Edinburgh

Chicken satay noodles and vegetable satay noodles at Yocoko Edinburgh

The interior is very minimalist but has comfy seats and a nice view onto the busy streets of Edinburgh. The staff are also quick, efficient and knowledgeable of the choices on the menu – many of which I could not pronounce.

Yocoko also offer a takeaway option for their meals. Meaning you can eat their delicious food with your feet up, on the sofa if you are lucky enough to reside in Edinburgh.

To top it all off for those of you on a tight budget Yocoko also offer free green tea to accompany your meal. Our bill came to less than £10 for two very large, filling and delicious meals plus a pot of green tea. We will definitely be going back and I would thoroughly recommend a visit.

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Cranberry Juice – Not Just A Mixer

Many of you will be surprised to know that cranberry juice isn’t just a delightful mixer for the traditional double vodka drink, it is, in fact, actually very good for you. Especially for your young, greasy, and possibly acne filled skin.

I’m not a scientist as many of you will be shocked to hear, but I do have a lot of personal experience with cranberry juice (mostly without alcohol). It’s been my favourite juice drink since primary school so ever since then I’ve been drinking it on a regular basis. On occasion I find myself drinking a litre of the stuff a day which obviously isn’t good for my teeth but it’s better for me than any fizzy drink.

I very rarely wear any makeup, not out of any feminist stance, I genuinely don’t like the feel of it on my face and I find myself more self-conscious with it on than off.  My skin isn’t perfect but it’s far from what would be deemed as ’bad skin’. I’ve never had acne, I very rarely get spots and if I do they don’t tend to last long. I dedicate all my skin success to drinking cranberry juice.

cranberry-juice-4

Science-ish

Cranberries have recently been classified as a Superfood. These are foods which are known to be full of nutrients and are especially beneficial to human health and all-round wellbeing. Cranberry juice is rich in anti-oxidants. I don’t necessarily know what anti-oxidants do, however,  I have been assured by scientist friends that they are a good thing.

Cranberry juice contains flavonoids and salicylic acid, both of these are commonly synthetically created and added to many acne and spot treatment creams and gels. Many of these creams are expensive and for students can be out of their price range – ironically this happens to be the demographic that would need these creams the most – So cranberry juice can work as an all-natural substitute for them. Salicylic acid is also the active ingredient in Aspirin so cranberry juice can also act as a mild pain relief.  Cranberry juice also contains calcium, potassium and proteins that aid the rejuvenation of skin cells. So it’s worthwhile continuing to drink the juice even after your skin has cleared up.

The typical cup of cranberry juice contains 45 calories – with different brands varying due to the amount of sugar added.  Due to this cranberry juice fits in with typical dietary guidelines of consuming 2,000 calories per day for women, and 2,500 for men.  Comparing this to the 138 calories contained within 1 can of coke, it’s obvious to see that cranberry juice is a superior drink on the market.

Cranberry juice can also help fight against:

  • Urinary Tract Infections
  • Tumours
  • Respiratory Diseases
  • Colds and Flu
  • Kidney stones
  • Ulcers

So kids, next time you’re on a night out why not opt for cranberry juice as the mixer of choice, it may not help the hangover, but at least your skin will look spectacular while you’re slumped over a stranger’s toilet bowl.

Sources:

http://www.bustle.com/articles/48765-3-cranberry-juice-uses-for-hair-and-skin-just-in-time-for-all-your-holiday-dinner

https://www.organicfacts.net/health-benefits/fruit/health-benefits-of-cranberry-juice.html

https://www.cas.org/news/insights/science-connections/aspirin

http://www.nlm.nih.gov/medlineplus/antioxidants.html

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