Cosy Creativity

Get flipping for Pancake Day this Tuesday!

12 Feb 2018 09:00:00

Everybody loves a pancake…or two for Shrove Tuesday. But where did this tradition start and what is the meaning behind it? How can you make the perfect pancakes to serve up?

Pancake Day, or Shrove Tuesday, is the traditional feast day before the start of Lent on Ash Wednesday. Lent – the 40 days leading up to Easter – was traditionally a time of fasting and on Shrove Tuesday, Christians went to confession and were “shriven” (absolved from their sins). A bell would be rung to call people to confession, this came to be known as the “Pancake Bell” and is still rung today.

Shrove Tuesday always falls 47 days before Easter Sunday, so the date varies from year to year and falls between the 3rd of February and the 9th of March. In 2018 Shrove Tuesday will fall on the 13th February. Shrove Tuesday was traditionally the last opportunity to use up the eggs and fats before embarking on the Lenten fast; pancakes are the perfect way of using up these ingredients.

A pancake is a thin, flat cake, made of batter and fried in a frying pan. A traditional English pancake is very thin and served immediately. The pancake has a very long history and featured in cookery books as far back as 1439! The tradition of tossing or flipping them is almost as old:

“And every man and maide doe take their turne,

And tosse their Pancakes up for feare they burne”

Pasquil’s Palin, 1619.

Make your own delicious pancakes

The ingredients for pancakes can be seen to symbolise four points of significance at this time of year:
Eggs: creation
Flour: the staff of life
Salt: wholesomeness
Milk: purity

To make 8 or so pancakes you will need: 8oz plain flour, 2 large eggs, 1 pint milk, salt.

Mix all the ingredients together and whisk well, then leave to stand for 30 minutes. Heat a little oil in a frying pan, pour in enough batter to cover the base of the pan and let it cook until the base of the pancake has browned. Then shake the pan to loosen the pancake and flip the pancake over to brown the other side – being careful not to drop it! Golden syrup or lemon juice and caster sugar are the usual toppings for pancakes.

Pancakes

Fresh fruit makes a healthy addition to any pancake

Are you particularly proud of your pancake flipping? Share some photos with us via email at community@cosyfeet.com and we’ll share it on social media.

0 Comments | Posted in Cosyfeet Blog, Cosy Creativity by Daisy Nicholson-Lailey

How to make our sock hedgehogs

11 Oct 2017 12:00:00

Wondering what to do with your odd socks? Why not follow our step by step tutorial and turn them into the cute hedgehogs featured on the cover of our latest sock and hosiery catalogue.

Issue 39

Wondering what to do with your odd socks? Why not follow our step by step tutorial and turn them into the cute hedgehogs featured on the cover of our latest sock and hosiery catalogue.

Step-by-step guide:

1. Choose your socks - we recommend three to get a nice variation of colour:

Step 1

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2. Cut out the pieces that you need using our hedgehog pattern, click here:

Step 2

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

3. Start with the ears; cut the shapes out and sew right sides together:

Step 3

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

4. Turn ears round the right way and sew open ends together to create a 'pinch' effect:

Step 4

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

5. Stuff nose section with wadding and sew to secure:

Step 5

Step 5

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

6. Sew triangle sections of head along two sides, right sides together:

Step 6

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

7. Pin and stitch nose piece (facing inwards) at the 'point' of the triangle section:

Step 7

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

8. Sew body sections along two sides, right sides together:

Step 8

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

9. Pin ears in correct place (these will be sewn in place when all sections are joined):

Step 9

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

10. Arrange two separate sections (head and body) correctly; pin and sew into place:

Step 10

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

11. Attach base section underneath the pinned head and body – sew everything together, leaving a small opening at the rear. (You should now have an inside-out hedgehog!):

Step 11

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

12. Turn the hedgehog the right way round and stuff with wadding, then sew up the remaining opening:

Step 12

Step 12

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

13. Add eyes and make as many as you like!

Step 13

Step 13

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We would love to see your hedgehog creations – send your photos to creativity@cosyfeet.com and we’ll share them on the website and social media!

0 Comments | Posted in Cosy Creativity by Daisy Nicholson-Lailey

A seasonal fish recipe for September

22 Sep 2017 09:00:00

The most natural way of eating fish is to eat varieties that are in season and therefore plentiful. Sardines are particularly abundant in September so it’s a great time of year to make the most of this healthy, flavoursome fish...

The most natural way of eating fish is to eat varieties that are in season and therefore plentiful. This helps to reduce the impact we have on the fish population. Sardines are particularly abundant in September so it’s a great time of year to make the most of this healthy, flavoursome fish.

Sardines are an oily fish that are packed with protein and are rich in omega-3 so they’re good for your heart. They’re also a rich source of bone-building vitamin D.

This simple recipe is easy to make and is ideal as a starter or to serve at a party:

Sardines on bruschetta with crème fraice

Sardines on bruschetta with crème fraiche

Ingredients:

  • 4 fresh sardines, cleaned and filleted
  • 4 thick slices Italian bread
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic
  • Salt and fresh ground black pepper
  • 1 lemon
  • 1 teaspoon chopped Italian flat-leaf parsley
  • Crème fraiche
  • Fresh tomatoes

Method:

1. Lightly oil the bread slices with olive oil and place them on a baking sheet. Place under the grill and toast until golden brown and crisp.

2. While the toast is still warm, rub 1 side of each slice with the fresh garlic. Place 2 sardine fillets, silver skin side facing up, on each toast and put back on the baking sheet. Season with salt and pepper.

3. Grill for 4 to 6 minutes. Remove the tray from the oven and garnish with a squeeze of lemon juice, chopped tomatoes, chopped parsley and a spoonful of crème fraiche. Serve immediately.

0 Comments | Posted in Cosy Creativity by Daisy Nicholson-Lailey

How to make mulled apple juice

6 Sep 2017 16:12:03

Perfect for children and drivers, this simple, non-alcoholic drink is a delicious alternative to mulled cider or wine.

Perfect for children and drivers, this simple, non-alcoholic drink is a delicious alternative to mulled cider or wine. 

Ingredients:

  • 1 litre apple juice
  • Strips of orange peel
  • 1 cinnamon stick
  • 3 cloves
  • Honey or sugar, to taste

Method:

1. In a large saucepan, simmer the apple juice with the strips of orange peel, cinnamon stick and cloves for about 10 minutes until all the flavours have infused.

2. Sweeten to taste with sugar or honey.

3. If you wish, you can serve each drink with a little orange peel and a piece of cinnamon stick.

Apple Juice

0 Comments | Posted in Cosy Creativity by Daisy Nicholson-Lailey

Make your Own Ice Lollies!

18 Aug 2017 09:00:00

Ice lollies are easy to make and children and grandchildren will love helping out. They’re also healthier and cheaper than shop-bought versions...

Strawberry Milk Lollies

Strawberry Milk Lollies

Ingredients:

  • 400g ripe strawberries
  • 200ml semi-skimmed milk
  • 405g light condensed milk

Method:

  1. 1. Hull the strawberries and whizz them in a food processor until smooth. Mix in the milk and condensed milk.
  2. 2. Pour the mixture into 12 ice-lolly moulds and attach the tops. Freeze for a minimum of 4 hours or until solid. Warm the moulds with your hands or under warm water to release the lollies. 

 

Melon Ice Lollies

Melon Ice Lollies

Ingredients:

  • 500g watermelon flesh, cut into chunks – no need to de-seed it
  • 300g honeydew melon flesh (de-seeded), cut into chunks
  • Juice of one lime
  • 100 ml pressed apple juice

Method:

  1. 1. Put the watermelon in a blender and whizz until smooth. Strain into a jug, then pour into 8 lolly moulds about a third of the way up. Freeze for about 1 hour or until almost frozen solid.
  2. 2. Rinse out the blender and add the honeydew melon with the lime juice and apple juice and whizz to a purée.
  3. 3. Push the mixture through a sieve and pour into the lolly moulds, inserting a stick in the middle, and freeze until solid. Pour in the remaining watermelon juice to fill the moulds and then freeze. 

 

Orange Lollies

Orange Lollies

Ingredients:

  • 5 large carrots
  • Juice of 4 large oranges, zest of one
  • 1 satsuma, peeled then chopped

Method:

1. Finely grate the carrots and place in the middle of a clean tea towel.

2. Gather up the towel and squeeze the carrot juice into a jug, discarding the pulp.

3. Add the orange juice and top up with a little cold water if needed. Stir in the orange zest and satsuma pieces. Pour into lolly moulds and freeze overnight. 

0 Comments | Posted in Cosyfeet Blog, Cosy Creativity by Daisy Nicholson-Lailey

Easy BBQ Recipes

29 Jun 2017 09:00:00

Inspired by the fantastic summer weather, we’ve rustled up some simple but delicious recipes to help you enjoy some alfresco dining...

Inspired by the fantastic summer weather, we’ve rustled up some simple but delicious recipes to help you enjoy some alfresco dining:

Honey and Mustard Grilled Chicken

Honey and Mustard Grilled Chicken

Ingredients:

1 tsp. Dijon mustard

2 tbsp. honey

2 tbsp. mayonnaise

1 tsp. brown sauce

4 skinless, boneless chicken breast halves or chicken wings

Method:

  1. In a shallow bowl, mix the mustard, honey, mayonnaise and brown sauce. Set aside a small amount of the honey mustard sauce for basting and dip the chicken into the remaining sauce to coat.
  2. Lightly oil the grill grate. Grill the chicken over indirect heat for 18 to 20 minutes, turning occasionally, or until juices run clear. Baste occasionally with the reserved sauce during the last 10 minutes. 

 

Halloumi Kebabs

Halloumi Kebabs

Ingredients:

2 medium courgettes

1 large red onion

250g of halloumi cheese cut into chunks

16 cherry tomatoes

For the baste:

1 tbsp. olive oil

2 tbsp. lemon juice

2 tsp. fresh thyme leaves

1 tsp. Dijon mustard

Method:

  1. Halve the courgettes lengthways, then thickly slice. Cut the onion into wedges and separate into pieces. Thread the halloumi, cherry tomatoes, courgettes and onion onto eight skewers. Cover and chill the kebabs until you are ready to cook.
  2. To make the baste, mix together the olive oil, lemon juice, thyme, mustard and seasoning. (This can be made ahead and chilled.)
  3. Preheat the barbecue or grill and arrange the kebabs on the rack. Brush with the baste, stirring it first to make sure the ingredients are blended. Cook for 4-5 minutes, turning often, until the cheese begins to turn golden and the vegetables are just tender.

  4. Homemade Burgers

    Homemade BurgersIngredients:

Olive oil

1 red onion, peeled and finely chopped

1 x 500g pack of beef steak mince

I tsp. Dijon mustard

1 pinch of salt

4 white rolls

Lettuce leaves

1 beef tomato, sliced

Method:

  1. Heat the olive oil in a frying pan, add the onion and cook for 5 minutes until softened and starting to turn golden. Set aside.
  2. In a bowl, combine the beef mince with the mustard and salt. Add the onions and mix well. Use your hands to shape the mixture into 4 patties.

Cook the burgers on a preheated barbecue or griddle for 5-6 minutes on each side. Meanwhile, lightly toast the cut-sides of the buns on the barbecue. Fill with the lettuce, burgers and tomato slices.

Click here for a refreshing salad and drinks to complete your meal!

Compete your special look with our summer limited edition colours!

0 Comments | Posted in Cosyfeet Blog, Cosy Creativity by Daisy Nicholson-Lailey

Simple Summer Recipes

29 Jun 2017 09:00:00

Inspired by the fantastic summer weather, we’ve rustled up some simple but delicious recipes to help you enjoy some alfresco dining...

Inspired by the fantastic summer weather, we’ve rustled up some simple but delicious recipes to help you enjoy some alfresco dining:

Greek Pasta Salad

Greek Pasta Salad

Ingredients:

300g fusilli pasta spirals

225g bag of fresh baby spinach

250g punnet of cherry tomatoes, halved

100g black olives

200g feta cheese, broken into rough chunks

3 tbsp. olive oil

Method:

  1. Tip the fusilli into a large pan of boiling salted water and boil for 10 minutes. Throw in the spinach, stir well and boil for another 2 minutes. Drain into a colander or sieve and leave to drip-dry.
  2. Tip the tomatoes, olives and feta into a big bowl, grind lots of black pepper over and then drizzle with the olive oil.
  3. Toss in the drained pasta and spinach.

Non-Alcoholic Mojito

Non-Alcoholic Mojito

Ingredients:

Glass filled with crushed ice

Half a glass of lemonade or ginger ale

Quarter of a glass of apple juice

1 tsp. of golden sugar

8 sprigs of mint

One lime

Method:

  1. Mash the brown sugar with 4 sprigs of mint.
  2. Add a little apple juice as you mash.
  3. Add the rest of the apple juice, lemonade, 4 sprigs of mint and half the lime juice.
  4. Add two lime wedges to serve.

 

Dont forget to break out your BBQ and try these fantastic recipes too!

Compete your special look with our summer limited edition colours!

0 Comments | Posted in Cosyfeet Blog, Cosy Creativity by Daisy Nicholson-Lailey

Make Your Own Scotch Eggs

16 Jun 2017 09:45:00

Perfect for summer picnics, these tasty scotch eggs are easy to make and are guaranteed to impress your friends and family!

Perfect for summer picnics, these tasty scotch eggs are easy to make and are guaranteed to impress your friends and family!

Ingredients:

  • 5 large eggs
  • 300g good-quality pork sausage, skinned
  • 1 tsp black peppercorn, crushed
  • 140g cooked ham, shredded
  • 25g sage, apple & onion stuffing mix
  • 1 tsp chopped sage
  • 1 tsp chopped thyme
  • 1 tsp chopped parsley
  • 100g plain flour, seasoned, plus extra for dusting
  • 100g dried breadcrumb
  • sunflower oil for frying

Method:

    1. Bring a pan of salted water to the boil. Lower 4 of the eggs into the pan and simmer for 7 mins 30 secs. Scoop out and place in a bowl of iced water, cracking the shells a little so they’re easier to peel later. Leave them to cool completely, then peel and set aside.

    2. Put the sausage meat, pepper, ham, stuffing and herbs in a small bowl, mix to combine, then divide into 4 equal balls. Squash one of the balls between a piece of cling film until it’s as flat as possible. One at a time, lightly flour each cooked egg, then use the cling film to help roll the sausage meat around the egg to completely encase. Repeat with the remaining sausage balls and eggs.

    3. Beat the remaining egg and put on a plate. Put the flour and breadcrumbs on 2 separate plates. Roll the encased eggs in the flour, then the beaten egg and finally the breadcrumbs.

    4. To cook the eggs, heat 5cm of the oil in a wide saucepan or wok until it reaches 160C on a cooking thermometer or until a few breadcrumbs turn golden after 10 secs in the oil.  Depending on the size of your pan, lower as many eggs as you can into the oil and cook for 8-10 mins until golden and crispy. Drain on kitchen paper and leave to cool.

Do you have a favourite picnic recipe? We’d love to hear it! Send your recipe idea to creativity@cosyfeet.com and we’ll share it on social media.

Click here to see our top tips for a successful picnic.

Click here to see our picnic-friendly products.

0 Comments | Posted in Cosyfeet Blog, Cosy Creativity by Daisy Nicholson-Lailey

Make Your Own Basket Flower Arrangement

19 May 2017 09:00:00

Follow our simple step-by-step guide to create your own pretty basket arrangement – perfect as a gift or a decoration to brighten up any room!

EquipmentThis simple step-by-step guide will have you making beautiful arrangements in no time!

What you will need:

-          A container or basket (waterproof lined)

-          Floral foam

-          A sink full of cold water

-          An elastic band or florist tape

-          Secateurs or florist scissors

-          Flowers and foliage

 

Method:

    1. Float floral foam on the surface of a sink of water – do not force it under the water as this will create air-pockets:

Step 1

    2. Once soaked – secure it within your container, either with an elastic band, as we have done, or florist tape:

    Step 2

    3. Start by creating a foliage outline, this should stem from a central focal point to ensure a pleasing shape. As you do this, you can establish the desired shape, width and height:

    Step 3

    4. Add main focal flowers to the top and around the sides:

    Step 4

    5. Add filler flowers in between, at different heights to add interest. Place some deep within the design to create depth:

    Step 5

    6. Add extra foliage to cover any exposed foam:

    Step 6

    7. Check your arrangement from every angle for evenness and foam coverage. Add any decorative touches such as bows, tags, etc and your arrangement is complete:

    Step 7

    8. Top up the container with water on a daily basis and your arrangement should last for around two weeks:

Step 8

A big thank you to our local florist from Abundiflora in Glastonbury for providing such a great step-by-step guide. Have you made your own arrangement? We’d love to see it! Send your photos to creativity@cosyfeet.com and we’ll share them on social media

0 Comments | Posted in Cosy Creativity by Daisy Nicholson-Lailey

Create beautiful long-lasting displays with hanging baskets

8 May 2017 10:37:42

Hanging baskets are a wonderful addition to any home and garden no matter the size. They provide impact and colour throughout the summer months. Follow these simple tips and you will have a stunning display to enjoy in summer.

Hanging baskets are a wonderful addition to any home and garden no matter the size.  They provide impact and colour throughout the summer months. Follow these simple tips and you will have a stunning display to enjoy in summer

Hanging Basket

Choosing the right compost will pay off in the long run.  Always use a quality and fresh compost in your baskets, mix in some slow release fertiliser as the plants will be very hungry and water retaining granules.  The plants will require a lot of water to keep them looking good.  Water retaining granules hold up to 600 times their weight in water so will help with the watering, but keep an eye on them as you may still need to water twice a day!

April is the ideal time to start planting up your baskets. Keeping them in a greenhouse or putting them out during the day will help settle them in and bring them on until you are ready to move them to their final location once all chance of frost has gone.

To create a large, full basket, side planting is a must if you have a wire basket. Wicker baskets or 10" baskets don't allow for this but can still make a wonderful show.  You will need a liner for your basket, there are pre-formed fibre liners ready to just drop in, sisal or coco liners are also available, both are easy to use with side planting.  A little tip for side planting is to wrap the small plants/plugs roots in paper and ease them through the holes so as not to damage the tiny root ball.

After planting, the removal of the first flowers that appear and pinching out new shoots will encourage the plants to put all their energy into producing a good root growth and a bushy plant, which in turn will lead to masses of flowers for the season.

When choosing plants make sure to choose ones that will thrive in the position you hang your baskets.  If you have a sunny site picked out then plants such as Petunias / Surfinias, Pelargoniums / Geraniums and Verbena / Temari will be a better option. For more shady spots the Fuchsia, Begonias and Impatiens would suit more.

To maintain your baskets and keep them looking their best, regular deadheading and trimming of tired, straggly shoots must be done throughout the growing season along with regular watering and liquid feeding as baskets are thirsty and hungry.

Hanging Basket

Courtesy of Oaklands Nursery in Street, Somerset: www.oaklandsnurseryltd.com.

Are you proud of the hanging baskets in your garden? We’d love to see them! Send your photos to creativity@cosyfeet.com and we’ll share them on social media. 

0 Comments | Posted in Cosy Creativity by Daisy Nicholson-Lailey
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