Cocktail Hour 馃嵏 Aldi Valdobbiadene Prosecco Superiore DOCG Frozecco 馃嵐

As you know, for my Daughters Birthday I made Cocktails for them – I thought this weekend I would make some more – for us this time 馃構


Aldi kindly sent me a bottle of their gorgeous Valdobbiadene Prosecco Superiore DOCG, I am not just saying that because they sent me it, it’s something I buy whenever we have something nice to celebrate – for 拢7.99, to me it tastes as good as any Champagne 馃聽They asked me to try one of their Cocktail recipes ‘Frozecco’ 聽馃嵐



路 150ml Valdobbiadene Prosecco Superiore DOCG, Aldi, 拢7.99
路 20ml fresh orange juisce
路 1 cup frozen whole strawberries
路 1 teaspoon honey
路 Garnish with fresh strawberries or oranges
路 Blend all ingredients together until smooth
路 Garnish with orange slices and/or strawberries as desired
路 Serve immediately


This is lovely and refreshing, like a grownup slushy


don’t forget to top the strawberries and freeze them overnight.


Perfect for a summer evening in the garden with friends – Cheers!

Kir Royale


For another Prosecco combination, what about a Kir Royale, this traditionally is a French aperitif made with Champagne and a splash of Creme de Cassis in the bottom of a champagne flute


It is just as fabulous with the Prosecco – an amazing aperitif for a summer dinner party 馃嵕


As I was in Cocktail making mode, I will also share one of my favourites too – this is a strong one, not for the feint hearted 馃槣

Expresso Martini

250ml Frozen good quality coffee
100ml Vodka
30ml Coffee Liqueur
30ml Franjelico (Hazelnut liqueur) *optional


You could use 50ml very strong expresso and 200g icecubes – I froze 250ml strong coffee overnight.


I add all of this to the Thermomix and whizz for a few seconds on speed 7


Pour into glasses garnish with a few coffee beans and enjoy…..

Here are some other Cocktails I have made聽A White Lady聽and聽Cocobay Mojito

what are your favourite Cocktails?

Please note We are having food with this – just burgers and salad for me, jacket spuds for Hubby – well you have to have a balanced diet 馃ぃ


Party Time… 馃嵏馃嵐

Just a brief one today, we have been busy getting stuff sorted for the party – I don’t think the queen has this much fuss – I know it’s self inflicted, no sympathy required 馃構


Hubby is on garden duty, the gazebo is up, chairs and tables ready to positioned, electric is available for the DJ boyfriend- neighbors have been warned/invited – thankfully  sadly this will all be over by 10pm at the latest 馃ぃ馃ぃ


I have been baking, which is lovely on the hottest day of the years so far 馃寢

As I said yesterday I use Nigella’s cupcake recipe, it’s simple and tastes great


for 24 cupcakes I mixed 250g unsalted butter with 250g sugar and a blob of vanilla bean paste, till light and fluffy, add 4 eggs, one at a time to the mix, then add 250g of self raising flour about 1/4 at a time – add a little milk till the mixture is ‘dropping constantly.


Spoon into the cases, don’t overfill them, half to 3/4 full is enough

IMG_4100Into a preheated oven (200) for 15 minutes, then leave to cool.


I made the icing sugar yesterday, the buttercream icing is simple, add 250g unsalted butter to the mixing bowl with a small blob of vanilla bean paste, beat till pale, then carefully add 500g of icing sugar, a bit at a time so it doesn’t look like a snow storm in the kitchen.  You can colour this at this point – I am making 2 batches, one natural, one pale pink.


Spoon you icing into a large icing bag, with a star nozzle at the end, in today’s heat I popped this into the fridge for 20 minutes to firm a little.

IMG_4106I start with a blob of icing in the middle of each cake, and with a continuous swirl.

Decorate to suit – these are truly easy to make and look lovely, even if I do say so myself – great fun to make with kids 馃


The salads are finished off.


The watermelon sliced and plated.


The cakes arranged.


Cocktails are go…


Hubby is Grill King


Lets Party……….



Party Prep 馃

Tomorrow we are hosting a Birthday BBQ for our Daughter and her friends for her 21st.


Today is prep day and we have been out shopping, the BBQ meat is from Iceland, as I saved some vouchers especially for this purpose- just the normal Burgers, sausages plus spices Chicken Wings and Tiger Prawns as they are her favourite – we are not going OTT. I have some Field Mushroom and Halloumi for the Veggies 馃構


I also got some frozen Macaron- they are so pretty and taste amazing and at this price I couldn’t make them.


For a healthy sweet kick, sliced watermelon


To go with savoury I am making 2 basic salads, one a giant Cous Cous Salad – I boil this in plenty of water for 10 minutes or until tender, drain and pop back into the pan with a good glug of olive oil to keep it from sticking together – I am leaving this to cool, and will add finely sliced spring onion, cucumber, red pepper and a whole pack of chopped coriander and mint, Stir though with salt, pepper and lemon juice till ‘right’


The other a homemade coleslaw

IMG_4089I make this in the Magimix with the slicing and grating blades – I could make it in the Thermomix, but it Chops the veg and I prefer it sliced – this will be finalised tomorrow.

Instead of a Birthday cake, I am making 21 cupcakes, the base recipe I use is from Nigella’s Domestic Goddess book. These will be made tomorrow.


I make my own icing sugar in the Thermomix a kilo of icing sugar costs 拢1.70 on Sainsbury’s website, a kilo of Aldi granulated sugar is 59p

IMG_4067I add 250g of sugar and a teaspoon of cornflour to the Thermomix bowl and whizz at speed 10 for 10 seconds, stop, shake the bowl, and whizz again for another 10 seconds – I pop a sheet of kitchen roll between the measuring cup and the lid to prevent a billow of icing sugar


Repeat this till the sugar is used – hey presto – a kilo of icing sugar 馃

I am keeping these simple with pale pink rosette icing with shop bought ‘toppers’

When Grace was tiny, she couldn’t pronounce ‘Grace’ and as everyone called her Gracie, she shortened her own name to Ce-Ce (see-see) that was lengthened to Cupcake – like Families do 馃檮 聽So her birthday cake had to be Cupcakes 馃槆

IMG_4080For drinks, I said I would provide a toast drink, we are making聽Strawberry Dachari’s for those who like them from Homemade frozen Stawberry pur茅e , vodka, Lime juice, crushed ice, whizzed up in the Thermomix聽馃槈聽Aparently Cocktails are very ‘in’, I personally would prefer an Expresso Martini 馃槆


We also have a huge bottle of Prosecco to toast her with – I might even share it with others 馃ぃ聽Loads of soft drinks too

I am sure she will have a fab night, they are going onto a night club afterwards – we will be on Cleanup duty then flaking out 馃ぃ Just one more 21st to go (youngest) then they can arrange their own parties 馃

Cocobay Coconut Rum Cocktails Party practice run

Our darling daughter is 21 next month, we are having a BBQ party for her and her friends, or pre-drinks as she calls it.


Lovely Aldi have send me a bottle of their Cocobay Coconut Rum to try, and it is just perfect for Summer party cocktails I am testing 2 I am only making a glass of each today, but this will be made into big jugs for the party.


Cocobay Mojito –


Take 6 or so mint leaves and pop them in a glass, add a teaspoon of sugar of sugar, the juice of half a lime and with the end of wooden spoon bash together till the mint oil is released into the sugar and lime – it smells delicious.


Add a measure of Cocobay and top up with a third of a glass of crushed ice and top up with soda water – this is so light, refreshing.


Cocobay Cuba Libre


Lets keep it simple, Cocobay Coconut Rum, Lime and cola for each glass a measure of Cocobay


juice of half a lime and top up with crushed ice and cola


These will keep the girls happy whilst we BBQ their food – I’m really looking forward to her ‘Big birthday’ I’m sure I will post more nearer the time 馃槈


Thanks to Aldi for sending me the Cocobay – it’s delicious and a bargain price for a party.

A Christmas Cocktail 馃嵏Steak Dinner and a cheeky glass of Red Wine 馃構

We like to have a few drinks with friends, and Christmas is a great chance to catch up with everyone..

Aldi kindly sent me a bottle of their Oliver Cromwell London Gin to try, it is a lovely crisp Gin with a good herbal balance, we thought we would make our favourite way to drink it…


It is a cocktail known as a White Lady, it is a delicious mix of Orange from Triple Sec and Lemon juice which mixes with the herbal fusion of the Gin – a Winter Winner That would make a fantastic welcome for guests over the festive season 馃嵏


Mix 4 parts of Gin to one of Triple Sec, I have used Aldi’s own version of Cointreau 聽from this summer and one of lemon juice – I don’t own a cocktail shaker, so I use my Thermomix, chuck a few chunks of ice into the bowl, the Gin, orange liqueur and lemon juice- a quick spin on reverse speed 2 and strain into glasses.


Winter Wonderland White and a really nice, fresh cocktail to celebrate Christmas and New Year – Cheers….


Dinner tonight is a simple steak with baked Potato and a Rocket salad, and to continue the booze theme we will be trying another Aldi bottle, a South African Pinotage called Cambalala – this is a really lush, fruity, full bodied wine which goes so well with our griddled Rib Eye steaks tonight, keeping it simple with a baked potato and green salad.


One for our Christmas drinks cabinet 馃嵎