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Wednesday, 13 December 2017

Super-easy asian-spiced gyoza

Now the snow is really falling here there's only one thing that can help stave off the sniffles - spicy food and lots of it. I love gyoza and, as I've said approx 345 times on this blog, if it wasn't easy I wouldn't make them haha. These are filled with asian spiced pork and surrounded with a crispy skin. We dip ours in soy sauce and they are so delicious that even though we eat them often we have never, ever, ever, in the history of gyoza making, made it to the table. We just stand by the kitchen counter and stuff our mouths! Lazy but true!

I bought the dumpling wrappers which I would describe as an absolutely essential item. I have made the wrappers before and it's not that difficult but it takes absolutely ages, plus since you have to go to a specialist shop anyway for the flour...why not just buy the wrappers and be done with it? Anyway if you are determined to make them and have several hours free then you need to create a mixture of half flour and half water rolled into small circles. You will need to buy dumpling flour which is more finely ground than regular.

If you want to make these you will need:

For the gyoza:
500 grams lean pork mince (beef mince will not taste as good here). I tend to make a meat version for my boyfriend and a vege based one for myself - if you use quorn it's the exact same steps apart from you don't need to marinate the meat and it also wont form as smooth a paste, but it does work!
1 tbsp of garlic (finely chopped or ground)
1 tbsp of fresh grated ginger (take off the skin with the back of a hot teaspoon before grating)
3 tbsp of soy sauce
1 hot finely chopped chilli
1 finely chopped spring onion
1 egg
1 packet of dumpling wrappers

For the dipping sauce:
1 chilli (finely chopped)
Drizzle of sesame oil
Soy sauce (I use reduced salt because I have this alot but it's up to you)
1 spring onion (finely chopped)

This feeds about 5 people or 2 hungry people for 2 days. I find 6-8 gyoza reaches that sweet spot between light meal and food coma haha.

To make the filling, combine the garlic, ginger, soy, chilli, onion, egg and mince until you have a smooth paste. Leave it to marinate overnight if you can but as a minimum for an hour. I never used to marinate meat at all because I didn't think it would make that much of a difference but it really does so please give it a go.

When you are ready to assemble lay out your dumpling wrappers. Then use two teaspoons to collect and compact down the meat and put it down slightly off centre from the middle of the wrapper. It's best to lay out all the meat first before you seal them up. 

Sealing is simple but it's a knack. Using your fingers brush half of the wrapper with water and then concertina it up - they should look slightly curved on one side when your done but don't sweat it if yours are not perfect because they will still be delicious. 

Once you've finished, boil a kettle and fill a large frying pan with enough water to reach half the gyoza's height. Put the heat on full so the water is boiling and gently lay the gyoza in. They will expand so don't put them too close together. If like me, you've make about 40 just keep them moving around and they wont stick. Cover the pan and let the water boil away - this should take about 10 minutes. 

While the gyoza are cooking away it's time to make the dipping sauce. Add the finely chopped chilli, spring onion, sesame oil and soy sauce together. Done!

Back to the gyoza. Once the water is gone add oil so the gyoza get crispy. Turn on the side so you have two crispy sides and one soft - this makes them so much tastier and only takes a few extra minutes. 

Lay them out on a plate by the dipping sauce and provide chop sticks (or spoons for those who can't handle them!)

I usually bite a bit off the end of the gyoza and then fill it with the dipping sauce. Spicy, delicious and perfect for cold nights!

I think they go best with prosecco but since red wine is what I've got in that's what I've had them with and it works!



Saturday, 9 December 2017

Quintessentially British: Cosy Weekend in York

I had such a fun weekend break in York staying in the cutest camping pod - I had booked it a few months ago and almost instantly regretted it when I realised it would be December and probably snowing. I couldn't cancel without losing the deposit so packed my bags with winter gear and mentally prepped myself for a bit of an endurance weekend. It turned out to be such a cosy weekend - the fire in the pod made it the cutest cosiest hide out for the snow.

Let me show you around!

It's so beautifully made inside and was so warm with the fire on so we were properly toasty.

Inside there was everything you could need and more - eco fire wood, lighters, kettle, microwave, toaster, torches, access to a private heated bathroom, welly store and DVD's. They really had thought of everything. We especially loved the mince pies and hot chocolate they left us.

Even the setting of the pods is lovely.

A post shared by J.E.T Travels (@jetthetraveller) on

We had decided to go for a hike and lunch so I had pre-made a chilli for us at night. I took my fondue set because it heats up so quickly and it was so perfect, I'm definitely going to use it at any camping trips in the future. Afterwards we toasted marshmallows on the fire - it was such a great weekend to get away for everything and spend quality time together.

We spent some time in York sightseeing before heading back and met friends in Fossgate.



Monday, 4 December 2017

Christmas gift guide

Now it's December it's definitely time to start feeling festive. I hate running around last minute for gifts in the city centre elbowing my way through swarms of people. I'm usually really organised but last year I wasn't and it was such a stressful experience and more expensive getting things last minute.

I've ordered everything on line this year so now I'm feeling more excited! So here's is my gift guide for the girl you don't know what to buy, for the beauty-lover, for him and for the traveller.

Let's kick off with everything in my basket right now...

This amazing double-jumper that everyone and their parents/friends/partners need right now.

Isn't it amazing?! Hahaha I love it!

For the girl you don't know what to buy...

For the one who needs to relax: A personalised bath caddy because who doesn't love drinking wine in the bath?

For the animal lover: No prob-llama backpack available here...

A beautiful chinese art-set, available here.

For the beauty-lover...

For the special one you have no idea what to get: You can't go wrong with Chanel No.5

For the one who loves a natural glow: Body-shop illuminating drops - I have this and it's so beautiful and subtle looking.

For the one who loves glitter: Cath Kidson multi-glitter make-up bag.
For the one who loves all things Kawaii: KawaiiKrush GHD straighteners - the absolute straighteners of dreams.

For the one who loves little luxuries in life: GlamGlow GLOWSTARTER: These products have a cult following for good reason! Such beautiful packaging as well.

For the man in your life...

For the smart-casual guy: A smart-casual leather Barbour bag.

For the gamer: A gameboy color (then you can 'borrow' it hehe)

For the one that loves a tipple: Personalised the Haig Club Whisky.

Whisky stones to go with it.

For the one you travelled the world with: These super-cool world map cufflinks.

For the one who loves all things space: StarWars: The Force Awakens

For the one that loves beer: Craft Beer discovery subscription.

Image result for dior homme
For the one a little fancy: DIOR Homme Cologne

...or if non of those appeal how about some tickets; Hans Zimmer or their favourite band?

For the Traveller:

A smart leather canon lens case.

The ultimate travelist - it's heavy though so maybe one to tick off when they pop home.

Super-cool moon boots for the one spending time in the mountains.

A travel-wallet for the one who needs a little help with their organisation.

A scuba-set for the one in the sunnier climes.

...and if you have no idea whatsoever, then get them a drink!

I hope this has given you some ideas and have a great Christmas.

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