• Lockdown list of useful ingredients 15th January 2021

    People keep asking me what do you buy during lockdown to avoid going to the supermarket especially when you are on a budget. If you have a freezer make the mot of it and portion up batch meals and cuts of meat and fish.

    So here goes apart from the obvious teabags, rice, pasta – top of my list are:

    OATS – can be used for breakfast porridge, overnight oats, flapjack and biscuits. You can even make your own oat milk.  Also useful as a filler in casseroles and bolognaise.  You can grind it down in a blender to supplement flour in cakes too if you a short.

    Powdered milk – life saver when you can’t get to the shops and only need 1 tbsp of powder to each 100ml of water.  Great for hot chocolates, milkshakes, pancakes and Yorkshire puddings.  Also can use it to make white sauces for lasagne and macaroni cheese.

    Flour – easy to make pancakes, pizza bases and flatbreads with water and oil.  Mix twice as much flour to natural yoghurt to make a dough for grilled fluffy naans. Roll out more for pizza dough or dry fry in a pan for flatbread.  Add spices to the mix to flavour it up.  1 mug of flour to 2 of yoghurt makes 4 portions

    Natural yoghurt – look out for long dates can be used for breakfast or a pudding with honey, nuts and fresh/tinned fruit.

    Lentils, beans, chickpeas and pulses –  dried or tinned are a great source of protein and easy to add casseroles, pasta dishes and blend into soups.  Don’t throw away the watery contents of beans and chickpeas (aquafaba) it acts like egg and makes a great egg replacer if you are short of one for pancakes, biscuits or cakes ( 4 tbsp aquafaba = 1 egg)

    Tinned tomatoes and coconut milk – useful in so many dishes and sauces from dhal to katsu curry sauce with the addition of an onion and some spices.

    Tinned fruit – can be used in smoothies, fried with sugar for pancake topping or added to porridge and yoghurt.

    Popcorn easy to make yourself for a quick tasty snack.

    Frozen / Seasonal vegetables and fruit – cauliflower and cabbage last well in a cool dark along with onions, squashes, potatoes, sweet potatoes.  Garlic and ginger store well and can also be frozen and grated. Apples and oranges keep for a long time in the fridge. Bananas and soft fruit freeze well and great for smoothies and crumbles.

    Eggs – so versatile and have a reasonable shelf life. 

    Nuts and seeds – great addition to porridge and yoghurt. Useful as protein replacement in stir fries, can be soaked to make milk or added to soups to make them creamy, this works particularly well with cashews.

    Honey – useful for adding to porridge, yoghurt and pancakes and mixing with soy sauce and oil to make a marinade or sauce.

    Herbs and spices, condiments, peanut butter – stock cubes, tomato puree, miso paste, herbs and spices are essential to jazz up the plainest of ingredients. Garam masala and smoked paprika re my favourite.

    Click here for my free budget recipe ideas

    Vegan inspiration


    Zoom cooking classes can also be arranged for friends, family and work colleagues to stay connected and have fun while making food together or join one of my other Zoom group cooking classes

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  • FREE Zoom Cooking Workshops 6th January 2021

    Since March 2020 I have provided a range of poplar free workshops at lunchtime to break up the day and have some fun learning in the kitchen.

    They are aimed at all ages so whether you are on your own or a family looking to do an activity together. I hope they provide a bit of light relief and inspire you to do more cooking from scratch.

    They are also a great way to connect with other households and know you are not on your own. These sessions are more than just about a recipe. I will give lots of cooking tips along the way.

    Places are limited so please have the courtesy to let me know if you can’t make the session so I can offer the place to someone else.

    If you would like to make a contribution (no pressure) please consider making one to Warwick and District Foodbank to help them provide items which are urgently required. Thank you.

    Free lessons will take place on Wednesday’s from 12pm and will last up to an hour. Adult assistance will be required at all times if cooking with children. Please do not leave children unattended in the kitchen. Please book on the links below!

    13th Jan Sausage casserole

    20th Jan Fishcakes

    27th Jan Potato & Leek soup

    3rd Feb Hummus & Crackers

    10th Feb Omelette popovers

    24th Feb Toad in the hole

    Here is a short guide to some basic cooking recipes using store cupboard ingredients. I hope you find it useful.

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  • How to reduce food waste at Christmas 21st December 2020

    Have you found yourself with more food in your fridge than expected? Not sure what to do with it all or the leftovers? Ultimately your freezer is your friend but there are other things you can do too:

    Cook meat and slice when cold and pop in manageable portions into the freezer. Use in pies, sandwiches and pasta dishes.

    Cooked pigs in blankets can be sliced and used on top of pizzas or in pasta dishes as well as frozen.

    Vegetables can be roasted in the oven with different herbs and spices. Keep in the fridge and use in salads or soups. Can be frozen too or popped in a pie with leftover meat.

    Root vegetables such as celery, spring onions, brussle sprout ‘trees’ broccoli and cauliflower stalks canbe popped into shallow vases of water.

    Soup is always a great way to use sad vegetables. Don’t forget about vegetable peelings too! They make great crisps and toppings for soup. Just pop them on a roasting tray with a little oil and seasoning for 15-20 minutes at 160C.

    Puff pastry sheets are a fab way of using leftovers. Spread with tomato puree or chutney then cover with random fridge bits and sprinkle a little cheese. Alternatively spread with mincemeat or jam and sliced fruit for an easy pudding which takes 20 minutes to cook in the oven.

    Alternatively use a food waste sharing app such as Olio and pass onto people locally who will use it.

    Another idea is to ‘share a plate’ Pop a note through neighbours doors who may be struggling or on their own. Cooking a roast for one not always on everyone’s agenda so why not share yours. We may not be able to have loved ones round but we can bring a bit of love to people around us.

    Sharing is caring ❤ spread the love through food. 

    Anyone on their own and wants a bit of company and a bit of a laugh I am making pancakes via Zoom for FREE on Christmas day at 9.30am. To book this and other free activities visit Virtually Together.

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  • Hints and tips for stress free Christmas 4th December 2020

    Three weeks to Christmas! Time to start planning what you will need but maybe first it is worth checking what is already in the cupboards, throw out out of date tins and spices and donate food to charities that is in date you have no intention of eating.

    Maybe have a freezer week and eat what is in your freezer and the money saved can go to food for Christmas. It is worth doing an Freezer audit and keep it on the fridge so you know what needs using up. Base meal plans on food that has been sat in there for a long time giving way for space for get ahead food for Christmas.

    Sausage rolls (or use  nut roast filling) and mince pies can be made up and frozen uncooked. Just pop them in the oven to cook.

    Gravy – make a nice gravy from  this weeks roast chicken, add a dash of white wine for  extra flavour.

    Stuffing – make up stuffing and place in a oven proof dish ready to go in the oven.

    Sauces – make bread, brandy and cranberry sauces.

    Red cabbage – slow cooker is a great way to braise red cabbage.

    Gammon ham – Use a slow cooker and cook in spices and cider.  When cold slice and freeze in portions.   Strain the stock and freeze, use as a base for soup.

    Yorkshire puddings – freeze after cooking they only take 10 minutes  warm through.

    Potatoes –  par boil and freeze, they will only need to be to roasted on the day.

    Turkey – cook and slice when cold.  Freeze the slices and reheat in gravy on the day.

    Sausages – wrap in bacon, cook and freeze.  Reheat from frozen.

    Make a stock from the turkey/chicken/duck giblets (cats and dogs enjoy the cooked giblets too!), which can be used for the gravy or kept in the fridge for a soup after Christmas.

    Leftover cooked vegetables are great for adding to a pie with leftover roast meat – keep a pack of puff pastry in the fridge or freezer to make a quick pie topping.

    Buy a whole salmon and ask the fishmonger to cut into steaks and fillets and freeze in portions – much more economical than buying already prepared.

    Keep a few simple meals in the freezer for days when you don’t fancy rich food.

    Most importantly don’t stress, it’s only a roast dinner with a few extra sides, which can be easily made in advance.

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  • Resilience Awards Finalist! 2nd December 2020

    Get Cooking! has been chosen as a finalist in the Leamington Business Awards! I am so chuffed and honoured to be included.

    Covid 19 has had interesting impact on my business.

    Initially it was heart wrenching cancelling events, the feeling of letting certain community groups down and thinking of all the hard work put into organising workshops, festivals, group lessons and other celebrations.

    I did my best to carry on until I had no choice.  The last event I did was dropping off weighed ingredients for a golden anniversary so a family could still have some sort of celebration.

    I knew things were going to be tough for many families. I started doing facebook lives on how to cook on a budget and make the most of essential store cupboard ingredients. They were very popular but I found it hard to interact with people and it was the human contact I was also missing.

    I then decided to move over to Zoom and offered the cooking lessons free of charge so they were accessible to most people although I was conscious not everyone has enough data to access them, so carried on with useful hints and tips on the my social media channels, which I have always done.

    Between March and the end of July I provided around 30 free Zoom lessons with up to 12-15 participants.  They included families and individuals on their own not seeing anyone for weeks on end.  It was great to see the rappore develop between them and wanting to know how everyone was getting on.  The confidence of the children cooking was amazing to see. 

    At the start everyone scrambling around in the kitchen watching intently while I showed them new skills. By the end they were confidently chopping and cooking away and creating conversation between them.  It was great fun and really helped me to know what day of the week it was and make me keep on top of my kitchen cleaning!

    It was great to provide some classes for local and national charities to help keep them feeling connected. I organised a fakeaway event to raise funds for Leamington and Warwick Foodbank.  We made a curry using typical ingredients using Foodbank parcel and participants donated the cost a takeaway to Foodbank. I have a ginger biscuit event organised for Saturday December 12th too.

    Providing health and well being workshops for companies nationwide has been very rewarding. Staff having some fun time and down time with colleagues while they are all working from home.

    I have created over 50 online paid group events since August. I do offer discounts and free places to those who are struggling financially and families I have worked with. 

    I am really looking forward to December with a range of traditional Christmas baking workshops.  I have a lot corporate bookings already and baking made from them will be distributed in some doorstep deliveries to those who are on their own or in need of cheering up.  Over the summer it was lovely leaving little afternoon tea parcels everywhere!

    Festive online baking lessons


    My online classes are suitable for all ages and aim is to bring people together through food. My philosophy has always to start with real ingredients and create something tasty with them.  Yes recipes are provided but I encourage my attendees to think about how they can be adapted to what is actually in our cupboards and in season.  I have an emphasis on economical and easy to make food that all the family will enjoy. I have a sustainable approach to cooking. Hate waste!

    I teach a wide range of cooking lessons from healthy comfort food to indulgent baking. Majority of my lessons are vegetarian and vegan (albeit a few with tweaks). I do my best to include all dietary requirements.

    My lessons start at £10 an hour, they are live and interactive.  I can provide bespoke lessons for groups of individuals and provide health and well being cooking classes for work colleagues to enable them to have some fun and learn new skills while working from home.

    Covid 19 has allowed me to reach out to more people and as much as I can’t wait to get back to face to face lessons in my kitchen and in the community, cooking on Zoom will be part of my business going forward.  It allows people of all ages who cannot get out easily, uncomfortable in group situations or live remotely to access good quality live interactive learning. 

    If you are reading this and taken part in any of the online workshops over the last 9 months I really appreciate your support. Thank you reading and hope to provide you with a cooking experience soon!

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  • Zoom Group Cooking Lessons 12th November 2020

    zoom cooking group lessons

    Zoom Group cooking lessons live in your kitchen are an ideal way to have fun at lunchtime or after work during the dark evenings. It looks like the run up to Christmas will be different this year but Get Cooking! has a range of Christmas events. They are suitable for all ages and bring people together.

    Do you have friends, family or work colleagues scattered across the country? A bespoke cooking session maybe the answer. Choose a time that suits you, pick one or two recipes and cook along!  After you have made your dishes I can leave you to it to chat and eat together. Christmas slots are booking up quickly so don’t leave it too late to organise.

    Group lessons are great if you are in on your own and want a bit of company.  They are really friendly and I encourage everyone to be social – it’s not just about the cooking and enable you to have a laugh and at the end of a session something lovely to eat or possible gift to a friend or neighbour. 

    Over the last six months I have really enjoyed watching the rapport grow between regular participants and also their confidence in the kitchen.  I make sure we are not making anything too complicated or fancy ingredients as I want to be sure you have something you want to recreate again…. but I do drop in some technical challenges for those who want to be more adventurous with some expert guidance!

    Stir up Sunday is the start of our Christmas events – create your Christmas pudding to my mum’s recipe, cake and traditional mincemeat all in one session.  A great way to kick off the Christmas season.

    If you are thinking about Christmas gifts Get Cooking can provide a range of Gift Voucher options starting from £10 for online group cooking lessons to £125 for face to face private cooking lessons.

    Group Lessons generally take place on a Monday at 12pm, 4.15pm and 6.15pm and Thursday at 4.15pm and 6.15pm. Saturday workshops generally take place around 5pm (ready for strictly!)

    Afternoon sessions are aimed at families to enable younger children to get involved but any age can take part. The 6.15pm are aimed for older children and individuals after a day at work.

    Take a look at our up and coming workshops!

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  • Vegan Cooking – start with the ingredients 28th October 2020

    I am a great believer in starting with ingredients not a recipe when learning to cook. Yes a recipe is useful especially when baking but when it comes to savoury there is much more room for creativity, substituting ingredients and flavours. Don’t worry I do provide recipes with lessons but as you will find out my sessions are more than just about the recipe.

    Vegetable bag schemes are a great way to introduce more fresh seasonal vegetables to your diet. Autumn provides an array of squashes and root vegetables which store well in cool dark cupboards.

    This week I have a celariac, an apple form a neighbour and onion from the allotment, the easiest thing to do with them is make a tasty soup. Fry off the onion with a pinch of salt, add the apple and celariac (chop both ends off, peel the skin with a potato peeler and chop into chunks) then add enough water to cover all the vegetables. Cook for about 20 minutes on the hob then blitz with a stick blender. If too thick add a little water, too thin a few chunks of dry bread until you have the right consistency.

    Vegan cooking lessons are suitable for everyone. Eating a plant based diet is increasing in popularity all the time. More people are becoming aware of the environmental impact and the effect of eating meat has on the animals and the planet.

    Are you new to eating vegan?

    Wanting to increase your intake of plant based meals?

    Or have family members and are struggling to know what to cook?

    I have a range of cooking lessons are perfect for you and your family. Many of the lesson plans I have are naturally vegan. They make use of seasonal products typically found in vegetable bags. Making use of store cupboard ingredients, pulses, spices, and herbs enable you to make tasty satisfying meals.

    I love to show creative ways of how to use basic products and make them taste alive.

    If you wish to have a more in depth session on plant based cooking a private lesson can be tailored to your exact needs.

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  • Pumpkins – not just for Halloween! 26th October 2020

    Pumpkins are grown in this country primarily for celebrating Halloween and the majority are not eaten. I would like to change that!

    Pumpkins store well, they are full of fibre, really high in Vitamin A (beta-carotene, like carrots) and also contain vitamin C and potassium. The seeds are also nutritious and contain antioxidants, numerous vitamins and minerals.

    Pumpkins are really easy to grow and come in various colours, you just need to water them alot! Home grown pumpkins tend to grow less intensively and heavier. Try and pick heavy pumpkins at the supermarket they will be less watery.

    An ice cream scoop is a great way to take out the flesh once all the seeds are removed. Scrape away at the insides to remove the flesh (this will make the walls thinner and easier to carve too). Don’t get rid of the seeds!

    The empty pumpkin can make a great serving dish for a biriyani using the pumpkin flesh. Pumpkin is quite a bland flavour and really soaks up spices and works well in Morrocan or Indian dishes.

    Simple recipe ideas for pumpkins (or any other squashes)

    Pumpkin soup with puff pastry twists

    I like to make soup with the flesh. Add the pulp to a chopped onion fried with a teaspoon of garam masala, then add a chopped apple, a tin of cannellini bean or a few potatoes with enough water to cover the contents of the pan and cook for about 20 minutes. You can add chilli, smoked paprika or garlic for more flavour. Use a stick blender to make it nice and smooth. If you find the soup is a little watery add some bread (dry or croutons work well for absorbing excess liquid) and blend again.

    You can store the pulp for several day int he fridge before cooking. Roasting for about 40 minutes and mashing into a puree is useful for making soup, adding to bread, muffins or stuffing chapatis.

    Alternatively grate it raw and use as an alternative to carrot in carrot cake/muffins. Just make sure you press down with a dry cloth/kitchen towel the excess moisture or you will end up with a soggy cake.

    Can I eat the seeds?

    Yes you can! They are full on micro nutrients and minerals. You can also eat seeds from butternut squashes too so don’t throw them away.

    Wash the seeds to get the stringy bit off, dry in a tea towel or kitchen paper. Place on a baking tray and drizzle a little oil, salt and your favourite spices (cumin, chilli, smoke paprika or go sweet with cinnamon and brown sugar). Mix well so all the seeds are coated and bake for about 20 minutes at 150C until golden and crispy. Eat as snack, sprinkle on top of soup or blend into a powder and add to porridge and smoothies.

    Don’t fancy eating the pumpkin but don’t want to waste it?

    Pop the seeds in your bird feeder or place them in the empty pumpkin as a makeshift bird feeder. The local wildlife will nibble the flesh too.

    Follow me on Facebook or Instagram for more hints tips and recipes.

    Fancy joining one of our Zoom cook alongs? There is a range of dishes over the coming months or why not have your own bespoke Zoom cooking party. Great for all ages and abilities.

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  • CHRISTMAS COOKING CLASSES – online 1st October 2020

    Christmas is coming to a kitchen near you! It may not be possible to do mixed group cooking workshops under current COVID19 conditions but it doesn’t mean they can’t happen in your kitchen!

    Learn to cook in one of our popular live Zoom group cooking lessons or create your own bespoke Zoom Christmas cooking party under expert guidance. Hints and tips galore to enable you to create fabulous food and tasty treats.

    Decide what you would like to make then Zoom links and detailed recipes will be sent out to you beforehand.

    Zoom cooking lessons are a great way to connect with friends, family and work colleagues.

    Zoom cooking lessons also make an affordable stocking filler which can be accessed from anywhere in the UK and beyond! Gift vouchers are also available.

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  • 5 top tips and recipe ideas for cooking on a budget on holiday. 12th July 2020

    Here are my top tips for cheap meal ideas on holiday so it is stress free and feels like a holiday and not a chore. Planning before you go is the key so you don’t have to think about it when you are there. I like to switch off and not really think about what I’m going to cook or spend ages cooking it. The thought of going to a busy supermarket fills me with dread when first arriving on holiday, this year even more so. Scroll down for free recipe sheet.

    1 Keep meals simple – no one wants to be spending a long time in the kitchen or taking too much food with you. Just take enough for each meal, planning meals before you go will help.

    At least take enough food to avoid shopping the weekend you arrive will avoid long queues at supermarkets and impulse buys.

    2 Freeze ahead – Take two meals with you frozen, one to have on the first night and the other the next or on the last night if you don’t intend going out and have access to a freezer. This could simply be chilli/cottage pie/lasagne/curry/soup/ ready made pizzas/frozen chips or a favourite meal.

    If you are going with another family and they cook a meal too, it will mean 4 evening meals are already catered for. This will reduce the amount of food prep and shopping required while on holiday.

    3 Take snack/picnic food – Make or take biscuits, tray of flapjack, chocolate brownies and loaf cake for afternoon treats when out and about or at the beach. (cut cake into cubes and store in plastic storage containers or cleaned out 1kg natural yoghurt pots)

    Take popping kernels, a couple of cake packet mix or pizza dough / bread mix for rainy afternoon activity or pre weigh dry ingredients, bag and label.

    4 Advance meal plan and prep – Measure out dry ingredients for each meal you intend to make. Here are a few simple main meal ideas which you can add extra fresh vegetables to and/or replace an extra protein of your choice:


    • 1 mug of rice + 1 jar of sauce or tin of coconut + onion + chickpeas + Indian paste or home made spice mix of cumin, coriander, turmeric and garam masala.
    • ¾ mug cous cous + 1 tin of mixed bean salad + Spring onions + red pepper + smoked paprika/harissa paste.
    • 3 or 4 noodle nests + 1 tin of sweetcorn + spring onions + green pepper + ready made Thai paste + 1 tin of coconut milk (optional).
    • 1/2 bag of pasta + 1 tin of tuna + 1 sweetcorn + 1 tin of butter beans + 1 onion +1 tin of flavoured tomatoes/passata and/or add dried herbs.
    •  4 large potatoes for baking/chipping + baked beans + eggs.
    • 1 mug of flour +1 mug of milk (or 1 mug of water + 3 tbsp powdered milk) + 1 egg (or 4 tbsp aquafaba/chickpea water) = 6 pancakes.
    • 1 carton of passata + smoked paprika + 1 onion + 3 peppers + 1 carrot + wraps

    Fresh veg to accompany the above and create salads to accompany meals or for packed lunches buy locally if you can or take with you.
    Half red cabbage and white cabbage
    Large pack of peppers
    Lettuce(s)/salad bags
    Mange tout
    Green beans
    Sunflower/pumpkin seeds
    Cheese of choice
    Eggs x 12

    Pack of pitta bread, wraps and poppodums
    Part baked rolls
    Loaf of bread
    Tins of fish
    Pickled beetroot/onions/olives
    Boxes of crackers
    Popping kernels
    Porridge oats/Cereal
    Pre cooked pouches of grains
    Pre cooked tins of green lentils

    Soy sauce
    Olive oil
    Lemon juice
    Smoked paprika
    Powdered milk
    Peanut butter
    Sandwich spreads of choice

    I’m sure there are other family favourite essentials you won’t forget to take with you. I hope this list helps. I always take a sharp knife, peeler, ice cube tray, and cork screw!

    Try to support local bakers, butchers and markets where you can for fresh ingredients and fruit but taking store cupboard ingredients will help you plan your meals. See if local stores are doing click and collect especially if boot space is an issue. You may need to book a slot in advance to avoid queues.

    Download for FREE Anne Marie’s easy tea recipes included in this blog.

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  • Seasonal Summer Fruit Recipes 16th June 2020

    Seasonal fruit and vegetables is one of the best ways to have a varied diet. If you are growing your own produce, this is the time of year you tend to get gluts!

    Jam and cordials are the obvious choice for summer fruits. If you don’t have time to make them pop the fruit in the freezer to use in smoothies, crumbles or make jam another day.

    Fruit that grows at the same time usually provide good combinations in recipes. Elderflower cordial tastes great with numerous fruit including blackcurrants, strawberries, rhubarb and gooseberries. I also like strawberry and rhubarb as a jam, blackcurrrant and apple or for a unique flavour add a star anise when boiling up the currants.

    One of my favourite old time puddings is Summer Fruit Pudding and is very flexible… just use what fruit you have!

    Summer Fruit Pudding

    summer fruit pudding

    In a pan add 600g mixed summer fruits. 4 – 6 tbsp of sugar, 4- 6 tbsp of water or elderberry syrup and warm through until the sugar has dissolved and the fruit has broke down.

    Line a glass bowl, firstly with cling film then place strips of dry bread with the crusts taken off. Make a disc of bread for the top and the bottom using a round cookie cutter. Place the cooked fruit mix on top of the bread and make sure plenty of juices to soak into the bread. Place the disc of bread on top to seal and cover in foil. Place a heavy object or plate on top and leave to rest preferably overnight. Serve cold with a fruit syrup, cream or ice cream.

    Gooseberry jam

    Gooseberry jam along with plum is one of the easiest jams to make due to high pectin levels, which helps it set.

    Add 750g of gooseberries and 50ml of water or elderberry syrup/cordial in a heavy bottomed pan and cook until soft and broken down (about 15 minutes).

    Add juice of one lemon and 750g of sugar and bring to a rolling boil. Cook for 10 – 15 minutes until the temperature has reached 105C.

    Scrape off any scum/froth with a slotted spoon. Pour the jam carefully into sterilized* warm jars (this mix makes approx 6 x 200ml jars).

    Gooseberries go great with strawberries or elderflower syrup.

    * to sterilize jars – wash in soapy hot water and rinse then pop them on a tray, in the oven for 20 minutes at 150C.

    Fruity Gallette

    Really easy rustic open pie that can be adapted with any fruit combination. From blackcurrant and peach, rhubarb and strawberry to gooseberry and redcurrants. A recipe for all seasons!

    Add 300g of mixed fresh seasonal fruit to a pan with a few tablesppoons of sugar and a little liquid. Gently simmer the fruit until it has broken down a little.

    While this is simmering make up the pastry. In a bowl rub in 90g of butter into 150g of plain flour and 2 tbsp of sugar and a pinch of salt (I replaced 40g of plain with buckwheat). Add approx 3 or 4 tbsp of water to bring the mixture together. Place the dough in the fridge for an hour.

    Roll out and place the pastry on a tray. Add the fruit on the pastry leaving a gap of 3-4 cm around the edges. Fold the pastry over the fruit leaving the centre open. Egg/milk wash the pastry and sprinkle with a little sugar. Place in a preheated oven (180C) and cook for 30-35 minutes.

    Elderflower champagne (old recipe from one of my allotment pals)

    Add 500g of sugar to 2 pints of boiling water in pan and stir until dissolved. Add 5 pints of cooled boiled water, 4 tablespoons of apple cider vinegar and 7 or 8 large elderflower heads to the pan. Place a lid on the pan and let the mix steep for up to 48 hours. Strain the liquid through a muslin into plastic bottles with screw lids.

    Elderflowers contain natural yeast and reacts with the sugar. Release the pressure of the bottles morning and night for 1 week before placing them in the fridge. Release the pressure every few days for another week then enjoy! It is important to ‘burp’ the bottles so the pressure does not build too high and cause the bottle to explode. ( I am very cautious and place the bottles in a plastic bag within the fridge just in case!)

    If you would like to learn some more seasonal recipes with fruit i can provide private and group lessons to show you how to make jams, curds and syrups for a variety of fruit and how to create individual flavour combinations.

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    zoom cooking lessons


    Live group online cooking lessons will take place on Monday evenings at 5pm and replace the regular classes at St Chad’s in Bishop’s Tachbrook during lockdown.

    Online lessons are interactive, with plenty of time for discussion. Recipes and registration links to Zoom are sent beforehand so you are ready to start cooking at the start of the lesson.

    Servings can be made for 2 or 4 people so you can share with your partner or family straight after the lesson or you can pop your creations in the fridge or freezer for another time.

    Classes last up to an hour depending what we are making. I will take you through the recipe a step at a time, while giving you hints and tips along the way. Online classes are kept to a maximum of 8 people. This ensures everyone feels comfortable and can interact with each other too.

    The cost is £10 per session for individual classes. Take a look at COURSE CONTENT AND DATES

    To book and register for these live interactive cooking lessons get in touch with Anne Marie. Recipes and equipment list will be sent out after registration.

    These lessons can also be arranged privately, also with a group of friends, family or colleagues at a different time.

    See what clients have been saying over on TripAdvisor

    Review of zoom cooking lessons
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  • ONLINE COOKING LESSONS 13th April 2020


    Over the last few weeks the online daytime free basic cooking sessions have proved very popular with individuals in isolation and families alike. Get Cooking! provides a unique experience where you can join in with other people cooking while at home.

    The lessons are at 12pm on a Monday and Friday and last anything between 30 and 45 minutes. It depends what we are cooking and discussion arising from the session.

    To register for any of the lessons coming up contact Anne Marie with your email address for the registration links to Zoom. Recipes will be sent out before the lesson begins.


    These will take place on Monday evenings at 7pm and replaces the regular class at St Chad’s in Bishop’s Tachbrook. Classes last up to an hour depending what we are making. The cost is £10 per session for individual classes. To book and register for these lessons get in touch with Anne Marie.


    Private lessons, workshops and parties can be arranged day or evenings for families, work colleagues and friends to provide a unique cooking experience. Great fun to keep connected through food!

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  • Can I really eat dandelions? 7th April 2020

    Yes you can really eat dandelions! They are versatile, nutritious and readily available! Spring is the ideal time to make a tasty vinegar to be used in summer salads.

    Here are a few ideas what you can make with this common weed!


    To make homemade dandelion apple cider vinegar all you will need is fresh dandelions and apple cider vinegar! (White wine or white vinegar can be used as an alternative.)

    Last year I made my own cider vinegar with a jar of small, windfall apples from my tree and water with a little organic cider apple vinegar that contained the ‘mother’ (jelly like substance at the bottom of the bottle). This is inspired by the chef, Tom Hunt, (recipe here) so it only seems appropriate to make an infusion with dandelion and apple cider vinegar using dandelions from my allotment. 

    You can make apple cider vinegar at any time of the year; it takes at least 6 weeks to create from start to finish.

    I’ve made dandelion vinegar many times over the years using commercial apple cider vinegar and it brings an interesting flavour to simple vinaigrette. 

    Dandelions are everywhere, especially in the Spring. All of the plant can be used in a variety of ways.  I have yet to attempt  making dandelion and burdock!


    • 20 dandelion heads
    • 250ml  (approx) apple cider vinegar


    Place about 20 dandelion heads into a small sterilised jar and fill it up with vinegar. Keep the jar in a dark cupboard for at least a week and up to 6 weeks, and then strain the vinegar into a bottle.

    The vinegar can be used to drink neat or use to make a simple vinaigrette.


    • 1 tbsp dandelion infused vinegar
    • 3 tbsp olive oil
    • 1 tsp lemon juice (alternatively honey or mustard)


    Add all the ingredients to a small jug and whisk just before adding to a salad. The mix can be stored in the fridge for several weeks. Concentrate of lemon can be used instead of fresh lemon.



    • ¾ mug of plain flour
    • ¾ mug of water
    • 1 egg


    Place all the ingredients together in a bowl and whisk until smooth.

    Dip the dandelions into the batter mix. Shake off excess before placing into a pan with enough oil to shallow fry the dandelions.  After a few minutes turn the dandelions over to cook the other side and remove from the pan once the batter is golden.

    Alternatively deep fry in oil for several minutes until golden and crispy.

    Advice regarding picking dandelions

    Ensure to leave some dandelions behind in the Spring for the bees as they are one of the earliest plants to flower in the season to provide pollen.

    Cooking with wild plants

    Dandelions have been used for centuries in many cultures to aid a variety of conditions as explained here.  

    There are many ways through the season you can incorporate ingredients from your own back garden or local hedgerows and woods.  If you would like to learn more about plants in the wild, allotment vegetables and sustainable cooking get in touch.  I provide bespoke cooking lessons online and offline based on the season.

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  • How to make dairy free milk at home 26th March 2020

    Dairy free milk is very simple to make at home. The cheapest and quickest milk to make is oat milk, which I demonstrate in the following video.

    Many people have asked me how to make dairy free milk due to limited stock on the shelves since the Corona Virus outbreak. I hope this helps people even if you just need a small amount for a regular cup of tea. I would suggest freezing milk in ice cube trays then placing them in bags and store in the freezer. Just pop one straight into your boiling mug of tea and it will soon melt. It will also cool your tea to a nice temperature at the same time!

    How to make dairy free milk at home – oat and rice milk
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    So many people sat at home due to the Corona Virus with basic foods supplies in their cupboards, I thought I would provide some free basic lessons to keep our spirits up! It will also me a bit of structure to my day too. I have tried to make sure that I have used minimal fancy ingredients and hope you can cook along with me.

    If you would like to sign up for free cooking lessons please contact me and I will forward the details of times and ingredients required. The lessons will be on Zoom and will vary in length but no longer than an hour. They are suitable for individuals and families and best watched on a laptop.


    If you are on Facebook check out some of the videos of crumble, scones and energy balls on my facebook page.

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  • Accessible Cooking Lessons at Get Cooking! 30th January 2020

    Get Cooking! provides accessible cooking lessons for all ages and abilities. I work with adults with dementia, additional needs, limited mobility, and wheelchairs. I try to accommodate all reasonable requests tailoring cooking lessons and workshops so they are accessible to as many people as possible.

    Get Cooking! provides accessible cooking lessons for those with wheelchairs and limited mobility.
    Accessible cooking lesson at Get Cooking!

    Unfortunately my downstairs toilet is not accessible to wheelchairs. My kitchen is however large enough for a standard sized wheelchair to gain access. An office chair, which is height adjustable with detachable arm rests is available for use. It helps if you require more height. I also have induction stove tops, which can be placed on my kitchen table so you are able to cook on a hob safely. If you require further information on accessible cooking lessons please get in touch.

    I currently provide baking workshops at Leycester House Care Home and volunteer at a dementia cafe in Warwick. In the past I have supported Spinal Muscular Atrophy UK with accessible cooking workshops which was great fun!

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  • New kitchen for Get Cooking! cookery school in Warwick Gates 30th September 2019

    Kitchen has been recently updated to provide a calm environment to teach private lessons whilst also enabling enough space for fun workshops and cooking parties of between 4 and 5 people for adults and children. Availability for lessons and workshops during the day and evening.  For more information contact Anne Marie.

    Workshops and private lessons can be tailored to your individual needs and dietary requirements.

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  • Get Cooking! Jaqueline Gold OBE #WOW winner 30th September 2019!/Jacqueline_Gold



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  • 2020 Cooking workshops – Christmas gift vouchers available! 30th September 2019



    (max 4-5 students per class, contact directly for more information and to book)

    Pasta making from scratch workshop – Thursday 9th January 7-9pm (£40 per place)

    Sushi workshop (vegetable/fish option) – Saturday 11th January  11-12.30pm (£35 per place)

    Vegan curry workshop – Thursday 16th January 7-9pm  7-9pm  (£40 per place)

    Pizza  and cheescake workshop  – Saturday 18th 11-12.30pm (£35 per place)

    Batch Cooking with mince – Thursday 23rd January 7-9pm (£40 per place)

    If you are booking for at least 4 places alternative dates and times can be arranged.


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  • Christmas Baking workshops 2019 5th September 2019

    Find enclosed the links for information regarding Christmas Baking workshops 2019.

    If you would like to host your own baking workshop or private lesson in my home get in touch for more dates available.

    9th December 7.30 – 9.30pm age 14+ to adult   (£21.95)

    14th December 9.30-11.30am 8+ to adult  (£21.95)

    19th December 11.45 – 2.15pm age 14+ to adult (£21.95)


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  • Get Cooking! at Leamington Food Festival 2019 5th September 2019

    Get Cooking! award winning workshops will be at the food festival again this year. See link for more details.

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  • Summer Holiday Cooking Workshops 2019 27th June 2019

    Whitnash Community Cafe in Acre Close, Whitnash is hosting several Get Cooking! sessions aimed at 2-11 years old.  They are mini 20 minute sessions depending on age and ability and run alongside other activities within the hall including crafts and toys.  There are refreshments for a small donation which helps keep the cafe running. Car park on site.  Adults must stay with the children during the session in case they need help. Contact Anne Marie to book.

    Cooking Workshops in Leamington

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  • Summer Holidays 2019 Children’s Cooking Workshops 27th June 2019

    We will be holding several workhops aimed at 11+ to 19 in my home in the summer holidays.  Small class of 4 students to ensure workshop is tailored to everyones needs and ablity. More dates may be available for groups of 4 children.  Great workshop for those leaving home.

    23rd July We will be making a full roast dinner and stock which we will eat for lunch and in the afternoon we will be using the leftovers to create some quick, tasty dinners including Chinese noodle soup and fajitas.

    30th July We will make pizza wedges, garlic bread and coleslaw for lucnh and batch cooking for the freezer with mince to make cottage pie, chillie, lasagne and cornish pasties.

    6th August  We will be making chicken Tandoori, spicy rice onepot, vegan vegetable pancakes and chapatis followed by some baking in the afternoon, scones, flapjacks and brownies.

    Depending on time their may be additional dishes made or slight alterations to the menu.

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  • Ready Steady Thai 10th May 2019

    Next cooking social is May 14th and we are going Thai again raising funds for Christian Aid.

    To book contact Catherine

    Suggested donation of £10+

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  • Coventry Food Festival 11th/12th May 2019 – Children’s cooking classes 10th May 2019

    Priory Visitor Centre FOLLOW LINKS BELOW TO BOOK!

    I will be there on Sunday providing the wrap and rainbow kebab workshops

    Coventry Food and Drink Festival 2019 Coventry City Centre

    Decorating cakes 10.30am…

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  • Social Cooking Events 14th April 2019


    Looking for a social occasion with a group or friends or your organsiation?

    Celebrate an event, reward staff or raise funds for your chosen charity.

    Ask for details on our range of fakeaway cooking events which can be tailored to your requirements.  From a simple demonstration and tasters to audience partipation to a full on hello fresh style cooking event like in the link below. Contact Anne Marie

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  • Thai Feast Fakeaway Saturday 9th February 3rd January 2019

    Come along and cook a Thai feast in teams in a relaxed environment (come on your own or with a group of friends) to create several dishes, which will be added to the buffet. Once everything is ready we will all sit down and eat together.  To book email before the 5th February to Anne Marie at

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  • Leamington Business Awards Winner 2018 7th December 2018

    Get Cooking! proud to receive the South Warwickshire Achievement Award 2018 for work carried out in Leamington Spa and surrounding areas over the last 5 years with local organsiations and charities.  Being able to cook gives you choices and I believe everyone should be able to access basic cooking skills and know how to to cook well whatever budget is available.

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  • Christmas Baking Workshop 12th September 2018

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  • Bishop’s Tachbrook – Group Cooking Lessons 17th July 2018

    There are currently spaces in our children’s class for the September term starting on Monday 10th  September 7.15-8.15pm (12 week term @ £8.50 per lesson paid termly)

    Ingredients included and aprons provided. For more information contact Anne Marie  

    See below a few examples of things we have made over the last term.

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  • Privacy Policy Update 16th May 2018

    Get Cooking! Privacy Policy


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  • Free Canny Cooking! Courses 16th January 2018

    Here is the next round of free cooking on a budget cooking courses running in Leamington over the next few months.  Please get in touch directly with the children’s centre to register your interest. 


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  • Free Cooking Demonstrations – The Chain, Lillington 12th September 2017

    Want to know how to create simple tasty meals from seasonal fruit and vegetables commonly found in community veg bags? Pop along to The Chain to find out more.


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  • Children and adult cooking classes Autumn 2017 Warwick / Leamington 17th July 2017

    Children’s and adult classes at St Chad’s Centre Bishop’s Tachbrook.

    New term starts Monday September 11th. Limited availability. £7.50 per lesson.

    7.15-8.15pm Children’s class (8+)

    8.30-9.30pm Adult class (16+)

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  • Canny Cooking! Whitnash mum’s rustle up fabulous fakeaways 13th February 2017

    Leamington Observer 2/2/17

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  • I CAN COOK ! 2nd September 2016

    Would you like to learn how to cook within a small friendly group?  Coming soon! ‘I can cook’ and ‘I can bake’ classes in the Warwick/Leamington Spa area.  Day and evening classes will be available depending on demand  8-11 yrs, 12-17 yrs, 18+ yrs.  To register your interest contact Anne Marie at Get Cooking!

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  • Canny Cooking Lessons! 2nd September 2016

    Get Cooking! will be providing FREE Canny Cooking! cookery sessions on Tuesday’s for 5 weeks from September 20th 2016 at St Margeret’s Centre.  Contact Kingsway Children Centre to register and for more details. Whitnash cooking workshop information

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  • Get Cooking wins national award. 25th April 2016

    Get Cooking has won a national award from Networking Mummies UK Ltd.

    You can read the full story in the Warwick Courier by clicking here

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  • Love Food Hate Waste 15th February 2016

    Get Cooking is now on Love Food Hate Waste website Partner wall of fame in recognition of helping you waste less food, save money and help the environment.

    Click here to go to the website

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  • Frugal Cooking Demonstration 8th February 2016

    Frugal Cooking Demonstration at The Open Door Cafe, Hampton Magna 11-12pm Friday March 18th

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  • Frugal Cooking Demonstration 8th February 2016

    Frugal Cooking Demonstration at The Chain Hub, Crown Way, Lillington 11-12pm Wednesday March 11th

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  • New Monthly Demos 8th July 2015

    July 2015 will see monthly demos at The Chain, Crown Way, Lillington based on the Canny Cooking recipe book. Contact Anne Marie via email for more details.

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  • Cooking Up Some Money Saving Ideas 20th February 2015

    Anne-Marie of get cooking recently featured in an article in the Leamington Observer. The full story can be found by clicking here.


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  • Budget Fakeaway 8th February 2015

    February 2015 saw the launch of Budget Fakeaway cooking lessons in conjunction with The Gap

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