Garmin Edge Touring

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So after struggling to read maps, use Google Maps on the phone and plan routes on the bike for what seems like forever, I finally decided to join the 21st century and get my self a bike Sat Nav.

Install

Garmin Edge Touring

The Garmin Edge Touring
Sat Nav for the bike with few useless extras.

This was pretty straightforward really – the package I purchased from Halfords came with it’s own ‘out front’ style mount, which simply clamps to your bars with a screw (incidentally this didn’t fit on my bars due to my bar mounted light, now installed on my GFs bike), and also comes with a shim for slimmer style bars.

As all Garmin style product this then uses the ‘quarter turn’ style mount to attach the device to the mounting.

It’s a really simple method that works well.

I did find one problem though, in that when wearing my flourescent yellow riding jacket, the reflectivity of the screen makes it hard to read. Mainly due to where it’s situated on my stem and the angle it’s on, but it’s not impossible to see.

Features

From the Halfords website:

With round trip routing and Garmin connect there are more ways to find new rides with the Garmin Edge Touring Special Edition GPS Cycle Computer with Out-front Bike Mount & ProtectiveCase – Exclusive to Halfords. Simple to use, you can keep track of your real time stats during your ride to make sure you stay on target.

  • Guide your ride – new simple user interface
  • Real time customisable data screen
  • Tough, water resistant, compact and lightweight design
  • On and off road navigation with the Garmin cycle map
  • Round trip routing with 3 ride options
  • Share and save routes with Garmin Connect

As I’m sure you are aware, there is a version which has a few extra ‘features’ on such as heart rate monitor and ANT+ compatibility, but given that I don’t need those this is the basic version.

Review

So when the doctors finally allowed me back on the bike, off I go to play with my new toy to see if I could use the new toy as well as the old one (I managed to get an Edge 200 for £30!).

After a brief fiddle with the buttons and the settings, I managed to record my stats with the usual ease (basically you press the ‘Start Timer’ button and set off), and comparing stats from my previous rides seems to be as accurate as ever too.

The mapping functions is the whole point of this unit though, so I set off from my office having told it I wanted to go home. The route it chose wasn’t was what I would have chosen, so all well and good there then.

After purposely getting lost in a previously unknown estate I again told it to route me home. Again this proved no problem, but I did manage to accidentally stop the recording of the stats, so statistically I’m about 4 miles short this month. It seems that the stats side and the mapping sides of this can be used independently, though I’m not sure if that’s a good thing.

Would I really want to navigate and not know the stats for the ride? Perhaps some people do…

Still, my own stupidity aside, I’m loving this gadget more than the previous incarnation. The routing functions seem to be about right for my preferred style of riding – I have read some reports of people having some problems with that though.

Now I’ve downloaded the Garmin Basecamp software too and entered my regular stops and clients as waypoints, and a few regular routes, giving me more options to waste time on the bike.

I’ve yet to test the round trip function, where you can tell the unit to calculate a route of X miles for you, but that’s for when I’m medically allowed to ride properly again (looking like after Christmas now!).

All in all I’d go 8/10 – A great little unit with a couple of easily avoidable flaws.

Lets Twist Again (Blood Clot)

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So I thought I’d better update the story of the twisted ankle with the details of a quite worrisome discovery, a blood clot in my leg.

My symptoms were a strong, constant, cramp-like pain in the leg which I could feel under the muscle. A tightness in the muscle when relaxed, and coldness in my foot/toes.
If you feel anything like this go to A&E and get it checked!
A couple of weeks or so after I had a good go at breaking my ankle, but not quite succeeding (details here), I started noticing a cramp like pain in the top of my right leg, not too much at this point, just a ‘niggle’ and therefore really nothing a grown man like I should worry about.

This slowly increased to a point that it was more painful than my now healing ankle [I could comfortably walk on this now].

A brief search on t’Internet threw up a lot of potential causes for this, mainly DVT (Deep Vein Thrombosis), but I didn’t seem to have any but one of the symptoms, just the cramp-like pain, so I dismissed this as a possibility.

Mentioning this to my lovely significant other she said I “shouldn’t worry about it” as it was “probably my leg having to compensate” for being off the ankle for a while – and I was happy to agree with that assumption, after all, it wasn’t a pain we all haven’t felt at sometime (cramp), just it’s longevity was different.

DVT (Blood clot)A couple more days passed by, and as she readied herself for a regular trip out on the bike, I settled in for a night on the sofa with a goo geek movie – sadly this wasn’t to come to pass.

After about 30 mins or so my leg (which was by now slightly swollen at the calf, quite hot and sore to touch), decided to suddenly cause my foot to go cold, rapidly, and the pain became unbearable.

So I called the NHS 111 service to ask for some guidance, a fairly brief conversation and the instruction to “get myself to A&E within the next 6 hours” got me a little worried – but off I dutifully trotted.

Arriving at A&E I sat and waited for some time [nothing unusual there then], until the nurse poked, prodded and sent me directly to Bradford Royal Infirmary (BRI) with a letter suggesting I had a problem – namely a potential blood clot in my leg.

BRI sat me in their waiting area for a while, took some blood samples and had me waiting again – I had gone to BRI via home to ask my girlfriend to take me, this was a very good idea as it turns out.

After nearly 3 hours waiting for the blood results (!) we were ushered into a cubicle for some more waiting. Someone in the cubicle next door at this point was complaining about the wait also and the fact that they dismissed him with nothing, the last time he was there.

Finally the doctor came to discuss his findings, which apparently were inconclusive, but basically said that I might have a clot, but would need an ultrasound to confirm (why they didn’t just do this to start with still baffles me), and supplied some blood thinning drugs along with some pain meds.

The following day I was called and an ultrasound appointment arranged, which confirmed that I did indeed have a large blood clot just behind my right knee, and I would have to “keep taking the tablets” and attend a DVT clinic (not gone yet), and potentially wear a compression sock for 2 years. Nice! [not].

So, after a brief walk to the bank, I end up with a potentially life threatening condition and on some drugs that require me to carry a “Patient Alert” card in case I’m involved in an accident, which also cause me to go dizzy at the drop of a hat, and have me having to sit down suddenly or risk fainting.

Right now I’m sitting here with a highly painful leg, feeling slightly dizzy and somewhat worried…

Twisted

Featured

As the entire world has asked me what I’ve done with my ankle and automatically assumed it was a biking injury, I will lament my woes here for the entire world to see the extent of my clumsiness.

So one fateful Friday I needed to go rectify one of my more stupid moments, where I managed to totally forget the PIN number to the company card I have – I’m talking about a total mind blank here – so I popped to the bank.

Now usually I’d be on my bike, as I was working from the office all day, but for reasons of product collections and delivery, providence decided that I’d be motorised for the day. As it turns out this was a good move!

The bank in question has a large forecourt (mainly flat) and is elevated, with about 10 steps up to the door and a disabled ramp, zig-zagging, up to the same door, past the ubiquitous cash machine; This ATM was my focus.

On crutches again..!

Oh Joy! A few weeks to enjoy the pleasures of the crutches. At least there’ll be an upper body workout every time I go out.

Up the steps with my usual aplomb, performed technical wizardry with the technology as ever, regained the use of the cash card as the machine reported that it had indeed done as requested and the “PIN Unlocked”.

Yeay!

Trotted back down the steps, and started across the flat forecourt and disaster hit – I ‘cockled’ over on my right ankle; heard a sickening ‘crack’ and was viciously pulled to the ground by the usually non capricious Gravity.

Fearing the worst, I picked myself up and limped to the car…

Now at this point there wasn’t much beyond quite a sore feeling, so I travelled to my next appointment to pick up some kit, whereupon I met some more steps – I hobbled up them [painful] and I hobbled back down them [more painful]. There was also someone’s child there who told me I should go to hospital, so I did.

Bradford Royal was busy, there was around 6-8 people queuing for attention at the reception, and about 20-30 sat waiting in the seating area.

After the usual game of 20 questions, I asked for some pain killers, but “I’m not medically qualified to give you any – sorry” was the response.

So I endured what was about an hour, attempting to sit on plastic, bench style seats, with an ankle growing in both pain and girth. The swelling was, at this point, getting impressive, causing my shoe to become quite tight, and, upon removing said shoe, gained comments from a casual observer that “that’s broke, that”.

Assuming that meant she thought I’d broken my ankle – I must admit that I did too.

Finally Lisa popped her head out of her assigned cubicle and called my name, much hopping and hurting ensued until I was safely ensconced on the bed in the cubicle; which as it turns out is a little doorway on to what looked like a treatment area.

Lisa gave me drugs… I offered her a position on my Christmas card list as a reward.

A quick drive to the torture of the X-ray until [I was twisted in to some painful contortions], and then the longest wait on ‘minors’ whist they appeared to d nothing.

Finally after a cursory glance at the aforementioned X-rays I was bundled out of the treatment room in minors to wait for the attentions of someone who soon handed me a pair of crutches, and was thereafter summarily dismissed.

Not even a comment as to what I have managed to do to myself…

So now I have to perform R.I.C.E. – Rest, Ice [until the swelling goes down], Compression and Elevation, for some weeks.

No cycling through the best few weeks of the summer for me then 🙁

[UPDATED HERE]

Olympic Bobsled Run On a Bike!

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A bike rider named Philipp Meister decided to use the disused Sarajevo bobsled run from the 1984 Olympics as a cycle track.

It’s not as bad as you might think; with not a single fall, ridden without snow and ice, and not nearly as fast as you might imagine (Philipp said that there was dirt and leaves on the track), but provides a nice short jaunt through the countryside.

At just over 1.6km it’s not a massively long ride and only takes about 02:14 to watch but it’s worth a watch.

The cynical side of me expects the Olympic sites in the UK to end up in a similar state.

Online reviews – Good or Bad?

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If you use on-line review sites (and in reality, who doesn’t), there was a startling revelation recently announced by the website Yelp.

Online reviews are have a both a good and bad side.

On-line reviews are have a both a good and bad side.

They reported that about a quarter of their reviews may be faked in attempts by companies to influence consumer opinions. 😯

Yelp say that they have introduced automated filters to try to stop this, though admitted that this approach was not foolproof and genuine reviews may be filtered out.

Amazingly, New York authorities set up a sting operation, created a fake company and hired Search Engine optimization (SEO) companies to boost the fake company’s on-line presence. they then fined 19 companies over $350,000 (about £217,00 at time of writing) for posting fake reviews on websites such as Yelp.

This is a common tactic for SEO services, known as ‘astroturfing’ ~ Fake grass roots level reviews.  (6)

The Harvard Business School conducted a report in to the amount of fake reviews over a number of years and concluded that fake reviews to Yelp in particular had risen from just 5% in 2006 to a whopping 20% in 2013, this includes those that were filtered out already.

This does not just mean positive reviews either. The report analysed more than 310,000 reviews of 3,625 establishments and discovered that the numbers of negative reviews increased as competition increased. Obviously attempting to weaken reputations. (666)

So next time you decide to read reviews for your next holiday, gadget or restaurant, bear in mind that someone may have been paid to write the review ~ good or bad. If it helps to discern the fakes from the genuine; fake reviews tend to be greatly positive or negative in their tone.

Real World Hacking

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Hacking in the virtual world is almost as prevalent as speeding on the motorways, in that there are so many people doing it, it is almost expected that things get hacked. New exploits and ways of hacking are being discovered all the time, and the cyber world has become a battleground for hackers and the companies that protect systems.

Real world hacking is getting extremely worrying

Real world hacking is getting extremely worrying

There has been for some time a movement that is not interested in hacking computers per se, but are more interested in hacking the micro controllers we now use in so many systems, for instance in the control units in vehicles.

As a couple of examples of this there has recently been two high-profile demonstrations of hacking technology that are a little scary.

Firstly a team of ‘White Hat’ hackers (so-called ‘ethical hackers’) identified a potential problem with the engine management systems in some cars, and the immobilization systems. Namely the Megamos Crypto system used to encrypt the communication of remote keys.

(reference: http://www.theguardian.com/technology/2013/jul/26/scientist-banned-revealing-codes-cars)

The hack was first reported back in November last year by three researchers, when, upon discovery, the information was detailed to the car manufacturers to do something about, before being published in the upcoming Usenix Security Symposium, which will be held in Washington next month (August).

The three researchers are Flavio Garcia, a computer science lecturer at the University of Birmingham, and Baris Ege and Roel Verdult, security researchers at Radboud University Nijmegen in the Netherlands.

Hacking security vulnerabilities in real world devices such as cars, luxury yachts and even medical equipment is becoming a real concern as we progress down a more technological path in our lives.
The German carmaker Volkswagen and French defence group Thales obtained the interim ruling after arguing that the information could be used by criminals. Once this was gained the researchers plans to publicize the information at an upcoming hacking conference were dropped.

Further to this – and possibly more worrying – is that news that DARPA funded research in to hacking the actual control systems in cars.

(Reference: http://www.ibtimes.com/car-hacking-darpa-funded-researchers-take-control-toyota-prius-ford-escape-using-laptop-video)

The troubling part is that the researchers were able to take control of a Toyota Prius and a Ford Escape and do simple things such as manipulating the speedometer and various sensors. More nefarious hacks included tricking the car into jerking to the left and right, controlling the horn, triggering the seat belt tensioner and even turning off the brakes entirely.

The second example involves the spoofing of a GPS signal confusing the systems used on a luxury yacht and meaning you could direct it anywhere you wished.

(reference: http://www.upi.com/Science_News/Blog/2013/07/30/Texas-GPS-spoofing-fools-80M-superyacht-receiver/1741375208037/)

In this case researchers simple created a false GPS signal to fool a yachts GPS systems in to believing they were somewhere else. Using this technology, the researchers were able to control the yacht and send it to a destination of their choice.

This was all done with the consent of the yacht’s captain, who reported that there were no alarms or warnings of any type on the yacht.

All this could apparently be done from a range of up to 30km away using drones to provide the fake GPS signal.

If all this isn’t scary enough for you, what if I mentioned that Hacker Barnaby Jack also discovered vulnerabilities in the code used to turn pacemakers on and off and ‘tamper’ with kidney equipment, in this case it was possible to build a simple transmitter that stopped the pacemaker entirely resulting in the death of the target.

Mysteriously Barnaby, the hacker that found this exploit, died before revealing his research; it is even more strange that there are no details about the circumstances of his death, although details were sent to the manufacturers to rectify the problem.

Autonomous Cars Approved

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Yesterday was a great day for automotive technology in the UK, as the government approves testing of autonomous vehicles by the end of 2013 (cars that drive themselves for want of a better word – Autocars perhaps?).

The converted Nissan Leaf, self-drive car, as built by Oxford University.

The converted Nissan Leaf, self-drive car, as built by Oxford University.

So far, these kind of cars have only been allowed to be driven on private land in the UK where researchers at Oxford University have been testing a converted Nissan Leaf car around the Oxford Science Park.

As I mentioned in a previous post (Self-driving car comes to Oxford), the car uses a different method than that of the Google Self-Drive car to determine its location, and attempts to memorize routes regularly driven ~ such as the school run or daily commute.

Google themselves seem to be leading the way with this technology along with the American Government; I suspect that this is simply because Google are getting more airtime and publicity, but their converted Toyota Prius has clocked up an impressive 300,000 miles on public roads. The governments of Nevada, Florida and California have all passed legislation specifically about driverless cars.

There are several companies developing this technology though, as you would expect, and both Mercedes and Volvo have demonstrated the self-drive capabilities of their vehicles.

You can almost read the headlines now: Autodrive Car Kills Child
Further reading however tells that the car was manually driven by a drunkard, massive bad press and bad public feeling ensues. You get the idea…
All the vehicles mentioned however, all seem to have one fatal flaw in my opinion, and that is that they all have a ‘manual override’ – i.e. you can take control whenever you wish. Personally I believe that this is not a good idea, and that by doing this you are inviting trouble. Google themselves have had a couple of crashes 😳 which happened when the car was being manually driven.

Take out the driver and you take out the bit of driving that causes the vast proportion of the problems. Computers don’t have opinions, or attitudes, nor do they make decisions based on their emotional state; They just do what they are told.

The best news for me as a long-term geek, is that these cars “should be commercially available by the end of the decade”. Soon we’ll be able to jump in the car, direct it to the destination, sit back and relax, maybe have a little breakfast and watch the news on our windscreen… 😎

Sky Ride Leeds

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Under the baking sun of an incredibly beautiful Sunday morning, hundreds of day-glow yellow clad cyclists gathered for a city centre bike ride round the closed streets of Leeds.

skyride1

Image courtesy of Yorkshire Evening Post

The first ride of its type in Leeds, and organised by  Leeds City Council, Sky, British Cycling and West Yorkshire Metro’s go:cycling project, this was a simple jaunt around a 5.2Km (3.2 mile) course, circling the Town Hall, and passing through Woodhouse Moor and the university campus.

The ride was started by Leeds’s own Kimberley Walsh, at just after 10:00am, we started pedalling; only to come up against the slower riders in front of us…

After a little start/stopping, we finally got going as the mass peleton gained momentum. This is where it started getting good!

It really was a stunning sunny day, and the ride itself (rated as ‘Easy Going’) was a fairly quiet affair as riders of all ages and abilities were present.

As you would expect, there were quite a few of the ‘all the gear, no idea’ crowd about, and riding in a group is an acquired skill it would seem – it was amusing to see quite a few chunky middle-aged people, bedecked in skin tight garish colours on some fantastic bikes, wobbling about and sweating profusely, walking up the hill (there was a fairly gentle but long hill on the route). 😆

As the  route rounded a little downhill section there was a small crowd of, well, ‘loonies’ is probably the best description, as they were encouraging people, by cheering and blasting air horns. Surprisingly this seems to work! Weird…

There was a small troupe of clowns wandering about - I HATE CLOWNS (Coulrophobia)

There was a small troupe of clowns wandering about – I HATE CLOWNS (Coulrophobia)

The best bit for me though was towards the end of the route as we rode the parks bowered pathways, and down to a twisty, downhill section approaching and through the university grounds. Bliss! 😎

After the ride we wandered through the stalls and things arranged about the start section, where we were fed free cooled Jaffa oranges (we managed 8 between us), filmed for a future event in Leeds (something about animating a clock), and had opportunity to ride on some other style bikes. This transpired as a sporty, low slung recumbent bike (think go-cart with pedals), a lovely sedate side by side bike for two, and a hand-cranked bike designed for disabled people (this was particularly hard to use).

For me this was a great day out – there was food, drink, sun and cycling around traffic free roads. Much to be recommended!!

Maple Pecan Oatmeal Cookies

Maple Pecan Oatmeal Cookies
Yields 24
If you’re looking for a thick, chewy, moist cookie with great flavour and crunch too, you’ve found it! Maple Pecan Oatmeal Cookies are deliciously delightful and a perfect cookie for holiday gift giving!
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Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
12 min
Total Time
22 min
Prep Time
10 min
Cook Time
12 min
Total Time
22 min
151 calories
20 g
18 g
7 g
2 g
3 g
34 g
58 g
12 g
0 g
4 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
34g
Yields
24
Amount Per Serving
Calories 151
Calories from Fat 64
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 7g
12%
Saturated Fat 3g
14%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 3g
Cholesterol 18mg
6%
Sodium 58mg
2%
Total Carbohydrates 20g
7%
Dietary Fiber 1g
5%
Sugars 12g
Protein 2g
Vitamin A
3%
Vitamin C
0%
Calcium
2%
Iron
3%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 2 cups oatmeal
  2. 3/4 cup plain flour
  3. 1 cup chopped pecans
  4. 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  5. 1/4 teaspoon salt
  6. 1/2 cup butter, softened
  7. 1 cup brown sugar, lightly packed
  8. 1/2 cup maple syrup
  9. 1 large egg
Instructions
  1. Preheat the oven to 350 degrees. Prepare two baking sheets by lining each one with a silicone mat or parchment paper.
  2. In a bowl, whisk together the oatmeal, flour, 1/2 cup of the pecans, baking soda, and salt. Set aside.
  3. In a large bowl, use a hand mixer to blend together the butter and a 1/2 cup of the brown sugar. Add the maple syrup and the egg. Beat until smooth.
  4. Using a wooden spoon, stir the dry ingredients into the butter mixture until well incorporated.
  5. With a 1.5 tablespoon-sized ice-cream scoop, place equal amounts of batter onto each baking sheet. Be sure to leave 2-3 inches of space between each mound of batter.
  6. Gently press the batter with the back of your hand to form a small round shape roughly 1/4-1/2 inch in thickness.
  7. In a small bowl, toss together the remaining brown sugar and pecans. Sprinkle approximately 1 teaspoon of the mixture onto each flattened cookie.
  8. Bake each cookie sheet separately for 12 minutes. Allow cookies to cool on the baking sheets for two minutes after removing them from the oven. Lastly, transfer the cookies to a cooling rack to continue the cooling process.
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calories
151
fat
7g
protein
2g
carbs
20g
more
Simon Rochester http://www.simonrochester.co.uk/

Refried Beans

Refried Beans
Making your own refried beans is simple and delicious, and you can control the ingredients. Use your beans as the base for some excellent nachos, huevos rancheros, or just eat them with some high-quality tortillas.
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630 calories
96 g
12 g
15 g
32 g
5 g
392 g
972 g
2 g
0 g
8 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
392g
Amount Per Serving
Calories 630
Calories from Fat 135
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 15g
23%
Saturated Fat 5g
27%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
Monounsaturated Fat 6g
Cholesterol 12mg
4%
Sodium 972mg
40%
Total Carbohydrates 96g
32%
Dietary Fiber 32g
129%
Sugars 2g
Protein 32g
Vitamin A
1%
Vitamin C
11%
Calcium
20%
Iron
45%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 2 cups cooked pinto beans (or one can)
  2. 1 tablespoon of your favorite cooking oil\fat (lard, bacon grease, chicken schmaltz, duck fat, vegetable oil, or butter)
  3. 1/4 of an onion, finely diced
  4. 2 garlic cloves, minced
  5. 1 sprig of fresh oregano
  6. 1 bay leaf (optional)
  7. 1/4 teaspoon cumin (optional)
  8. Salt to taste
Instructions
  1. Heat the oil in a sauce pan or Dutch oven until shimmering, and add onion, garlic, oregano, bay leaf, and cumin. Season with salt.
  2. Cook until the garlic is browned the onions are soft, and you scan smell the aromatics.
  3. Add the beans, season with salt, and cook until they are thoroughly heated and begin to fall apart a bit.
  4. Remove the bay leaf and oregano, and mash the beans to your desired consistency with either a potato masher or immersion blender.
  5. Taste and add more salt if needed. If the beans are too thick, stir in a tablespoon of water.
Notes
  1. I like these with a smooth base texture and some chunky bits throughout, so I remove half the beans, mash the rest as above, then roughly crush the removed beans with a wooden spoon before returning them.
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calories
630
fat
15g
protein
32g
carbs
96g
more
Simon Rochester http://www.simonrochester.co.uk/

Cinnamon Rolls

Cinnamon Rolls
Yields 12
Sweet gooey deliciousness!
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Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
15 min
Prep Time
30 min
Cook Time
15 min
781 calories
106 g
133 g
37 g
9 g
22 g
210 g
315 g
67 g
1 g
12 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
210g
Yields
12
Amount Per Serving
Calories 781
Calories from Fat 323
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 37g
57%
Saturated Fat 22g
111%
Trans Fat 1g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
Monounsaturated Fat 10g
Cholesterol 133mg
44%
Sodium 315mg
13%
Total Carbohydrates 106g
35%
Dietary Fiber 2g
9%
Sugars 67g
Protein 9g
Vitamin A
25%
Vitamin C
0%
Calcium
10%
Iron
6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
For the Dough
  1. 1 cup warm milk
  2. 2 1/2 teaspoons instant dry yeast
  3. 2 large eggs at room temperature
  4. 1/3 cup butter melted
  5. 4 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
  6. 1 teaspoon salt
  7. 1/2 cup granulated sugar
For the Filling
  1. 1/2 cup butter softened
  2. 1 cup packed brown sugar
  3. 2 tablespoons cinnamon
  4. 1/2 cup double cream
For the Frosting
  1. 11 ounces cream cheese softened
  2. 2/3 cup butter softened
  3. 4 cups powdered sugar
  4. 1 tablespoon vanilla extract
Instructions
  1. Pour the warm milk in the bowl of a mixer and sprinkle the yeast over the top.
  2. Add the eggs, butter, salt and sugar.
  3. Add the flour and mix using the beater blade just until the ingredients are barely combined. Allow the mixture to rest for 5 minutes so the flour has time to soak up the liquids.
  4. Scrape the dough off the beater blade and remove it. Attach the dough hook.
  5. Beat the dough on medium speed for 5-7 minutes or until the dough is elastic and smooth. NOTE: The dough will be tacky and will still be sticking to the sides of the bowl. That's ok! Don't be tempted to add more flour at this point.
  6. Spray a large bowl with cooking spray.
  7. Use a spatula to remove the dough from the mixer bowl and place it in the greased large bowl.
  8. Cover the bowl with a towel or wax paper.
  9. Set the bowl in a warm place and allow the dough to rise until double. I like to turn on the oven to the lowest setting for 1-2 minutes. Then turn off the oven and place the dough to rise in there. It normally takes about 30 minutes for the dough to rise. Do not allow the dough to rise too much or your cinnamon rolls will be airy.
Filling
  1. In a medium bowl, combine the soft butter, brown sugar and cinnamon, mixing until well combined. Set aside.
  2. Sprinkle a pastry mat generously with flour. Turn out the dough onto the pastry mat and sprinkle the top of the dough with additional flour.
  3. Flour a rolling pin and roll the dough to about a 12x15" rectangle.
  4. Use a spatula to smooth the cinnamon filling over the whole dough rectangle.
  5. Starting on the long end, roll the dough up tightly, Swiss Roll style.
  6. Cut into 12 slices and place in a greased 9x13 baking pan.
  7. Cover the pan and allow the rolls to rise for 20 minutes or until nearly double.
  8. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees.
  9. Warm the heavy cream until the chill is off. Don't make it hot...you just don't want it cold. It should be warm to the touch.
  10. Once the rolls have risen, pour the heavy cream over the top of the rolls, allowing it to soak down in and around the rolls.
  11. Bake at 375 degrees for 15-17 minutes, until the rolls are lightly golden brown and the center rolls are cooked through.
Frosting
  1. In a large bowl, combine the softened cream cheese and butter using a hand mixer. Blend well.
  2. Add in your extract and the powdered sugar. Beat until combined.
  3. Spread the frosting over the cooled rolls.
  4. Store in an airtight container.
Notes
  1. Best served with a lovely coffee for added indulgence.
  2. Try swapping the vanilla extract in the frosting for maple for a different twist.
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calories
781
fat
37g
protein
9g
carbs
106g
more
Simon Rochester http://www.simonrochester.co.uk/

Sage ‘n’ Onion Stuffing

Sage 'n' Onion Stuffing
Serves 6
This classic sage and onion stuffing recipe is really easy to make at home and tastes so much better than the packet version.
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Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
40 min
Prep Time
15 min
Cook Time
40 min
169 calories
15 g
49 g
11 g
4 g
5 g
61 g
136 g
2 g
0 g
5 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
61g
Servings
6
Amount Per Serving
Calories 169
Calories from Fat 96
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 11g
17%
Saturated Fat 5g
25%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 1g
Monounsaturated Fat 4g
Cholesterol 49mg
16%
Sodium 136mg
6%
Total Carbohydrates 15g
5%
Dietary Fiber 1g
5%
Sugars 2g
Protein 4g
Vitamin A
5%
Vitamin C
3%
Calcium
5%
Iron
6%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 50g butter
  2. 1tbsp oil
  3. 1 large chopped onion
  4. 100g breadcrumbs
  5. 1tbsp chopped fresh sage
  6. 1 Large Egg (Beaten)
Instructions
  1. Heat the butter and oil, and cook the onion until softened. Stir in the breadcrumbs, sage, seasoning and the beaten egg.
  2. Put in a covered baking dish (uncovered if you want the top crispy) and cook in a preheated oven at 180C, gas 4 for 40 mins.
Notes
  1. Serve with your favourite roast Turkey or Chicken and lashings of gravy.
beta
calories
169
fat
11g
protein
4g
carbs
15g
more
Simon Rochester http://www.simonrochester.co.uk/

Quick Egg Fried Rice

Quick Egg Fried Rice
Serves 2
Quick fried rice, and a simple recipe. Ticks that "I need something savoury" box.
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Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
10 min
Total Time
30 min
Prep Time
20 min
Cook Time
10 min
Total Time
30 min
479 calories
73 g
186 g
13 g
17 g
2 g
419 g
1425 g
8 g
0 g
9 g
Nutrition Facts
Serving Size
419g
Servings
2
Amount Per Serving
Calories 479
Calories from Fat 111
% Daily Value *
Total Fat 13g
19%
Saturated Fat 2g
11%
Trans Fat 0g
Polyunsaturated Fat 2g
Monounsaturated Fat 7g
Cholesterol 186mg
62%
Sodium 1425mg
59%
Total Carbohydrates 73g
24%
Dietary Fiber 5g
21%
Sugars 8g
Protein 17g
Vitamin A
17%
Vitamin C
58%
Calcium
7%
Iron
16%
* Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000 calorie diet. Your Daily Values may be higher or lower depending on your calorie needs.
Ingredients
  1. 3 Tbsp Dark Soy
  2. 2 Eggs
  3. 1 Tbsp Vegetable Oil
  4. ½ onion, finely sliced
  5. 2 Cups Cooked Boiled Rice (cold cooked rice is the best)
  6. 1 Cup Peas
Instructions
  1. In a bowl, mix the Soy, Eggs and Oil to a loose consistency (just break the eggs up a little).
  2. Warm your wok, and drop in the mixture for a few seconds until the eggs solidify - this really looks quite a mess.
  3. Return the mixture to the bowl.
  4. Add the Onions and gently fry until soft but not browned.
  5. Add the Rice to the Wok, stir and cook for about 3 minutes to warm it up.
  6. Add the Soy, Egg, Oil mixture, stir continually and cook for 3 minutes..
  7. Add the peas and any meats and cook for about 7 minutes, stirring all the time.
  8. Make sure that everything is cooked and server.
Notes
  1. Try adding some cooked meat or Prawns, during the frying process to add to the flavour, also try using a different type of oil to give the rice a subtle flavour.
  2. Adding some sliced chillies and/or Peppers, and a few finely sliced Spring Onions will spice up this dish.
beta
calories
479
fat
13g
protein
17g
carbs
73g
more
Simon Rochester http://www.simonrochester.co.uk/