Monday, 31 March 2014


Making good rice is a nightmare. It has taken me 29 years to finally find a way to do it without it be claggy, starchy or even undercooked. However I have a quick post here to show you have to make the perfect rice in 4 simple steps:

 Perfect Rice!
  1. Rinse your rice in a colander under a cold tap until the water  runs clear through the rice
  2. Tip your rice into a pan of salted boiling water and boil for 5 minutes
  3. Take the pan off the heat, cover the pan with foil and cover with a lid. Leave for ten minutes
  4. Drain the rice of any excess water and fluff up the rice with a fork.

No more excuses for dodgy rice!


One of my absolute staple dishes for healthier eating is a Thai curry. I love the fragrant flavors that they have and the good thing is that once you have the base recipe down you can interchange the type of paste you use so you will never get bored with the taste.

Now it isn't my most healthiest dish by a long shot but it's still better than a Big Mac and fries at the end of the day. I would have one as a bit of a treat compared to the more lower cal dishes I have the rest of the week.

Sunday, 30 March 2014


If like me, things are a bit tight on the old money front then you need to get the most out of all the food you buy. I have found recently that planning my meals for the week not only helps with the diet but it also helps with saving some cash as you don't waste money on food that you don't need/use that then gets lashed in the bin.

You've just rustled up a fantastic Roast Chicken for your Sunday lunch but don't throw away all those fantastic bones and chickeny bit. Collect them all together and use them to make this fantastic chicken stock.

Leftover Chicken Stock

Grad all your left over chickeny bit, juices and carcass
2 Celery Sticks
2 Carrots
2 Onions
2 Sprigs Of Rosemary
Handful Of Parsley
2 Bay Leaves
8 Black Peppercorns


What else would make a perfect Sunday other than Cake and Ice Cream.  Has to be that mighty British classic. The Sunday Roast!

For me it has to be roast chicken every time - the smell it creates as its roasting away in the oven has to be one of the best smells ever invented. They should sell it in cans as air freshener! 

What could make that roast chicken even better. Adding some curry spices to the mix. The warmth of the curry flavors and the chickens own natural roasting smell! Yum Yum Yum!

For a simple curry marinade for your roast chicken simply add all the following into a bowl, whizz together and then smother your chicken: 

Curry Chicken Marinade: 

1 Tbsp Grated Garlic
1 Tbsp Grated Ginger
2 Jalapeno Peppers
1 Tbsp Tomato Puree
1 Tsp Ground Coriander
1 Tsp Turmeric
1 Tsp Garam Marsala
1 Tsp Ground Cumin
2 Tbsp Creme Fraiche
Pinch Of Sea Salt


Sunday's are amazing aren't they. It's the day I look forward to the most. I love lying in bed late reading the
Sunday papers and listening to my iPod. Absolute bliss.

It's also another day where I pull in the diet reigns and treat myself to more scrummy puddings. Now if like me you spent Saturday baking up a storm and for some reason you haven't demolished your bakes - you can stick your head in the fridge and dive straight in with no hassle what so ever.

I get jittery kitchen fingers if I'm not making something on a day off work however so to add to my yummy chocolate fudge cake I'm going to show you how to whip up a raspberry ice cream that is so easy it doesn't really warrant this recipe:

Saturday, 29 March 2014


Last night we enjoyed a Mexican Night In. If your anything like us you'll always end up making far too much food than you needed. This is no bad thing however - leftovers are perfect for having at lunch the next day or for jooshing up for dinner the next day (and for when you just can't be bothered cooking at all should you of had a heavy Mexican Night Out).

So when deciding what to eat today we thought - Fajitas! Perfect for turning leftover chili into something special. The only problem we had is that we prefer a nice fresh salsa with our fajitas as opposed to the overly saucy tomotey salsas you get in supermarkets. If your like us then you will love my recipe tomato and jalapeno salsa:

Tomato and Jalapeno Salsa:

8 Medium Tomatoes
A Handful Of Chopped Parsley
1 Red Onion
2 Jalapeno Chillies
1 Tbsp Olive Oil
Juice of 1 Lime
1 Tsp Soft Brown Sugar
1 Tbsp Black Pepper

Friday, 28 March 2014


So The Mexican Night In is complete! The plate of chili I had to the left - hoovered up in no time
 But what if you want the Mexican experience but don't want to go to the hassle of cooking. This is my number one Mexican restaurant suggestion as well as where I would love to visit next time I'm being lazy and crave good chili!

Lucha Libra:

 If your ever up in Liverpool (or Manchester now I believe) please visit Lucha Libre. Not just your typical restaurant, the small restaurant tucked away in the back streets of Liverpool growing increasingly popular in the city. Capitalising on the lack of any decent street food in the city (come on Liverpool, get with the revolution!) they serve fresh Mexican treats washed down with their amazing flavoured frozen Margarita's which are worth a visit on their own.

 The decor inside is brilliant, giving that authentic Mexican street feel whilst the relatively small inside gives it a great atmosphere when busy. The seating is brilliant for all occasions - raised booths which are ideal for families, cosy two seaters for first dates and long bench areas for groups of friends looking for something to eat before heading down into their Maya night club in the restaurants basement for more of those amazing cocktails.

As for the food, this is proper Mexican street food. All the food is fresh and light, miles away from the stodgy burritos you can get in other restaurants. To the right are there sharing platters - this is what we have every time we go as you get a little bit of everything (the menus too good to possibly decide on one thing). We always choose the veggie platter which at the time of writing consists of: 
  •  Veggie Tacos with marinated grilled halloumi
  • Maria Sabina with mushrooms, herbs and spinach
  • Veggie Tostadas with black beans and beetroot puree
  • Veggie Empanadas with butternut squash and goats cheese
All absolutely delicious and perfect for sharing with your dining companions - it's the item I recommend but f you do love your meat then carnivorous versions are available

Hopefully they will continue to expand so that more people get to sample their Mexican treats but if you are planning a night out in Liverpool and are in a Mexican mood, Lucha Libre is my number 1 choice. 

Bucket List Restaurant: Wahaca

I never watched the series of Masterchef when Thomasina Miers won. I saw her first on her fantastic show Mexican Food Made Easy. This lead me onto her book of the same name and later Mexican Food at home. Both are fantastic buys and I'm looking forward to her new book, Chili Notes.
We often visit London and it baffles me why we have never taken time out to visit Wahaca. If the food is half as Delicious as what is in her books then it will defiantly be one to come back too. This is top of my bucket list and I hope I can write up about my experience visiting their on in the very near future.

How about you? Are there any mexican restaurants you would recommend in a heartbeat. Post your recommendations in the comment box below or drop me a tweet!


No, I haven't turned into Jennifer Lopez. Although I can bust some moves like good old J'Lo. No tonight is Mexican night here at MattyB Bakes.

For me a good chili con carne is an essential comfort food meal, one that if I know were having it for tea then I crave it all day. It's especially good on a day like today - that day being Friday! What better day to reward yourself for surviving another week of work then a good old chili.

Now I never used to like any spice in my chili, however over time I've been conditioned by a certain someone, who used to slip in the odd chili into all kinds of meals, to now miss that warm kick of a good spicy chili when it's not there. I find adding chili to any kind of tomato sauce based meal such as a bolognase really gives it some ooompf!

Tonights chilli brewing away. Yum!
I can't stress as well how good it is too slow cook your chili. If your not part of the slow cooker crew yet you really should invest in one. You can pick up a fairly decent one for next too nothing. For my fellow scousers out there take a trip to good old TJ Hughes. We got ours from there for next to nothing and it's not let us down yet. The slow cooking time really gives your chili time to really brew and the result is really deep and flavourful chili and a beautiful warm smell wafting through your house. Nothing more comforting than that is there!

Thursday, 27 March 2014


This was me last year. Taken at Chester Zoo. I looked at this picture when it was posted on Facebook and thought I really need to sort my weight out.

Now I've never been a skinny bloke and I'd lost quite a lot of weight from when I was younger. I was around 18st at one point when I was in school. It always baffled me however why I was so big. I had never eaten tonnes as far as I was aware (maybe I was a secret eater) and I was relatively active. Think I was unfortunate to have a poor metabolism.
Of course, in the past I had committed every year to going on a diet. This of course lasts 2 weeks until I have the first big night out of the year and wake up the next day with a horrendous hangover and need to eat the entire menu of Papa Johns the next day. Then I would think "well why bother" and bang, the diet is over for another year.


Hello Everyone!

My name is Matthew - affectionately known to some as MattyB. This is my blog.

Let me explain: a lot of things have happened recently. We moved into a new flat, my partner, Jon has diagnosed with cancer and my dad has had continual health problems. It's been pretty stressful to say the least.

Don't worry - This blog will not be full of doom and gloom. 

Me and Hollywood!!!
During this time I started baking. Yes, I got caught up in the whole Great British Bake Off boom but it turned into something else. I found that it was relaxing just to forget the worries of the week/month/year and just lose myself in the kitchen. Afterwards not only did the flat smell amazing but I also got to eat a gorgeous cake and then share this with my family and friends. It was a piece of happiness that kept me sane in those bad times.