Saturday, August 19, 2017

Fochabers Fish Bar - Scotland's No.1 Fish and Chips 2017

On our way home from our dolphin spotting adventure at Spey Bay, a big sign pointed us to the direction of "Scotland's No.1 Fish and Chip Takeaway 2017" located in Fochabers.

A queue was already forming when we arrived at Fochabers Fish Bar. There is a small section for those wishing to dine-in or you could join the queue for the takeaway. Expect a short wait as everything is cooked to order. While waiting, we studied the long list of awards they have won over the years, including Runner Up in the Young Fish Frier of the Year Competition 2017.





After collecting our order, we walked down to the Village Square to enjoy our dinner. We ordered two scampi suppers, one each for the kids since they're big fans (weekly offer at £4.90 instead of £6.20) - each pack comes with 10 pieces of breaded scampi, crisp and juicy. Hubby and I also ordered the haddock (£4.50) and haggis pudding (£2.30). The haddock was great, with a light, crispy batter enclosing the fresh, flaky fish. The haggis pudding was massive, though tastewise I prefer the one here.

Overall, we enjoyed our chipper dinner - definitely worth making a stop here if you are in the area.











Fochabers Folk Museum - directly opposite the chipper





For dessert, we had ice cream from a nearby award-winning ice cream shop - Fochabers Ice Cream Parlour (£2.25 each).



Mint choc chip and salted caramel ice cream


We went for a little walk after dinner... a great view from the bridge of River Spey.


Opening times: Thu & Fri 12pm - 1.30pm; Sun-Thu 4pm- 8pm; Fri-Sat 4pm - 8.30pm.

Price: Total bill £19.40.

Location: Fochabers Fish Bar, 19 High Street, Fochabers, IV32 7DX Scotland.

Tel: 01343 820320

Website: http://www.fochabersfishbar.co.uk/





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Thursday, August 17, 2017

Recipe: Avocado, Strawberry and Feta Sandwich

I found avocado, strawberry and feta in the fridge and thought they'd go nicely together in a sandwich. An easy one to put together - spread mashed avocado on toast, layer on the creamy feta cheese and then finish off with sliced juicy strawberries. I sprinkled Maldon salt on half of the sandwich, and drizzled honey on the other half... they were both delicious!






Avocado, Strawberry and Feta Sandwich
Recipe by Baby Sumo
Preparation time: 5 minutes
Serves 1

Ingredients
1/2 ripe avocado
2 slice white bread, toasted
2 strawberries, thinly sliced
5 thin slices feta cheese
Maldon salt
Honey


1. Scoop out avocado flesh and mash with a fork.

2. Spread the avocado on one slice of toast, and then layer with feta cheese and strawberries. Either sprinkle with some Maldon salt or drizzle with honey, or both if preferred. Top with another slice of toast and cut into half.

Note: You can also serve this as an open-faced sandwich, omit one slice of toast.



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Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Scottish Dolphin Centre, Spey Bay, Moray

One of the things we really wanted to see during our trip were dolphins. Out of the many leaflets that our son picked out was one for the Scottish Dolphin Centre.

Moray Firth is home to the largest bottlenose dolphins in the world and the centre is strategically located at Spey Bay, about 2 hours drive from Aberdeen. Other than dolphins, you may also catch a glimpse of ospreys, seals and otters if you are lucky.






At the Scottish Dolphin Centre, you can opt to go on the Icehouse Tour happening at 12.15pm and 3.15pm, lasting about 45 minutes. Built in 1830, the Tugnet icehouse is the largest surviving icehouse in the UK, used for storing ice in the past, which is used for keeping fish fresh for transportation. The tour incorporates the "Dry Dive" experience, the "Bones Room" and a talk about the salmon fishing heritage of the Spey river. We were also briefed on how to identify a dolphin vs whale. The guided tour is free, however you may give a small donation to the centre.

Other than the tour, there is also a Wildlife Wander (also lasting approximately 45 minutes), whereby you will be taken on a walk around the vicinity to discover the wildlife. We were extremely lucky as we spotted an osprey 5 minutes into our walk, and we even saw it dive into the water and emerge with a fish through our binoculars. We also spotted various birds and lizards, and our tour guide also pointed out some interesting, as well as dangerous plants you can find in the area. A fun, informative walk. Again, this is free,  but do make a small donation to thank them for the work they do here for the conservation of whales and dolphins.





Inside the centre you will also find an interactive exhibition, dolphin cams as well as activities for the kids. There is also a cafe and shop within the centre.

Although we did not spot any dolphins during our visit, we had a fun day out and learned a lot more about dolphins. We also enjoyed our walk at the shingle beach at Spey Bay.









Speyside, whisky territory - BabySumoKids on the rocks ;)



Open daily in Apr-Oct 10.30am to 5pm.

Location: WDC Scottish Dolphin Centre, Spey Bay, Moray IV32 7PJ, Scotland. (Parking available on site)

Tel: +44 01343 820339

Website: http://dolphincentre.whales.org/




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Sunday, August 13, 2017

Recipe: Chip Shop Chicken Curry

Hubby once commented that the Japanese chicken curry that we would have in KL is similar to the curry we get from a Chinese takeaway here in the UK.

To make chip shop style chicken curry, you can easily get bottled curry sauce in the supermarkets. An easy and quick recipe, I simple sauteed some onions and chicken breast, added the carrots and curry sauce and simmered it for 10 minutes. The curry was mild and delicious eaten with chips. Certainly satisfied my curry cravings. ;)


Chip Shop Curry Chicken with Triple Cooked Chips




Chip shop curry chicken
Recipe by Baby Sumo
Preparation time: 5 minutes
Cooking time: 15-17 minutes
Serves 2-3

Ingredients
500g chip shop curry sauce
250g chicken breast, cut into bite sized chunks
3 carrots
1 onion, peeled and sliced thinly
2 tbsp olive oil

1. In a frying pan, heat oil over medium high heat. Add onion and saute for 1 1/2 minutes, until slightly softened.

2. Add the chicken and cook for about 4-5 minutes, then add the curry sauce and carrots, and simmer over medium low heat for 10 minutes.

3. Serve with chips or boiled rice.

Note: we used chip shop curry sauce from Aldi.




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Thursday, August 10, 2017

Hairy Coo (Highland Cows) @ Crathes Castle, Aberdeenshire, Scotland

Every year, we would go coo hunting... particularly for  the iconic Highland Cows, also known as Hairy Coo. Most of the time when we spot one - they're either very far away in the field (to get a good shot of) or there will be no parking nearby.



When Crathes Castle posted on their FB about their newest "coo" addition, we took the kids there the following day. The Highland Coo trail starts off at the overflow car park, and kids are encouraged to follow the hairy coo cut outs in the woodland until they get to the real thing. Guess who was the most excited when we saw them? Obviously the biggest hairy coo fan... mummy!

There are currently 2 adult coos and 2 baby coos, beautiful animals! It's great to be able to see them upclose.... in fact this is the closest I've ever been to a hairy coo.

Easy trail ... very manageable even for young kids




Mummy Coo







A selfie with my favorite animal in the whole wide world



Lots of other interesting trails to go on at Crathes Castle




Check out the yew hedges in the walled gardens, planted in 1702.




Location: Crathes Castle, Garden & Estate, Banchory, AB31 5QH, Scotland (Parking: £2, free for NTS members).

Tel: 01330 844525

Website: https://www.facebook.com/CrathesNTS/



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Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Recipe: Bacon and Egg Brioche Sandwich

I've been spoilt with lots of delicious breakfast on our holidays, all lovingly prepared by Hubby. One of my favorites was the bacon and egg brioche sandwich which he made last week. He upgraded from white toast to brioche buns which brought this sandwich to the next level. Breakfast fit for a king, queen, prince or princess... the whole family approves of this!

Hubby, if you're reading this, I'd like this for breakfast again, PLEASE ;)



Bacon and egg brioche sandwich
Recipe by Baby Sumo
Preparation time: 2 minutes
Cooking time: 6-8 minutes
Serves 4

Ingredients
4 brioche buns
4 slices back bacon
4 medium eggs
2 tbsp olive oil
Tomato ketchup



1. Place bacon under hot grill and grill for 6 minutes, turning once.

2. In a frying pan, heat the oil over medium heat. Fry the eggs for 3-4 mins until the whites are cooked through.

3. Halve the brioche buns and lightly toast them, then spread with a thin layer of butter / margarine.

4. To assemble, place brioche bun, followed by a slice of bacon, a fried egg, a dollop of ketchup and finished with the brioche bun top.





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Sunday, August 6, 2017

Newburgh Seals Beach, Aberdeenshire, Scotland

If you want to catch a glimpse seals in Aberdeenshire, one of the best places to go is Newburgh Beach. It was an amazing sight as we came past the "Seals Ahead" sign and was greeted by hundreds of seals at the sand bar. 

Many of them were swimming in the sea and would come up to the sand area at times and we even saw one which rolled in the sand while enjoying the sun. Do remember to bring your binoculars to catch a good look of the seals.




Nice sandy beaches to explore with your family too.



Here is a video of the adorable seals at Newburgh.

Park at car park near the Newburgh golf course and walk towards to the beach. Newburgh is about 25-30 minutes drive from Aberdeen.

Location: Newburgh Beach, Newburgh, AB41 6BY, Scotland, United Kingdom.

GPS Coordinates: 57.314079, -2.000888




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