Stop the clocks people, I have made a roast dinner!
Ok, I know that for most people this is hardly Big News, but for me? I don’t do roast dinners. Agro. Washing up. Not that exciting. Most importantly, not pasta or cake which are the two lynchpins of my healthy balanced diet. However my friend Rachel who has the world’s best tea loaf recipe told me the other day that she had the perfect recipe for yorkshire puddings. Rachel cooks roast dinners a lot, because unlike me she is a Good Housewife. And her kids eat LOADS, so I thought I would give it a try. Look, I’m in my 30′s with toddler, pregnant and married to a preacher, these days cooking a roast is classified as living on the edge to me. Continue reading
I got a breadmaker for my birthday. It is one of those large, imposing machines that forces its way onto your kitchen counter and then… gathers dust. Of course, I tried to use it, I really did, not least after watching a programme over Christmas that talked about how chicken feathers are used in most commercially produced breads as a preservative. I know, nice. But the bread it was making? Ugh. Small, dense loaves with the dough kneader always stuck in it. Always. Not really edible. It gathered more dust.
And then a little while ago I fell upon this recipe from Pat who writes the blog A Yorkshire Cook. Sure enough, Pat had the same cheapie breadmaker as me but she was actually making bread from it that looked nice. Edible even. Imagine! Continue reading
I know! Being a stay at home mum is treating me very badly, right?! And to think there are people that go to work because they worry that otherwise their brains will turn to mush, well not me sir, nope, nu-uh. Because since becoming a sahm I have learnt the 4:4:4:2 method and that was never written into my my yearly targets before now. One somewhat wonders what I used got do all day? (Don’t answer that.)
The 4:4:4:2 method, for the uninitiated is Continue reading
I am in love with my slow cooker, IN LOVE I tell you. Two things I like about it: 1) I can chuck a load of food in it early in the day and then later on, post glass of wine have dinner waiting for me with no effort 2) it makes me both look and sound like some kind of domestic goddess who plans things in advance. This is exactly the kind of myth I like to encourage!
Seeing as it’s so cold outside still I thought I’d pull together ten great slow cooker recipes you could do this weekend, saving you some time to chill out with the shiraz.
This fabulous recipe came from my friend Jodie and has universal love from everyone who’s tried it. You can do it in a casserole dish in the oven, but I like to pop it in my slow cooker about mid-day so I don’t have to think anymore about cooking once lunchtime is over!
Italian Vegetable Bake
I hate the cold weather so this lovely looking dish from the BBC’s Good Food site sounds like a surefire winner for helping me to start focusing on more cheery things like summer holidays. Continue reading
I have always bought them. My friend Rachel makes them.
“Too much effort!” I say. “Oh no,” says Rachel, “I just buy some pastry and the mincemeat and make them like that.”
She is right, of course. They are lovely. My house smells fantastic and I feel remarkably full of seasonal cheer. (Especially for someone who hasn’t done anything to prepare for tomorrow yet!)
Have a lovely Christmas everyone x
Last year for Christmas I handmade a felt bird ornament. I was really pleased with it, it took me about an hour though. Even the husband liked it. “That’s great, can you do enough to cover the tree?”
So this year I planned on being a bit more organised and doing a bit more, but strangely when December came round I had not magically metamorphosised into another, more well planned person. I was still me which means that everything will be slightly last minute, slightly panicked and normally with a couple of choice words thrown in when I realise I don’t have everything I needed. (Ginger for gingerbread? Oh…) I have however, despite all this managed to make a few things this year and as I was so very pleased with myself I feel morally obliged to share them.
These lovelies are courtesy of this recipe over on mumsnet. They are lovely, right? And even better is that I can eat them all, which is rather handy when your friends pop over and you realise that you are out of cake. (Yes, that’s also disorganised me earlier this week) A word to the wise though. Gingerbread needs ginger, do double check. Continue reading
Yesterday Mumsnet hosted a webchat with the very lovely Nigel Slater. I am a big fan of his, affected at least in part by one of his books in which he recommends smarties as a kitchen cupboard must-have and one of his early programmes in which he confessed to sitting down to watch tv (ER, if memory serves correct) with a tub of Haagen Daaz. I like cooking, but y’know, everything in moderation and all that.
Anyway, having pulled some chicken thighs out of the freezer that morning and with the normal lack of imagination that mid-week cooking brings, I thought I would ask Nigel what the husband and I should do for dinner. His answer was to cook them with some olive oil, lemon and basil and serve with some sautéed potatoes. I thought I would blog this in case anyone else is having the midweek what to cook horrors and doesn’t have one of the best cooks in the country to advise them personally! Continue reading
So then, this week….If I could sum it up in one word it would probably be ARRGGHHHH!!! I had a mega-blog mid-week when I wrote two posts and scheduled this one to go out just after midnight, setting it up nicely for Foodie Kids Thursday. Then my blog died. And when, 48 hours later it reappeared it was without the posts.
So now I’m at work, re-writing this.
And I’ve had the interview today to see if I’d be selected for redundancy and to put it nicely, it did not go well. So you’ll have to excuse the desire to hide under the duvet but its that or hit the shiraz and as the toddler is waking pre-six am at the moment that doesn’t sound like my best idea! Continue reading
Bronco stew, you ask, what is that? Well, my husband’s named this bronco stew because it’s very loosely based on a Rick Stein recipe for Bullfighters Stew. The husband made it so he gets to name it, I think that’s fair enough.
By the time we get to the weekend I’m always more than ready to pop something into the slow cooker, my basic mantra being cook when you have the energy, eat when you’ve run out of energy. This recipe is also pretty typical for round here in that it includes large amounts of wine and tastes all the better if you drink some more when you eat it (yes, I do insist!). Its Sunday, lets all chill out a bit more. Cook this now, then put an old film on and put your feet up, and make sure you have a bottle of red in for later to eke the last bits of pleasure out of the weekend. Continue reading
Reader, do you like work? Want to find something to make it a bit more bearable? Then may I introduce to you The Office Bake Off. yes its a simple idea but by God does it work. Inspired by last seasons Great British Bake Off we started one in my office and crikey does it make paid employment that bit more bearable. And you get guaranteed cake at work every week which has got to be a winner. Here’s my rules to a happy workplace:
Banana and raisin cakes, made by my own fair hands
1) Set up a spreadsheet with every week for the next few months
2) Send round a hassley ‘Do you like cake?!’ style email, note, it helps to prep a work place friend to yell out very loudly ‘Oh! I love cake! Lets all do a bake off and anyone who doesn’t join in is rubbish!’ as soon as aforementioned email is sent Continue reading