Archive for the ‘Foodie Stuff’ Category

Menu Planner Monday

February 3, 2008

I’m off to England on Friday morning for my brothers 50th. So this week is a short one, but an adventurous one, too. I’m making four things I’ve never attempted before.


And next week I can’t wait to make these, Nic’s Chicken Mug Pies

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I’ve signed up for another Foodie Event (I’m a sucker for competition!) Take a look at ‘No Croutons Required’ over at Lisa’s Kitchen. It’s a joint effort here with Holler at Tinned Tomatoes. She’s a Jouster, too (I voted for her when she made this) Which brings me onto my entry for this months Royal Joust over at Jenns blog The Leftover Queen. I entered previously but didn’t get anywhere! It would be great to win and pick the three ingredients for the March Joust.

 The only way for you to vote for me though, would be to register in the forum. If you wish to do this go here then here to vote. Why not join in the next Joust?
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Lamb Cutlets on a Spiced Vegetable Broth

12 lean lamb cutlets
125g soaked soup mix (red split lentils, green split lentils, pearl barley and marrowfat peas)
1 white onion
2 sticks celery
2 med potatoes
1 eggplant (aubergine)
2 carrots1 red pepper
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1/2 tsp cumin
2 cloves garlic
freshly ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 180o
Cook the cutlets for 15 minutes


Dice the vegetables small
Fry onion till soft and add the spices
Add the vegetables and sweat for 5 minutes
Add  soup mix and stock, bring to the boil
Simmer for 20 minutes
Season to taste

Plate up and arrange 3 cutlets on top of each dish
I added a sprig of fresh coriander for extra colour

Pork Casserole with Mixed Beans

October 6, 2007



Advantages of sleeping with the Chef

September 27, 2007

  He spoils me. A couple of times a year, Chef will take me on a shopping spree. Today was one of those days. I really don’t enjoy shopping for clothes, unless I’m on my own. I like to browse alone in silence. I never try anything on. I’ll pick straight from the rack, pay and go. I suppose I’m lucky that what I chose, generally fits anyway. 

 But today, the first shop we came across was this one. Le Creuset. I’d rather go wild in here than in any other shop…

Here’s what Chef bought for me ( as well as clothes which I’ll be’ modelling’ before I start the dinner)

Just what I need to cook the casseroles and stews

I found this book last week

And cooking this tonight. The Menu Planner has been neglected again!

Well, I thought I was cooking that . I went upstairs to ‘model’ a few pieces and when I came down for his approval, this is what I saw….

Oy! My rack has been destroyed! He was so hungry and I was too slow…

And nothing goes to waste!

I hope they eat it…

January 18, 2007

I’m trying a new recipe today, hoping that the children will at least give it a try. Quiche Provencale.

I bought ready-rolled pastry to save time and fresh ingredients which I didn’t have.

 Prick with fork.


I blind-baked it for 10 minutes last night and put it in the fridge.


 New wok!

 Add ingredients to pastry case

  Added asparagus spears, too

 Mix eggs and cheese

 Cover and season

 Little too brown…

 But very tasty!

The children didn’t even want to  try it, so I’m getting through it all myself!

Curry night (Pics and update!)

January 4, 2007


  I can’t remember the last time I made a curry from scratch with fresh ingredients (Uncle Bens fault) so today I’ll do just that. I discovered an Indian deli tucked away on a side-street in the next town, so I’ll be venturing there later. Meanwhile, take a look at this Jamie Oliver recipe. I’m drooling!….

 ~You will like this curry – it’s easy and fun to make. Two little tips are first, to use a Magimix or food processor to chop the onions and tomatoes as it makes less mess, it’s really quick and will stop you crying! Second, get all your ingredients prepared and ready to go, then you can have the sauce finished in 15 minutes.
Keep your eyes peeled for curry leaves – I’m trying to get supermarkets to stock them at the moment, but you can buy them from Indian and Asian delis. Get yourself a big bag of them, let them dry and they’ll last for ages. If you really can get them, do without, but it won’t be quite the same.
Serves 4

*5 tablespoons vegetable oil

* 2 teaspoons black mustard seeds

* I teaspoon fenugreek seeds

* 3 fresh green chillies, deseeded and thinly sliced

* 1 handful of curry leaves

* 2 thumb-sized pieces of fresh ginger, peeled and coarsely grated

* 3 onions, peeled and chopped

* 1 teaspoon chilli powder

* 1 teaspoon tumeric

* 6 tomatoes, chopped

* 1 x 14fl oz tin coconut milk

* salt

~For the Fish version

*4 x 225g fresh haddock fillets, skinned and pin boned

 * 1 knob of tamarind paste or 1 teaspoon tamarind syrup

* optional: 1 large handful of baby spinach

* optional: 1 good handful of fresh coriander, chopped

 For the Chicken version

* 4 chicken breasts, sliced into 1cm strips

* 1 tablespoon coriander seeds, crushed

For the Vegetarian version

*800g mixed vegetables, chopped (potatoes, courgettes, peppers, onions, sweet potatoes, spinach, chard, cauliflower, lentils, beans…use your imagination)

Heat the oil in a pan, and when hot add the mustard seeds. Wait for them to pop, then add the fenugreek seeds, fresh green chillies, curry leaves and ginger. Stir and fry for a few minutes. Using a Magimix food processor, chop the onions and add to the same pan. Continue to cook for 5 minutes until the onion is light brown and soft, then add the chilli powder and tumeric. Using the same food processor, pulse the tomatoes and add these to the pan. Cook for a couple of minutes, then add 1 or 2 wine glasses of water and the coconut milk. Simmer for about 5 minutes until it has the consistency of double cream, then season carefully with salt.Take this sauce as a base. To make the fish curry, add the fish and tamarind to the sauce and simmer for 6 minutes. Feel free to add some baby spinach and chopped coriander at the end of the cooking time.
For the chicken version, stir-fry the chicken strips and coriander seeds until lightly coloured, then add your sauce and simmer for 10 minutes. For the vegetarian version, simply add all your veg to the sauce at the beginning when you add your onions. Continue to cook as normal and simmer until tender.~

Thankyou Jamie Oliver!

 Mise en place

~I got all the ingredients Jamie asked for, or so I thought,  prepared it (one hour, minimum) Meanwhile Hubs is starving looking in the fridge which REALLY annoys me! The kids are running riot , what’s new? Apart from No.1 who is ill on the couch with a bad dose of flu. No’s 3& 4 are dancing to the Scissor Sisters’ ‘Don’t feel like cooking dancing’ on the kitchen table as I de-seed and finely chop red chilli peppers. What can I do? Poke ’em in the eye? And No.2 is asking me intelligent questions while surfing the net. Stop!!!!  I’m not clever!

 I burnt the curry leaves and Hubs said I didn’t. I DID!

 The sauce

 My husband enjoyed the meal and when I asked him what his real thoughts were, he said it could have been hotter. I used ground chilli flakes as opposed  to chilli powder, DAMN!  Makes all the difference to use the correct ingredients.

Hang on a minute…….  is that a dinosaur in the dishwasher?


How the hell did that get there? (Methinks my 2 yr old is involved)

 With chicken

TIP: When de-seeding chilli’s wear surgeons gloves!