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Showing posts from 2019

Meal Plan Friday 27th December 2019

The last meal plan of the year and the next one will be rather more healthy. We are lucky had had a rather indulgent Christmas, however we do not like waste and this plan is rather a use up one.  Lunches are just using up the meats and cheeses with bread. Friday - Gammon, Egg and Chips to use up the Christmas Ham Saturday - Turkey Curry for Mr MC&W and I. The boys will have Chinese turkey noodles. Sunday - Mr MC&W decided he wanted these posh sausages from the butcher where we got our turkey from but we did not need them for Christmas lunch. So we will eat them up in a sausage casserole as the MIL is coming round. The boys will have them with beans and mash and broccoli. Monday - Lasagna for us thanks to Charlie Bigham as I wanted a break form cooking. The boys wanted tomato soup. Tuesday - new year eve - We have a lot of cheese so it will be a cheese fest for us snacking on with apples and grapes. The boys will have pizza and salad. Wednesday - Roast beef with al

December Garden Review

It has been so long since I last wrote a garden update, I have been training so I can hopefully go back to work, combine this with the almost constant rain and children getting poorly I have not managed to get outside for ages. Below shows how our clay soil is coping with the rain.... Today I managed to get outside, start to clear down and see what needs to be done.  Firstly these grapes, what a mess. I did not have the time to do anything with the grapes we grew and the butterfly's and insects did love them late autumn when they needed the food, but this left over mess I really hate. I am thinking about if I want to keep the grape vines or look for something else. The vines grow fast and look OK but it is a plant I really have not grown to love. A good hour of tidy up and the joys of a step ladder in the garden, it looks much better. I am not sure I should be doing this now but the plant was getting mouldy and I cut back to a node each time. So hopefully not

Meal Plan Friday 20th December 2019

Well it has been sometime since I last managed to upload a meal plan. Rest assure we have been eating just very busy with training, Christmas, birthdays, school and everyone getting poorly. I can not remember a time I have missed so many plans. So here we are coming up to Christmas and getting closer to another new year. I will be back to sharing my meals as I have missed it. Friday - Sausages in rolls with red onions just sausages for the boys Saturday - Caesar Salad for us and Chinese Chicken Noodles for the boys Sunday - Spag Bol Monday - Scampi, chips and peas. Fish Fingers for the boys. Tuesday - Curry this was Mr MC&W family tradition and one I am more than happy to continue on. I will be cooking a ham in cola today and if any of it lasts we will be having it over the next week. Problem is we tend to pick at it on Christmas eve. Wednesday - Well Roast rolled turkey breast with carrots cooked in orange juice and honey, roast potatoes, parsnips and everything else

Meal Plan Friday 15th November 2019

Oh my the month is disappearing way too fast. As always now the meal plan is late and i am getting more unorganised which can not be good in the run uo to Christmas. Friday - Main lunch out for Mr MC&W and I so a snack. Boys omelette's and jackets Saturday - Peri Peri Chicken for Mr MC&W and I the boys are making their own pizza. Sunday - Sausages in large Yorkshire puddings with lots of veggies and gravy. Monday - Fish, Chips and peas Tuesday - Halloumi burgers as making slaw for the peri peri chicken and pineapple for the pizza so using it all up for this meal. Boys having quorn burgers. Spiced halloumi pineapple burger zingy slaw Wednesday - Prawn Paella, this is Ainsley Harriet one from his quick meals and its brilliant.  Thursday - Sausage Casserole as the sausages are not freezable and we now have swimming on a Thursday so chuck this in t he slow cooker and some microwave mash and we are go go go Please have a think about doing food bank advent this

Meal Plan Friday 8th November 2019

Well the fiber increase went pretty well, though the butternut squash and sweet potato soup was not enjoyed. However, the wholemeal pasta was a huge hit as was the change to wholemeal bread and sandwich thins. Lots of little changes have made a big difference. Friday - Jacket potatoes with omelets filled with cheese Saturday - Cola Gammon with roast potatoes, carrots, kale and broccoli Sunday - Chicken Curry - based on this one but coconut milk not double cream Monday - Harissa Salmon with zesty couscous. Tomato soup with wholemeal toast for the boys. Harissa salmon zesty couscous Tuesday - Pizza and Salad Wednesday - Spanish meatballs with butter beans. Meatballs with spaghetti for the boys. Spanish meatball butter bean stew Thursday - Tuna slices for the boys. Mr MC&W and I will have goats cheese and Mediterranean slices with salad. Please join us in food bank advent as well, have a little look at the post here Food bank advent 2019

Quick and Easy Thai Style Rice

This is a very quick, easy and tasty meal that the whole family love. The other great thing about this meal is you can have a good old fridge clear out. I have put down all the bits we have used in this meal.  This takes around 10 mins to prep and 15 to 20 mins to cook Ingredients Chicken breast cut into bite size pieces or quorn pieces Microwave Rice we use 2 packs for 5 of us two adults and 3 kids (1 toddler) Thai Curry paste red or green, I use the smaller pots as no waste. Coconut milk Chicken or vegetable stock around 200ml Examples of veggies you can add red onions, peppers, sweetcorn, peas, broccoli, mushrooms, carrors - add what ever the kids or you like. I cook one version for the kids after school and one for us a little later on. Method Cut the chicken breast  and all the veggies you are choosing that need to be cut up into bite size pieces. Add the chicken or quorn and veggies that need a little longer to cook for exapmle onions, peppers, broccoli, c

Friday 1st November 2019

The meal plan is late as I just could not get it right. This week we have my mum coming to stay for a couple of days and could I get my head around what to feed her. We also have one word going round our household at the moment and that is fiber, our youngest is terribly fussy with all textures which means we are constantly battling food. We are trying to find little ways to increase fiber into his diet as he likes so few foods. Friday - Quorn burgers for the boys we had birds eye southern style crispy chicken with avocado and salad Saturday - We were meant to have Charlie Bighams Lasagna but we had a power cut so had reduced priced sushi Sunday - Charlie Bighams Lasagna the boys are having pasta Monday - Gnocchi with mushrooms and broccoli form Madhouse Cookbook by Jo Pratt Tuesday - Sausage Pasta. We will be trying wholemeal pasta!!! not sure how that will go down. Wednesday - Chicken in red wine that we were meant ti have on Sunday  Chicken and red wine casserole T

Food Bank Advent 2019

It is the end of October and my thoughts are turning to Christmas not just for us but for the food bank. Last year I did food bank advent in December, this year I have decided to do it in November. I decided to do November as December can be busy and expensive this way I can make sure I think about the items and spread the cost. I contacted our local food bank to chat through what they would like, they let me know they were doing special boxes on Christmas eve and would I think of the following items Gravy Mix Stuffing Cranberry Sauce Tin Foil pickles Selection boxes Special Biscuits All need to be in date for 25th December and lets be honest a few days after and nothing that needs refrigeration. Last year some friends and I clubbed together and we did 6 items each. A good way to join together and we had lots of chats about who was getting what. We had a lovely big box of bits for the food bank by mid December. So each week I will be adding a few extra items to my b

Meal Plan 25th October 2019

We have nearly made it to half term, only one day to go. We have shattered children who need some time to rest and relax. Friday - Hot dogs vegetarian ones for the boys, slightly posher version for us Mapleglazed hot-dogs-with-mustardy onions Saturday - Chinese chicken this is new and in the comments someone had served this with noodles and this is how we are going to do it Chinese chicken pancakes Sunday - Roast pork, Mr MC&W did a butchery course so this is the leg of pork will have it with roast potatoes, carrots and spinach and v broccoli Monday - Lentil Mustard Salmon. Salmon with mash and peas for the boys. Mustardy salmon beetroot and lentils Tuesday -  Cauliflower cheese and spinach pasta bake. I can only do this with time so perfect meal for the holidays. Cauliflower cheese and spinach pasta bakes Wednesday - Thai Chicken - I am doing this as I need to write it up for a school cookbook and get some photos. Thursday - Using up the pork for Paprika Po

GYO Review 2019

This is our second year of GYO in the planters we brought for the front garden. This year really has not been as good as last year, which was a real disappointment. Shall we see where it all went wrong. Trough style planters really need some thinking about and planning, far better than how I planted them this year. This is a little annoying as I thought I had already learnt this lesson last year but it looks like I had not.  I planted Swiss Card next to Fennel and the Swiss chard took over and the poor fennel had not light and did very badly. To make matters worse we did not really eat the Swiss chard.  Which meant wasted food and space. This was pure bad planning and planting. The courgettes did OK but not very well, last summer we had them none stop for weeks. This time they did not grow properly or went mouldy at the bottom. I am not really sure why this happened. They were planted in the same position as last time but a different variety. The carrots and th

Meal Plan Friday 18th October 2019

Some how I managed to cobble a meal plan together, I really must get more organised but the kids are full of cold and shattered and we have so much homework to do that is the whole family. It is very hard to fit it all in. Also this constant rain just does not help anything. Friday - Pizza easy easy easy Saturday - Quorn Burgers and salad again easy Sunday - My favourite meal and so easy French Style Chicken this I do with mini roasts French style chicken with peas and bacon Monday - Neapolitan Rice Salad from Gino Healthy Italian for me and Mr MC&W he had had the weekend playing golf. Boys will have tuna mayo loaded waffles with salad Tuesday - Chicken Tagine from Mary berry with couscous. I am going to try this with the boys and see how we go. Chicken tagine recipe by mary berry Wednesday - Fish in sauce with new potatoes and roasted Mediterranean veg. Fish goujons, mash and peas. Thursday - Super Smokey Bacon and tomato spaghetti super smoky bacon tomato sp

Meal Plan Friday 11th October

The meal plan is late again and rather rushed. I am finding with everything going on it is done last minute, I sit down in the evening and there is just no inspiration. Need to find a time to sit down when I can spend just ten mins planning. Friday - Scampi and Chips (fish fingers for the boys) and peas Saturday - Macaroni cheese for the boys. Chicken salad for us. Sunday - We have family over for ATM and Mr MC&W birthdays and we are having fajitas veggie and chicken ones. Monday - is Mr MC&W birthday so steak and chips. The boys will have tortellini. Tuesday - is a crazy day so simple meals for us all. Tomato soup and rolls for the boys. We will have a smoked mackerel salad using mini roast potatoes i just have to pop in the oven. Based on this Smoked mackerel salad with beetroot and horseradish Wednesday - Baked Gnocchi Puttanesca baked gnocchi Thursday - Mushroom Stroganoff and the boys will have a quorn one with rice Mushroom Stroganoff

Meal Plan Friday 4th October

Last week was crazy with my training course and this weekend it is our middle ones birthday and school visits and trying to keep up with my course work. My poor brain failed terribly at the meal plan. Friday - Chili for us all Saturday - Pizza Express trip for us and a couple of Mouses friends Sunday - Quorn Burgers and chips this was requested by Mouse for his birthday treat meal. Monday -  Omelets and salad for the boys and we will have a Crunchy Mozzarella and Pesto Mushroom with wedges Crunchy pesto and mozzarella baked mushrooms Tuesday - Smoked Salmon and Celeriac Dauphonise. Jackets and beans for the boys. Smoked salmon and celeriac dauphinoise Wednesday - Chinese Chicken Curry for us all Chinese chicken curry Thursday - Home from work Spaghetti, this is also using up some of the pesto from Monday. Homefromwork spaghetti

Growing Biennials from seed

What I love about twitter is learning form all the gardeners, this year suddenly there was a lot of talk about sewing biennials. What I need to make clear is this started in July. I have had some success with annuals, so thought I should have a look. When reading up, I discovered that included were Sweet Williams and Foxgloves I adore both. I found a brilliant article from Higgeldy Garden which made it all make sense, so I ordered some seeds from Higgidy Garden and Chiltern seeds. I planted them all in pots to see if they would germinate. I put a few in each one to see what happened. Some of the seeds were so tiny they got a liberal sprinkling and a hope for the best. I put them in the mini greenhouse with the roof open and watered and fed regularly, I did have to take them out for a while as it was so hot, they nearly cooked. I was pretty shocked to see many had germinated. It took some a lot longer than others but nearly each pot I had some of the seeds germinate.