Monday, 21 May 2012

Meal Planning Monday W/c: 21st May 2012

Oh my its been two whole weeks! So sorry to have abandoned you, time has flown by! Just as I got my camera back, I then leant it to my dad for his holiday so have not photographed anything! Also my laptop cable has died, the replacement via ebay doesn't work and now am on a borrowed, lower power one that won't charge but at least can use it plugged in! If anyone has a spare Dell vostro one please send it my way :)

In all honesty, I've not really been cooking anything that blogworthy...exam season is approaching scarily fast, car bills have seen the purse super tightened and I have been living off the depths of the fridge and freezer! Everything's been edible but just not very exciting! Though I did make for lunch today a rather gorgeous take on my beetroot salad, which also doubled as payment to a lovely colleague who cut my hair last week. If only we could barter everything with food! It was very popular in the staffroom too with everyone diving in to try it! Will make again and blog next time with piccies.

Last week I was sent some gorgeous new naan breads from Warburton's, which have been squirrelled into the freezer for when have people over, as I feared would eat the whole thing by myself! The garlic one in particular looks really tasty! Am going to make a curry soon and write more about them then.

And so moving on to this weeks plan. Which as always is subject to change! *updated*

Monday - I saw a recipe for an fruit nut and oat stuffed pepper...though am thinking of tweaking to using groats...about to venture into the kitchen so we shall see! Became groat pilaf, as my pepper was wonky and wouldn't stand up! Added sultanas and toasted cashew nuts, was tasty

Tuesday - Gammon, groats and courgette Leftovers from Monday

Wednesday - salmon pea and ginger noodles Was too hot after working late! Had rice cakes with marmite instead

Thursday - Breaded fish, potato bake and cabbage (though was a zillion degrees and would of have salad if I hadn't used it all up for lunches!

Friday - If I don't bake something before then, looking at frittata, possibly with mackerel in. Became a cheese pasty at work, then a banana

Weekend - am making plans to go out so open to anything!

Saturday -  going to the market get my fruit n veg in - dinner might be fridays bumped omelette

Sunday - family around - having chicken and veg pie, with whatever veg I get in market

Have a good week everyone!

Monday, 7 May 2012

Meal Planning Monday w/c: 07/05/2012

I hope everyone had a nice bank holiday even if the weather has been soggier than the paper under a bag of hot chips! On Saturday I visited the Foodies Festival at Hampton court, and despite the rain and being frozen to the bone managed a few hours, think once the wine samples kicked in we felt better! Have come away with several goodies including some delicious fruit curds, crisps and plenty of inspiration!

Yesterday unfortunately saw me say goodbye to the twenties and entering my thirties. Though was told on several occasions I don't look it which is good! We went out for a delicious curry and visited a lovely place near me in Cobham, which has plants, little outlets selling all sorts of stuff, and a great little cafe where we stopped for lunch. And beer! Also managed to buy there some gorgeous fresh olives which are rapidly vanishing this afternoon! Some are smoked which is a first for me, they are intriguingly good!

Last weeks meal plan as always got several tweakings but didn't do too badly at sticking with it! The surprise highlight of the week were these pork patties I made on Thursday night:

In them went minced pork, lgihtly cooked grated carrot, breadcrumbs from the depths of the freezer, a few tbsp of some 'omega seed' mix and a little soy milk to bind. Alongside I cooked my groats as planned, and they are a definite new favourite. They faintly reminded me of oatmeal and are a little bigger than couscous grains. Were good both hot that night, and cold the next day in my lunchbox, along with another pork patty!

the second highlight were as posted on Wednesday were my bannocks, with broccoli and pesto soup. A thriftily good recipe!

So moving on to this week, I have not planned the weekend yet as am off work and haven't decided what to do! I've also leant my camera to my dad, so won't be able to photograph anything again for a few weeks! Am planning to make a fruit tealoaf though but going to experiment with a herbal teabag instead..

Lots of freezer raiding going on - need to save pennies to pay back car repairs!

Monday - tonight is leftover takeaway curry - special biryani, vegetable curry and paratha

Tuesday - Breaded fish portion, mashed potato and green beans

Wednesday - might be going out but if not will be gammon with boulangere potatoes and carrots

Thursday - Chicken and mushroom pie with frozen root veggies

Friday - Salmon with ginger noodles and peas

Have a great week everyone!

Wednesday, 2 May 2012

Basil infused Bannocks with Broccoli and Pesto Soup

Hooray, I finally have something to blog! My beloved DSLR camera is safely back home this morning and I thought it deserved some long overdue usage! I have just realised how many B's there are in the post title, is a bit of a tongue twister!

A few weeks back I was flicking through my copy of Bread, part of the River Cottage Handbook series and whilst being tempted pretty much by every recipe, Bannocks in particular caught my eye...

I had previously never heard of a Bannock, and a quick googling tells me they seem a Northernly thing… a type of quick bread that’s made from grains.. more handily it was made using oatmeal, and as I’ve been on a mission to use up all the odds and ends gathering dust in the bottom of the draw it meant I could give it a good use, other than throwing into a casserole to thicken!

The book recommends serving with soup. I was intending to use up a (shh!) tin of mushroom soup that’s been lurking in the cupboard but being on a lazy day off from work, and told myself that if I’m gonna make the bread, I might as well do the soup too! I made a small batch of broccoli soup, by frying off a little diced onion, then adding the stalks for 5 minutes and some veggie stock, added the chopped up florets and simmered until soft. Then simply stirred through the last of a jar of pesto, roughly 2 scant teaspoons. Together with the bannocks it made a great combination, as I had also added basil oil to the bannock mixture which was subtle enough not to over power.

The bannocks are super quick to make – less than a minute to make and a couple in the pan to cook. These are fragile beasts and at several points found myself questioning the recipes success but I persisted – and they came up a treat! They are oaty, and wholesome tasting.

In the original recpipe it makes two, but I scaled down as was only me eating and don't think these would re-heat that well..

62g medium oatmeal, and a little extra
Teeny pinch salt
Teeny bit bigger pinch baking powder - say 1/8 tsp
1 tsp basil infused oil, plus oil to grease the pan. The book also recommends using fat or butter.
2 ish tbsp hot water


Place a heavy-based frying pan on a medium heat.

Mix together the oatmeal, salt and baking powder In a bowl, add the basil oil, then enough water to make a stiff paste. This is the fun part!

Sprinkle a little more oatmeal on a suitable board, tip the mixture on to it. Sprinkle a bit more oatmeal over and flatten to a just under a centimetre, working quickly before it cools. Cut it into quarters.

Add a little fat/oil to the hot pan, and cook the bannock for a couple of minutes on each side, until browning lightly. Serve hot with a little butter on if desired.

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