food


Hacks for leftover food 17

We have been making the most of a fabulous week of weather here in the North Yorkshire for the second week of the school Easter holidays (hence the lack of posting this week)! Holidays for us mean lots of family activities and lots of cooking and eating together.   With two boys aged ten and nearly nine I have to make my food stretch and with these hacks for leftover food you will never throw any food away again!


The best Carrot cake in the world – c is for carrot 32

Yes I know it is a big things to say, but this really is the best carrot cake in the whole wide world.  We have tried others and nothing comes close and other people have made out best carrot cake in the world and agree with us. We do to even peel the carrots, just wash them and top and tail them.  This is a beautifully moist cake that is delicious and if you have kids that refuse carrots this will really turn them round. This recipe is great for making with kids as you do it all the mixing by hand.  


How to make heart shaped sugar cubes 40

One of the highlights of my days as the boys get older is afternoon tea.  Once they get home from school we sit down to after school snacks and a pot of tea.  I don’t take sugar, however, the MIL always sugared the boys tea and they love adding a sugar lump, so we have mad fun making our own heart shaped sugar cubes. Even better I love the fact that we have my mum’s sugar tongs and bowl and it makes it such an experience. How to make heart shaped sugar cubes


Weetabuddies – it is OK to play with your food! 21

Breakfast is the most important meal of the day, yet one in six kids in the UK do not eat breakfast.  I have two very different kids in this house, Maxi will not leave the house without breakfast and Mini would skip it given the chance.  So we jumped at the chance to become representatives for Weetabix and help promote their Weetabuddies campaign and have a go at creating our own Weetabuddy. Weetabix have created the ‘Weetabuddies’ to encourage families to get creative at breakfast whilst having a healthy start to the day. So what is a Weetabuddy?  They are a range of characters to make breakfast a little more fun! You can meet all more »


After school snack ideas 142

My boys seem to have hollow legs they are always eating.  They both have school lunch and then we eat together as a family at six pm each evening during the week.  So I need to find them an after school snack that satisfies their hunger, but doesn’t overfill them. They also have Judo, cubs and football, so it is all about balancing their needs and wants, which isn’t easy when you are 8 and 9! Healthy after school snack ideas


A weeks school lunch Bento Box ideas 15

Just because my kids eat school dinners doesn’t mean that they don’t need a packed lunch occasionally and I have been a fan of Grace at Easts Amazing for a long time.  Her lunches looks fantastic and really aspirational, however, as you can see from the fab post from Grace below they are easily achievable with some planning using what you have in your home. Allow me to introduce myself – I’m Grace, mum of two boys, and I usually blog over at Eats Amazing, where I share ideas and inspiration for presenting healthy children’s food in new and exciting ways. I’m probably most well-known for the creative bento-style lunches that more »


Breakfast basics

As adults, we’ll often rush out of the house in a flurry – if we’re lucky – with a slice of toast in hand. As role models to our children, it’s important to envision a healthy and balanced diet and one that involves sitting down to breakfast on a daily basis. Why is breakfast so important? Kid’s who eat breakfast tend to eat healthier on a whole. Breakfast is a great way to kick-start the body into action and is especially needed by little ones who spend their days running around the playground, studying and exercising. Those who eat breakfast will be more likely to partake in a number of physical more »


A space party for an out of this world parents evening 1

It was parents evening at the school this week.  Safe to say we walked out of the school with the biggest grins on our faces.  Mini’s conference was exceptional and he is coming on in leaps and bounds and his English work is fab (probably down to all the reading he does).  Maxi is too steaming ahead, but we are going to have to have a conversation about effort as at the moment he is applying minimum effort to get the desired outcome (Hey I guess that is a typical eight year old boys thing).


Why not have a BBQ for Halloween or Bonfire Night

I know what we will be doing this Bonfire night.  We will be spending it with family as they put on their own annual fireworks show.  It is something we look forward to every year and it would be the perfect time to have a winter BBQ and the people at Country Valley Foods have some brilliant  meat hampers at the moment. There is nothing better than some lovely warm food whilst watching fireworks and it makes for a great evening for everyone.  I particularly like the Meat Hampers from Country Valley and think they are really great value.  Even better for me they are a local company and have sites not far from more »


Meal Plan – The Fresh Week Pledge Edition 12

As part of the Tefal innovation panel I was asked if I would take the fresh week pledge to commit to giving up processed food from Monday 13 May – Sunday 19 May 2013 in favour of fresh, unprocessed food. For me this is a bit of a no brainer as I cook from scratch most days.

Since getting cancer I have been wary of processed foods. I know that not everything processed is bad, but I make the effort to give myself and my family the best food I can and for me this means cooking from scratch.

As a perk of being a Tefal Innovator they sent me a Fresh Express and a riverford food box this week, so kick starting my menu planning for next week. So I am going to share with you my menu for this week and see if you would be willing to take the pledge. If you do there is a chance that you too could win a Fresh Express and a Vegetable Box.

Bank holiday Monday

Homemade pancakes and fruit

Salad Sandwiches with homemade bread

BBQ with Fish, fennel, salad and homemade flatbreads

Tuesday

Scrambled egg with chopped tomato

The boys are back at school so school lunch for them.

Lentil bolognese (diced peppers, onions, passata, herbs)

Wednesday

Dippy eggs

Spelt pizza bases with lentil sauce topping and vegetables, served with salad

Thursday

Banana Muffins

Chickpea daah and homemade naan bread

Friday

Fruit and yogurt

Boys are at a party, but me and MadDad will be having homemade fish and chips

Saturday

Pancakes with fruit and yogurt

Poached eggs with smoked haddock

Sunday

Breakfast Muffins

Roast Chicken with yorkshire puddings and vegetables

Homemade roast vegetables soup and homemade bread


Top 5 Recipes to Keep You Warm

Winter in the UK is a genuinely unpredictable season, meaning the cold weather can start as early as October and sometimes not depart until March. Whichever type of winter season we have, it is almost certain that at some point there will be the usual headlines about the wrong type of snow hitting train services and the pavements turning into ice rinks due to council cutbacks! However cold it gets, you can always warm yourself up with a lovely homemade meal, giving you the inner warmth needed to take on the outdoors, or simply cosy up on the sofa. Here are five top recipes to keep you warm: Porridge Breakfast is more »


Fridge Bottom Curry with Heinz Five Beans 7

We are great lovers of Curry in The Mad House and even the boys love it too. Mostly I make one from scratch and you can find my Nice Easy Basic Curry recipe over at Frugalicious Food, butI am not adverse to using curry powder especially when I have less time and we have what has fondly become know as Fridge bottom curry. I have to admit that the inspiration for this curry comes from Chris at Thinly Spread and is based on her Baked Bean Curry.


Trying not to pass my food dislikes to my children 7

MadDad’s mum doesn’t like mushrooms and tomatoes, neither does MadDad. When you ask him he puts it down to the fact that he had never tried them until he was older and he doesnt like the texture, he never learned to like them. In fact between me and MadDad we have quite a few food aversions, but we have always ensured that we try not to pass these on to our boys.
Growing up I didn’t like turnip, but was made to have a tea spoon each Sunday on my dinner and told to mix it with my carrot or potato and I was expected to eat it. Guess what I actually like turnip now. With regards to veg, both the boys will happily eat their way though the garden, to which I am so thankful and I put down to the fact that we grow a selection in the garden.


Do your children eat fish? Fish is the Dish 4

My boys love fish. If we eat out it is what we order off the menu. In fact I would take fish over meat every day. Some thing the boys would too. When asked what they wanted to eat for their back to school feast they both chose sea bass, which made me happy and very sad at the same time. Why you may wonder, well seabass is £27 a kilo four times the price of steak and I was sure that I would ruin it whilst cooking it. This is one of the most comon reasons we do not eact fish, my fear of how to cook it and spoil it.