Monday, 30 November 2015

CookBlogShare Week 19 Round Up

Last weeks CookBlogShare had a wide variety of both savoury and sweet recipes. Last week I featured sweet, Christmas recipes. This week has seen me sway more to the savoury side. This is probably because I am trying so hard to not be temped by delicious sweet foods. But thankfully the Slimming World plan does allow you to have the odd treat! Over the weekend we visited Cadbury World to celebrate Christmas with the Carnival Cruise team and families who we are working with over the coming year so as you can imagine the diet went out of the window for the day! But now I am back on the syn counting and enjoying my healthier foods.

The recipes that I have chosen this week are healthier meals but they are all full of flavour! They all contain a sweetness that is combined perfectly with the savoury. They really are the best of both worlds! 

Here are my favourite recipes from week 19 of CookBlogShare...

Weekly Meal Plan - Week Commencing 30th November 2015

When I wrote last weeks meal plan I completely forgot that I did not need to plan a meal for Friday night as we were travelling down to Redditch. We stayed over night as we had the day at Cadbury World with the Carnival Cruise team and the other FunSeeking families who are working with them over the coming year.

The first two meals that I had planned went well, however after that it went to pot. There was no meal plan and not feeling well did not help. It is times like this I appreciate having a meal plan but I also realise that I need to have some easy meals on hand for when I am not feeling good or the meal plan does not go as planned. I do cook all of our meals from scratch but having some pre prepared frozen meals in would be a great help.

Last week I shared a variety of foodie posts. I shared a tasty leftovers recipe, my Thrifty Christmas Thursday tips which is the first of a five week feature that I am working on with Aldi, a delicious extra special sandwich and the contents of last months Degustabox.

Here are last weeks foodie posts...

Sunday, 29 November 2015

22nd November - 28th November 2015 - One Picture Everyday For One Year

This week has been so busy and has flown by. The Christmas feeling has started to enter our house. I have been reading more and more Christmas recipes, we have made our Christmas pudding and I have even started to plan Christmas activities for the children during the week that runs up to Christmas.

This week has seen Christmas puddings, saving money doing our shopping, Christmas dinner, beautiful sunrises and a lot of chocolate! Here is our week in pictures...

Sunday 22nd November 2015

Sunday was stir up Sunday and as tradition states we made our Christmas pudding. I was lucky to receive a sixpence from the Royal Mint for our pudding this year. I am hoping that this sixpence will be the start of a great family tradition and one that we will continue for years to come. Then passed down through generations.

Friday, 27 November 2015

Proper Pickle Extra Special Sandwich with English Provender

When I saw that Foodies100 were working with English Provender I was excited to see what delicious pickle they had created. I have got to admit that I do love a good pickle on my sandwiches. So when I decided to step up the the challenge of creating a Proper Pickle sandwich I knew that it would be fun.

Creating the perfect sandwich is more complicated than you think. It is easy to make a regular, everyday sandwich, but I wanted to go one step further. I wanted to create a sandwich that you can sit back, enjoy and truly appreciate every single mouthful. Now how many time have you been able to do that? I know, not many times!

Getting all of the core ingredients at the highest quality is fundamental when creating a perfect sandwich. That is why I decided to make my own bread. You simply cannot beat the taste of fresh bread. Once I had decided on the type of bread that I would bake I had my first ingredient ready. Next comes the filling. English Provender have created four deliciously different pickles. They have made two Traditional Proper Pickles, one that is chunky while the other is finely chopped, a Pickled Onion Proper Pickle and a Beetroot Proper Pickle. To say that I was excited to try the pickles was an under statement. They are all truly scrumptious and exactly what you come to expect from a pickle, and more. My favourite pickle had to be the Pickled Onion Proper Pickle. I love pickled onions and can sit and eat them from the jar. This pickle contains yellow mustard seed so gives a real kick of flavours with every bite!

Once I had my bread and the pickle my focus went onto flavours that would combine well and compliment the pickle. One of my favourite flavour combinations has to be salmon and cream cheese. I know that onions go well with salmon too so I decided to give smoked salmon slices, topped with cottage cheese and finished with a spoon of Pickled Onion Proper Pickle and, WOW, it works so well! I seriously had to stop myself from eating all of the salmon before I had prepared the sandwich in the pictures.

Let me tell you how to make this Proper Pickle Extra Special Sandwich!

Thursday, 26 November 2015

Thrifty Christmas Thursday with Aldi - Meat, Fish and Vegetarian Options for Christmas Dinner

From now until Christmas, Thursdays are now officially called #ThriftyChristmasThursday. Every week I will be telling you how you can save money this Christmas. Working with Aldi and I will be showing you my top foodie finds which will be perfect for Christmas. Best of all you will find all of your favourite food and drink at a price that will not break the bank!

For me, and I am sure many of you, food plays an important part on Christmas day. I have fond memories of sitting down with my family enjoying a big traditional roast turkey dinner with all of the trimmings. It is only now that it is now my turn to prepare this all important meal that I realise how much time and effort goes into it. I have also discovered how expensive it can be to cater for everybody on Christmas day. That is why I am going to share with you my own 'specially selected' dishes which I think are perfect for the big day and will not disappoint anyone. I will also be sharing ways to make cooking the all important meal a little easier so that on Christmas day you are not stuck in the kitchen cooking while everyone else is having fun. You, too, will be able to spend quality time with your family safe in the knowledge that the food has been prepared and you will all enjoy a fantastic meal!

Today, I am focusing on the main course. Today is all about the meat, fish and vegetarian options.

Wednesday, 25 November 2015

Christmas Activities with Lakeland

Now that they children have just over 3 weeks left at school before they break up for the Christmas holidays I thought that I would start to plan some activities to keep them busy during the week running up to Christmas. For us all I think that the week will drag as we eagerly await the excitement of Christmas day. So to help them pass the time I am planning to create a Christmas activity box to help keep them occupied and having fun.

So when Lakeland got in touch asking me if I would like to write about their Make-Your-Own range that they have released especially for Christmas I knew that it would be perfect for the activity box. I love Lakeland, it is one of my favourite homeware shops. I cannot walk past their shop without going in to explore everything that they have got. Yes, this also means that I cannot go in without spending! I have always found that the products that I have bought from Lakeland have been of the highest quality and have lasted really well.

As you can imagine I was so excited when I saw what they had sent to us. This is what we received...