This is one of those recipes where I threw random ingredients together, it worked out well and I’ll probably never manage to recreate it again 🙂
I am a happy meat eater, but I enjoyed this dish as much as one loaded with mince. This recipe stemmed from a surprise in defrosting: I defrosted mince and found out once thawed that it was actually beef sausages, so I made the chilli vegetarian 😀
Serves 2 large portions/4 sensible portions (which I don’t eat)
2 cloves garlic
a handful of mushrooms
half a chilli/1/4 if using chilli sauce in beans
1 tin of kidney beans (in chilli sauce if you like)
1 tin chopped tomatoes
1/2 tsp cumin
1/4 tsp salt
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp sugar
pinch of black pepper
1 square of milk chocolate (I used Galaxy :))
handful of fresh coriander
Chop onion, garlic, chilli and mushrooms finely. Fry in some olive oil. Once cooked, add the tin of tomatoes and the tin of kidney beans. This is important and sounds gross, but trust me – if you aren’t using kidney beans in chilli sauce, pour in the tin of beans with 1/2 the brine. It will thicken the sauce and give it better flavour.
Add cumin, salt, sugar, black pepper and garlic powder and turn down the heat. Add the square of chocolate and half the coriander and cook on a low simmer for up to an hour. Add water if the sauce is drying out. The longer you cook it for, the more the flavours will develop.
Serve with rice/tortilla chips and lots of cheese. Garnish with the rest of the coriander.
I like breakfast to be effortless, hence why I set up my coffee maker the night before so all I have to do is wait for the sound of the coffee pot chortle as my alarm call. These are so easy to make and you just stick them in the fridge before you go to bed, meaning no preparation is required when you’re still in semi-slumber mode. I usually don’t serve these up to my kids, at least not without a chorus of “I want something else,” but at least I’ve eliminated the preparation of one breakfast in the morning. These can be eaten cold or shoved in the microwave to heat them up. You can make them look pretty by making them in a mason jar, but I don’t own practical kitchen equipment like that because I’d rather spend my money on candles and dresses, apparently.
1 Cup of Oats
1 Cup of Milk (any you like)
1 tbsp Jam (strawberry or raspberry)
1 tbsp Peanut butter
Add one cup of oats to a bowl. Cover with whatever milk you like. I usually just cover them as I don’t like runny porridge, but you can add more if you want a different consistency. Top with one tbsp of peanut butter and one tbsp of jam. Sprinkle some chia seeds on top or some peanuts/cashew nuts/walnuts.
Refrigerate overnight and eat 🙂 You could also eliminate the jam and make a variation using chocolate chips with peanut butter and add cocoa powder to the milk and oats.
This recipe is really cheap and a good way to use up leftover bananas. It is also a good baking activity for child involvement without compromising adult sanity 🙂 I won’t eat bananas once they have the first sign of a freckle, so I might have gone overboard with the number of bananas in the recipe. They were a hit with my kids; they kept trying to sneak their hands into the tub when I wasn’t looking (even though they’d already had three each.)
3 Bananas (I used 4 but mine taste more like banana than muffin now.)
1/4 cup of milk
1/2 cup of oil
1 tsp vanilla extract
1 3/4 cups of flour
1 heaped tsp of baking powder
1/2 cup of sugar
A handful of white chocolate chips/chunks of white chocolate
Mash bananas in a large bowl with a potato masher. Add all wet ingredients and combine with a wooden spoon. Add dry ingredients, mix well, add chocolate and spoon into greased muffin tins/bun cases. Warning: this recipe made 26 mini muffins. That’s a lot of mini muffins, unless you’re me and always have room for snacks. You can improvise with the chocolate. I had no white chocolate so used part of an Easter egg I withheld from my kids and forgot about. They looked a bit annoyed and showed some vague signs of recognition, but they forgave me when I let them lick the bowl. Enjoy 🙂
My kids asked me to make banana bread this week. I’m convinced they only offer to help so they can lick the bowl and wreck the kitchen with my permission. I decided to sneak some chocolate into the recipe to spare my sanity during the flour explosion clear-up afterwards. My kids keep asking for a second slice of this, so I guess it must be alright.
4 bananas (this might sound excessive but they make it extra-moist)
1/2 cup of sugar
1/4 cup milk
1/2 cup veg oil
1tsp vanilla extract
1 3/4 Cups flour
1tsp bicarbonate of soda/baking soda
Handful of milk chocolate chunks (or in my case, halved chocolate buttons)
Preheat oven to 160 c
Mash bananas with a potato masher.
Whisk in the oil, milk, vanilla, eggs and sugar. I find whisking by hand works best. Don’t be too thorough – leave some banana chunks if you like.
Mix in flour and baking soda. Add chocolate at the end and stir in so it is dispersed evenly. Put mixture in a greased loaf tin.
Bake for about 40 mins in the middle of the oven. Add a layer of foil halfway through cooking so the outside doesn’t become over-crisp.
I never use the term “super” but for the sake of sibilance, I’m using it today. So if you think I’ve had a personality transplant, fear not. I made this soup today and it worked out pretty well. It was one of those days where you’re down to three items in the fridge and you either have to improvise or go outside. I chose the former. I usually come up with recipes I like when that happens; maybe I should use that as an excuse to avoid the dreaded weekly food shop and accompanying trolley tantrums.
5 small sweet potatoes (fewer if using larger sized ones)
1 litre chicken stock
1/2 tsp lazy ginger/ small piece grated ginger (it gives warmth without overpowering the soup)
Pinch of salt
Small handful of Coriander
Peel and chip sweet potatoes into fine slices/cubes. Add boiled water and salt, (and ginger if using fresh) bring to the boil. Reduce to a simmer to stop sweet potato froth 🙂 Crumble in a chicken stock cube. Cook for 15-20 mins. (Add ginger at this stage if using from a jar.) Add coriander. Blend using a hand blender. Taste to make sure it’s ok before giving it to people and stuff.
This isn’t really a proper recipe, but I thought I’d share it since it went down as well with my kids as ice cream, without the hyperactive results. I was looking for easy ways to entertain kids today since I’m sick and these took two minutes to make and eating them kept them entertained for a long time 🙂 they’re like a cross between a smoothie and frozen yogurt.
1 frozen banana (just peel and shove in the freezer and add straight to blender)
1 handful frozen strawberries
a few blueberries
2 tbsps Greek yogurt
300ml whole milk (or any milk you like)
a large squeeze of honey
1 tsp chia seeds
Add all ingredients to a blender and blend until you have achieved your desired consistency. Give it to them in little cups with spoons, party cups or add an umbrella if you want to make them for a party 🙂
I got all of the ingredients in Lidl. They have lots of frozen berries which are great for smoothies 🙂
A lot of people seem to buy jars of pre-made pizza sauce, which admittedly is probably less effort, but probably costs more and doesn’t taste as good. This sauce is so easy to make and goes particularly well with this pizza dough recipe: https://www.foodnetwork.com/recipes/bobby-flay/pizza-dough-recipe-1921714
This is the best pizza dough recipe I have found. It tastes as good as takeaway pizza and you can let the dough rise in the fridge overnight if you want to make it the day before. It also freezes really well.
Here is the recipe for sauce (I am hoping all of these measurements are accurate since I typically just throw things at a pot.)
1 tin chopped tomatoes
1 clove of garlic
1 tsp sugar
1/4 tsp salt
1/4 tsp black pepper
1/2 tsp oregano
1/4 tsp rosemary
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1 tsp oil
Throw all ingredients in a pot (apart from the oil) and simmer on a low heat for 10-15 minutes until all the flavours have combined.
Take it off the heat and stir in the oil, transfer to a blender and puree as smoothly as you like. I usually do mine in a smoothie maker and it comes out really smooth and a very vibrant colour, but you can use a blender, hand blender or if you have neither, just mash it really well 🙂 This usually makes enough sauce to top three 10 inch pizzas. (You can double the recipe to make a larger quantity.) The sauce also freezes well (just drain off any excess liquid when it defrosts before putting it on the pizza.)
For a really quick pizza use this on pittas, grilled muffins, bagels or make pizza toast for kids 🙂