Sunday, 28 May 2017

Menu Plan - 21st May to 27th May

I was thinking the best way to begin would be with a Boiled Chocolate Cake recipe.  I use the Bellini however the recipe also has the instructions for the stove top.  As the chocolate mixture boils it has the most amazing smell.  It is just like a chocolate pudding smell.  I had a few leftover chocolate chips in the pantry which I threw on top for a little decoration.

I find loaf shapes easier to slice.
Photo a little dark however you can see the richness.

Sunday morning I made up two large pasta bakes.  As we were going out late afternoon I wanted to have dinner ready so we could just reheat it.  The other pasta bake went into the freezer.  That morning I also made Nigella Lawson's Madeira Cake for Dad again - his favourite.

Monday evening was Slowcooker Coconut Curry Sausages which I served with rice.  Coconut and curry make a great combination.  Super easy dish, warms you up, smells great and is tasty.

The kids love their curry and sausages too of course.

Tuesday nights here are usually leftovers from Monday night and the weekend.  Chips are usually in the oven too accompanied by tomato sauce.

Soup night was next with a hearty Split Pea Soup.  As we had leftover in the fridge it was perfect for anyone to just zap in the microwave when peckish.  The kids came home from school on the Thursday and enjoyed a warm bowl of soup with bread.  That kept them going until dinner.

I also made an oven baked Rice Pudding from my new library book 'The Country Table by The Australian Women's Weekly.'  The kids were not that keen.  It was the whole rice as a dessert thought which they had trouble with.  My husband on the otherhand loved it.  I mixed up milk using milk powder for this recipe as I was running low on milk.  Something to keep in mind next time I'm baking as I will use the powdered milk.

As we had an after school appointment Thursday I pulled out leftover Lentil Bolognese from the freezer.

Another keeper.

Homemade pizza is a must here on a Friday night.  As our daughter doesn't like cheese it is always a little tricky with the topping.  I usually whisk two eggs and spread that over the pizza to hold the ingredients together.

Chocolate Sultana Slice was made and well received and I also managed to squeeze in these Vanilla Cupcakes during the week.

A great cupcake recipe.

On Saturday I pulled out my pie maker which I should actually do more often.  I made Chicken and Corn Pies.  I doubled the recipe and ended up with ten individual pies.  They've been great to have in the fridge over the weekend.  I have left the pie machine out on the bench so they can just pop a pie in when hungry and have a hot, crispy pie in less than 10 minutes.  

Chicken and Corn Pies for lunch over the weekend.

Menu plan is all ready for next week.  I have found a few dinners from The Country Table and as always there will be sweets.  I'll be cooking from this wonderful cookbook over the coming weeks.  I really think I'll end up buying this one.  Fantastic recipes and so many favourites.

Also looking forward to writing about our clever chickens and an update on their new run.  It is looking superb thanks to my husband who has been working very hard all weekend.  We will then need to give their new run a name.

Saturday, 27 May 2017

Chocolate Sultana Slice

Here is a great slice I can remember from many years ago which I'm now sharing with our kids and it gets the big thumbs up.  Yep, they gave it a 10/10.  They're great little taste testers and really do give good feedback.  I've always had them taste everything and I'm fortunate that they do give things a go.

Having them try so many different recipes and dishes and asking them to try and guess the ingredients really has made them aware of different tastes and textures.  They're really good at it now and I value their opinions.

This slice brings back memories.

Split Pea Soup

Now that the weather is really starting to turn colder it's time to warm things up with lovely thick soups.  The thicker the better for me.  Mum always made soups thick and I'm now doing the same.

Split Pea Soup is just so easy, tastes great, warms you up and is even better the next day.  Served with thick, buttery bread is the best way to have it I think.

I like to add frozen peas to my recipe as it gives it a brighter green colour.

Love those big chunks of meat.

Coconut Curry Sausages - Slowcooker

This recipe comes from the Stay at Home Mum site and is just so easy.  One of those ones where you throw everything into the slow cooker at once, turn it on and that's it.  No need to precook or fry anything beforehand and it is delicious.  

I put it on at lunchtime and it was ready right on time for dinner.  The kids could smell it even before they opened the door after school.  Another one of their favourites.

After 6 hours in the slow cooker.

Sausage Casserole - One Pot

I remember finding this All-In Sausage Casserole recipe quite a while ago and keeping it as it was easy, full of veggies, only uses the one pot, packed with flavour and the family love it.  Over time I have changed it quite a bit and am really happy with the result.

When planning our menu last week I wanted to use a few 'favourite' recipes which we hadn't had for a while.  It must have been a little too long for this one because they had trouble remembering it.  I love it when I see their eyes open wide when they taste something they enjoy.  The comments were things like:  'these are the best sausages,' 'I love this one Mum,' 'this is so good.'

One of their favourite dishes.

Wednesday, 24 May 2017

Cross Stitch Update

My cross stitch is moving along little by little.  I really look forward to the evenings when I can sit on the couch with my cross stitch and the whole family is home.  Apart from early mornings the evenings are one of the best parts of my day.

A few weeks ago I wrote about my cross stitch journey so far.  Since then I have been working on my current project most nights and although it is very challenging it is also really enjoyable.  It is coming along slowly but surely.

This project really is making me think.

Monday, 22 May 2017

Little Catch-Up

The past few weeks have been jam packed with so many exciting things.  New recipes, chicken coop moving along, veggie garden, reading, cross-stitching and so much more.

Over the past week I've been experimenting with making bread using whole wheat flour.  My first loaf was very tasty however not as light as I would like.  I'm using this recipe as a guide.

My first attempt.