Best Brownies Recipe

Recipe for the best sticky chocolate brownies

Ingredients:
75 grams of butter
100 grams of light brown sugar
2 eggs
100 grams self raising flour
100 grams chocolate caramel spread
200 grams nutella
1 teaspoon vanilla extract
Pinch of salt
100 grams white chocolate chips

Preheat the oven to 180 and grease a square tin with butter and dust with flour.
Cream together the butter and sugar and add in one of the eggs and the flour. Add the other egg and vanilla extract. Mix in the two spreads and the salt. Fold in the chocolate chips.

Bake for 20-25 mins until firm around the outside and slightly soft in the middle. Leave to cool before cutting into squares.

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Quick and Easy Tasty Dinners

Easy dinners

1. Stir fry. The easiest has got to be a stir fry. for the one below I used a garlic and hoisin sauce from Aldi, a Chinese stir fry mix from Tesco, mushrooms and dried egg noodles. It’s super easy to boil the noodles and stir fry the vegetables.

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2. At home Indian. For this one I shopped at Asda. I bought a saag aloo side for me, a chicken tikka masala for rob and a pack of 8 mini vegetable samosas and onion Bhajis. Boiling rice and warming up naan breads was simple enough and the other bits were microwaveable

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3. Shepherds pie. To make this one easier I use frozen mashed potato. Frying the meat and your choice of vegetables and adding gravy is quick and this can be prepared in advance and warmed in the oven before serving. I usually top mine with grated cheese

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4. Of course there has to be easy to make and delicious puddings too. One of my favourite is these double chocolate cookies. These are good for little fingers too. Find the recipe – one of my cookie in a jar gift ideas – here.

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traditional Christmas dinner or something else?

Traditional Christmas Dinner or Something Else?

Christmas dinner. Most people imagine turkey with all the trimmings. Roast potatoes. Stuffing. Red cabbage. Brussels sprouts. Roast parsnips. Cauliflower cheese. Pigs in blankets. Gravy.

But are you a family that chooses something else?

Over the years my family have had a variety of meats for dinner; turkey, chicken, gammon, lamb, beef, duck. (Not that it really affects me as I don’t eat the meat part.)
But regardless of the protein the rest of the dinner is pretty much the same.

Some ideas I’ve heard recently:

Fry up
A surprising number of people have a huge cooked breakfast for their Christmas dinner. This isn’t my favourite choice but it’s definitely an option for dealing with a Boxing Day morning hangover. (I’m sure plenty of people have a fry up for breakfast and then a roast turkey dinner on Christmas Day. It doesn’t need to be one or the other.)

Curry
This gives you a variety of meat options, just like roast dinner. It also means you can all pick your own spice strength and type of rice. Poppadoms and naan bread are easily ordered or bought from the supermarket. In fact you could easily buy a variety of curry dishes from Tesco or Sainsbury’s and heat them up. Much simpler than roasting an entire turkey.

Fish and chips
The old English favourite is another popular choice. I’m sure we will have a takeaway at some point over the festive period but for me it’s a roast dinner all the way.

Here’s a picture of Christmas dinner last year, cooked by me and my mum. Last year I was over 20 weeks pregnant. This year I have a 7 and a half month old little monkey.

Christmas dinner 2016

Comfort Food

When it’s  cold and wet outside there’s nothing better than coming back to a nice home cooked meal.

When I’m at uni I tend to cheat with dinners and cook whatever is easiest straight from the freezer. I get home quite late and after six hours of lectures the last thing I feel like doing is spending ages cooking. So when I’m not at uni I try and make a bit more effort.

Last nights dinner – for Rob. I had a veggie option – was cottage pie. Cottage pie is a brilliant way to get extra vegetables into a meal. You can mix mashed parsnip in with the mashed potatoes and can put all sorts of vegetables in with the meat. If you chop them up small enough little mouthes won’t even realise.

Rob had his with green beans and spicy jalapeño and beef nacho bites – obviously you would not give those to a little person. They’d burn their little mouth. But otherwise a perfect meal for my titchy princess. She has four little ones frozen in the freezer for other nights.

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20 Days til Christmas

We may have missed meat free Monday this week but little lady really enjoyed a vegetable lasagne for dinner this evening.

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We’ve already decided we aren’t going to raise Amelia on a vegetarian diet but when I saw the range of Ella’s kitchen vegetable based meals I had to get some of them for Amelia to try. Amelia will eat anything and everything – at the moment she particularly likes paper – so her liking it wasn’t exactly surprising. She is a little piggy and loves her food. I can’t wait for Christmas when she can have her own little dinner.

20 days til Christmas today!

Things that are done:
All the presents have been paid for and most of them are wrapped
Our tree is up

Things still to do:
Write the Christmas cards
Take Amelia to see Father Christmas

How is everyone else’s Christmas lead up going?

We ❤️ Ella’s Kitchen Part 2

Amelia is now 6 months old – nearly 7 and we are a big fan of Ella’s kitchen (see my previous post here).

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We are doing a combination of baby led weaning and traditional weaning. (For information on these Ella’s kitchen is wonderful)
As she is getting the hang of eating I am always looking for more meals and snacks she can try. One of Amelia’s favourites is cow and gates spaghetti bolognaise. (Yes I will be making my own baby food but I can’t get it as smooth) Her favourite snack at the moment is the strawberry and banana melty puffs by Ella’s kitchen. They are easy for her to pick up and if she’s being cheeky she Holden one on each hand and tries to eat two at a time!

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We went food shopping in Asda last week and found Ella’s kitchen vanilla and banana bread puddings. They sound yummy and Ella’s kitchen food is organic so is good all round. I also picked up two purees, thicker ones, so that Amelia can get used to lumpy food.
What are your little ones favourites?

Mum Excitement

Anyone who has had children will know exactly what I mean when I say completely different things excite you once you’ve had a baby. The first month of their life you are just delighted if you get five minutes to shower and as they get bigger you are just as happy when you realise you remember to put the extra nappies in the changing bag.

Now Amelia is bigger and we have our own flat there are bigger but more ‘boring’ things that excite me. Take today for example. Me and Amelia went out on our usual walk to the shops and I found a piece of kitchen equipment I had wanted for ages. A steamer.

I know. It’s funny. I’m 21 and excited about buying myself a steamer. But I love cooking for my little family. I walked back with it balanced on Amelia’s pushchair with a smile on my face. No doubt when Rob sees it he will laugh.

When I was little my Nan always made bacon pudding in her steamer, bacon and stuffing wrapped in a suet pastry. I can’t wait to try and make my own vegetarian version this evening.

What ‘mum’ things have you got excited about?