1 Aug 2016

What we ate last week: Summer Holidays week one with weddings and dinners out.

Saturday:  Wedding breakfast
The volume of wedding invites we receive now has dropped, sigh, but when one does come a long it always lovely! Who does not love a wedding! This one was for a lovely old University friend – who got married on a rather beautiful sunny day in surrey. This was child free wedding with champagne and canapés flowing. The meal was a beautiful pretty salad with manchenago and chorizo – a really lovely combination. Followed by my first taste of guinea fowl with dauphinoise potatoes and seasonal vegetables. The finale was a tipsy Eaton mess which was lovely and fresh and not overflowing with cream. The evening reception brought around hog roast sandwiches – yum yum yum.

Sunday: Chicken two ways
The kids were dispatched back home (and mummy who had overindulged on the champagne was grumpy) but after a quick trip out (errands to run and McDonalds to eat and a trip to the park) we headed home to get ready for the following week. Husband felt inspired to get in the kitchen and whip up dinner. (good cause I was not in the best hungover moods) We had picked up a large tray of chicken from asda which contains 3 different cuts of Chicken (some quarters, some thighs and some drumsticks) all for the reasonable price of £4.50. With the quarters this were coated in breadcrumbs and baked in the oven to create a crispy chicken – especially for grumpy eldest child who still refused to try the dinner without a lot of coaxing and tears. The rest of the chicken was drenched in flavoursome curry seasoning and cooked on the stove making a type of chicken curry stew which we had with rice and mixed vegetables.

Monday: Loaded wedges with spicy beef and peppers.
 Sometimes a trashy dinner is what is called for, as in this did not look pretty but tasted pretty damn fine. I used cubes of beef which were cooked with seasoning, onions and peppers – added in some water and left to bubble away. While this was going I have sliced about 6 potatoes into wedges and coated them in a tablespoon of oil, a dusting of salt and pepper. Added them to HOT oven and left to cook until crispy. Once we were able to eat piled onto the plate some wedges and topped with the beef, vegetables and a sprinkle of extra strong cheese. A satisfying end to a Monday.

Tuesday: Pizza Express….. Again
I’m not sure if it is the sunshine, or the increase in daylight or just the fact the boys are getting that bit older so easier to leave but yes I went out for dinner, again. This time it was with work to celebrate a friend’s birthday and to welcome a new colleague to the team. I kept it simple with a classic dough balls and a florentina pizza (with the béchamel base) and a cheeky glass of wine! The husband had leftovers. With a stand by from the freezer of sweet potato mash.

Wednesday: The tale of two dinners – ending in sausage gnocchi bake.
I had been super organised and had got out some fish to defrost in the morning – I was planning some rice vegetable type dish with some poached fish pieces added on top. Something light and quick. I had picked up a sachet of seasoning at my in laws as it sounded lovely. Garlic and Coriander biryani mix. I got home (sat kids in front of TV!!) and as soon as husband got home set him to work getting the children’s bags ready for nursery and holiday clubs. I went back to taste the dinner and BOOM the spice was TOO much, and even after adding in can of coconut milk it was still unbearable… A throw away of a whole dinner, a ton of washing up and attempt to re think what the hell were we going to eat.
Instead a squeezed out of the skins a pack of sausages and gave them a quick fry in a pan until mostly cooked through and crispy bits on the outside – emptied into a dish. Added in a bag of spinach into the pan to wilt and then chop it up with scissors. Then boil the gnocchi before mixing together with the sausages and pouring over the top a mixture of eggs, milk and Parmesan. Into the oven it went for about 20 minutes. Not to shabby and meant I had leftovers for lunch. WIN.

Thursday: turkey burger and homemade wedges.
If I can utilise the odd shortcut during the week I will. I know this I not always the most cost effective option or the healthiest but sometimes I need something to help me through the busy week. In an attempt to get the boys trying new things I picked up these salt and pepper turkey burger from asda. My eldest loves burgers and will devour them! So by switching these to turkey burgers it was a great way to try them out. And they were a win. He cleared his plate of these along with his baked beans, and carrot and potato wedges (another freezer favourite from Asda) I used brioche buns and for the adults roasted some vegetables to top the burger with.

Friday: Mums night out
 The past year at school I have been a part of the PTA committee and Friday night was our night out to celebrate that. We headed to a Tapas restaurant near by where we had potato Bravas, octopus, calamari and monkfish skewers. It was very yummy… And what followed was a few cocktails and some dancing. But I think I may be getting too old for all this! Just maybe. 

No time for baking this week and that's it week one of six of the holidays survived. Only a few meltdowns and proclamations of i'm bored, i'm sure we have more to come. Be strong mamas.

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