Tuesday, 2 July 2013

Recipe requests?

Hi everyone!

As requested by Grammyscraps, I am no longer writing in pink. I love pink and only used it because it's my blog and I'm free to choose the design of it. I hadn't realised that it caused a glare for some people - I'm sorry about that. Obviously I want anyone that finds me to be able to read all posts, so I won't be using the blue or purple either from now on. Welcome to my blog grammyscraps!

I didn't get a lot done yesterday because of the tennis, but while it's on I am spending time with Daisy playing. We bought her a playpen on Sunday and she is happy in it for about half an hour before wanting a cuddle. I never seem to finish a job that I start and the playpen means she is safely contained when the oven is on. Normally she will love to rush around in her walker while I'm cooking, but suddenly we are interested in the cooker and the cupboards and the chairs and the dog's bowls! I did manage to cook a tasty tea - spag bol. Simple but nice. Daisy really enjoyed it (I make a different version for her without the oxo and Worcester sauce etc) and was making happy noises while eating!

Daisy was 10 months old yesterday and had her first time in the big girl's bath! We also bought an aqua pod from Mothercare which is a bath mat with little seat attached. She still fits into her baby bath (she is so small) and we thought she may be scared in the big bath. Last week we put the baby bath inside the big bath and she was fine, so we moved on. She had all her bath toys in there and splashed away happily.

Thank you for all your comments. In reply:

Loo - is there anything you don't like in a cake (eg: I hate coffee cake), because I've got a lot of recipes?!

Jane - (comment from the other day) I meal plan as I go, shopping for offers and creating meals to suit. I love AF for the giant cake and bread mixes, but I struggle for storage. We're about to start decorating our spare room, but hopefully it will double up as my sewing room, so there won't be much space for food. I keep them on top of my kichen cupboards at the moment, but it does look untidy.

I love to be stocked up with food, but in the past I have had to throw away food because I just had forgotten how much stuff there was and it was past it's best. I am a lot less fussy when it comes to best before dates now.

I'm currently not working (had to give up my teaching assistant job because of family illness), so I can cook from scratch, although it can be difficult if Daisy is having a clingy day. A couple of months ago we were eating way too much meat, so I have cut it by half. I bulk buy, then portion it into the freezer. There's only Daisy, my daughter, OH and me now so we don't need to be eating as much. We have a lot of meat free days too now. My OH is a self-employed builder and works very hard, six days a week, so he needs man food to keep him going - a salad isn't enough really! We had cheese salad last week but that was a change of plan because he came home ill and wasn't eating tea with us.

We shop at asda fortnightly and the local butcher now and then. We never 'top-up' shop in our village like many people do. The asda staff always think we've got a lot of shopping until we tell them that this is what we buy for the whole two weeks. A lot of people go several times a week, filling a small trolley. Half of the bulk in our trolley is Daisy's nappies! We're doing Frugal Queen's challenge to get into the habit of cutting our food spend. We still buy a lot of what we like, rather than just what we need! Spare cash would be good for our savings tins (holiday, Christmas and home improvements) and we want to move so badly, but the house is not ready for selling yet.

Update with my daughter situation - we speak every day and she is making plans for her new house. She has an awful lot of stuff to buy for Daisy (we are keeping everything because we bought everything), so moving in for Daisy will not be for a while yet. I've suggested that she has her for the day once a week until she's sorted and I can send her stuff in the changing bag etc.

Jane - (yesterday's comment) I'm not shocked by four freezers, I used to have three until one broke. I've got a chest freezer in the garage and a fridge freezer in the kitchen. I also have a fridge in the garage too. You can never have too much freezer space.

Well done on your weight loss!

Do you still want meat based recipes? I assume that your OH eats meat, as you said Daniel is not a big meat eater. On a good day, I would make a dinner and pudding and bake once a week. I make simple cakes mainly - my OH loves plain cakes like victoria sandwich with jam inside and a dusting of icing sugar on top or fruit cake. My daughter is also quite happy with cake without icing, where as I love icing! These sorts of cakes I make without a recipe because I've been baking since I was a little girl, but I also love to try out different recipes and if we like them, I will make them again. I cut recipes out of magazines, I write them down as I read them or hear them on tele and I have a huge collection dating back to when I did Home Economics at school!

If I get any specific requests, I'm sure I will find suitable recipes for you all to try. I love to bake and need to make more time  to do it (instead of reading blogs!)

I hope you're all having a good day and I look forward to the recipe requests...

Thanks for reading,

Mandy x


  1. Hi Mandy,
    So glad youre sorting out the situation with your daughter and its a good idea for her to start slowly with having Daisy maybe just the once a week. Also I agree with you keeping the things at your house you have bought for her as she may end up spending more time back with you anyway when reality hits home for your daughter.
    My OH is a big meat eater and he too isn't satisfied with a simple salad. He does take salad sandwiches for his lunch at work but even then has a full breakfast or a breakfast bap from the canteen lady and extras throughout the day (he does 12 hour shifts).
    I cook loads of meat based recipes for him as even though I don't eat it I have no objection to cooking it, its nothing to do with beliefs or animal rights etc I just don't like the taste and texture of meat, only stuff like wafer thin ham, chicken breast, and I adore "spam" and hot dog sausages - weird eh?
    Any frugal recipes are welcomed. I also loved Frugal Queens veggie paella recipe but like her would also add a small handful of prawns as I always have prawns and crabsticks in the freezers as I love them.
    Theres loads of foods I cant eat now due to the bypass, mainly rice, pasta, and noodles as these tend to swell in my stomach and with having a reduced sized stomach causes problems.
    I can only eat small amounts of bread for the same reason. I cannot tolerate anything fried and if I only eat a spoonful more than I can manage I can be really ill.
    Certain foods now give me terrible hearburn such as anything remotely hot or spicy so no curries or chillis. I have only recently started eating salad stuff again when I started this diet a few months a go as that too made me ill and I couldn't digest lettuce, onion and cucumber at all so stick to the bags of grated coleslaw mix that are available in asda that you add the sachet of dressing to, and I use this as the base of my salad with a small amount of cherry tomatoes cut very small then add either prawns, shredded crabsticks or finely sliced quorn cooked meat style beef or chicken slices.
    I had problems with fruit too but ive found that I can now tolerate finely sliced strawberries, grapes, kiwi, blueberries and watermelon (all of which I buy mainly in the small pre prepared packs from Asda as if I bought the larger loose fruits they would go to waste as no one else eats any of these fruits except grapes, my OH and Daniel prefer banana, peaches and plums with none of us liking apples or oranges.
    This is the cause of my shopping being quite expensive lately, but I do tend to do well with big meals for hubby such as stews/casseroles, pies, shepherds pies, bolognaises, fish pies, lasagnes and cannellonis all of which I make in large quantities and freeze for him in individual portions.
    I have a massive stockpile of suet mix (about 8 3.5kg bags to be honest) as it was 99p a bag from AF. I also have tonnes of jelly and angel delight type mixes for a quick pud.
    My cakes and bun baking are not great and I have had better success with the fudge brownie and carrot cake mixes also from AF.
    I have a breadmaker and maybe once a week make a homemade loaf but as I don't eat much bread and OH prefers breadcakes for his sandwiches I usually buy these ready made. I have a massive stock of white bread roll and bap mix and really should get to practice making bread rolls with it when I get the time, it too was also 99p for 3.5kg bags. I also got scone mix which I use to make both fruit and cheese scones which also was very cheap either 99p or 1.49 for the 3.5kg bags. So has you can see I have plenty of supplies to last quite a while and they are all stored in massive plastic storage boxes in the spare bedroom, along with the fridge freezer.
    I also tend to buy tea bags and coffee in the largest sizes possible, also toilet rolls, dog food and wash powder as it works out cheaper this way and as we both get paid only once a month with no other money coming in again until the next payday find this to be an advantage.
    well better get on with the day as usual take care, jane

  2. Just wanted to stick my head above the parapet and say Hi; I am enjoying your blog and loving some of your thoughts and ideas. I especially like the "no computer on a weekend" as someone who spends far to much time online I think I will be adopting this on my days off. Hopefully that will encourage me to find other things to do. Like learning to sew something I have always wanted to do but can never seem to find the time, but I can find time to spend hours on the computer! lol

  3. I have never ordered from AF - when I look there - no big packets of mix. I too don't like Coffee cake.