Halloumi Rainbow Salad

This is one of my favourite salads & is based on this delicious recipe. It’s also great to take to work for lunch – I just need to be extra careful when eating the beetroot at my desk!

Halloumi Rainbow Salad

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: easy
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The kids love this salad, apart from the beetroot,so I have to serve it on the side when giving it to them.

Ingredients for the Salad

  • 1 pack of halloumi
  • 1 sweet pepper, sliced
  • 1 carrot, grated
  • 1 pack of beetroot, cut into small chunks
  • 1 pack of baby plum tomatoes, halved
  • 1 spring onion (optional), sliced
  • 1 Packet of rocket & other salad leaves
  • Olive oil

and for the Dressing

  • 1 tsp good olive oil
  • 0.5 tsp lemon juice
  • 0.25 tsp dried chopped chilli

Instructions

  1. Warm some olive oil in a frying pan.
  2. Slice the halloumi & fry for a few minutes on each side until a nicely browned. Cool on some kitchen roll when cooked.
  3. Mix the dressing ingredients together in a bowl.
  4. Chop peppers, peel & grate the carrot, halve the tomatoes & slice the spring onions.
  5. Plate the salad (or put in your lunchbox) and top with the cooled halloumi. Either pour over the dressing, or pop into a little dressing pot to take in your lunchbox.

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Flatbread

We *love* flatbread & for years we have been buying it pre-made from the supermarket. However, in my quest to reduce the amount of plastic waste we generate I looked into making it ourselves & it is SO very easy to make, we haven’t looked back & I get the kids (5, 8 & 11) to make it whenever possible! ūüôā

Here’s a link to the original recipe – we slightly reduce the salt & omit the herbs because the children prefer it plain. The recipe makes three flatbreads which is perfect for us (2 adults, 3 kids). I did get greedy once & made more, but it was just too much for us. I did then discover that if I baked it in the oven again for a few minutes, it made tasty nacho chips for snacking on the following day.

Flatbread

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: easy
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Flatbread

Easy to make & tastes delicious

Ingredients

  • 1.75 cups plain flour
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 0.5 tsp salt
  • 0.5 cup olive oil
  • 0.5 cup water

Instructions

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 230 C
  2. Mix the flour, baking powder & salt together in a bowl
  3. Stir in the water & 1/3 cup of the oil *** not all of the oil!! ***
  4. Kneed until it makes a nice soft dough
  5. Cut some parchment paper to fit your big baking tray (a pizza tray is perfect)
  6. Split the dough into thirds & shape into balls
  7. Roll each ball into a 10″ circle on the parchment paper
  8. Put onto the baking tray, lightly brush with oil & bake for 8-10 minutes until golden brown.
  9. Repeat with remaining dough

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Chickpea Salad

This was inspired by this delicious Roasted Chickpea Salad, but needed some alterations to suit the picky children everyone’s tastes… The plate shown was beautifully laid out by DC1 (10).

Chickpea Salad

  • Servings: 4
  • Difficulty: easy
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Chickpea Salad

Great for a take-to-work lunch too!

Ingredients

  • 1 tin chickpeas
  • 2 teaspoons olive oil
  • 1 romaine lettuce, chopped
  • 1 cucumber, chopped
  • 3 carrots, spiralised
  • 1 punnet grape tomatoes, halved
  • 1 large tin sweetcorn
  • 2 avocados, minimum

Instructions

  1. Drain the chickpeas
  2. Chop lettuce, cucumber, tomatoes, corn, and avocado.
  3. Spiralise (or grate or chop) carrots.
  4. Mix it all together in a bowl & drizzle with the Olive Oil before serving

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Mini Mouse Birthday Cake

Mini Mouse Birthday Cake
Mini Mouse Birthday Cake

I just realised that I forgot to¬†post a piccy of DC2’s birthday cake (it was ^only^ 5 months ago!)

DC2 adores Mini Mouse, so it seemed the obvious choice. DH did his usual thing of googling for an apropriate image, and making a couple of easy chocolate cakes.

After forming the right shape from the cakes, he cut out a piece of greaseproof paper the same size & shape as the cake, and copied the picture of Mini¬†onto it. ¬†Using this as a guide, he rolled out and cut up the various coloured packs of ready-made icing he’d bought and then decorated the cake with them.

It always sounds so simple, but I seriously doubt I could do such a good job. Why not check out his efforts from previous years?

Spaghetti with Tomatoes & Basil

A light pasta dish that’s quick & easy to make and perfect for the summer.

Spaghetti with tomatoes & basil
Spaghetti with tomatoes & basil

This is such a simple dish & so very tasty. DH made it last week when we were away with friends & they loved it too.

Our dried spaghetti takes around 10mins to cook, if you are using fresh you might find it better to put the pasta on after you have added the tomatoes to the pan.

Spaghetti with Tomatoes & Basil

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients

  • 0.25¬†cup good olive oil
  • 3 cloves crushed¬†garlic
  • 2¬†pints small cherry tomatoes
  • 9¬†large basil leaves,¬†thinly sliced
  • 1 tablespoon chopped fresh curly parsley
  • 1 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme leaves
  • 0.5 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
  • 0.5 teaspoon freshly ground¬†salt
  • 0.25¬†teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes
  • 200g¬†dried¬†wholewheat spaghetti (or other pasta of your choice)
  • 0.75¬†cups freshly grated VEGETARIAN Parmesan-style cheese
  • Extra chopped basil and grated Parmesan for serving

Instructions

  1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil.
  2. Add the pasta to the pot of boiling water and cook as per instructions on the packet.
  3. Meanwhile, heat the olive oil in a large pan. Add the garlic to the oil and cook over medium heat for 30 seconds. Be careful not to burn it!
  4. Add the tomatoes, basil, parsley, thyme, salt, pepper, and red pepper flakes. Reduce the heat to medium-low and cook for five to seven minutes, tossing occasionally, until the tomatoes begin to soften but don’t break up.
  5. Drain the pasta, reserving some of the pasta water.
  6. Place the pasta in a large serving bowl, add the tomatoes and Parmesan, and toss well. Add some of the pasta water if the pasta seems too dry. Serve large bowls of pasta with extra basil sprinkled on top and a big bowl of extra Parmesan on the side.

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Easy Miso Soup

I just love Miso Soup and was so pleased to find it it so easy to make at home.

Miso Soup
Miso Soup

I love miso soup,¬†so thought it was about time I made it myself. ¬†This recipe from the Muffin Myth sounded just perfect. It’s such a comforting taste and yet so healthy – what more could you want?!

You can add whatever you like to the basic miso/stock mix (which makes it perfect for clearing out the veggies in the bottom of the fridge), but I always want some little cubes of tofu in there.

The first time I made this the kids loved it, but the next time DC1(5) decided she no longer liked it <sigh> I’ll have to try giving it to her again in a couple of months….

Miso Soup

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients

  • 4 cups low salt vegetable¬†stock
  • 2 cloves garlic,¬†crushed
  • 2 Tbsp ginger, freshly grated
  • 1 Tbsp thinly sliced red¬†chilli pepper (optional)
  • 3 Tbsp miso paste
  • 1 spring¬†onion, thinly sliced
  • a handful of cubed tofu
  • another 2 handfuls of chopped veg. e.g. carrots, asparagus or broccoli spears

Instructions

  1. Place the vegetable stock, ginger, garlic, chilli pepper, and green onion in a medium pot over high heat. Bring to the boil, uncovered, then reduce to a simmer.
  2. Put the miso paste into a small bowl, and add a little of the stock to it. Use a fork to mash the paste into the stock, then add to the soup pot. Do not allow the broth to return to a boil!
  3. Add the tofu & veg to the pot. Allow them to heat through for a few minutes so the vegetables cook just slightly.

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Frozen Banana Dessert

frozen banana dessert frozen banana dessert with chopped nutsApparently 1.4 million bananas are thrown away every day! How many of them are yours?

I usually make banana bread or banana and oatmeal muffins with my old bananas but when I saw this recipe for banana icecream I started putting my over-ripe bananas in the freezer straight away!

A few weeks later when I had enough bananas in the freezer, I discovered that the blitzing process is made a lot easier if you slice the bananas quite thinly before you freeze them, and let them thaw slightly before turning the processor on!

So far, we’ve had just plain banana, and some topped with chopped nuts & everyone has loved them – next time we’re going to try making lollies!

Frozen Banana Dessert

  • Servings: 2
  • Difficulty: easy
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Ingredients

  • 3 large, very ripe bananas – peeled, cut into thin slices¬†and then frozen
  • 0.5¬†tsp¬†cinnamon
  • 0.5¬†tsp¬†vanilla extract

optional extras

  • fresh fruit, chopped
  • chocolate chips
  • coconut flakes
  • nuts or seeds

Instructions

  1. Let bananas soften at room temperature for about five minutes.
  2. Blitz bananas, cinnamon and vanilla in a blender until smooth and creamy, this may take a few minutes.
  3. Pour into bowl, top with extras and serve immediately, or add to your favorite ice-lolly molds and freeze for later.

 

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