I HAVE A kitchen because it came with my house.
And also because I haven’t won the euro millions lottery yet and can’t afford for someone to do it for me.
Look, I just don’t enjoy it ok? I do it because I have to. However, I do like to try out new recipes every now and again. But once I make them a couple of times, both my curiousity and palette are satisfied and I rarely go back to them.
So during a week that was perilously close to Christmas past and too far away from pay day I knew feeding my lot was going to prove interesting.
Taking into account the freezer was full of meat; pork, chicken, lamb and beef plus bread so all I needed to stock up on was fruit and veg and lunch box supplies. So it wasn’t too bad really.
Except one of our boys is on a detox of sorts at the moment for an allergy and lamb is on the list. He is also not too fond of beef. Anyone up for chicken every day this week?
No. Didn’t think so.
His lunch box was also proving to be a worry. The usual sandwich was out as was his couple of Rich Tea biscuits (Barley ingredient). But I got some BFree bread in my local supermarket and found some (bloody expensive) plain biscuits so the lunch box issue was sorted. He also received a hearty breakfast each morning before school so another thing covered. Tackling dinners was my next challenge.
I had already decided I was going to cook something I wanted for a change. And this was going to be a sweet and sour pork recipe by Elizabeth on Life on Hushabye Farm. I knew at least two of the kids would complain but I had already started the Bad Mammy moment and I wasn’t to be stopped. This dish is gorgeous and can be made in half an hour. I cheat a little and use a can of pineapple chunks instead of the fresh variety. I served it with rice and was very pleased with myself.
Tuesday isn’t the best day for a dinner in our house. I go to my breastfeeding group in the morning so we always make do with Flung Together Vittles on Tuesday. Recently Oldest Boy has discovered toasted ham and cheese sandwiches. I have been known to plug in the sandwich maker twice a day to satisfy his current addiction. One of them doesn’t like cheese so I have to make a plain one for him. We can get through a sliced pan and open another in one day sometimes. I asked santy for a cow for Christmas but I think I am going to have to add a pig to next year’s wish list if they continue to eat ham at the going rate.
It had to be roast chicken, didn’t it? One of my favourite dinners though. My boys love their gravy and chicken provides the perfect base for that. It also meant I would have a few slices left over to include in the lunch box the next day. I always do potatoes, carrots and parsnip, peas and cauliflower if I have it with this meal. And the obligatory gravy. I discovered a few rogue Yorkshire puddings rattling around in the freezer as well. Happy campers all round on Wednesday.
Spag bol day. Another opportunity for some of the boys to hurl insults at my cooking but this is my cheats dinner and the fact that they aren’t wild about it means there is always some left over for the freezer. Easy peasy lemon squeezy: fry off some onions and garlic. Add minced beef. Then your jar of choice. Yes, a jar. A good one. Don’t ask me which. I alternate. And a bit pot of spaghetti or penne. Easy peasy lemon squeezy.
I know of a few people who have Fast Food Friday. Ours consists of chicken nuggets and oven chips. Every. Time. Smallest Boy like me to crank open a tin of those spaghetti hoop things.
I promised the boys we would go out for pizza before they went back to school after the Christmas holidays. This would also double up as a little celebration for the happy birthday boy. They love this treat. I wolfed down cannelloni filled with ricotta and spinach. The boys enjoyed pepperoni pizza, Hawaiian pizza and finished up with ice-cream.
We go to Wonderful Nana’s once a month for our Sunday dinner and this day we enjoyed a roast beef dinner with all the trimmings. There may or may not have been a glass or two of wine as well. The boys drank juice. Of course. Strawberry Pavlova, sherry trifle followed that with tea and coffee. I suppose you could say we had the dining out experience twice in one weekend!
P.S. I was supposed to add photos with each meal but usually with my cooking, it tastes a lot better than it looks so I didn’t want to distress you with the photography. Here’s one of Smallest Boy messing about with a napkin at our pizza family dinner instead.