cheap, Danish, Side dishes, vegetarien

Warm Potato Salad – a Great Side Dish (45p per person)

I think I have mentioned a few times that I wasn’t the greatest fan of my mums cooking, however, one thing I remember that she did make exceptionally well, was warm potato salad. I loved the sourness off it, it almost gave another dimension to the dish. It felt lighter than a traditional potato salad.

Therefore, I called her a few weeks ago and got her to email me the recipe she used. However, it was not very precise so, a bit of this and a bit of that. However, this gave me enough to work on. So, for a few weeks, I have been perfecting my warm potato salad and finally found it good enough to give you all the recipe. This is the way I made them for our keyboarder last week.

The boys weren’t convinced about it, but then I assume it is quite an unusual flavour. They both gave them a very good try though. I will be serving them again for the boys as I believe the more times, they get to taste something the more likely they are to get to like it in the end.

Blipper has come such a long way since his little brother was born. When I was pregnant with Flipper, I was so poorly due to Hyperemesis gravidarum that the first 7-8 months I allowed him to live on cereal, pizza and ice-cream. This meant that he really started to dislike trying things. But now 18 months on, and he is amazing at trying new flavours.

The main difference is that I changed the way we serve the food. Instead of serving the food on individual plates I changed it, so all the food is served on big serving platters at the middle of the table, and no alternatives, so what we serve is what there to eat. I believe that when food is served up attractively both adults and kids are more likely to try the food. Since we changed the way food is served Blipper and Flipper seem so much happier at meal times since they don’t have any alternatives. Obviously, there will be times where I serve something different for them both, mainly when I cook something extremely spicy.

Another change I have done, is that Blipper get one day a week where he can choose what we eat, normally Fridays. This week he got to choose on a Thursday as tomorrow is Bank Holiday Friday and Bank Holidays, I like to choose, as it needs to fit in to the rest of our plans.

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Warm Potato Salad

Serves 4

Ingredients:

800g Small potatoes
6 Spring onions, white and green parts
50g Butter, unsalted
150ml water
2 tbsp Apple cider vinegar (or normal vinegar)
1 tbsp Dijon Mustard
1 tbsp Sugar
2 tsp Salt (1 is for boiling the potatoes)
Salt and Pepper to taste.

Method:

  1. Peel the potatoes and halve any that are too big.
  2. Fill up a pot with water and add the Salt then boil the potatoes until just cooked through.
  3. Cut the potatoes into 1 cm thick discs, leave them to cool down whilst preparing the rest of the ingredients.
  4. Now rinse the spring onions and cut them into fine slices. Keep the Green parts aside.
  5. Pour 150ml of water into a pot, then add the vinegar, sugar, salt and the white part of the spring onions. Boil it for 2-3 minutes or until the spring onions are soft. Then add the mustard and butter to the pot and wait for the butter to melt.
  6. Add the Potatoes to the mixture and gently mix the potatoes into the mixture, be careful to not over mix as you don’t want the potatoes to break up. Slowly bring the mixture back up to a gentle boil, before turning it off. The potatoes should be warmed through before turning the mixture off.
  7. Before serving, taste and season with extra salt and pepper if needed then add the green part of the spring onion to the mixture and gentle mix it through.
  8. Serve warm or lukewarm as a side dish to any meat such as Meatballs (frikadelle), Karbonader, pork steaks etc.

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Bon Appetite as my grandad would have said.

Costings:

These has been based on Tesco’s prices and the basic products where possible (Correct as per April 2019).

Ingredients:

Potatoes (£1.00/1000g)x800g = 80p
Spring onions (6 in a bunch)= 55p
Butter (£1.50/250g)x50g = 30p
Tesco Cider Vinegar (£0.80/350ml)x30ml = 7p
Dijon Mustard (£0.55/185g) x 15g = 5p
Sugar (0.69/1000g)x10g= 1p
Cooking salt (£1.10/3000g)x10g= 1p
Salt and Pepper to taste. 2p

Total cost = £1.81
Per portion (£1.81/4) = £0.45 per portion

 

Beef, cheap, Danish, Meats, Pork

Danish Breaded Meatballs – Karbonader, (57p per meatball)

Not sure we got an expression for it here in the UK, but in Denmark there is certain types of food we call for Grandma Food (Mormor Mad). This is typically traditional Danish dishes that our grandparents used to make or food that the younger generation got a lovely memory of being served as a child.

It’s not a specific meal but loads of different meals and everyone got their own favourites. For me, one of the dishes I remember with great fondness is Karbonader or Danish Breaded Meatballs. It wasn’t my grandma who I remember cooking it, but my lovely Aunt Sonja and my Dads Sister Ingrid. I still can remember visiting my Uncle and Aunt and stepping into the kitchen where a frying pan with Karbonader being cooked and an amazing aroma that came from it. I used to long for the food Sonja cooked and it was always a pleasure to visit, not only for the food obviously but also for the company.

Often when I visited, I would go with my uncle to the farm and see the cows coming in and being milked, it was lots of fun. I remember tasting the fresh milk straight from the cow, it was still warm and delicious! we would be allowed to feed the animals and see how they went from calves to full grown cows; it was an amazing experience. When we were finished being outside, we were starving and ready for dinner time!

I seem to remember that my Aunties Karbonader was served with new boiled potatoes and a delicious brown sauce. However, I also loved when it was served with a warm sweet and sour potato salad. Which is what I served it with for my boys, together with sweet corns, peas and carrots and some pickled beetroots and a lemon wedge.

Most of my meals seems to have sweetcorn, peas and carrots in fairness. Just because I know both boys like those vegetables and therefore will eat them quite happily. I like to ensure that they get enough vegetables as its full of vitamins.

Now, I must add this is probably not the healthiest recipe as its breaded and fried in oil and butter… but please try it as its yummy. I know there is quite a few different recipes for karbonader, however, this is mine. Both Flipper and Blip ate the meat and vegetables, but neither was keen on the potato salad. Luckily, I had a leftover Yorkshire pudding and some garlic bread for them on the side. But at least they tried it.

I make mine a bit smaller than they normally should be, as neither of my boys could eat that much meat and I would struggle as well. Normally its 300g of meat to two kabonader. So Instead of getting five Karbonader out of my 750g meat, I made 7.

Danish Breaded Meatballs (Karbonader)

Feeds 4 -6 adults

Ingredients:

750g Mixed Beef and Pork Mince
3 Tbsp flour
2 Eggs
2 Tbsp Oil
2 Tbsp Salted Butter
300 Ml Breadcrumbs (preferable coarse breadcrumbs)
Salt and pepper

Method:

  1. Crack the eggs and whisk them in a bowl.
  2. Form the meatballs (if you have bought the beef and pork mince separately, you should mix it together before forming the meatballs).
  3. Season the meatball generously with salt and pepper on both sides.
  4. Then dip the meatballs first in flour then into the egg mixture and lastly into the breadcrumbs. Put on a plate until you have formed them all.
  5. Now heat the butter and oil on a large frying pan, and when warm brown each of the Karbonader for about 1 minute on each side. Then turn the heat down to medium heat and finish cooking them for about 5-7 minutes on each side or until finished. (this depends on the size of the meatballs).
  6. Best enjoyed straight away.

Bon Appetite as my grandad would have said.

Costings:

These has been based on Tesco’s prices and the basic products where possible (Correct as per April 2019).

I used Aldi’s Mince as they had a combination off both and was reduced. I also use my own breadcrumbs, simply made with any stale bread I got and then kept in my freezer until needed.

Ingredients:

Pork mince (£1.99/500g)x375g= £1.50
Beef Mince (£1.49/500g)x375g = £1.12
Flour (0.45/1500g)x10g= 1p
Eggs = 16p
Oil (£3.50/5000)x30ml =3p
Butter = £1.50/250g)x30g =18p
Breadcrumbs (preferable coarse breadcrumbs) (0.80/2)= 40p
Salt and pepper 2p

Total cost = £3.42
Per portion (£3.42/6) = £0.57 per portion

 

Side dishes, vegetarien

Courgette and Spinach Filo Pie (£1.15 per portion)

Whatever we eat these days seems to depend on what I get on offer in my local shop. If I’m lucky I get the 10p reduced deals in the evening. It’s very hit and miss. Some days, I get loads other days nothing at all. I have been lucky lately and found loads and loads of chicken reduced to 10p… My freezers are full of chicken (so be prepared, chicken recipes may appear soon). I’m lucky I got 3 freezers and I tend to fill them up. But rotating what I got in them, so I eat the oldest things first.

I often think that my kids are lucky they get a very varied dinner, and most of the time its quite healthy as well. I like to serve the food on big serving plates in the middle of the table. This is so the boys or at least Blip can help himself. It helps him understand how much he can eat, my rule is, what you put on your plate you must eat… however, he is welcome to come back for more if he eats what’s on the plate. I.e. You can’t just eat meatballs, you need your vegetables and potatoes as well before you can have more meat or whatever it is you fancy.

I love eating dinner with my boys, we talk, we laugh and we sometimes we cry. Our conversation is often really random, but sometimes I get snippets of what is going on in Blips life at school, things he perhaps wouldn’t have thought about talking about if it wasn’t for this important time together.

We now have dinner at 6 in the evening and when Blip comes back from school, we have a light snack, the snack will consist of something like a bread role with butter, ham or fruit. Just enough for the boys to not be starving. It does mean that I rarely make “kids” dinners, i.e. Fish Fingers, Nuggets, Hotdogs, instead I believe they benefit from eating the same food as me, and hopefully one day they will eat everything. Now, this does not mean that dinner time is always lovely, sometimes I feel ready to throw both boys out in the rubbish.. I mostly find this to be the days when I’m exhausted as I don’t have the energy and this reflects on the kids. It’s a funny world we live in.

One of the vegetables I often get reduced is courgettes, I absolutely love them, however, I get tired of eating them the same way every time. So when I found myself surrounded my courgettes I decided it was time for something different and I went searching in my fridge and freezer.

I also had salad cheese (feta), filo pastry and spinach, which I had purchased reduced and I was planning to turn it into a Greek Spanakopita Filo Pie. So, I decided to mix it all up a bit and make a Courgette and Spinach Filo Pie. What a triumph… I absolutely loved it… Flipper and Blip on the other hand was not convinced at all. In fairness it is a rather “adult” flavour, and most children probably wouldn’t be keen.

Luckily, I also made some paprika chicken with preserved lemons as I had a feeling they wouldn’t be keen on the Spanakopita. Instead I passed some off the Spanakopita on to my friend who enjoyed it.

I served it all with homemade Tzatziki


Courgette and Spinach Filo Pie

Serves 6 as a main, or 8 as a starter or side

Ingredients

2 eggs
450g Spinach
6 medium courgettes
½ grated nutmeg
200g feta (or salad cheese)
30g dill
30g Parsley
5 sheet Filo Pastry from a 175g pack
Pepper
Lemon zest from one lemon or 1 tsp lemon juice
2 grated garlic cloves.
2 tbsp Oil

 

Method:

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 170C if fan assisted or 200C if not a fan oven.
  2. Grate the courgettes, and finely cut the spinach. Place a large frying pan over medium heat and add the grated courgettes and spinach to it with 1/2 a teaspoon of salt and pepper and squeeze in the garlic cloves, then gently fry the mixture until the courgettes has gone slightly soft and started to release the extra liquid.
  3. Now add the mixture to a clean tea towel over a colander and let it drain for 15 minutes or until cold enough to handle the mixture. Then wring the tea towel tightly to extract as much liquid as possible from the mixture.
  4. Transfer the mixture to a large bowl, adding chopped up parsley and dill, nutmeg, pepper, lemon zest and eggs. Then crumble the feta into the mixture and stir it well to combine all the ingredients.
  5. Then line a deep, frying pan with greaseproof paper, please ensure the frying pan is oven safe, alternatively use a baking tin. Lay a sheet of filo over the base, allowing the excess to hang over the side of the pan, and brush with oil. Top with another piece of Filo, rotating it slightly so the excess hangs at a different angle. Repeat these 3 more times until you have used up 5 sheets of filo. Make sure to oil the sheets every time and work quickly.
  6. Now add the courgette mixture to the middle of the pie and even it out. Then fold over the overhanging pieces of filo ensuring to brush with oil every time. For the best result the filo pastry on top should be crinkled/crumbled.
  7. Place the pan in a preheated oven for 45 minutes, (ensure the frying pan is suitable for oven use).
  8. Lift out the filo pie to a suitable serving platter and serve hot or cold. It’s brilliantly on its own or as a side dish.

 

Bon Appetite as my grandad would have said.

 

Costings:

These has been based on Tesco’s prices and the basic products where possible (Correct as per April 2019).

Ingredients:

Eggs = 16p
Spinach (1.50p/900g)x450g = 75p
Courgettes (0.4p x 6 courgettes) = £2.40
½ grated nutmeg = 5p
Salad cheese = 75p
Dill = 70p
Parsley = 70p
Filo Pastry = (1.85p/7sheets) x 5sheets =£1.32
Pepper 1p
Lemon zest (free, as the lemon I use for other dishes)
Garlic Cloves (0.62/40cloves)x 2cloves= 4
2 tbsp Oil (£3.50/5000ml)x30ml =3p

Total cost = £6.91
Per portion (£6.91/6) = £1.15 per portion