New Recipes, vegetarien

Easy and Delicious Aubergine Bake – 95p per portion

I absolutely love aubergines. When I see that deep purple almost black colour of the skin, it makes me so happy. It’s strange because I know that aubergines weren’t used a lot back home in Denmark, however, I clearly remember my mum buying them (occasionally) and we must have eaten them as well… I have no recollection of eating them in Denmark!

 Since I arrived in the UK Aubergines are still one of the vegetables that I love to cook with. I have tried many different recipes. Aubergines aren’t technically a vegetable but a fruit from the same category as the tomato! Luckily the husband also enjoys aubergines, for Baby Blip, the jury is still out on Aubergines.

Baby “Flipper” is almost 10 months and is still only happy having breast milk (mummy is getting very tired). However, he has lately at least started to put some food in his mouth… a bit of pizza today! HURRAH!!!!!  Hopefully, by the time he is 18 he will be happy eating normal food… He was happy to squeeze and play with the Aubergine bake I made today… however, none of it touched his lips. But hey, one day!

I have tried purees and all the tricks under the sun, however, he is stubborn like his mummy and know what he wants.

The dish I made today is really simple, this year I am growing thyme and oregano outside so using fresh herbs. however, you could just substitute it for dried herbs instead.

I added frozen spinach to the dish which was lovely. However, next time I would love to try and layer it with potatoes, this would help give the dish a bit of texture. I often buy Aubergines from my local market, they normally do two for a pound. However, they are widely available from super markets as well. This dish is meat free, however, you could add some bacon to it or even some sausage meat between the layers. I like to make my own bread crumbs with the ends of bread. It’s cheap and easy.

I served the dish with garlic bread.

This recipe serves 4 people, I made it in foil trays, so we could freeze one portion.

Aubergine Bake

Serves 4

Ingredients

2 medium aubergines

2 tbsp oil

1 medium onion finely chopped

½ large leek – white part (optional)

2 clove garlic finely chopped

400g tinned chopped tomatoes

100g cream cheese

1 tbsp oregano

1 tbsp thyme

75g fresh spinach

3 tbsp bread crumbs

3 tbsp grated mature cheddar

Salt and pepper

 

Method:

  1. Cut the aubergines into 1 cm long slices, lengthwise. Lay them in one layer on a baking tray (or a grill pan) and lightly brush with oil and season with a bit of salt and pepper. Now cook them until slightly browned, then turn them over and season again and cook until tender.
  2. Meanwhile, clean and chop up the leek finely.
  3. Put the remaining oil in a pan and on medium heat add the garlic, leek and onion and cook until translucent.
  4. Pour in the chopped tomato, the thyme and oregano and let it simmer for about 5 minutes, the consistency should be rather thick.
  5. Assemble the dish by, adding half the aubergines to the bottom of an oven proof dish, then spread the cream cheese on top of it. Then add a layer of tomato sauce (1/3 of the tomato sauce) a layer of spinach and top with the remaining aubergines. Now add the remaining tomato sauce on top and finish off with the breadcrumbs and grated cheese.
  6. Cook at 200C in a preheated oven for 15-20 minutes.

Serve with garlic bread and salad

 

Bon appetite – as my granddad would have said

Costings:

These has been based on Tesco’s prices and the basic products where possible (Correct as per June 2018).

 

Aubergines £1.40

Oil 1p

Onion 10p

Leek 25p

Garlic 6p

Tin Tomatoes 30p

Cream cheese 55p

1 tbsp oregano 5p

1 tbsp thyme 5p

Spinach 30p

Bread Crumbs 20p

Cheddar (£2.50/500g)x100g = 50p

Salt and pepper 2p

Total amount = £3.79

Per portion = 95p

 

Every day life posts, New Recipes

Sophie goes on holiday

Sometimes with a busy family life it’s easy to forget to appreciate the small things in life. It’s so easy to forget to appreciate the small moments in life. In the autumn, just a few months after I gave birth to Baby “Flipper”, the husband was working from home one Saturday. This meant that Toddler “Blip”, Me and Baby “Flipper” had to try and not disturb daddy.  With a toddler and a baby in tow this is much easier said than done. Blip isn’t big enough to fully understand what works means and constantly tries and disturb daddy.

The sun was shining but it was freezing cold outside, however, as I was getting more and more irritated inside trying to not disturb daddy, I decided to take both the kids out for a walk. In Denmark we say, there is no such thing as bad weather, only bad clothes. Blip wanted a picnic I packed him a sandwich and juice and of for a walk and picnic we went.

Flipper was wrapped up nice and warm in his pram and Blip in a warm jacket. Off we went for a walk, Blip had his bellowed elephant Sophie with him.

We walked through this wooden kind of forest and over a bridge, to a playground. Blip was exploring the nature, flowers, stones everything you can find in the forest. When we got to the big bridge he was fascinated seeing all the cars driving underneath. We spend a whilst just looking at it. Then finally we got to the playground and had our picnic. I had brought a small towel with me to sit on, just so you had the feeling of picnic.

sophie and joshii sopha

Blip was so excited and had such a good time, I joined in and we played “We are going on a bear hunt” I climbed with Blip op on all the playground features and we had a giggle. Flipper was sleeping and nice and cosy in his pram, finally it was time to get home.

When we got home I realised that Blip had lost his blue nosed elephant Sophie on the trip. I left him with daddy and re-traced our trip. But Sophie was nowhere to be found… I looked everywhere. That evening Blip couldn’t sleep as he was so sad that Sophie was gone. In the end I told him that Sophie had gone on holiday and we talked about what she would be experiencing on her journey.

Next morning Blip told me that he was waiting for his postcards from Sophie and that she soon we come home to him.

I ended up buying a replacement (4 in the end as they all where the wrong sizes except the last one) on eBay. I was lucky that the lovely members of The Hygge Nook (a group on Facebook) were so kind and offered to send Blip lots of postcards, as if they were from Sophie.

Within a few days we started to receive postcards, we got from America, Canada, Different places in the UK, and Australia. Every morning Blip would run to the door and check if there was news from Sophie. We also received a baby brother to Sophie – a tiny elephant. And a card from Millie the cat that Sophie visited in Scotland.

 

I also posted on our local pages if anyone had found her, 3 weeks later (I still hadn’t received the correct replacement) I got a message on Facebook that she had been found in a charity shop and a lovely man had bought her and she was delivered back to us. – It amazing what kind people are around, normally we only hear the bad stories

Finally, we got Sophie home again, however, she was rather dirty. I gave her a wash and ensured she was ready for when Blip returned from pre-school. She was standing inside the door with a tiny suitcase… Never have I seen him so happy being reunited with his elephant.

It’s now about 4 months since this happened and he still talks about her journeys, we still got all the postcards. The other day he said to me… Can she go on holiday again (my answer) NOOOO!

However, creating the picnic and when she was lost coming up with the story about her on the holiday and getting her returned with the small suitcase was amazing. It will always be surrounded by a mystery and a bit of hygge connected with it.

Blip still sleeps with his Sophie every evening. I want to say a big THANK YOU to all the members of the Hygge Nook… You guys are amazing.

In the end it all turned out lovely, and it is so  lovely to be a part of your children’s life and try and create the best childhood you can for them. It’s about remembering that the best times doesn’t need to cost money and you can experience hygge if you have an open mind and look for it.

 

 

 

About Me, New Recipes

Thank you! The Versatile Blogger Award!

I’m so overwhelmed, its been a very hard 9 months here, going through a pregnancy with Hyperemisis Gravidarum. However, It has now ended with the birth of Baby “Flipper” on 12 August 2017, who weighed a massive 6.9lb compared to big brothers 5lb. However, there will be another post about this amazing event!!

Just before I had my amazing son, I was nominated for a Vesatile Blogger Award (which I never ever would have dreamed of)  by heidihoshi at Heidihoshi’s Adventures an amazing blogger, who blogs about Craft, Origami, and cooking and in general Awww moments. 🙂 Having done Origami in the past I absolutely love the posts and seeing the cards she creates.

versatile blogger award, heidihoshiIt’s an honour to be nominated, though in this case, every nominee is a winner

According to the Versatile Blogger Award Rules, I need to do five things to preserve the spirit of this award:

#1 Nominees should know that if you are nominated for the Versatile Blogger Award, you have already won

All done!

#2 Display the Versatile Blogger Award logo on my post

🙂 Also done!

#3 Write and publish a blog post thanking and linking back to the person who nominated me

Done! after I found out how to add a link to the blog!

#4 List seven random facts about myself

  1. I got a phobia of snakes!!
  2. I love reading books, all kind of books and I’m a bit of a book hoarder (drives my husband mad!)
  3. As a kid I was the fussiest eater on the planet! Now I eat anything.
  4. My biggest dream would be to take my family to Lapland and stay in the Ice Hotel and hopefully we would see the Northern Light.
  5. I do not recognise peoples faces, I once could not recognise my toddler when picking him up at the nursery and walked right passed my husband!
  6. I love painting, it’s another passion of mine.
  7. I’m the biggest chatterbox on the planet!!

#5 Nominate up to 15 other blogs that you follow and believe deserve recognition for their hard work

  1. Vero and Canito in the kitchen from withcoloursandcanitointhekitchen, a new mum who blogs about life with her baby and posts some lovely recipes both for her baby and also for adults. I love the blog and the inspirational recipes from all over the world.
  2. Empty Nest – Full Tum for posting amazing inspirational recipes. It always makes me hungry and makes me want to try the food. If you are into food definitely check out this blog!!
  3. How To Hygge The British Way an amazing blog about how to create hygge, which is a Danish expression for cosiness but the British way. The posts makes you smile and reminds me of Denmark. It is inspirational, because of the everyday stories, that make such a difference to the life and creates hygge.
  4. 3 Sisters Abroad this blog is an amazing travel blog, about 3 sisters who travels to Europe and about their experiences. I really have enjoyed this blog as its lovely to hear about the journeys they experience

Thank you all for writing your lovely blogs, I so enjoy reading them. xx

About Me, New Recipes, Normal life

Hyperemesis Gravidarum

What is Hyperemesis Gravidarum? Hyperemesis Gravidarum means Excessive nausea and vomiting in pregnancy.

I thought I would add a blog post, that is totally unrelated to my normal food posts. Why, you may ask? because, I have mentioned more than once that in this pregnancy I have suffered from Hyperemesis Gravidarum.  It’s a pregnancy complication that is very underestimated and not very well known.

If you read this post and think you are suffering from Hyperemesis Gravidarum and are not getting the help you need, please contact PSS the Pregnancy Sickness Support in UK. They are amazing and will help you get the treatment needed! https://www.pregnancysicknesssupport.org.uk/

Morning_sickness_or_Hyperemesis

Now most of you have probably heard about morning sickness or pregnancy sickness, which is a better term for it (as it does not only happen in the morning). It is well known that 7 out of 10 women will experience some level of Nausea during pregnancy. This is expected and for most people it will settle by week 12. Also, the nausea or pregnancy sickness is not overwhelming and the woman can continue their lives more or less as normal.

But then you got woman who suffer from the rarer form of pregnancy sickness, also known as Hyperemesis gravidarum (HG). Approximately 1 out of 100 pregnant woman suffers from this during their pregnancy and it is extreme. Imagine having an extreme hangover, where you can’t sit up, even the smell of coffee, food, your partner makes you feel horrible. Sitting up in bed you feel like throwing up the room spins and you can’t even have anything to drink as it makes you throw it straight up. With the hangover, you know that within a few hours or if really bad, at least by the next day you will feel better.

Hyperemesis Gravidarum is like a hangover from hell, but instead of it disappearing within a few hours days, it continues for ever. For me it lasted from week 6 to 32 in a really bad way, then from week 32 I have been slightly better and feeling at least a bit better. I have actually been able to cook for the last few weeks, but still being sick up to 10 times in a day. If lucky, only 3 times a day… those days have been a blessing.

 

What is even worse than suffering from HG is that professional people like doctors and midwifes often does not now a lot about this sickness complication and therefore doesn’t take it seriously.

In my first pregnancy, with Toddler “Blip” I had never heard about HG, and when I went to the doctors and told them that I had been sick more than 20 times in the day and hadn’t been able to eat/or drink for almost 3 days, all I was told was that it was normal to be sick and to try and drink more water and eat small meals. I was informed that some women had more problems to accept they are pregnant and therefore psychologically they couldn’t manage as well and morning sickness felt worse than it was.

It took doctors 8 attempts to take blood and get me drip due to being dehydrated. Every time my veins collapsed. It was so painful!

When I went back from that doctor appointment I felt so bad, I felt that it was me that was wrong and couldn’t cope. The following day I was so bad that I lay down with a pillow in the bathroom so I didn’t have to move when I had to throw up. When my husband came home he took me straight to A&E who admitted me straight away to get medication and fluids. First at this point did I learn about Hyperemesis Gravidarum. Even then, it wasn’t treated proper at doctors etc. More than once I was made to feel bad that I had to take medication for the sickness… But first pregnancy was the easy one. I had one hospital admission…

Second pregnancy, was a total different ball game. I have been admitted 6 times… at week 38 I’m still on 3 types of medication, and still throwing up multiple times a day. Last night, I was up at 1am throwing up, 2:37, 3:16 and a further 3 times… But at least I was able to request medication and treatment from the beginning of the pregnancy… I still ended up in A&E twice due to my doctor surgery refusing to give me medication.

What NOT to tell a woman suffering from Hyperemesis Gravidarum

       Have you tried, Ginger, sea bands, Lemonade, herbal supplements, thinking about something else, small meals etc….

I can tell you that when someone has thrown up every day for weeks and months then they have tried everything… believe nobody would ever want to have their heads down in a toilet for 9 months!!!


       You should just eat small meals

No, you just don’t get it… I can’t eat anything, small or big… everything is horrible!

       It’s just mind over matter

This is probably the worst you can suggest to someone with HG, because it indicates that there is something wrong with the person who is suffering, and HG isn’t real. Believe me it is very real… You wouldn’t tell a person with a broken arm to just ignore it, so why would you tell someone with HG that it is not real?


       Just remember that if you are sick your baby is healthy…

This is not true, with extreme sickness HG both mummy and baby are at risk of losing their lives. Especially when not correctly treated.

       You should not take medication whilst pregnant it is dangerous for the baby.

When a woman is pregnant she would always want to do the best for her baby, and believe me there is more than enough guilt associated with not being able to eat and being so sick. I can tell you, had it not been for the medication, neither, Toddler “Blip”, Baby “Flipper” and I would not be alive…

       Oh, I had that, but I had to go to work…

Well in that case, you definitely did not suffer the same form of HG as me, I couldn’t even get out of bed!

       Have you tried Ginger… Just stop


       You are so lucky to not gain weight
No I’m not.

       Just be grateful you are pregnant; many women can’t become pregnant.

 

If you think you suffer from Hyperemesis Gravidarum and you are in the UK then please contact PSS. https://www.pregnancysicknesssupport.org.uk/ They are amazing and will support you to get the right treatment!!

 

The pictures are borrowed from PSS with permission. 

Please do not suffer in silence, and raise awareness where possible x

Condiments, New Recipes

Using up Leftover Cream – To Make Homemade Garlic Butter (£1.79 for 250g of Garlic butter)

Lately, because the husband is doing this low carb diet, we seem to always be buying double cream. Apparently, on Atkins and Keto diets, cream is good for you? Help you lose weight… problem is that we quite often end up with some we can’t use before it runs out of date.

The other week, I needed 200 ml of double cream for a quiche, when I went to the local Co-op shop 600ml was reduced to £1.19 but 300ml was £1.39. Now, I know that we may just about have got through the 300 ml, but I wasn’t sure. Therefore, I purchased the 600ml cream to the lower price. But what to do with the remaining 400ml, I really didn’t want to waste it.

Looking in our fridge I had parsley that needed to be used up and I also had garlic in my cupboard, so I thought why not try and make homemade garlic butter? You could just make normal butter, but that wasn’t what I fancied. So therefore I decided to try this new adventure. homemade butter… And it turned out lovely, even though, it was a bit messy as I used a tiny bowl and my hand mixer started to throw butter everywhere in the end… so word of advice… use a bigger bowl!!


When the garlic butter was made I froze it and before totally set I cut it into slices, so whenever we need it we can take a slice out.


I’m always looking for ways of cutting out food waste as I think it’s a bit of a crime, there are people out there who can’t afford food for themselves or their kids.

I also think making butter would be a good project for kids when they are around 4-5 so they understand where food comes from and how it’s made. It’s such an interesting process to watch!

I must admit though that I can’t see myself making butter if it wasn’t because I had leftover double cream or found some really reduced in the super market. But to buy a full 600ml just for this, I probably wouldn’t, then I would just buy a basic butter and mix it with garlic and herbs and make that into the garlic butter.

If you purchased all the ingredients, just with the goal of making the butter then it would cost you £1.79 for 250gram.. However, because I grow my own parsley and the cream I was using was reduced, I only paid £1.03 for the garlic butter. But this would be an unfair price to put up.. as someone else may not find the reduced cream or grow their own parsley etc..

Homemade garlic butter

Now you absolutely do not need to stick to these measurements as if you have more/less cream use that.. just remember that the volume of cream becomes much less as you lose a lot of liquid making it into butter.

Ingredients:

400ml double cream
Pinch of Sea Salt
4 large garlic cloves
A bunch of parsley

Method:

  1. Place the cream in a large bowl, use a hand mixer and mix on high and keep mixing until the cream starts splitting. You will now see a lot of liquid coming out of the cream. Poor the excess liquid out of the bowl. Now you continue mixing for a bit longer, then when you don’t think more liquid is coming out of the mixture, put the butter into a colander and squeeze it, either with your CLEAN washed hands or put it in a muslin cloth and squeeze excess liquid out.
  2. Finely chop the garlic and the parsley, then add it to the butter together with a good pinch of Sea salt. Make sure it is very well mixed together.
  3. Taste the mixture, does it need more salt, parsley or garlic. If not put the mixture in baking paper or cling film and form to a sausage/square and freeze.
  4. Before the mixture is fully set take it out of the freezer and slice it. That way you can take out slices of garlic butter as you need it. It is delicious.


For this recipe, you could choose and change it as you like, really, it could be plain unsalted butter, salted butter, or you could have garlic and chilli butter. Whatever your imagination says would be nice.

Bon appetite – as my granddad would have said

Costings:

These has been based on Tesco’s prices and the basic products where possible (Correct as per July 2017).

Double cream £1.07
Sea Salt 10p
Garlic 12p
A bunch of parsley 50p

Total price: £1.79 for 250g.

In Tesco if you bought ready made garlic butter you would pay £2.50 for 250g so still a saving 

 

 

 

New Recipes

Panacotta :-) mmmm

My husband loves Panacotta, especially one from the Co-op with chai flavour. However it is rather expensive £3.50 for two small pots! So I decided to make them myself today as a treat for the husband before he goes to China. 

I also cooked a lovely Nandos inspired meal. Mmm 

  
Baby blip was not too happy to let mommy cook, but wanted to be carried. Really hope the teething soon stops!

Panacotta recipe 
(Makes 6)

It’s super easy

Ingredients

250ml milk 

250 ml double cream

25 g sugar

3 gelatine leafs

(Vanilla, or teabags or whatever flavour you desire)

Method:

Soak leafs in cold water
Add milk, cream and sugar to saucepan together with flavour. I added flavour with 2 earl grey teabags. Bring to a simmer (don’t let it burn). 
Take out the teabags or vanilla pods etc. 
Take of heat
Squeeze water out of gelatine letters. 
Add to milk mixture and mix it together. When mixed well (gelatine de solves) add to ramekins or glasses. 
Leave in fridge to set min one hour I would say longer.
Now turn onto plates, I’m lazy leaves them in glass 
Put decorations on 

And eat!

  

New Recipes

Colombian frijoles- a cheap stable in our house

As my husband is Colombian and I’m Danish, we both crave different things at times. But certain things has become a stable in our house and one of these are Frijoles (kidney beans with rice). There are many different ways of cooking this. This is our way

Frijoles – serves 4 best served with rice, fried plantain and egg

1 tin kidney beans
1 small onion
3 springonions
2 medium sized potatoes, diced
4 garlic cloves
200 g bacon finely chopped
1 tbsp veg oil
1 tbsp cumin
1 tsp paprika
1 tsp coriander powder
1/2 tsp oregano
350 ml water
1 chicken stock cube
Salt & pepper to taste
Small handful Coriander
1. Finely dice onion, garlic and spring onion
2. Cut potatoes to dices (1 cm)
3. Cut bacon fine
4. In a pot add oil, firstly finely fry the bacon, the add the onion, garlic and spring onions cook for 5 min on low heat. Now add all spices (except salt and pepper) add chicken stock, kidney beans and potatoes. Cook until kidney beans and potatoes is done. Add salt/pepper to taste
5. Serve with coriander on top and rice on side. A fried egg and ripe plantain is really nice