Thursday, May 31, 2012

May Roundup

  • 31st: Homemade pizza
  • 30th: Greek Island salad with chicken and avocado
  • 29th: Vegetable Stir-Fry with Cashews
  • 28th: Bacon and Squash Pasta
  • 27th: Sausages, Asparagus, Potatoes
  • 26th: Asparagus and Goat Cheese Quiche
  • 25th: Salad Selection
  • 24th: New potato and green bean salad, Stuffed Courgettes, Bread
  • 23rd: Stir fried cauliflower with black bean sauce
  • 22nd: Spinach and nutmeg soup, bread
  • 21st: Filled pasta bake
  • 20th: Slow braised pork shoulder with cider and creme fraiche, asparagus, mash
  • 19th: Italian Bean and Parsnip Stew
  • 18th: Chorizo, olive and rocket penne
  • 17th: Yogurt and Almond Chicken Curry
  • 16th: Chili con Carne (leftovers from freezer)
  • 15th: Beef Bourginon (leftovers from freezer)
  • 14th: Ham and Tomato Stromboli
  • 13th: Mu Shu Pork (Meat & Veg Pancakes)
  • 12th: Mushroom and Sausage Pasta, salad
  • 11th: Honey and Soy Salmon Skewers, Rice, Courgettes
  • 10th: Curried Lentil and Veg Stew
  • 9th: Creamy Swedish Meatballs, mash
  • 8th: Pasta with pancetta, chili and lemon
  • 7th: Harissa chicken with peppers and feta
  • 6th: Artichoke Gratin, tomato salad
  • 5th: Spaghetti Bolognese (Geoff cooking)
  • 4th: Beef Paprikash
  • 3rd: Macaroni Cheese
  • 2nd: Sausages, curly fries, peas (Geoff cooking)
  • 1st: Spicy Parsnip Soup with Cumin Bread

May 31st: Homemade pizza

Alex had a friend around to play after school today, and I have a yoga class every Thursday evening, so homemade pizzas are a nice choice - the kids can choose what they want on theirs (as can the adults, for that matter) and I can leave my dough until I get home and make my pizza then. I do the dough in the bread machine and then we just add toppings as we fancy. It's always a casual kind of dinner, as I can't cook everyone's pizza at once, so we just eat in little groups...

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

May 30th: Greek Island salad with chicken and avocado

Recipe Source: Good Food Magazine.

notes: we've had this one before - it's a summer standard, as we all like it. Usually I use chicken breast, which I poach a little in advance, rather than roast chicken, but I'm sure roast would work as well. 

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Monday, May 28, 2012

May 28th: Bacon and pumpkin pasta

Source: Good Food Magazine

Notes:  We've had this lots of times in the past, using various combinations of pumpkin, butternut squash, sweet potato and regular potato. This time, it was sweet potato, because that's what I had that wanted using up.  And it was not penne, but another pasta. Doesn't much matter, though.  Forgot to take a photo, but it looks a lot like what's in the recipe photo.  I guess I was so excited to be able to eat outside AGAIN that I wasn't thinking of blogging...

Saturday, May 26, 2012

May 26th: Asparagus and goat cheese quiche

Recipe source/notes: none, really. I saw a "goat's cheese and courgette tart", which looked good, but I didn't want courgettes to be the main ingredient in something twice in a week and anyway, it's asparagus season, so we take advantage of it while it lasts, so I just pinched the idea of using goat's cheese, which worked brilliantly. Essentially, it's a pie crust, four eggs, about 300ml whipping cream, asparagus and some soft goat cheese. Not quite a low fat meal, but we had it with lots of salad, which makes it all better, right?

Claremont Landscape Gardens, Esher

A gorgeous, sunny day, on a weekend must needs mean a day out - or part of a day. We had to pop down to Garson's Farm in Esher anyway, because we needed some asparagus and the picking season is short, but as Claremont Gardens is across the road from Garson's  - almost literally - and as we are National Trust Members this year, so it's "free" (i.e. we have already paid!) we couldn't resist.

Azaleas were in bloom.

Moorhens were displaying their chicks.

Children were climbing trees (the other child isn't beyond tree-climbing, but she didn't come with us).

Views were viewed.

More azaleas were blooming.

Trees were standing tall and proud in the blazing (yes, I do still live in England - it's odd, I know) sunshine.

(Here's the opposing view to the previous one.)

And of course, the most onerous part of being a National Trust Member - all those teashops to be visited and cakes to be quality-controlled...

Friday, May 25, 2012

May 25th: Salad Selection

notes: There were three salads for tonight's dinner, plus the leftover potato and green bean salad from yesterday. The new ones were a butternut squash salad with soy balsamic dressing, a spicy cucumber salad and a Greek salad (essentially cucumber, tomato, feta, olives). The squash salad I've made before; it's incredibly yummy. The cucumber one is new, but tasty.  Also, you can see some homemade (bread machine) bread. A nice supper on a warm summerish day!

Recipe sources: both from Good Food.

Thursday, May 24, 2012

May 24th: Stuffed Courgettes; New potato and green bean salad

Recipe sources:  The potato salad is from Good Food. Not sure about the courgettes

notes:  We've had the courgettes before; I always add capers.  I couldn't find yellow beans (not surprising perhaps, but seems to be a theme in my week, though they were two different kinds of yellow beans I couldn't find...) so I used green, and runner.  We really loved this salad; we'll be seeing it again this summer for sure.  Used green olives instead of black, as that's what I had.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

May 23rd: Stir-fried Cauliflower with Ginger and Garlic

Recipe Source: The Great Vegetarian Cookbook, Rosamund Richardson

notes:  No yellow bean sauce in Waitrose this week, so did it with black bean sauce and some additional black beans, chopped up. Added some mushrooms I had which wanted using.  We've had this before in various combinations and always enjoy it.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

May 22nd: Spinach and Nutmeg Soup

Recipe Source: New Covent Garden Soup Book

notes: nice. Tasted like spinach.  Forgot to take a photo in a bowl, as we were in a rush to go out to the theatre (An Inspector Calls) after swimming...

Sunday, May 20, 2012

May 20th: Slow braised pork shoulder with cider, creme fraiche and mustard

Recipe source: Olive magazine

notes:  served with mash and freshly picked asparagus (yeah, new asparagus season!) - this was less saucy than we expected, but it tasted lovely. 

Baking day

Olivia and her friend Nina are hosting a session at Guides tomorrow night - they chose the theme Native Americans, and have a number of activities planned, including some food tasting. We can't get completely authentic, but pumpkin pie and cornbread will do, at least enough for guides!

Saturday, May 19, 2012

May 18th: Italian bean and parsnip casserole

Recipe source: Good Food magazine, Christmas issue 2007

notes: this is a nice bean stew and we are always happy to eat it. The parsnips, however, are fantastic. Served with a green salad.

Friday, May 18, 2012

May 18th: Chorizo, olive and rocket penne

Recipe source: Olive magazine

notes: this is one we've had before, though not in a while. Easy and tasty and quick - as usual, my favourite combo.

Thursday, May 17, 2012

May 17th: Yogurt & almond chicken curry

Recipe source: Good Food Magazine

notes: this was delicious, really tender and juicy.  I'm sure it's the cream!  Anyway, we liked it much more than a similar dish we've had before. 


Poor Alex - his Year 4 residential trip was this week - Monday to Wednesday - and the weather was not very good - it rained a lot of the time.  Better than when Olivia went, I guess, as it snowed on them (that was March, rather than May, admittedly). But still. We were hoping for better.  It didn't stop the kids from taking part in activities, of course.  Above, one of Alex's friends is getting ready to go on the zipwire. No photo of Alex doing that, as he took the photos, but same basic principle.

Here he is, in the rain...

Monday, May 14, 2012

May 14th: Ham and Tomato Stromboli

Recipe source; Good Food magazine

notes: I've made this before - this time I curled it up into a circle, but I think it probably works better as a long log as the very centre didn't cook quite enough. Only the very centre, though. The rest was fine and it was still gorgeous.

High Equilibrium

Olivia spent the weekend on a residential trip with school - to Kingswood, which is an activity centre a bit like PGL, where the kids have been before (and Alex went off to today!).  Here she is, climbing up to the top of the high equilibrium, to join her friend Phoebe.  The idea was to make it balance.

Ta da!  They also did a little dancing and whatnot.