Saturday, June 17, 2017

Dinner, 17/6/17: Homemade pizzas

Olivia and I were out today at a university open day (Sarah is in Bulgaria on holiday; Geoff is in Switzerland at a conference), so I wanted something fairly easy for dinner - Alex put the pizza dough on when we were partway home, and it was ready when we got here. After that, it's just a matter of assembly (this one has no tomato sauce, just chili oil, garlic, some meat and cheese) and cooking and then relaxing in the sunshine with your yummy pizza!

Book 60: Crooked Kingdom by Leigh Bardugo

This is the second in a duology (first was Six of Crows) I started a while back. When I picked up the first one, I didn't realise there was another trilogy of books set in the same world, so I went back and read those in the intervening space, to get a better understanding of the world. It's not essential, but I'd recommend the trilogy first if you are going to look into the Grisha world. I really enjoyed all five of these, despite reading them in an odd order. It was an interesting premise for a Fantasy world, and I do think that YA writing is very strong these days - makes me wish I was a YA again - ok, not really. Just makes me wish we had books like this in the days when I was. I love the outcasts and rebels in this pair of books and overall, probably like them better than the Grisha trilogy, which is a bit more serious.

Friday, June 16, 2017

Dinner, 16/6/17: Roasted Cauliflower & Chickpease with harrisa & spinach couscous (

This is a recipe I've cooked a few times before, and each time I've made a few alterations; we really like this variation, so it might stick. I accidentally dumped the couscous into the pan with the harissa onions, because I was talking while cooking, but it worked brilliantly.  Cauliflower is such an underrated vegetable and can be cooked in so many ways. With this one, I also roast the chopped up stems and leaves of the cauliflower and add them to the finished dish.  Vegan if you don't sprinkle the feta on it (if the couscous is vegan).

Wednesday, June 14, 2017

Dinner, 14/6/17: Red Kidney Bean & Green Bean Curry (Hairy Bikers)

The Hairy Bikers' latest cookbook is not only a "diet" book, but also, vegetarian. Some of the stuff looks pretty promising. This was great.

Tuesday, June 13, 2017

Dinner, 13/6/17: Tahini & Honey Chicken and Paprika Potatoes (John Whaite)

This is actually a photo from the last time we had this, as I wasn't home, and Alex forgot to photograph his creation - he cooked. We did the marinade on the chicken the night before, and the rest was easy assemblage on the day. Very nice. And easy!

Monday, June 12, 2017

Dinner, 12/6/17: Pasta with Pesto & Veg

This was a using up leftover bits kind of dinner - the pesto was in the freezer from a previous meal; the broccoli and asparagus were both extra bits from previous dinners. Win-win. 

Sunday, June 11, 2017

Book 59: About Grace by Anthony Doerr

I picked this up because I read and really enjoyed All The Light We Cannot See by the same author. This is his first novel, and although I thought it was a bit of a slow starter, it was actually quite a strong story with a compelling plot and characters. It lacked that special bit of magic that made All The Light... such an amazing story,  but then again, so do 99 per cent of books written. 

Dinner, 11/6/17: Steak, Asparagus, New Potatoes

The steak was on sale, the asparagus was new season, the potatoes were Jersey Royal. What more is there to say?

Saturday, June 10, 2017

Book 58: The Moon-Spinners by Mary Stewart (re-read)

...and here's the last Stewart re-read, at least for the present. I like this one a lot, though not quite as much as my very favourite few. But it's still a nice, satisfying old friend to visit.

Wednesday, June 07, 2017

Book 57: Nine Coaches Waiting by Mary Stewart (re-read)

Whenever I re-read a Mary Stewart, I usually end up reading several of them. This is one I hadn't revisited in a while, so I enjoyed that, though I admit, it's not one of my very favourites.

Tuesday, June 06, 2017

Dinner, 6/6/17: Mexican Bean and Tortilla Bake

Another quick meal - Sarah cooking again tonight to help me out on busy weekdays, as she's a lady of leisure at the moment. 

Monday, June 05, 2017

Book 56: Madam, will you talk by Mary Stewart (re-read)

Mary Stewart is another favourite author I turn to when I want something comforting and not to challenging to my tired brain. This is, possibly, my favourite (though perhaps not; it's hard to be certain). 

Dinner, 5/6/17: Lemon, chicken and artichoke pasta

Quick pasta dish using the leftover chicken from last night's roast.

Sunday, June 04, 2017

Dinner, 4/6/17: Roast Chicken, roast potatoes, carrots, cabbage

Sunday roast. Not that we have one every Sunday by any means, but sometimes we do. Today was one of those times!

Book 55: Dawn's Early Light by Elswyth Thane (re-read)

Read this one a number of times before; it's the first of a series of historical novels, following a group of families through American (and English) history, mostly during times of war. This one is set during the American Revolution. Always enjoyable.

Friday, June 02, 2017

Book 54: The Light Between Oceans, M L Stedman

This is quite well known and popular at the moment, I think - been made into a film, perhaps? It was enjoyable, though I didn't think it was quite as amazing as it has been hyped up to be. Finished it in a tea shop in Exeter, and left it on their community bookcase!

Book 53: The Bargain, Mary Jo Putney

Found this in the bookcase in the hotel we've been staying in, in Exeter. Decided that I needed something relatively mindless to occupy myself while Olivia did some maths revision; my other book was enjoyable, but a little serious for late in the evening. I'm sure I've read this before, though it's not noted down, but Putney is usually fairly reliable among romance authors, so it's not a big deal to read it again.

Thursday, June 01, 2017

May Roundup

What was for DINNER, MAY 2017

  • 31st: Grilled Halloumi with Lentil & Beetroot Salad
  • 30th: Sweet Potato Saag Aloo
  • 29th: Middle Eastern Chicken Flatbreads, Cauliflower Salad
  • 28th: leftovers
  • 27th: BBQ at Jane's
  • 26th: Homemade pizzas
  • 25th: Fend for yourself Thursday
  • 24th: Sausage & Rocket Pasta (Sarah)
  • 23rd: Chinese takeaway
  • 22nd: Fajitas
  • 21st: Hot dogs, chips, salad
  • 20th: Lunch out at Wisley with family
  • 19th: Cauliflower Steaks
  • 18th: Fend for yourself Thursday
  • 17th: Fend for yourself Wednesday (last minute meeting)
  • 16th: Bang Bang Chicken
  • 15th: Broccoli Pesto Pasta
  • 14th: Sausages, oven potatoes, green beans
  • 13th: Ribs, Jacket Potatoes, Asparagus
  • 12th: Asian Steamed Chicken Dumplings
  • 11th: Fend for yourself Thursday
  • 10th: Pasta with tomatoes and black olives (Sarah cooking)
  • 9th: Mac & Cheese with Spinach & Bacon
  • 8th: Courgette & Red Pesto Pizza
  • 7th: Bombay Potato Fritatta
  • 6th: Tacos
  • 5th: Sticky Sesame Chicken, Pak Choi
  • 4th: Fend for yourself Thursday
  • 3rd: Pasta with Rocket & Walnut Pesto
  • 2nd: Asparagus and Potato Chowder
  • 1st: Chicken, Courgette & Potato Tray Bake

Book 52: Three Bedrooms, One Corpse by Charlaine Harris

Third in this series - apparently I have read these before, but again, no memory whatever of this one. It's not a highly memorable story, I suppose, though the author is good - I've read lots of her things before, and the story is enjoyable. Weird! I counted this one as a May read as I read all but a few chapters last night...