Meal Planner (archive)

Week starting 11th July


Feels like the posting of the meal planner gets later every week, but then again I am posting it so maybe I should focus on the positive. And never fear, we have been eating something, they don’t let me get away with half hearted attempts. These people are hungry goddamnit.

On Monday we had our usual winner dinner pasta pesto as I was off in the big smoke and I always try to keep Mondays easy in any case as life is hard enough. I (and when I say I I mean my husband) just whizz up a big bunch of basil with a handful of pine nuts toasted in a dry pan, about 50g of parmesan and a few good glugs of olive oil, mix with your cooked pasta and you’ve got a tasty 10 minute meal.


Yesterday was a repeat of a hit from a couple of weeks ago, egg fried rice with prawns and spring greens.


The egg fried rice is very simple (especially as I cheat with microwave wholemeal basmati rice). Fry the rice up with some garlic and ginger for 5 minutes or so, add peas and 30ml of soy sauce and then add 2 eggs continually stirring. I served with prawns fried in a bit of butter and cumin and spring greens. Very yummy, feels pretty healthy and is exceptionally quick.

Tonight is going to be one that we were supposed to have last week – easy summer fish pie from this month’s BBC Good Food magazine. I think the easiness is that there’s no white sauce, instead it’s a mix of cooked prawns, hot smoked salmon and creme fraiche. The potatoes are meant to be crushed but I think I may mash them given the audience. I’m dubious about how this will go down so cross your fingers for me.

On Thursday we are having quesadillas, another banker, with cheese and ham/chorizo for the kids and a more grown up version for the adults. Another recipe from this month’s BBC Good Food, sweet potato and shallots which involves cooking a couple of sweet potatoes in the microwave for 10 mins till soft, cooking up the shallots in a pan for 5 mins and using the mixture as a filling with some grated cheese. Watch this space.

On Friday yet another BBC Good Food recipe, chicken gyros, find the recipe here.

My husband saw this one while browsing through the magazine and suggested it for the meal planner (a rare occurrence he usually stays well out of it). It’s chicken (they use thighs, I’ll use breast) marinated in olive oil, oregano, mint, cumin, coriander, paprika, cinnamon and lemon. Served in homemade pitta wraps and tzatziki.

He rightly pointed out that I used to make wraps quite frequently but I think he may be forgetting that this was primarily during maternity leave when I had slightly more time but it’s Friday so I’ll give it a go.

Saturday is a day off to eat cake – I’m helping with manning the cake stall at the school fair as well as contributing to the wares – and then on Sunday we’re going to have toad in the hole because let’s face it, who doesn’t like toad in the hole. If you don’t, I’m not sure we can be friends.

Have a great week!


Meal Planner (Archive)

Week starting 4th July


Switching to a tennis theme this week as a distraction from the misery that was the football last week, hopefully we’ve got a better chance with Andy (although that’s probably him scuppered right there).

I’m late to the meal planner once again so reporting on meals we’ve already eaten including yesterday’s chicken with confetti couscous which was a recipe from Annabel Karmel’s Complete Baby and Toddler Meal Planner. Not one I’ve had out for a while but I remembered there’s some good family stuff in there so had a browse. It’s a simple couscous recipe which involves making up the couscous with some vegetable stock and adding diced uncooked veg including carrot, pepper and spring onion plus pine nuts and raisins (although I didn’t add the raisins as I don’t like them…) Served up with some grilled chicken it was a good start to a week when I’m feeling a bit lardy. Max loved it, Edie kept on trying it, whilst spitting out every other mouthful.

Tonight we had sea bass pan fried with diced chorizo, served with jersey royals, corn on the cob and asparagus. It’s one of my favourites but I have to persuade the kids to try the sea bass these days. They’re allowed to get away with one mouthful and then they focus on devouring sausage and corn.


Tomorrow we’re having a very basic quorn bolognese recipe and on Thursday it’s even more basic than that with jacket potatoes, beans and cheese. I bloody love jacket potatoes with beans and cheese though I have to admit.

On Friday it’s a bit oo la la Clearly it’s basically burgers and chips as Max is having friends over but it’s a posh version from this month’s copy of BBC Good Food so it’s a winner for us too. Find it here:

And finally, finishing the week with another BBC Good Food recipe, easy summer fish pie, because clearly it’s just too scorchio for normal fish pie right now… The new version doesn’t seem to be on the site as yet but there’s another summer fish pie here:

Sunday is obviously Wimbledon final day so we’ll mostly be trying to palm off children, eat scones and lie down.

Have a great week!


Meal Planner (archive)

Week starting 27th June


I’ve taken a break from our meal planner over the last few weeks, blame work (mostly), plus the unbelievable stress that is organising a kid’s party and various other things that came my way. I am finally feeling almost back to normal and back to full meal planning capability. Fear not, we have been eating in the meantime, I didn’t let standards slip that badly, but there were definitely some fish fingers and takeaways in there somewhere…

This week we kicked off with pasta primavera – a very simple veggie dish for a midweek meal.


Cook some nice seasonal veg in some oil or butter for 5 mins (I used asparagus, green beans and peas), add around 100g cream cheese and a handful of parmesan then finally loosen up to the desired consistency with some of the cooking water from the pasta. Hey presto, 10 minute meal that they all enjoyed. Well I say that, Edie ate half, then pushed it away saying “I don’t like it” but given it took her half of the meal to make that decision I’m ok with that.

Tomorrow is a recipe from John Torode’s book for egg fried rice – I have featured it in previous meal planners and I do think it’s a good one but clearly there are lots of egg fried rice recipes out there. I’m adding some prawns for our fish day because they are the one seafood they never turn their noses up at.

On Wednesday we’re celebrating Max’s practice day in year one (year one! How did this happen??!!) with some chicken fajitas. I’ve got into the habit of making my own spice mix and salsa these days which sounds highly wanky but both things are very quick and I actually really prefer them. I use this spice mix from BBC Good Food.

On Thursday we’re having veggie curry with naan bread – I haven’t quite decided exactly what this is going to be yet (ok I’m not quite up to full speed maybe) but we usually use an Ella’s kitchen recipe which is a mild coconut milk based curry they seem to like.

On Friday we’re going to have shop bought (gasp) fish cakes with homemade (thank goodness) fries – normal and sweet, because it’s Friday and my nan always said fish on a Friday.

Then a day off for partying (the five year old way) and a roast dinner to finish the week because we haven’t had one in an age and I think they would actually live on Yorkshire puddings.

Have a great week!


p.s. Ignoring the political events of the last few days and supporting my team regardless of current feelings around nationality/nationalism!