Dessert Uncategorized

Chocolate Ice Cream

Heat 300ml double cream, 200ml milk, 3 tablespoons of sugar, 100g dark chocolate and a pinch of salt in a pan, without boiling, until the chocolate melts.

Seperate 3 eggs and whisk the yolks together before pouring over the liquid.

Refrigerate for up to 24 hours before finishing in an ice-cream maker.

Chocolate Ice Cream
Beef Rice

Stir Fry Korean Beef

This was a first time try recipe from the BBC Good Food website and was delicious. Didn’t change anything frmo the recipe and served it with green vegetables and steamed white rice.

Stir Fry Korean Beef
Casserole Lamb

Lamb Ragout

Brown 350g of diced lamb in olive oil along with 125g of bacon lardons. Remove the meat frm the pan.

Add 1 finely chopped onion, 2 finely chopped celery sticks and 2 finely chopped carrots to the pan and fry until the onion turns transparent.

return the meat to the pan and add a teaspoon of nutmeg and a cup of chopped olives.

Tip in a tin of chopped tomatoes, a cup of red wine and a cup of vegetable stock. Put a lid on the pan, bring to the boil them immediately turn down to a very gentle simmer. Remove the lid of the pan so the liquid gently reduces as it simmers.

Lamb Ragout

We served it with green vegetables and fondant potatoes.

Lamb Ragout
Lamb Ragout
Mince Pasta Pork Uncategorized

Spaghetti Bolognaise

Our version. I make no promises to the authenticity and apologise in advance to our Italian friends.

Fry 2 finely chopped onions with a teaspoon of minced garlic in olive oil until the onions start to turn transparent.

Add 300g of pork mince and 100g of bacon lardons to the pan and fry until the meat is browned.

Add 8 tomatoes (quartered but with the skin on) to the pan along with a large cup full or chopped fresh parsley and a bunch of chopped fresh basil and oregano.

Add a table spoon of tomato puree then stir through 500ml of vegetable stock.

Bring to the boil then turn down to a very light simmer and leave for 2 hours.

About 45 minutes before you want to eat, turn the heat up and remove the lid on the pan to boil off excess liquid to leave a nice, rich meaty sauce.

We serve with wholewheat pasta and grated cheese. One of our family favourites and a simply go-to recipe.


Pork & Apple Pie

Finely chop a large onion and fry, in olive oil in a saucepan until they start to turn clear. Add 3-400g of diced porka nd 125g of bacon lardons to the pan and brown the meat.

Core the apple then cut into bite-size segments. We use an apple slicer. Don’t bother to peel the apple. Add this to the pan along with a chopped celery stick, a teaspoon each of English mustard, whole0grain mustard and mustard powder. Add a tin of chopped tomatoes and a can of sweet cider.

Put the lid on the pan, bring to the boil then turn down and simmer lightly for 2 hours.

For a final 2o minutes, turn the heat up and reduce the liquid to a nice consistency.

Transfer to a casserole and allow to cool slightly before adding a puff pastry top and plaving an the oven at 180 celsius. cook until the top is a golden colour.

We serve with green vegetables and chips which we cook in an Air Fryer. When we put the pie in the oven we heat up the fryer and cook the chips in 3 to 4 10 minute bursts.

Soup Vegetarian

Minestrone Soup

Another recipe which comes with an apology to my Italian friends!

Lightly fry a finely chopped onion in olive oil and add 2 carrots and 1 celery stick (both finely chopped).

Continue to fry for about 10 minutes.

Pour in 500ml of vegetable stock then pour in one cup of frozen peas and 1 cup of frozen baby broad beans.

Stir in 1 tin of chopped tomatoes and a handful of chopped basil.

Simmer for 1 hour.

We had some wholewheat spaghetti left from Bolognaise earlier in the week so, before serving, we stirred that through the soup. Otherwise cook the spaghetti fresh. Cook enough pasta for a large serving for 1 person.

We had the soup with garlic and herb bread and cheesy-bloomer.

Minestrone Soup
Potatoes Uncategorized

Fondant Potatoes

This was a wonderful dicovery on the BBC website.

Fondant Potatoes
Breakfast Uncategorized

Eggs Florentine

Warm Aberdeen Butter Cakes in the oven while making Hollandaise Sauce (we use a packet to which we add 300ml of milk – no shame in making things easier).

Spread Philadelphia cheese on the butter cakes they layer on 2 basil leaves and a handful of spinach leaves.

Poach two eggs (we use Poaching Pods from Lakeland – they are amazing) and pour over the Hollandaise. Enjoy!

Eggs Florentine

W/B 24thAugust 2020

Monday August 24th

Up for the start of another school week for the girls and another week where neither “S” nor I are back in work. Today is the day I should be flying out to Madrid but I’m not. 2 week quarantine if I choose to come home or if anyone comes to visit me makes it impossible for me to contemplate. I have another posisbility which I hope will come through this week otherwise I might have to revise my decision and look to head out nonetheless. I simply can’t contemplate the idea of living away from the family.

The crank arm on my bike has gone so I took a trip to Halfords for another. Quite a result, really, they didn’t have a new one in stock but they did have a used one in their workshop which I got for free. The bike is now working again but it’s late in the day so I’ll go out tomorrow.

This afternoon “S” made this week’s pudding (Marlborough Pie) which is absolutely delicious. It’s a recipe we got from the BBC History magazine and while it’s a bit of a faff it tastes delicious.

Before that I made some bread. Not our most successful loaf. We’re using wholemeal flour and it hasn’t risen nearly as well. It tastes good and is still a good texture it’s just not fill up in the tin and risen to a proper shape. Possibly need more yeast for wholemeal bread or start to do a 50/50 with white flour.

The third food prep we made today was chocolate icecream.

It was quite a pleasant walk this afternoon.

Dinner was Fresh Green Openm Lasagne. This is an Independent recipe and was absolutely gorgeous. Highly recommend it. Since it is Meat free Monday it is, of course, vegetarian but it uses soft goats cheese so it’s not vegan.

This evening we watched Ender’s Game. This is a really entertaining film. Considering the average age of the cast the actors do not come across as pretentious nor do you tire of watching them perform. It’s thoroughly entertaining and surprisingly well acted. Well worth a watch.

Tuesday August 25th.

Storm Francis has arrived! So much for going out on my bike today. I even relented and drove the girls to school! It is a miserable day.

When I got back from the school run I cleaned the kitchen so we’re all sparkly clean and fresh smelling in here again now. Not that it was unclean but it needed a decent wipe down.

So, this week is gong to be a nbit disjointed as I stopped trying to write daily and have left it to the weekend. Not sure how this is going to develkop over the coming weeks. During the lockdown I was writing every day – mostly about absolutely nothing and simply reporting on the weather or wildlife on the daily walk, the games we played in the afternoon, the meals we made and the films we watched in the evening. Now things are getting back to normal that isn’t going to work so I’ll try and reflact on the week past each weekend.

Obviously, the daily afternoon ‘Game Time’ has ended now the girls are back at school. I think this was rteally impoortant to keeping us going as a family unit during the lockdown. So much so, that we did play games on Saturday and Sunday afternoonsThe evening Film Club has to change too. We were adding our suggestions to a jar and drawing them to watch each evening. A film is often too long to watch on a school night so we’ve been watching Life on Mars and the ‘lost’ Dad’s Army episodes that they’ve re-recorded. These are episodes which the BBC wiped after broadcast and which have been re-filmed using the original script. Once you get overe the initial jar of the wrong people playing the parts, they’ve been really good. It’s strange because we are all fans of the recent Dad’s Army film and didn’t have a problem with the different actors in that. I think it’s to do with the writing. The scripts for these episodes will have been written for the original cast so will play on the spacific way those actors played them. So seeing someone else read the lines becomes somthing of a characature. Anyway, we enjoyed them. And have really liked watching Life on Mars again (or first time for the girls).

The dog walk has seen some variation in the weather this week. Tuesday was vile and we’ve had rain some of most every day but I’ve generally been lucky when it came to dog walking time and got out dry. It has turned cold though, back to having to wear a hoodie when I go out instead of being out in shirt-sleeves.

Tuesday August 25th
Wednesday August 26th
Thursday August 27th
Friday August 28th
Saturday August 29th
Saturday August 29th
Cormorant on the Forth

We took “E”s bike to Halford’s for a service inspectipon and, as expected, it needed a lot doing to it. She’s had it a good few years and we had nowhere to keep it out of the weather in Romania and are in the same position here. Since she’s only just started using it regularly it’s in urgent need of some TLC. The total estimate was around 180 to 200 so it seemed more cost effective to look at a new bike for her. This is now on order and should be here by September 7th. I’ve also had a look over her current bike and made some running repairs so it should last her, safely, for the next 2 weeks. I need to take mine in too at some point. I suspect miine will be about the same to repair but mine will be worth spending the money on as it is decent bike which I need to start looking after if I’m going to keep using it so much. I’me anjoying living somewhere where it is so easy to get out and about on it. My plan, once I’m back at work, is to cycle/train to work so I am using it every day. Hopefully I’ll be able to keep that enthusiasm up through the dark winter months! All being well, I should be working again in the next few days (or week at most). I chose to walk away from the leadership job in Madrid on a strong chance of a teaching job in Perth. The thought of being away from the family was too much tpo contemplate. I can see some benefit to me being back in the classroom. If we are wanting to be settled back here in Scotland I need to upskill myself on Curriculum for Excellence. Currently, I have extensive management experience but no curriculum experience so I am ineligible for any leadership roles withinthe State sector. If I can gain that experience over a year then I can start looking at leadership possibilities within the Scottish state sector. We’ll see how this works out – at least it is a plan which doesn’t involve me having to be away on my own. Right now I’m simply waiting on my PVG report being returned to Perth & Kinross council before I can start.

Cycling 3 days a week at the moment is keeping my Virtual Mission on target. I’ve been going for 2 weeks on this now and have covered 10% of the distance from Land’s End to John O’Groats. I’m quite pleased with that!

Dessert Pies

Marlborough Pie

Just occasionally we stumble across wonderful recipes in the most unusual places. This is one of those. It’s a delicious take on an apple pie from the BBC History magazine. It’s a bit of a faff to make but well worth the effort.