Run out of ideas for dinner? Kids hate eating everything? Well unfortunately they’ll probably hate these meals too but at least they might add a little variety to the food you throw away every night. Most of these are my own concoctions but some are just ideas for those moments when you just cant think of what to cook! Good luck brave feeder. May your children eat vegetables.
As a student, I always used to love adding marscapone cheese to pasta because it was easy and tasty. so the other day I saw it on the shelf in Sainsburys and wondered why on earth I hadn’t used it in kids meals! Marscapone cheese is pretty calorific but currently Izzy is barely eating anything, Sam’s a beanpole and Maisie wont eat it anyway, so calories are just fine as far as I’m concerned.
A splash of vegetable oil
4 heaped desert spoons of Marscapone cheese
A hefty splash of semi skimmed milk
A handful per child of the kids favorite pasta shapes.
Approx 15 fennel seeds crushed
A meat of your choice (we used ham tonight, but chicken works really well too)
A green veg of your choice (we used broccoli but peas work well too)
Half a crushed garlic clove (that was in a portion for 3 kids)
Heat the oil on a medium heat. Put your pasta on to boil. If you’re using raw meat then brown the meat, if you’re using a cooked meat then add the broccoli first to soften it and then add the meat. When the meat is cooked and the veg is soft then add the marscapone and stir. When the marscapone has melted down then add the crushed garlic and fennel seeds (fennel not compulsory if you havent got it!) and stir. Add enough milk so that the mixture is a good saucey consistency. When the pasta has boiled just add the pasta to the mixture and serve.
The only trouble with this meal is that it’s incredibly tempting for the hungry mummys who are doing the cooking… left-over snack alert!!!
Easy, Yummy Banana and Chocolate Chip Muffins
I got the basics of this recipe from another blogger http://chuckandtaz.wordpress.com/2012/09/13/my-current-favourite-banana-cake-recipe/ but have “translated” it from American cup measurements to grams.
3 large mashed bananas
200g of dark brown soft sugar
60g butter (preferably soft and at room temperature so the mixture doesn’t curdle)
190g of self raising flour
2 tbls semi skimmed milk
1 egg (preferably at room temperature)
Half teaspoon of vanilla extract (small end of a Calpol spoon!)
50g chocolate chips
Method (italics – copied and pasted from http://chuckandtaz.wordpress.com/)
Preheat oven to 180 degrees. Cream butter and sugar until light and fluffy. Add egg and beat until well combined. Add the rest, about half at a time and slowly mix or fold until just combined.
Pour the mix into muffin cases and cook for about 25-30 minutes,it said 15 mins on the original recipe but mine took loads longer. If you put the mix into a loaf tin instead then it could take between 40-50 minutes. Just occasionally check with a skewer to make sure the mixture inside is cooked.
Christmas Turkey Pesto Surprise
Ok, I don’t want to torture you with anticipation so, the surprise is cream! We should all have the following in the fridge and larder as its Boxing Day;
Pesto (come on, surely you have some pesto?!)
Pasta shapes (whatever shapes you fancy)
Single Cream (probably left over from Christmas Day because everyone went for the brandy cream instead.)
Bit of oil.
Put pasta on to boil
Re-heat the turkey in the frying pan with a little oil
Add a heaped teaspoon of pesto to the turkey.
Pour in some cream when you have 4 more mins left on your pasta, so that the consistency is a good sauce-like consistency (I know, I’m a very technical chef).
When pasta is boiled just mix in with the turkey sauce.
Easy Peasy Biscuits
I was on the hunt the other day for a very simple biscuit recipe with as few ingredients as possible and this is the one we decided to try and the results were pretty good. I got it from http://www.thecakerecipe.co.uk/easy-biscuit-recipe/ which has loads of good cake recipes on it. I also liked it as it contained less butter than lots of others I looked at. I actually adapted it a bit from the original and my version of the ingredients is below.
6oz (150g) plain flour
4oz (100g) butter
2oz (50g) sugar
1 desert spoon of vanilla extract.
Method (copied and pasted from the site with my changes in italics)
Pre-heat oven to 180°C/ 350°F/ Gas Mark 4
Sift the plain flour into a large mixing bowl and add the sugar (I don’t bother sifting)
Rub in the butter and bring mixture together
Add the vanilla extract (I found that the mixture was a bit too crumbly without it.)
Roll out to 1/4″ (6mm) thickness
Cut using a biscuit cutter
Place biscuits (using a palette knife) onto 2 or 3 lightly greased baking trays
Bake for about 15 minutes or until golden brown (I did it for 10 mins but we have a fan oven which tends to be hotter)
Don’t worry if it seems like the mixture is a bit crumbly as long as you can roll it and it sticks it’ll be fine and the end result is super tasty!
Honey chicken, doesn’t actually have any honey in it but has golden syrup in instead. I call it honey chicken because my kids like honey and will assume it’s tasty. If you find this morally objectionable then feel free to call it “golden syrup chicken” instead! This should only take about 12 minutes, depending on how long your rice takes to cook.
So here’s what you’ll need:
Toasted sesame oil (just a splash)
Sunflower oil ( an even smaller splash to stop the sesame oil from burning)
A breast of chicken (this seems fine for my 3 kids)
Rice (enough for however many kids you have!)
So, firstly, put your rice on to boil. Then warm the oil and add the chicken which should be diced into small squares. When the chicken has browned then add the sweetcorn and the broccoli until they are soft. When they’re all cooked, squeeze some golden syrup over the food and stir. I don’t add much but do it to taste. When the rice has cooked then add the chicken to the rice and stir.
“Is that it?”‘ I hear you cry! Yes it freaking well is, ha!
SALMON PASTA BAKE
250 grms smoked salmon slices
A good swig of semi skimmed milk
A healthy chunk of butter
Some plain flour
Any shaped pasta
Put some pasta on to boil. Pre heat oven to 180 degrees. Place the smoked salmon into a frying pan and pour over enough milk to make a sauce with. Broil the salmon until cooked and then pour the milk out through a sieve into a pan so you catch all the flakes of salmon. Put the salmon to one side and pour the milk into a jug. Take the pan and melt down a chunk of butter and sieve some plain flour into it once it’s melted. Stir until the mixture is smooth and still a bit runny. Then add the milk over a medium heat and stir until you have a good consistency of sauce. At this point you can add some peas or broccoli and then add the salmon and stir it all in. If the pasta is done then add it to the mixture and then put into an oven proof dish. Grate some cheese onto the top and you can even sprinkle some breadcrumbs on top too if you’re feeling crazy. Then just pop into the oven for about 20-25 minutes. This is also good without the bake angle, this also makes it 25 minutes quicker!
Lusharoony, as my daughter would say (on a good day where she hasn’t suddenly decided she hates salmon, cheese, pasta or peas.)
Bang bang Pig/Chicken
One pork medalian per child/two chicken mini fillets per child
5 or 6 breadsticks or three handfulls of cornflakes
One egg yolk
Splash of sunflower oil
This can be done with a tomato sauce and pasta or with chips/mash and veg. It’s quite fun to do with the kids if they enjoy getting involved. I try to keep them out of it if possible as I’m a control freak and have to shudder through their participation with a fixed grin and a strong gin.
Firstly crush your breadsticks or cornflakes until they’re the consistency of breadcrumbs. Lay out your pork medalians or chicken breasts on a flat surface and bash with the end of a rolling pin until flat, (kids love that bit). Once flat brush over egg yolk on both sides and sprinkle the breadcrumbs on both sides. Then just put a little splash of oil on a per-heated griddle and fry on about 4 mins each side until cooked through and brownish on the outside. Easy von peasy.