12m +, Breakfast, Egg Free, Lunchbox Idea, Nut Free, Savory

Chicken and Apricot Sausages

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  • 12m +
  • Dairy Free
  • Egg Free
  • Nut Free
  • Can be frozen
  • Lunch box idea

Ok these arn’t sausages in the traditional sense but they are super tasty, really easy to make and healthy. Shop brought sausages are high in salt as well as all sorts of other hidden bits so I wanted something to replace them with that The Monster would love, and boy does he love these (to be fair I love them too and stole half his stash…opps)

You can freeze them before or after cooking (I prefer to freeze then cook as they hold more moisture) They work well in place of regular sausages but also go well in a lunchbox, or choped up in a cous cous salad, the possibilities are endless.

Ingredients:

  • 500g boneless chicken thighs (thighs contain more iron than breasts, which is vital for children)
  • 1/2 cup wholemeal breadcrumbs
  • 1 tablespoon dried tarrgon
  • 5 dried apricots (chopped)

 

Method

Pop it all a food processor and blitz until it looks like a mince texture.

Drizzle a little oil in a frying pan and place on a medium heat hob. Flour your work surface and your hands and then just roll the mixture into sausage shapes (how big or small you make them is up to you). Roll each one in a little flour and fry for about 4 minutes each side, until cooked through.

It’s as simple as that.

 

If you want to mix it up, swap all these:

  • Chicken for pork
  • Apricot for Apple
  • Tarragon for sage

 

Enjoy

Em xx

8m +, Egg Free, Lunchbox Idea, Nut Free, Savory, Uncategorized

Minty Lamb and Hummus Pitas

  • 8M +
  • Dairy free
  • Egg free
  • Nut free
  • Can be frozen
  • Lunchbox idea

The Monster is not a massive fan of meat unless it’s in mince form so I try to make sure that I come up with a good variety of recipes that use mince. These Minty Lamb and Hummus Pitas are great for the whole family,  full of flavour, tender and just as good for lunch as they are for dinner . The best bit,  they can be made in around 15 minutes. 

I make them using mini wholemeal pita but you can easily use full sized ones. We can get some really great fresh hummus here (what with it being the Middle East and all) so I tend to buy it in rather than make it but there are loads of simple recipes online if you did want to make your own. 

Tip: if you want to freeze these, it’s best to freeze the lamb patties before cooking,  this helps to prevent them from drying out. 

Ingredients

  • 250g lamb mince
  • 1 teaspoon garlic powder
  • 2 tablespoons finely chopped mint
  • 1/4 of a onion, grated
  • 1 cup hummus
  • Packet of wholemeal pita breads

Method

Heat a frying pan over a medium heat hob (don’t add any oil) in a bowl put the lamb,  garlic powder,  mint and onion and mix thoroughly using your hands.  Take golf ball sized pieces of the mixture and flatten into oval patties. Fry for 5 minutes each side

Slice the pitas down the side to create pockets,  and pop in a good dollop of hummus,  add a lamb Pattie and any extras you want (I love adding tomatoes) and devour. 
Enjoy

Em xx

12m +, Lunchbox Idea, Nut Free, Vegetarian

Sugar-free Banana Bread

  • 12m +
  • Nut free
  • Vegetarian 
  • Can be frozen

The Monster (like most tiny humans) love narnas (or bananas as they are normally known) so we always have them in the house. Every now and then we have a few that go ripe a bit too quickly and those are the weeks I make my sugar-free banana bread. 

You won’t know it is sugar-free,  even my husband likes this cake and I have never admitted it has no sugar, shhhhh! 

It’s super easy to make and is deliciously moist. Just to add the the awesomeness of this cake it freezes really well,  is nut free and healthy making it great for lunchboxes or snacks. It is also really easy to adapt, if you need it diary free you can use coconut oil in place of the butter,  if you need it gluten free replace the regular flour with gluten free flour.

Every now and then I will also add a 1/4 cup of dark chocolate chips, so tasty! 

Ingredients

  • 2 eggs
  • 4 ripe bananas mashed
  • 1/2 cup melted butter 
  • 1/4 cup milk
  • 1 tablespoon of honey or natural maple syrup
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1 cup plain flour
  • 1 cup of wholemeal flour
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon or baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking powder

Method

Pre-heat the oven to 160 degrees. 

In a bowl,  combine all the wet ingredients (this includes the mashed Banana’s)  until thoroughly mixed. In a separate bowl combine the dry ingredients. Pour the wet mix into the dry and stir until it creates a thick batter like consistency. 

Line a loaf tin with baking paper. Pour the batter into the tin and place in the oven.  Bake for 50-60 minutes until a skewer comes out clean. 

Remove from the tin and allow to cool. Slice and serve. 
Enjoy

Em xx

6m +, Lunchbox Idea, Nut Free, Savory

Leftovers Pasta Bake

  • 6m +
  • Nut free
  • Can be frozen
  • Lunchbox Idea

I know leftovers don’t sound very appealing but this pasta dish is truly delicious. I hate throwing food away but every weekend when I do a roast dinner I seem to end up with a randomly size portion of veg and meat left over,  so I needed to create a nice easy dish to use it up. 

The ingredients list on this recipe is simply a guide,  it really varies each week depending on what I have an excess of.  This dish also freezes really well,  I normally pop it in to a muffin tray,  stick it in the freezer and then when frozen transfer the perfectly sized portions into a freezer bag. They are super handy when The Monster needs a different meal than we are having,  or even a filling lunch after his swimming class. 

Ingredients:

2 cups dried pasta shapes

1 cup leftover roasted veg (this week I had carrot,  pumpkin and broccoli) 

1/2 cup roasted chicken

1 tin chopped tomatoes

1 clove garlic

2 tablespoons cream

Grated cheese (for shrinking on top) 

Method:

In a saucepan, boil the pasta until half cooked (don’t cook it fully as it will continue to cook in the oven and will become mushy) 

Pre-heat the oven. Drain the pasta and return to the pan. In the same saucepan,  add the garlic, tomatoes,  veg and chicken (or whatever meat you choose, or none if you want to make it a veggie dish) stir,  pour in the cream and stir again.  Transfer to an oven proof dish,  sprinkle the cheese over the top and bake for 20 minutes.

Remove from the oven and serve. 
Enjoy

Em xx

7m +, Egg Free, Lunchbox Idea, Nut Free, Savory, Uncategorized, Vegetarian

Cheese and Rosemary Crackers

  • 7m +
  • Egg free
  • Nut free
  • Lunchbox idea

I have yet to meet a kiddie that doesn’t like crackers, even the fussiest of eaters seem unable to resist the crunchy,  cheesy delights. Unfortunately many of the shop brought ones have high levels of salt, and various other unpleasant ingredients. 

With The Monster  being crackers about crackers I decided I needed a super simple,  delicious and healthy recipe for making them at home.  After a few test recipes, this insanely easy recipe was created. When  tested on The Monster, his playmates and their mama’s there wasn’t one left,  always a good sign!

Ingredients 

  • 1 cup wholemeal flour
  • 3/4 cup mature cheddar (grated) 
  • 1 /4 cup Parmesan (grated) 
  • 1 tablespoon of dried rosemary
  • 1/2 cup water
  • 1/4 cup olive oil

Method

Re-heat the oven to be 180 degrees. Place the flour, rosemary and cheeses into a food processor and give it a quick blitz to combine the ingredients. Mix the water and olive oil and slowly pour into the flour, and cheese mix while the processor is on a low setting. Once the dough comes together, tip it onto a floured surface. Roll until thin (about 2.5mm) use cookie cutters to cut the dough into any shapes you choose. Line a baking sheet with grease proof paper and lay the crackers on the paper. Bake for about 12 mins or until golden brown and crisp at the edges. Allow to cool before eating. 
Enjoy

Em xx