Super Simple Bakewell Tart

Last week I had a roll of ready-made shortcrust pastry in the fridge, a day past its use-by date. I think I bought it to make some mince pies before Christmas – I hate making pastry – but never quite got round to it. I knew if I didn’t within a day or so, it would need to be chucked away.  I went to make some jam and lemon curd tarts when I decided to have a go at making my own version of a Bakewell Tart.

Super Simple Bakewell tart

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Meal Planning Monday #4

Another week where we stuck to the plan for six out of the seven days.  On Friday, we were going to have pizza and chips for a really quick and easy tea, but Alex, our super fussy eater, decided on Thursday night he no longer likes pizza and wanted hot dogs instead. Trying to get him to eat a meal at the moment is difficult enough so we ended up with hot dogs! He really enjoyed the slow cooker kebab, which surprised me a lot, so that’s something that we will definitely be having more often.

Meal Planning Monday

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Food Diary of a Vegan

I’ll start by saying that I’m not a vegan – as you can see from my meal plans I’m not even a vegetarian, and the chances of me becoming either are pretty much zero. That’s a whole different discussion, though, and one I won’t get into. However, saying that, I understand why people make that choice, and I do respect and admire their decision. I can’t imagine veganism to be easy as so many things we eat and drink contain animal products or by-products. I do think sometimes that we could reduce the amount of meat in our diet for all sorts of reasons – I often choose veggie sausages or a veggie option if I’m eating out, and I try to do the odd meat-free meal, but generally, in our house, we do eat meat and dairy products.

Food Diary of a Vegan

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Meal Planning Monday #1

Ok, so I meant to post this yesterday and completely forgot – good start to my year of organisation! I’m going to TRY to do this every week, both in real life and posting it on the blog. We have meal planned on and off for a few years, and when we’ve done it properly, it’s saved a lot of time, stress and money. With Graham back at work and doing 12-hour shifts, it’s down to me to do the vast majority of cooking which is a challenge within itself! I can’t face the thought of getting to 5pm (aka the witching hour here!) and staring into the freezer trying to work ou what to do for tea whilst the kids run riot. Hopefully, by planning meals ahead we can avoid that!

Meal Planning Monday

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December 2016 Degustabox | Vlog Review

Happy New Year!

Just before Christmas, we received our Degustabox, which is a monthly food and drink subscription box costing just £12.99 a month. Instead of taking photos and writing about each product, I thought I would vlog it this time and I really enjoyed doing it. I’ll definitely be vlogging a lot more throughout 2017!

Degustabox December 2016 Review

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How to Make Christmas Chocolate Bark

With two children at school and at least three very hard working members of staff in each of their classes,  buying gifts for school staff is beginning to get very expensive. I know from personal experience that staff don’t expect a gift at Christmas, but I know just how much they go beyond their job description and how much they deserve appreciation, and a small gift is a nice to way to show it. I can’t afford to spend a fortune though, and that’s where our our homemade Christmas chocolate bark comes into it.

Christmas Chocolate Bark | www.coffeecakekids.com

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Simple Tea Times with Morrisons Ready Meals

We don’t tend to eat a lot of ready meals. We both like cooking so one of us cooks something pretty much from scratch most nights. However, once in a while we just can’t be bothered, or have been out or day and just want something really quick and easy  for tea. Those are the nights when the chippy or the local Chinese takeaway becomes really tempting, which of course is expensive and not exactly a healthy choice.

Morrisons got in touch just before we moved house and asked us if we wanted to try out their new and improved range of ready meals. Of course, with a big house move and not having a cooker for a few days, this was the perfect time to try them out. There was a huge selection to choose from, and I asked them to choose a few for me – no way could I make that decision!!

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Degustabox September 2016

We’ve been getting the Degustabox for a few months now, and it’s something we look forward to every month. It’s a big affair when the box arrives, with the kids excited to see what new treats are in the box. It’s opened us up to lots of new brands and products that we probably wouldn’t have otherwise tried. September’s box was no exception.

Degustabox

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Degustabox August 2016

We look forward to our Degustabox being delivered every month, and this month it came just a couple of days after we came back from our holiday, which was a bonus. If you haven’t heard of Degustabox before, it’s a monthly food and drink subscription box, costing £12.99. The products in the box vary every month, and it’s a great way to try out new things without breaking the bank.

Degustabox | www.coffeecakekids.com

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Oreo Chocolate Truffles

Now, before I start, I need to give full credit to my mum, because I haven’t even attempted to make these! She’s made them a couple of times now, experimenting with different ingredients, but this is the one that we all agree is the best. They’re very rich – even a chocoholic like me can only manage two at the most – but they are utterly delicious.

Oreo Chocolate Truffles | www.coffeecakekids.com

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Campbells Prime Meat Review

For the past few months, we have been ordering our meat online from a local online butcher. We’ve found that the meat generally tastes a lot better than what we can get from the supermarket, and it’s much more convenient. When we were asked if we wanted to place an order with Campbells Prime Meat, a family run butchers established in Edinburgh in 1910, we decided to give them a go. After all, a butcher that has been around for over 100 years has got to be ok, right?

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5 Ideas for Chocolate Spread

5 Ideas for Chocolate Spread | www.coffeecakekids.com
Chocolate spread is a favourite in our house. We get through quite a lot of it – and it isn’t just the kids! The one thing that does worry me with most of it is the amount of sugar in them. I’d never heard of Jim Jams Spreads before, but when I discovered they did their own chocolate and hazelnut spread with 83% less sugar than their more well-known counterparts, I was pleased. I could finally feel a little bit less guilty about those chocolate spread sandwiches the kids love so much! Not only that but they are gluten-free as well.
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Degustabox July 2016

For the past couple of months we have been reviewing the Degustabox, which is a subscription box full of food and drink delivered to your door each month. We loved our May and June ones, so we were waiting with anticipation for the July one.

What we really love about the Degustaboxes is the variety of the products included, and the fact it has given us chance to try out so many new things that we probably wouldn’t have tried otherwise.

So, what was in this months box?

Degustabox July 2016 | www.coffeecakekids.com

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Cider and Pizza at The Stable, Birmingham

A couple of weeks ago, I was invited to a cider and pizza event at The Stable, in Birmingham.  It’s only been open since November, and prides itself on using local produce for its pizzas and pies, and local cider suppliers.

The Stable Birmingham | www.parenthoodhghsandlows.com

We were greeted with a glass of Devon Red cider, which was very much appreciated on the hottest day of the year so far, and sat chatting and admiring the interior – think exposed brickwork, long wooden benches and neon signs!

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Lemon Meringue Cupcakes

Lemon Meringue Cupcakes | www.parenthoodhighsandlows.com

Two food posts in less than a week – I am surprising myself with my level of domestication (is that even a word?) right now!

I’m not even sure where I got this recipe from. I *think* I wanted to make a lemon drizzle cake but didn’t have the right tin so adapted it in my own Rachel-like way. I love lemon curd and adding a blob of meringue to the top of it just seemed so right! Everyone in our house loves these cakes – they’re all lemony (obvs!), zingy and light. When you bite into them, the lemon curd just sort of drizzles out…mmm.

They’re not the prettiest of cakes – I really do not have the knack of making them look great (or taking photos!), and rather than do any fancy piping of meringue, it kind of just got splodged on – but it tastes amazing, and that’s all that matters, right?

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Mexican Texas Chicken

I don’t really do much cooking. In fact, I do very little. We lived in this house for almost six weeks, and I have cooked three meals  – this and lasagne twice. Don’t worry – I don’t starve the children, Graham does the cooking!

When I feel like it, I do enjoy cooking. I have such a short attention span and get so easily distracted that I need meals that are interesting to cook, and don’t take long. This ticks those boxes. It’s all stuff that we usually have in the house and only takes twenty minutes or so. My mum gave me this recipe – it’s something that she has been cooking regularly for the past few years and it has become a firm family favourite!

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