As far blogging went November had to not be a priority for me. Sadly my tiny baby girl ended up dealing with two illnesses that landed her in the hospital both times ending us with seeing 11 days in November there with her. It was horrible and terrifying seeing such a small baby so sick. But thankfully December has been much more kind and I am excited for Christmas with my new little addition. I know there aren’t that many more days left before the big day but I just had to share with you a few special Christmas recipes to help make the holidays easier for you. Because probably like many of you with new additions means a bigger family get together, making the holiday cooking just a bit more hectic. So finding easier ways to do dishes that are staples I think is a must. And this first one I want to share is by far my favourite. This has single handedly changed the way we are making potatoes forever. My husband was never a fan of mashed potatoes, finding them dull and tasteless unless a lot of additions were made to them. So he has always wanted roast potatoes for the holidays. But once we discovered these and found that they are not only easier but so full of flavour he is now a convert. I never thought about it before but boiling potatoes really does take away precious flavour from the potatoes but cooking them in the slowcooker gives them a rich almost baked flavour. Season as you would normally but we found that doing it this way has us going back to simple salt and pepper seasoning as the potatoes already have so much flavour.
Crockpot Mashed Potatoes
1 kilo (2 lbs) potatoes, cut into 2 inch pieces
(1/4 c.) milk
42g (3 Tbsp) butter
2 tsp salt
1 tsp black pepper
Recipe adapted from Creme De La Crumb
So as you know I love taking recipes that are normally very processed and making them home made. So when I happened upon a recipe for home made tater tots from Seeded At the Table I knew it was time to tackle an old favourite from my childhood, Tater Tot Casserole. This dish is what I would call a perfect example of a classic American recipe. Until I moved away from the US as an adult I never realized how much we love casseroles and using cans of condensed soups. When it comes to American style casseroles it is incredibly difficult to find any recipe that doesn’t use convenience items like tinned soups. But the thing is it really isn’t that difficult to put together a home made sauce as a substitute for tinned soups. It is not only healthier but it is tastes better.
While this dish is often thought of as a kids meal, this from scratch version is sure to satisfy the adults too.
Today Sunday Supper is sharing some of their favourite Passover and Easter ideas. As with any holiday time cooking can sometimes be stressful because you are often juggling a lot of activities with meal prep. So having to follow a complicated recipe can sometimes just make things harder. I wanted to share with you my easiest roasted lamb recipe that I use a lot. The thing about this recipe is it isn’t about following a recipe, all ingredients are eye balled and it can easily be adjusted for how many people are you cooking for.
Roast Leg of Lamb with Garlic and Rosemary
Boneless leg of lamb size will vary depending on how many you are serving (225g/8oz per person)
Garlic cloves, thinly sliced
Dried or fresh Rosemary, chopped
Salt and pepper
New potatoes (150g per serving)
Happy Thanksgiving! Are you ready for the belt tightening festivities? We won’t be having our meal until the weekend since it isn’t actually a holiday here in the UK but I am so looking forward to it. We are going to have all three grandkids plus all of “us” kids at my in-laws house, it is going to be very tight trying to get everyone around the table, but then again isn’t that what it is all about. Getting everyone together.
I do try to not let this time just turn into a time to throw all healthy eating habits out the window but at the same time I do like to have some fun. I am of the opinion that if you are trying to eat healthy and you completely deprive yourself of occasional treats then you are guaranteed to fail.
Well at least that is how it has worked for me.
So on this special occasion I wanted to share something with you that, well to be honest if you are on a diet you might want to look away. This is a bacon, cheesy potato feast that is every dieters nightmare. But served up with a large portion of broccoli and a small piece of grilled salmon as we did makes this not feel as naughty as it was, besides which it is incredibly easy to put together.
Have you ever found yourself eating too much of something like cake and then when the scale shows those extra pounds declaring to yourself that you are never going to eat cake again. No matter how much you really want to give up eating cake most people that make declarations like that never make it very far. One of the reasons why you fail when you say that you’ll never to do something again is because it is too extreme of a jump. Because there is no instant gratification for giving it up, you don’t all of a sudden lose all of the weight you gained by quitting eating cake. So in a society driven by instant gratification it is too big of a temptation to get frustrated and give up and continue with our bad habits. I have been guilty of being a yo-yo dieter for so much of my adult life often going to extreme measures of preventing myself from eating my favorite foods will forcing myself to eat terrible things like those awful prepackaged meals from NutriSystem. But nothing ever worked because I couldn’t stick to it. But a year and a half ago my husband and I talked about how we needed to make some real changes to our diet and lifestyle other wise, so we decided to make some smaller more realistic goals. Small things like, I started buying brown rice and whole wheat pasta. We stopped keeping the house stocked with chips and instead got granola bars and trail mix. We didn’t make all of the changes at once but over time we added and took away more things, and over time we turned our changes into habits. We don’t even think about the changes any more they are so apart of our life that it feels normal.
Another of the small changes was I switched to Olive Oil, like Olivari Olive Oil, for almost all of my cooking, from everything from baking to frying. Some people feel that the taste of olive oil isn’t good for certain foods but what I found was that I am so use to it that I don’t notice it. Olive oil has the lowest amount of saturated fat and contains more mono saturated fat a healthier type of fat that can lower your risk of heart disease by reducing the total and low-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels in your blood, it is considered the healthiest oil to cook with. Substituting olive oil was a small change but one that has reduced the calorie count and fat count of every dish I make. Just another of the small changes that made a big difference in mine and my husband’s life.
If you want more information about the benefits of olive oil and other facts you can check out this article.