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Thursday, 11 June 2015

Busy, busy, busy!

11th June 2015
To thrive in life you need three bones.  A wishbone.  A backbone.  And a funny bone! Reba McEntire

Oh how I miss my phone, it's only been gone a day and of course last night I needed it!  I needed to phone leaders and I hadn't got any stored numbers in the phone I'm using till mine gets fixed, I rarely need to call anyone, isn't that just typical!  Short on helpers too so I hadn't got time to mess about trying to get in touch via facebook, hey ho such is life, I slept well last night after emptying and reloading the car on my own - tired as, this is the bit no one sees ;) 

On a positive I did over 10,000 steps and stayed under control with my eating, I didn't use it as an excuse to fill my face!  We had mince beef and onions, potatoes and veg for lunch and I put a chicken with some veg in the slow cooker for when I got home so I had healthy food waiting, planning is key for sure.

Yep, need to get on top of a few things work wise, that's my plan for today!  If I get it sorted now I can have Friday afternoon, Saturday afternoon and Sunday off, as I'm in London Monday with work, so it's a full on week next week too!

A few of my members have been talking about eating on a budget a little in my meetings this week, so I've ordered a book called 'A girl called Jack' it's 100 delicious budget recipes apparently, here's one of them that does sound quite tasty and Aubergines are one of those veggies that stump me, I just can't decide, but they're also a veg that people usually grow on their allotment then try to give away but you don't really know what to do with them!  Well now you do, here's a recipe;

A great veggie alternative to meatballs, delicious served with spaghetti and tomato sauce – a simple can of chopped tomatoes heated through at the end with a pinch of salt would be a perfect accompaniment.

Serves 2: (8pp per serving)

1 aubergine
1 onion, red or white
a fat clove of garlic
1 red chilli or a pinch of the dried stuff
1 tablespoon finely chopped black olives (optional) (1pp)
3 tablespoons oil (12pp)
zest and juice of half a lemon, or a tablespoon of bottled lemon juice
a slice of bread, stale or fresh (2pp)

a fistful of herbs: parsley, mint, coriander or basil all work well
Cut the stems off the ends of the aubergines and halve lengthways. Dice the flesh into chunks and pop into a medium non stick saucepan or frying pan. Peel and finely slice the onion and garlic, chop the chilli as finely as you can, and add these to the pan. Toss in the chopped olives and a tablespoon of oil, and cook on a medium heat for 10 minutes to brown and soften.
Grate over the lemon zest and squeeze in the juice, and, once the aubergines are soft, tip everything into a mixing bowl. Grate the bread over the top (or break it up and blitz it in a blender for a minute to make breadcrumbs), finely chop the herbs and mix in well.

Shape the mixture into tablespoon sized balls with your hands. Put the remaining oil in a frying pan and carefully fry the aubergine balls in batches until browned all over. Remove with a slotted spoon, and serve with extra lemon juice and basil to taste.

Another allotment veg that people tend to grow or that's cheap in the shop at this time of the year is a Courgette, so here's another of her recipes.


The humble courgette – you either love it or you hate it! However, courgettes are cheap and abundant in the summer months, and extremely versatile. These fritters are great as a standalone snack with a homemade raita dip, or served with sausages and ketchup.

Makes 4 chunky (4pp each) or 6 thin fritters (3pp each):

1 large courgette
a fistful of fresh mint
a fistful of fresh coriander
a fistful of fresh parsley
1 egg, beaten (2pp)
2 heaped tablespoons plain flour (6pp)
2 tablespoons oil (8pp)
50g natural yoghurt (1pp)

Finely grate the courgette into a large mixing bowl. Chop the herbs and add around three-quarters to the courgette in the bowl, and set the rest aside for the yoghurt dip.
Mix the beaten egg into the courgette and the herbs with a fork. Add a tablespoon of flour and mix until it has formed a batter. You may need to add a little more flour to make the batter thicker than a pancake batter. Ideally it will stick to the prongs of your fork but come loose with a shake.

Heat the oil in a frying pan and dollop a level tablespoon of the batter in. Flatten with the back of a spoon and shape the edges quickly to form a rough circle. Repeat until you run out of space in the pan, with a small gap around each for ease of turning. You may have to cook them in batches! Fry on a low heat for a few minutes, until golden and crispy on the underside. Turn over with a spatula or fork and cook on the other side. Repeat until all the batter is used up.

Stir the remaining herbs into the natural yoghurt and serve with the fritters as a dip.

Tip: Add cheese to make these extra special – for the recipe above, 50g of cheddar (6pp) or a Greek cheese would complement the flavours perfectly.

So there's some food for thought, I'm off to water my hanging baskets - all 16 of them before I get ready for work - no rest for the wicked!  Yeah there is you know, I'm doing Jack when the work is done tomorrow lunchtime ;) I've got me a good book on the go and another one ready to start!

Have a great day BeYOUtiful.

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