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Wednesday, 22 January 2020

Food, glorious food

Wednesday 22nd January 2020
If you have good thoughts, they will shine out of your face like sunbeams and you will always look lovely.

It works!  Honestly, try it if you didn't this morning, wake up, sit up, put your feet on the floor and say 'It's going to be a great day!', and remind yourself of it throughout the day as you think or say something that's not so helpful.  I woke to mom asking how we were going to get all those kids back home, she'd obviously had a dream and bought it into her reality with her and because of my positive words that started my day, I still feel like I can handle anything the day wants to throw at me (not a challenge universe btw).

I had a couple more lovely gifts for my birthday yesterday, including a book that's a journal, it's called 99 things that bring me joy, right up my street that is, on each page it asks you to fill something in, so 1 is 'Childhood toys you loved', 22 is 'things you think are cute', 96 is 'A piece of wisdom someone gave you', what a wonderfully clever idea, each page gives you chance to use your brain and think.  I shall enjoy sitting and doing that, I'll do it when moms in a good mood and try and get her involved by asking her the questions too. 

I cooked my gnocchi yesterday, the salami had a real kick to it, the kind that burns the inside of your mouth, but it was delicious for 14SP a portion.   The butternut squash was past it's best so I cut off the bits that were ok and roasted them with the salami on the top of it.  Then fried diced onion with diced garlic and a splash of vermouth.  I then cooked the gnocchi on the hob for 3 minute,  drained it and added to the onion mixture threw in a bag of spinach and the squash from the oven.  Then stirred through 100g of really strong blue cheese and voila, nom nomness.

That's my kind of food for sure and today I plan to cook more of my kind of food, I've got to take my car in again first but then I'm going to make my very favourite 40 cloves of garlic chicken, I do love my Nigella.  The points shown are for all 3 plans unless I've highlighted them in a different colour, hope that makes sense.  Don't fear the number 40, you won't peel or chop them, the skins being left on means they grow sweet and caramel as they cook, like savoury bonbons in their sticky wrappers, so good.  For me this recipe is so much better with thighs but I understand that some people would be willing to lose a bit of flavour to save a few points, I'm not one of those people. 

Chicken with 40 cloves of garlic

Feeds 4

13SP per serving using thighs,
3SP or 7SP per serving using breasts,
9SP per serving using legs

2 tbsp regular olive oil (9SP)
Use 8 chicken thighs (skin on, bone in) (42SP) or
use 8 skinless breasts for 0SP or 13SP
use 4 skinless legs for 27SP or

1 bunch (about 6) spring onions
small bunch fresh thyme
40 garlic cloves (approx 3-4 bulbs), unpeeled
2 tbsp dry white wine (1SP)
1½ tsp sea salt flakes or ¾ tsp pouring salt
Ground black pepper

Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4. Heat the oil on the hob over a high heat in a wide, shallow, ovenproof and flameproof casserole (that will ultimately fit all the chicken in one layer, and that has a lid). Sear the chicken, skin-side down. This may take two batches, so transfer the browned pieces to a bowl as you go. Once the chicken pieces are seared, transfer them all to the bowl.

Finely slice the spring onions, put them into the casserole and quickly stir-fry them with the leaves torn from a few sprigs of thyme. Put 20 of the unpeeled cloves of garlic (papery excess removed) into the casserole, top with the chicken pieces, skin-side up, then cover with the remaining 20 cloves of garlic.

Add the vermouth (or white wine) to any oily chicken juices left in the bowl. Swill it around and pour this into the casserole. Sprinkle with the salt, grind over the pepper, and add a few more sprigs of thyme. Put on the lid and cook in the oven for 1½ hours.

Another recipe I think I'm going to do as well, either today and bulk cook or later in the week is this one; 


by Nigella. Featured in AT MY TABLE

Feeds 4, 11SP or 17SP per serving
What’s key here is the size of the roasting tin. I wouldn’t go any smaller – measuring from inside rim to inside rim – than about 38 x 28cm / 15 x 11inches (a little larger is fine) as there needs to be space around the chicken thighs for the magic to happen.

900 grams frozen petits pois 0SP or 21SP
400 grams trimmed leeks (cut into approx. 3cm/ 1 inch slices
2 fat cloves garlic (peeled and minced)
4 x 15ml tablespoons dry white vermouth or wine 3SP
2 tablespoons regular olive oil 9SP (plus more for drizzling – I'd not bother with this!)
2 teaspoons sea salt flakes (plus more for sprinkling)
1 small bunch fresh dill (torn into pieces)
8 chicken thighs with skin on and bone in 42SP


    Preheat the oven to 200°C/180°C Fan/400°F and clatter the frozen peas into a large roasting tin, followed by the leeks, garlic, vermouth, 2 tablespoons of oil, 2 teaspoons of sea salt flakes and most of the dill. Turn everything together in the pan – breaking up any large clumps of the frozen peas – until well mixed. I advise you to wear CSI gloves for this, just to stop you getting frostbite, though you still will feel the cold.
    Arrange the chicken thighs, skin-side up, on top, then drizzle them with a little olive oil and give them a good sprinkling of sea salt flakes, before roasting in the oven for 45 minutes. Remove from the oven, give the peas a small stir or tamp down, so that the few that are sitting on the surface and drying out a little are submerged in the liquid. Don’t do the same to the leeks, however, as the bits that are peeking out will become desirably caramelised in the heat. Put back in the oven for a further 30 minutes, by which time the peas and leeks will be soft, and the chicken tender and cooked through, its skin golden and crisp.
    Tear off the remaining dill fronds, and scatter over the top on serving, perhaps with some simply steamed new potatoes to soak up the pea and chicken juices.


    Refrigerate leftovers, within 2 hour of cooking, in an airtight container for up to 3 days. Reheat in a saucepan or microwave until piping hot all the way through.
    If you prefer, you can use light chicken stock in place of the vermouth or wine.

    I can't make that one unless I got get leeks and dill!  Anyway, I need to get my backside away from this computer, so I'll say hurrah, mwah.

    Luv ya 

    Love me xx

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