Monthly Archives: November 2014

Mum’s bean suprise!!

We have been stuck in the house these past few days as poor Ayla hasn’t been very well, it was a perfect time to make some good homemade-wholesome food and what better than my Mum’s very own Bean Surprise!

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Had to share this recipe with you … it is one of my favourites and always goes down well with the family, not to mention, cheap, incredibly easy and you probably have everything you need for it in your cupboard already.

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Boil up about 1.5kg of potatoes and turn your oven to about 200 oC, chop the onion and depending on how much you like garlic chop some cloves up to fry with the onion. I like mine quite garlicky, so about 6 is usually what I put in.

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Season the Onions and garlic, I like to add some mixed herbs at this point along with a good ‘splosh’ of balsamic vinegar, before adding the tinned mixed beans, chopped tomatoes and tomato puree.

And that is literally it! .. You can add mushrooms or anything else you might fancy, I just didn’t have any.

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P.s This is the secret ingredient…. shhhh … A good splash of Worcestershire sauce 🙂

 My Mum always adds a squirt of Tomato Ketchup, so I do too … it has never done me wrong.

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A man at this point is in no way essential, but if there happens to be a man in your house I like to get him to use his muscles and mash the po-tatties, (with lots of butter… of course!)

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Then pour out your beany-bake into an oven dish and cover with the mash. I find it easiest to cover round the edges first and then ‘plonk’ the rest of the mash in the middle before spreading it out to cover entire dish.

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Last but by no means least cover with cheese and pop it in the oven till it goes all golden… mmmm! This has to be the cheapest, easiest most scrummy dish, just perfect on a grey autumn day like today!

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Watch it burn!!

Well I have been avoiding my blog as I have neglected it for quite some time…the trouble was the more I left it the harder it seemed to get blogging again. Did not know where to start… however now I’m here I’m wondering really what all the fuss was about!

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Autumn has gone off with a bang, we enjoyed the usual celebrations of Bonfire night and all got dressed up warm to stand in a field to watch a huge pile of wood be set alight and something resembling a man be thrown on top! …. (Try explaining that to a two-year old) … I even began to question why we were all so desperate to watch it go up in flames along with the dummy of Guy Fawkes, I mean it’s all very well to celebrate the fact that the houses of parliament were not blown up but its kind of questionable to celebrate a ritual burning of a Guy every year.

I didn’t quite go to this level with Ayla as she is only two, and trying to teach them about forgive and forget and all might seem slightly hypocritical as the failed gunpowder plot actually happened in 1605…. but hey I like a good bonfire night as much as the next person!

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(apologies in advance for these blurry phone photos)

Needless to say this scene of revenge was not quite as grasping for Ayla as the rest of the crowd, thankfully she didn’t seem to notice the man being burned alive and once she had seen the bonfire that was about all there was to it and was keen to see something else. There is only so many times we could say.. ‘Look at the fire Ayla… Look at the smoke!’

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We kept trying to keep her interest with the promise of fireworks and music to come, I had tried to prepare her for the fireworks during the week by talking about them, painting them and doing impressions, actions and noises.

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She was on her Daddy’s shoulders as the very first rockets took flight and to see her face was a picture, (will always remember that) it was of awe, beauty and joy….. then the loud ones came out, with a BANG so hard it hits you in your chest. I kept smiling and reassuring her but could see she was starting to get anxious. There were other youngsters wailing (honestly why do we put our kids through this!) and I tried to keep her focus on us, she would bury her head in my chest when the loud ones went off so Josh covered her ears which helped and in between the loud ones were some pretty quiet ones that whizzed, sparkled and rained glitter down the sky…. ‘I like those ones Mummy’…..then the big ones again.. ‘Bit loud Mummy… TOO LOUD’.

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She didn’t cry which I was so glad about and despite not really liking the big bangs she never got upset which was a relief.

When we figured she’d had enough of the fireworks for one night, we took her into the gift shop where she picked up almost every cuddly toy… and then went through the motions of having to put each one back, so they could stay with ‘their friends’. After the fireworks we had a go on Mickey Mouse’s car which was not scary at all. When the ride stopped she informed us that…      ‘ Mummy Daddy…. Minnie’s car has run out of Petrol’

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They then put on a Sea lion show which was amazing and really helped to make the evening super special, as well as getting to see some of the fish, bats, reptiles and even the penguins.

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All in all a fantastic bonfire night, one to remember…. I will always remember bonfire nights fondly as for me it was the night that Josh called to invite me on our very first date. Here’s to many more special bonfire nights. Hope everyone’s pets were not too traumatised by the event. Definitely would recommend attending a professionally run event; they are always better and its never a great idea for amateurs to take explosives into their homes and set about lighting them from their gardens.

Happy Autumn days everyone… Winter is just around the corner!

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Here’s to being back on the blog… feels great 🙂

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