Thursday, August 31, 2006

Honey Honey Joy Joy

Posted by MANDI at 8:31 PM 5 comments
Preparations are in full swing for Offspring #2's first birthday party this weekend. The menu has been decided, the shopping has been done, presents have been bought, Offspring #1 has selcted a suitable present for his baby sister, the house has been thoroughly cleaned and cooking has begun. Today I made a batch of honey joys and promply ate an extraordinarily large number of them! It's a good thing we don't know too many people in town yet so the party will be small, otherwise I would be making more honey joys tomorrow to make up for the ones I ate. I love honey joys with a deep and abiding passion. The crunch, the sweetness, the honey, the joy - okay now it's getting ridiculous but you get what I mean. It's just not a kids party without them and it's even better when they don't all get eaten and you end up with leftovers for an extra day or two.

I have tried really hard not to go overboard with the party (as is my wont!) so in my new tradition of keeping kids parties simple (yeah, like that'll last!) we are having party pies, sausage rolls, mini quiches, tiny sandwiches and mini hot dogs with fruit kebabs, honey joys, fairy cakes, vanilla slice and biscuit faces and of course the birthday cake. There should be something for everyone in there.

I have planned a couple of games. We're going to play pass the parcel. I bought the prize for the middle of the parcel tonight - it's very hard to choose a prize that would suit anyone from 20 months to four-and-a-half years! We'll also play musical statues and then the kids can just yahoo around the backyard and fight over whose turn it is on the trampoline. After all, it wouldn't be a birthday party without an argument or two!

Question of the day: Do you have a favourite food from your childhood that might not be great nutritionally but it just makes you feel good?

Wednesday, August 30, 2006

Something Sweet

Posted by MANDI at 5:02 PM 0 comments
Muesli Slice
(from the exploding dessert/sweet binder)

¾ cup plain flour
½ teaspoon baking powder
1 cup rolled oats
¾ cup caster sugar
¾ cup chopped dried pineapple wedges I'm allergic to pineapple so used dried apricots
¾ cup Craisins (dried cranberries) I didn't have any so used sultanas instead
1 tablespoon sesame seeds, toasted
1 tablespoon sunflower kernels, toasted
70g low-fat margarine
¼ cup honey
1 egg lightly beaten

1. Preheat oven to 180˚C. Grease and line an 18cm X 28cm pan.
2. Sift flour and baking powder together in a large bowl. Stir in remaining dry ingredients. Heat margarine, honey and 2 tablespoons water in a saucepan on low, until melted. Mix into dry ingredients. Stir through egg.
3. Spoon mixture into prepared pan. Bake for 35-40 minutes, until golden and cooked when tested with a skewer. Cook in pan then cut into squares.
Sorry about the photo - I took 3 and this was the best one. That in itself says heaps about my abilities as a photographer! I have made this before and while it looks nothing like the picture that was with the original recipe it is a yummy slice. It is far more cake-y than the original picture looks, this time round I added extra oats, about an extra half cup. This made the slice a bit drier but it was still good. Both the boys in my house, ie Hubby and Offspring #1, certainly thought it was a success.
As you might be able to tell from the subject of this post last night's dinner was not special enough to share. I had thought I would make a quiche but couldn't find the quiche and flan recipe book so grabbed super-easy stuff instead - a packet of pasta'n'sauce, cooked up some vegies, threw it all together in a casserole dish and scattered grated cheese and breadcrumbs over the lot then chucked it in the oven for the cheese to melt. It wasn't fancy but we had vegies and it was almost a proper dinner!
Question of the day: Are you a 'stick to the recipe' kind of cook or do you substitute whatever is in the pantry?

Food Shopping With Kids

Posted by MANDI at 11:44 AM 0 comments
Grrrrrrr! Ever wanted to kill your kids right in the middle of the food shopping? "Clean up aisle 3, small child smeared across the floor." We have Offspring #2's birthday party this weekend so needed to do some shopping for party food and the like. Had arranged to meet a friend for coffee afterwards - she has a little boy the same age as Offspring #1 so this was the bribe to get through the shopping, "be good and we can have morning tea at the shops with small friend". Did it work? Absolutely not! Offspring #1 whinged, grizzled, touched stuff, banged the trolley (with Offspring #2 in it!) ran ahead, lay across the floor and on it went. Meanwhile Offspring #2 was getting tired, even though it wasn't nap-time yet, and she moaned and grizzled, banged her head when big brother bashed the trolley, threw her cracker on the floor and then cried when she couldn't have it back. Between the two of them the whole trip was such a joyous occasion - NOT! It didn't help that I had the slowest check-out lady on the face of the earth. If she had just sped things up a little we could have been out of there so much quicker and put a stop to the carry-on that much sooner. I would like to say that I held to my principles and we skipped morning tea and came straight home but by then I needed a cup of tea and a sit down with another grown-up. Anyway, now we are home and Offspring #2 is fast asleep. Offspring #1 is still annoying me but I'm about to get him some lunch and then he can have a rest on the couch and watch a DVD for a little while. A cup of tea should help the headache (otherwise I'll be raiding the medicine box for some Panadol) and then I'll start thinking about dinner. Hubby is golfing this afternoon - well it is Wednesday! - so I'm thinking something easy that I can prepare early and then just throw in the oven in time to be ready for 6-ish. I'll let you know the results tomorrow.
Question of the day - What is your standby easy recipe?

Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Hmm... a blog!

Posted by MANDI at 9:29 PM 0 comments
I got hooked on a few foodie blogs, then a couple of blogs from people I know on various websites and then just started reading blogs all over the place. From there it was a fairly logical step that I would start my own blog. I love cooking so am planning to post lots of recipes and photos of dishes I make. I also love scrapbooking so will be posting photos of pages that I create along with photos of other scrapbooking type projects. Along the way you'll get to see photos of my new home town, my kids and hear about the trials and tribulations of being a Mummy in the north-west.
1600 kilometres from home, surrounded by red dirt, a hubby who works too much and two small kids - this could be a recipe for disaster or it could just be the life of a Red Dirt Mummy!

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