Sunday, 7 January 2018

Soft Cheese and Vegetable Recipe

Makes enough for 3-4 adults and one child.


For the sauce
  • 1 carrot
  • 1 stick of celery
  • 1 red onion
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 2 handfuls of spinach
  • 6 tomatoes
  • 4 mushrooms
  • 2 tbsp soft cheese (I used lactofree soft cheese but regular soft cheese will work just as well)
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
Serve with spaghetti and a sprinkle of parmesan (optional)


  1. Put the oil in a large pan.
  2. Peel and chop the carrot, garlic and onion, chop the mushrooms, celery and tomatoes, add to the pan along with the spinach.
  3. Cook on a medium-high heat for 20 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. Remove from the heat and blitz in a food processor until reasonable smooth.
  5. Add the soft cheese and blitz again until fully combined.
  6. Fold into hot spaghetti and serve.

Friday, 21 July 2017

Sweet Veg Buns

These make an excellent finger food for those following baby led weaning, great for both lunch and snack time. They're also a brilliant way to eat cake guilt free as there's so much veg in them and no added sugar.

Makes approximately 16


  • 150g unsalted butter (at room temperature)
  • 200g self raising flour
  • 4 eggs
  • 6 tbsp whole milk
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • 1 small sweet potato
  • 1 large carrot
  • 1 apple
  • 4 tbsp frozen sweetcorn
  • 1.5 tsp ground cinnamon


  1. Line muffin tins with cases.
  2. Cream the butter with an electric mixer.
  3. Add the baking powder along with 1 egg, 1-2 tbsp milk and some flour and throughly whisk.
  4. Repeat step 3 with each egg, until all the eggs, butter and milk have been added.
  5. Peel the sweet potato, carrot and apple, then grate into the mixture.
  6. Add the cinnamon and sweetcorn and whisk until properly combined.
  7. Spoon into the cases and bake in a preheated oven at 180C for 20-25 minutes until cooked and golden brown.
  8. Serve as is or spread with soft cheese.

Tuesday, 27 June 2017

Money Saving Tips

Not a recipe I know but I thought I'd share a few things that I do to keep my weekly shopping costs down.

  1. Buy a large pack of meat, split it up and freeze. Usually the cost of meat is cheaper per kg if you buy a larger packet. When it comes to chicken fillets or pork chops I always buy more than I will need to make a meal and then wrap the fillets or chops up individually or in twos and freeze them until needed.
  2. Less meat, more veg. Vegitables tend to cost less than meat so add more veg to your dishes and keep the meat content down, this will make your food healthier too. When reading my recipes you'll notice that I sometimes only use one chicken fillet for 2 adults and a baby.
  3. Cook in bulk. It's the same principle as in tip one, bigger packs tend to cost less per g/kg. Cooking in bulk and freeze individual portions or family sized meals will save time as well as money, and who doesn't need more time?
  4. Plan ahead. Each week when I write my shopping list I plan out the meals we will be eating in advance and then buy what I need. Planning your meals, writing a shopping list and sticking to it will save you money. By planning ahead you can also group meals together to use up fresh ingredients before they go off. For example if you're cooking a whole chicken think about what other meals you could make with the leftover chicken, such as pizza, pie or soup. You should be able to get at least two meals from a whole chicken, I once managed four.
  5. Keep it simple. I alot of the time when I look at recipes I dispair at how many ingredients are needed and a lot of then not things you generally have as standard in the kitchen. I try to keep my recipes simple but tasty, you'll notice a core set of ingredients popping up time and again in my recipes, such as red onions, sweet potatoes, cheese, garlic, paprika and cinnamon.
  6. Utalise the freezer. I've already touched on this in some of the other tip but freezing extra ingredients and leftovers will keep costs down. There's also nothing wrong with using frozen veg if you know that you're not going to use enough of a fresh pack in a short amount of time before it goes off. Personally I find it really useful to freeze fresh herbs, you never need a full pack for any recipe so why not freeze what you don't need for next time? Herbs defrost instantly if you run them under cold water and are a great way to add flavour to cooking.
  7. There's nothing wrong with value brands. Most of the things I buy are either value or own brand. I find the quality and nutritional content is generally just as good or better than branded.
  8. Shop around? Or not. This one depends on how much you value your time Vs saving a bit of money. Personally I don't shop around but if you do have the time then you can get some good deals on fruit and veg at some of the discount supermarkets, but do look out for best before date and how generally healthy the produce looks. In the few occasions that I've shopped at a discount supermarket I've found that I've been caught out by things going off really quickly such as next day, dispite the BBD.
I hope these tips help you make a few savings. Why not share your own money saving tips in the comments below?

Wednesday, 7 June 2017

Vinaigrette Chicken Recipe

Can be mashed up so great for stage 2 weaning and beyond. I serve mine with cheesy mash potatoes, peas and sweetcorn.

Serves 2 adults and 1 baby

Vinaigrette Chicken, cheesy mash, peas and sweetcorn baby portion - stage 3 weaning
Vinaigrette Chicken, cheesy mash, peas and sweetcorn adult portion


  • 2 chicken breast fillets
  • 500ml chicken stock (using Boots Baby Organic stock cubes which have less then 0.01g salt per 100ml)
  • 2 tbsp tomato puree
  • 4 tbsp balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tbsp olive oil
  • Optional 3 sliced mushrooms 


  1. Make the vinaigrette by dissolving the stock cube in 500ml of boiling water, stir in the tomato puree and balsamic vinegar.
  2. Heat the oil in a frying pan then add the chicken (and mushrooms if using).
  3. Lightly sear the chicken then add the vinaigrette to the pan.
  4. Cook on a low heat for 15 minutes.
  5. Check that the chicken is cooked all the way through then remove from the pan and cut into strips.
  6. Turn the heat to high and leave the vinaigrette to reduce for 3-5 minutes.
  7. When serving pour the vinaigrette over the sliced chicken.

    Example of baby led weaning - baby eating Vinaigrette Chicken, cheesy mash, peas and sweetcorn
    Isabella feeding herself vinaigrette chicken.

Monday, 29 May 2017

Pizza Dough Recipe

Pizza makes a great finger food if you're doing baby led weaning and if you make it yourself it doesn't have to be unhealthy.

The pizza pictured has been topped with homemade tomato and basil sauce​ (click through for the recipe), roast chicken, mushrooms, red onion, yellow pepper, sweetcorn and cheese. Top your dough with your own favourite flavours for a personalised​ pizza.

Serves 3-4 adults and 1 baby (if served with a side dish; such as sweet potato fries, loaded jackets or wedges).


  • 400g strong white bread flour
  • 2 1/4tsp yeast
  • A pinch of caster sugar (I would normally avoid adding sugar to anything I'm cooking for a baby, but unfortunately without it the yeast won't work)
  • 325ml warm water


  1. Combine the flour, yeast and sugar in a bowl.
  2. Pour in the water a small about at a time until a pliable but not sticky dough is achieved (you may not need all the water. If the dough becomes sticky add a bit more flour).
  3. Knead the dough on a floured surface for 5 minutes until smooth and elastic.
  4. Return the dough to the bowl and cover with a tea towel. Leave to rise in a warm place for 1 hour.
  5. After 1 hour punch down the dough and leave for a further 30 minutes.
  6. Oil a large baking tray.
  7. Transfer the dough to a floured surface and roll out to match the size of the baking tray.
  8. Cover with layers of pizza sauce, cheese and your favourite toppings.
  9. Bake in a preheated oven at 200C for 20-25 minutes.

Sunday, 28 May 2017

Paprika Chicken Recipe

Not the prettiest looking of my recipes but definitely one of the tastiest. Can be served with jacket potatoes (I always do jacket sweet potatoes for Isabella because of the higher nutritional content) or pasta. If you've got enough left over sauce you can, get two meals out of this by serving with jacket potatoes for tea and then using the leftover sauce with pasta for dinner the next day.

Paprika Chicken recipe served with jacket potatoes adult portion

This is a great dish for different weaning stages as its easily puréed or can be cut into small chunks for baby to (somewhat messily) feed themselves.

Serves 2-3 adults and 1 baby.

Baby portion of paprika chicken and jacket sweet potato chunks


  • 2 chicken breast fillets
  • 1 clove of garlic
  • 500ml single cream
  • 500ml chicken stock (made using a Boots baby organic stock cube as this has virtually no salt in as oppose to regular stock cubes that have a high salt content)
  • 4tsp paprika
  • 4tsp dried mixed herbs
  • 50g grated cheese
  • 500ml boiling water


  1. Dice or crush the garlic and place in a measuring jug.
  2. Add the stock cube, paparika, herbs and water to the jug and stir till dissolved.
  3. Dice the chicken and place in an oven proof dish.
  4. Pour the stock mixture over the chicken then add the cream. Gently stir (so that the sauce doesn't slop over the sides) until the cream and stock mixture are combined.
  5. Bake in a preheated oven at 180C for 40 minutes.
  6. Removed from the oven and sprinkle over the cheese (most of the cheese will sink into the sauce so don't worry about this). 
  7. Return to the oven for a further 20 minutes then serve.
  8. If you are keeping the leftover​ sauce, pour it into an airtight container and keep in the fridge.

    Baby led weaning baby eating paprika Chicken and sweet potato
    Isabella feeding herself paprika chicken and sweet potato chunks.

Sunday, 21 May 2017

Cheese and Chive (or Blueberries and Cinnamon) Baked Pancakes Recipe

These little pancakes are great for lunch and brilliant for baby led weaning. The basic batter can be used with other ingredients as well as cheese and chive to create​ a variety of different flavours. For breakfast adding blueberries and cinnamon instead of cheese and chive gives you a delicious treat.

To make this recipe you will need 4 cup Yorkshire pudding trays.

Cheese and Chive Baked Pancakes


  • 150g plain flour
  • 1 egg
  • 3/4 cup water
  • 3/4 cup whole milk
  • 50g greated cheese
  • 1 tbsp chopped chives 
  • Unsalted butter for greasing

  • 100g blueberries
  • 1tsp cinnamon
  1. Preheat oven to 200 C
  2. Put all the ingredients into a large measuring jug and whisk until fully combined.
  3. Place a small amount of unsalted butter into each cup of Yorkshire pudding trays and melt in the oven until bubbling.
  4. Remove the trays from the oven and pour in a thin layer of batter.
  5. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes​.
  6. Serve as is or top with meats and pickle for the cheese and chive pancakes or banana and maple syrup for the blueberry and cinnamon pancakes.

Thursday, 11 May 2017

Tomato & Basil Pasta / Pizza Sauce

The quantities of ingredients shown for this recipe are for a bulk batch that will give you 3 servings of pasta sauce (to feed 1 baby and 3 adults) and 1 serving of pizza sauce (to feed 1 baby and 4 adults). Once made the sauce can be boxed up and frozen to be defrosted when needed.

Tomato and basil pasta sauce on spaghetti


  • 18 tomatoes
  • 3 red onions
  • 3 cloves garlic
  • 2tbsp oil
  • 25g basil


  1. Score a cross in the bottom of each tomato, place in boiling water for 5 minutes then drain.
  2. Dice the onion and garlic.
  3. Place the oil and onion in an extra large pan and cook on a medium/high heat for 4 minutes.
  4. Add the garlic and reduce to a low heat and cook for a further minute.
  5. Remove the skin of the tomatoes (it should just peel away from the cross in the bottom) and dice. 
  6. Tear up the basil and add to the pan along with the diced tomatoes. Cook for a further 20 minutes.
  7. Remove from the heat and allow to cool slightly before blitzing in a food processor, (depending on the size of your processor you may need to do this in batch).
  8. Box in airtight containers and refrigerate or freeze until needed.

Monday, 24 April 2017

Rosemary Chicken, Mushroom & Kale with Cheesy Spaghetti Recipe

Serves 2 adults and 1 baby.

I like to use fresh herbs rather than jars of dried herbs in my cooking, the flavour you get is a lot better. However, buying fresh herbs every time you need them can be expensive and wasteful unless you're green fingered and can grow your own. I'm not, I've tried but I always end up with shriveled brown clumps apart from with mint which just takes over and you can't it stop growing. Instead I buy bags of fresh herbs and freeze them, you rarely need the full bag for any recipe and herbs defrost super quick if you run them under cold water, meaning that I always have a stock of herbs in to flavour a meal at a moments notice.

Chicken, mushroom and kale cheesy spagetti recipe


  • 1 Chicken breast fillet
  • 4 Mushrooms
  • 75g Kale
  • 1 Clove of garlic
  • 1 sprig of Rosemary
  • 200g Soft Cheese
  • 300g Spaghetti


  1. Preheat oven to 200C.
  2. Slice the mushrooms and dice the chicken breast and garlic. Place in a lidded oven proof dish along with the rosemary. Bake in the oven for 15 minutes.
  3. Put the spaghetti on to cook, this should be brought to the boil and then simmered for 20 minutes.
  4. After baking for 15 minutes remove the oven proof dish from the oven and add the kale. Return to the oven with the lid on for a further 10 minutes.
  5. Drain the spaghetti, then in a large bowl mix in the soft cheese, add the contents of the oven proof dish including the juice and stir into the cheesy spaghetti.

Wednesday, 19 April 2017

Tomato, Spinach & Mushroom Omelette Recipe

Omelette is a great base to add a selection of veggies to, so why not mix and match your favourites? As well as tomato, spinach and mushroom, why not try omelette with onion, leek, sweetcorn, pepper or cheese? Also plain omelette on toast also goes down really well with my daughter and is easy to cut into finger food.

Spinach, tomato and mushroom omlette cut into finger food for baby


  • 4 eggs
  • 50ml whole milk
  • 1-2 tbsp olive oil
  • Sprinkle of paprika
  • 1 tomato
  • 3 mushrooms
  • 25g spinach


  1. Chop the tomato and mushrooms, add to a frying pan with the oil and cook for 5 minutes.
  2. Add the spinach to the pan and cook for a further 5 minutes.
  3. While the vegetables  are cooking, whisk the eggs, milk and paprika together.
  4. Pour into the pan and cook until the egg is fully solid, turning once (remember that babies can only eat well cooked eggs).