Forget chopping, peeling and grating and save time in the kitchen with Very Lazy's range of chopped ingredients! Only the finest produce is sourced, prepared and preserved in white wine vinegar ready to tantalise those tastebuds. Once opened they last 12 weeks in your fridge so plenty of time to create culinary masterpieces galore.
I've just started using these in my recipes and they do take a lot of off the fuss out of the prep work, especially when I'm trying to get a dish into the slow cooker as quickly as possible with a toddler hanging off my leg! Check out my Spanish Chicken recipe using their chopped garlic and red chillis!
I have 3 sets of Very Lazy chopped range (Ginger, Garlic and Red Chilli) to give away to 3 lucky winners. Simply complete the rafflecopter form below to enter. You can find out more about Very Lazy's full range of cooking ingredients at verylazy.com
This is a favourite slow cooker dish of mine because it is so quick to prepare and tastes delicious! I recommend using chicken thigh fillets as they hold up better during the slow cooking process.
600g chicken thigh fillets
1 red pepper
1 yellow pepper
1 jar passata
1 tin chopped tomatoes
2 teaspoons Very Lazy chopped garlic
1 teaspoon Very Lazy chopped chilli
Garlic Italian spice mix
Place the chicken thighs in a slow cooker
Chop the peppers and onion into strips and place on top of the chicken.
Add the chopped garlic, chopped chilli and Italian herbs.
Pour in the passata and tinned tomatoes.
Give everything a good stir.
Pop the lid on the slow cooker and cook on low for 8hrs. (If your sauce needs thickening add a squeeze of tomatoe purée half way through)
Serve with fluffy rice or sweet potato wedges and green veg.
Afternoon tea at The Park Lane Hotel. Review coming soon...
Father's Day is an extra special day for us because 2yrs ago we found out we were pregnant with Little I on Father's Day morning.
I'm not sure I'll ever top that Father's Day gift for Husband but I'm always on the look out for the perfect present for him, my Dad and Father in Law. They are impossible to buy for! If you are bored with buying socks and 'Best Dad' mugs then take a look at my gift guide for some great ideas:
Baldwins Men's Range Gift Box £34.99
Because Dad deserves a bit of pampering too! This gift set from Baldwins is beautifully presented and contains a selection of Green Tea and Frankincense facial products. Facial wash, exfoliator, shaving oil and facial lotion plus a natural cotton face towel; everything he needs to keep his face in tip top condition.
Baker Ross Father's Day craft range from £1.99
Kids making a gift for Dad can be extra special and younger children really get a kick out of creating mini masterpieces. Baker Ross do a selection of great, reasonably priced Father's Day craft projects from colour your own Dad's face cards to handprint keepsakes. Little E is particularly looking forward to painting a wooden DAD sign for Husband to hang on his shed.
How to Draw Pokemon
This How to Draw Pokemon book is perfect for Dad's to spend some time with their kids drawing some of their most loved Pokemon characters with the kids (or without them if they are big kids themselves!) read the full info here
Make a Bar Chocolate Factory £3.99
Ted Baker M Eau de Toilette Gift Set £14.99
Sometimes you just can't beat giving a nice aftershave! Ted Baker M is one of my favourite scents on Husband and this little gift set is great because it contains a 30ml Eau de Toilette, 100ml body wash and 100ml aftershave balm all for £14.99! The box is pretty cool too...
Available exclusively from The Perfume Shop
Braun CruZer5 Clean Shave £89.99
Vileda Windowmatic £49.99
Lego Superman LED keychain £6.99
For more great gift ideas check out last year's gift guide
I was sent some of these products to review but all opinions are my own.
It has been a little while since I shared a siblings shot but this snap of my girls sitting together in the garden struck a chord. I love how at ease they are with each other. I could watch these everyday moments endlessly.
(PS yes, that is the view from our postage stamp garden!)
I've got a phobia of sand. This didn't bode well for one of our craft activities this week as had some Sand Art from Baker Ross to try out. The sun was out so I figured the sand couldn't do me much harm outside... Surely...
We were sent a few of Baker Ross' Sand Art products but there are loads more on the website. We had Floursescent Sand (6 pack), Animal Sand Art Bottles (6 pack) and Sand Art Pictures (8 pack)
We started off with the Sand Art Pictires. Initially I was skeptical because I thought it involved glue (glue + sand = yuck) but I soon realised the pictures were sticky sheets which allowed you to remove sections of the design to apply different colours of sand one at a time. Brilliant.
Then you choose your first colour sand and cover your design
Then you shake off the excess sand (into a little Tupperware container in our case to save the sand) and to reveal it has only adhered to the sticky bit.
You remove the next set of sticky bits and repeat the process.
You do this a few times until you have your completed picture
There were lots of different designs from astronauts to butterflies! We were sent the Floursescent sand to try but you can get different colour sands or try mixing them. Little E created her own mix to give her another colour option.
I was really impressed how well these pictures came out. Really sharp edges and easy for younger children to do themselves. It would be immense to try this with glitter!
The second part of our sand activity was Animal Sand Bottles. This was so much fun! The kit comes with a little funnel and you layer different colour sands in the animal shape plastic bottle all the way up to the top.
Little E loved this and got very creative with her designs.
By the end we had a little army of sand animals! They reminded me of a little bottle I filled with sand when I was little. I still have it somewhere and I must locate it to show Little E what I made as a little girl. Great fun.
Overall I was stunned by how this activity kept 4yr old Little E focused. We spent 90minutes creating the sand art and she easily would have continued and finished all the pictures if there had been more time (her little sister woke up!). I've definitely overcome my fear of sand (at least art sand!) and we've got loads of sand left so we'll be doing this again with some of the other Baker Ross Sand Art products. A big thumbs up for outdoor sand crafting!
Baker Ross Floursescent sand x 6 £9.99, Sand Art Pictures x 8 £2.99, Animal Sand Art Bottles x 6 £3.49 available from bakerross.co.uk
Linking up to #letkidsbekids at letkidsbekids.co.uk #triedtested at myfamilyfever.co.uk and goingonanadventure.co.uk #minicreations at kidglloves.com #familytested at thegigglesfamily.com #countrykids at coombemill.com
We were sent these products to review as part of the Baker Ross Blogger Network but all opinions are our own.
Chilli is my go to recipe when I have a fridge full of raw veggies. I love packing it full of colour and the more variety the better. I add meat to mine but you can keep it veggie if you like - it tastes great either way!
750g lean beef mince
2 beef OXO cubes
3 cloves of garlic
Chilli powder (1-3tsp depending on how hot you like it)
1/2 teaspoon cumin
1/2 teaspoon dried oregano
3 squares of dark chocolate
2 tins chipped tomatoes
1/2 tin water
1tbsp tomato puree
Whatever veggies you fancy! In this dish I used:
1 red pepper
A handful of sugarsnap peas
Firstly dice the onion and vegetables relatively small - depending on how chunky you like your chilli!
Then grease a saucepan with your preferred oil (coconut oil in my case) and gently fry off the spices for 1 minute. Add the onion and gently cook for a couple of minutes.
Then throw in your veggies starting with the hardest ones like carrots and peppers then add softer veg (mushrooms, aubergine etc) a few minutes later.
Keep stirring them about until everything has softened down. Then add the garlic (crushed or chopped) for the final couple of minutes.
Remove the softened veggies from the pan and set aside.
If you are using beef now brown it off in the saucepan for a couple of minutes.
When browned drain off as much fat as possible before crumbling the stock cubes over the meat and adding the softened vegetables.
Tip in the tinned tomatoes and add the purée, water and oregano.
Give it a proper good stir and leave it for a while to simmer on a low heat. The longer the better but at least an hour. Keep an eye on it to check it doesn't dry out and add extra water as needed!!
Now for the magic bit - just before serving melt in the dark chocolate. Trust me it sounds odd but it makes the sauce so rich and deep.
We are low carb in this house so I serve on sweet potato jackets or brown rice (or just on it's own with a sprinkle of cheese on top). As it is packed with veggies it is a super filing meal which freezes really well making it ideal for batch baking.
A few weeks back we received a big box jammed full of lovely new arts and crafts materials from Baker Ross. Something which immediately caught my eye were the Kaleidoscope scratch art kits because I knew Little E would love them.
There are 5 different printed kaleidoscope designs and you get 2 of each in the pack of 10. You also get 10 little scratchy sticks (fab if you are using these for activities at birthday parties because each child will have their own stick) to aid the scratching and 10 multicoloured ribbons to hang the cards when finished.
It is really simple - you scratch off the black film on top to reveal the multicoloured card below. Older children can follow the printed design on top leaving some segments black to create a contrasting design (the packaging gives them a template to follow) or if your children are younger like Little E they can have loads of fun free styling it.
Little E absolutely loved it and I've never seen her concentrate so hard! She had me doing some sections and even Husband got involved.
This is a great no mess activity which would be perfect for taking out restaurants or to keep kids busy on planes and holidays. Or you can just enjoy them at home! Looking on the website they have loads of different designs from scratch wristbands to doodle pads so we'll be ordering more!
Baker Ross Kaleidoscope Scratch Art Hanging Decorations £2.99 for a pack of 10 (that's 30p each) Buy online at bakerross.co.uk
We were sent this kit to review but all opinions are our own
Well last week was a fantastic success - I stuck to my plan and cooked as planned plus batch baked for the freezer. Probably the best dish of the week was fish pie which took ages to prep but tasted immense.
I forgot to post my rainbow chilli recipe last week so keep your eyes peeled for that along with the fish pie recipe (it was too good not to share!) towards the end of the week.
This week we are out a lot but here is what I have planned:
Monday: Roast gammon with pesto bulgar wheat and spinach
Tuesday: Cottage pie with sweet potato topping and hidden veg (batch bake for freezer)
Wednesday: Chicken with roast tomato and garlic sauce, sweet potato wedges and brocolli
Thursday: Fish chowder
Saturday: Tuna superfood salad
Little E is a massive fan of Shaken Udder Kids milkshakes, especially the chocolate flavour and I must admit I am rather partial to the strawberry... We have 3 mixed flavour cases worth £22 to give away to 1 lucky winner!
Artist, Baker and Blogger. Mum to my two beautiful, cheeky girls. Muddling my way through parenthood with equally cheeky Husband.