Our Family Holiday in France

Finally got around to putting these up!

Some photographs from our Holiday in France in August 2012.


Want It Wednesday – Velcro Sneakers

Wasn’t sure about these at first, then saw them in a magazine article, the idea is starting to grow on me!  Think I’ll stick to a navy or black pair though, the orange are my favourites but I can’t imagine what I would wear them with!

Try It Out Thursday – Traditional Cottage Pie

Perfect for the cold evenings we’ve been having lately!  Enjoy!

Traditional Cottage Pie


  • 900g peeled potatoes, quartered
  • 6 tbsp milk
  • 100g butter, cubed (for the potatoes) + 1 tbsp for the sauce
  • Salt and ground black pepper
  • 1/2 tbsp cooking oil
  • 115g chopped onion
  • 115g chopped carrot
  • 1 clove garlic, minced
  • 450g ground/ minced beef
  • 1 pint / 600 ml beef stock
  • 115g chopped mushrooms
  • 2 tbsp finely chopped flat leaf parsley ( I didn’t have this so I used a tbsp. of thyme instead)
  • 1 tbsp all-purpose flour
  • 1-2 tbsp. tomato puree (optional – I added this myself)
  • 115g grated Cheddar Cheese


Serves 6

  • Heat the oven to 375°F/190°C/Gas 5
  • Boil the potatoes until soft, drain. Place the milk and butter in the pan used to boil the potatoes, return to the heat and warm gently until the butter has melted. Add the potatoes and mash. Season to taste and keep to one side.
  • Melt the lard or dripping in a large deep pan. Add the onion and carrot and fry for 5 minutes. Add the garlic and cook for another minute.
  • Add the ground beef and one quarter of the beef stock to the onion and carrot mixture and cook, stirring constantly until all the meat is browned. Add the remaining stock, parsley and mushrooms, season with salt and pepper. Cover with a lid and cook for 15 minutes.
  • Mash the flour into the remaining 1 tbsp butter then add in small pieces to the ground meat sauce, stirring until all the flour has dissolved and the sauce has thickened slightly, approx 5 mins.
  • Place the meat sauce into an ovenproof dish and cover with the mashed potato. Sprinkle the grated cheese on top of the potato and bake in the heated oven for 30 – 35 mins until the surface is crisp and browned. Serve immediately.

Try It Out Thursday – Thai Green Chicken Curry

Late this week again!  I have been neglectful of my blog lately, time to play catch up & hopefully get back on track!

This week, it’s a favourite recipe of mine, very simple but delicious, shown to me by my sister in law, hubbys favourite dinner & both small boy & girl love it!

It’s very time friendly as well, perfect for a quick dinner but I tend to keep it for the weekends, serve it with a bag of Thai crackers & open a bottle of white wine to accompany it.

Thai Green Curry

Serves 2-3

2-3 chicken fillets

As many green beans as you like!

3 -4 tablespoons of green thai curry paste (depending on how hot you like your curry!)

1 400 ml tin coconut milk (full or reduced fat)

1. Cut chicken into strips & fry with green beans until chicken is cooked through.

2. Add curry paste & fry for a further 2-3 minutes.

3. Add tin of coconut milk, bring to the boil & simmer for 5-10 minutes.

4. Serve with rice & thai or prawn crackers.

Yes, it’s that easy!


Try It Out Thursday – Vanilla Cupcakes

One of my favourite recipes! So simple, so quick & so, so yummy!

Vanilla Cupcakes

Makes 12

150 g (5 oz) butter, softened

150 g (5 oz) caster sugar

175 g (6 oz) self raising flour, sieved

3 eggs

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

1. Stand 12 silicone cupcake cases on a baking sheet or line a 12 section cupcake tin with paper or foil cases.

2. Put all of the cake ingredients in a bowl & beat with a hand-held electric whisk until light & creamy.  Divide the mixture between the cases.

3. Bake in a preheated oven at 180 oC (350 oF) for 20 minutes or until risen & just firm to the touch.  Transfer to a wire rack to cool.