Tuesday, 20 January 2009

new year, new way of eating

I feel that i have been neglecting my blog! My excuse is that i had a hectic and very sociable weekend, and i haven't quite mastered the art of cooking for other people, being hostess AND taking photos to post on here!

Last Friday was a mexican night in with the girls, when i produced my famous guacamole, nachos, beef fajitas and vegetable chilli (Lee's Hippy Farm Beans from the Leon cookbook). Dessert was the most delicious Chocolate Pots from Nigella Bites.

Saturday was spent eating leftovers from the night before and going to a fantastic wedding reception in the evening.

Sunday was all about planning and preparing a roast dinner for a friend (who happens to be a very good cook - no pressure then...) when i made Jamie Oliver's perfect roast chicken (taken from The Naked Chef), crispy roast potatoes and parsnips, sweet potato gratin (from Ottolenghi The Cookbook) and some simple peas and carrots. I hadn't cooked a roast for ages, but it all turned out well and we finished it off with some home-made apple crumble and cream (should have been freshly made custard but it curdled beyond repair...).

So tonight, i was determined to cook AND blog! But first i will explain my new year way of eating. I have spent the last couple of weeks sorting out my finances, my cupboards, my life in general... This was brought on by reading The Thrift Book by India Knight which is a modern day guide to living well and spending less. Tying in with all things credit crunch, i have decided if i make less visits to Waitrose each week, i will definitely save money and not waste so much food. It is all too easy for me to get carried away deciding on a must-cook recipe and ignore the actual contents of my fridge. So, i am making the most of the food i have and only shopping for fresh essentials as and when i need them. The secret of this is having a well-stocked cupboard which, thanks to the aforementioned Waitrose, I do!
A book i will be referring to often and which i have had for a good number of years is off the shelf by Donna Hay. Tonight i needed to use left over roast chicken and this recipe was perfect:

I didn't realise there were so many recipes on her website so i am off to explore some more...

Note to self: do not post too many pasta recipes!


Anonymous said...

Well done you - I should follow suit, as I spent £20 in M&S yesterday AND today, and there are loads of things I could have used in my freezer instead. Shall try and not venture into M&S the rest of the week.

The Cottage Cheese said...

Great blog name!

Biba said...

I'm dying to read The Thrift Book but am being too 'thrifty' to go buy it hehe!! Maybe i can have a sneak peek of yours?? :)

griffo68 said...

Like the sound of the lemon chicken pasta!

Mr G.x

Lisa said...

You can do it AO, i have managed 3 days now - almost a record!

Thanks Cottage Cheese - love your website and etsy shop, especially your vintage cookery books!

I will lend you my book miss b, but if you're passing Waterstones, it was reduced to £5!

Thank you mr g! Will be posting a low-carb supper just for you!


Gemma said...

Keep meaning to get that book so thanks for the thrifty £5 tip. I often don't take photos when people are over because I feel bad about making them wait while I get a picture - most get over my reluctance to discuss my blog with people I know! Anyway, the pasta looks delicious and I am addicted to Donna Hay and her aesthetic so it must be good.

Oh and the sweet potato gratin is bookmarked in Ottolenghi, I assume it was good?

Lisa said...

I know what you mean, this is my guilty secret at the moment!
The sweet potato gratin was delicious, will definitely make it again. And you should try the sweet potato galettes from Ottolenghi too - i will be blogging about them later this week.