More than just a Butternut Squash

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We love butternut squash in our house, but it can get a bit boring.  When Morrisons sent us   a selection of foods to try, I decided it was time to spice up our squash!  It’s a great accompaniment to so many main dishes.  Our current favourite is with Lemon Chicken.

Ingredients (serves 4)

1 x large Butternut Squash (peeled, de-seeded and cubed)

2x Red Onions (cubed)

Handful of fresh Rosemary (taken off the main stalk)

1/2 packet of Feta (cubed)

Olive Oil

Salt and Pepper

 

Method:

  1. Preheat oven to 180 C
  2. Place butternut squash cubes, onions, rosemary and a generous amount of salt ad pepper into a big bowl.
  3. Cover in a splash of olive oil and mix, so each piece is slightly coated.
  4. Place the mixture in a roasting tray and put in the oven for 30-40mins, until the butternut squash begins to turn golden brown and the veg is soft enough for a knife can easily go through.
  5. Remove from oven and sprinkle the feta on top.  Serve immediately.

 

Enjoy! x

Freshly-made Pesto Pasta

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I had never made fresh pesto before, but when Morrison’s kindly sent us some fresh basil, pine nuts and olive oil, I just had to try it out!  It really works too and was so easy and tasty.  Mia’s brother, Dominic, doesn’t like the pesto from a jar, but he tucked straight into this!

 

Ingredients (feeds a family of 4):

300g Gluten Free Pasta

Fresh Basil (3 handfuls of fresh leaves)

250g Pine nuts

1 x tsp Garlic Puree

100g Parmesan (grated)

Lemon Juice (from half lemon)

Olive Oil

Salt and Pepper

 

Method:

  1. Put pasta into a pan of boiling water with a splash of olive oil, cook as per the instructions on the packet.
  2. Meanwhile, put the basil, pine nuts, garlic, lemon juice and half the parmesan into a blender and whizz until it forms a paste.
  3. Then add a splash of olive oil and a bit more parmesan.  Whizz again and taste.
  4. Continue to add small amounts of olive oil and parmesan until you achieve your desired consistency and taste.
  5. When pasta has cooked and been drained, put the pesto into the pan with the pasta and heat gently for 2 minutes.
  6. Serve with a sprinkling of parmesan and a rocket salad.  Yum! Enjoy!

 

 

 

Morrisons are shining in the ‘Free From’ world

During Coeliac awareness week, last week, Mia was kindly invited to a tea party at Morrisons.  It was an amazing opportunity for My Little Coeliac to hear about Morrisons‘ Free From journey and their future plans….as well as eat our body weight in delicious gluten free goodies!
IMG_0152Morrisons now have more Free From products than ever before.  They have gone from having only 2 shelving compartments within their largest shops, to now having a whopping 9.  This is because their range of Free From products now exceeds 260!  Not only that, but they are aiming to have a specific Free From fridge and freezer section across many of their stores, to be located next to the Free From aisle.  We visited their newest store in Colindale, London.  The Free From section was so clearly advertised and easy to find from the entrance, which is what they are aiming to achieve across their stores.  It was so stress free and easy to shop there, I really wish all supermarkets would follow Morrisons‘ lead.

The other refreshing find was that their Free From buyer, Stef Downey, was actually there in person, chatting to us and asking for our opinions on products.  Her passion for finding the best products for her customers was clearly of huge importance for her and Morrisons.  Amazingly, My Little Coeliac was able to have a voice!

IMG_0154Within Morrisons, there are lots of easy ready-meals available now aimed at our little coeliacs, a vast range of cereals, treat items and many more.  However, My Little Coeliac have asked if we could see more party snack/lunch box ideas on their shelves in future, as this is our most challenging food issue.  Stef had already told us that there are areas that they are continuing to improve on and extending the Free From range to suit children is already on her list, which is wonderful news.

Watch this space as My Little Coeliac have been asked to be involved again with Morrisons in the future….exciting times!!
Morrisons also sent My Little Coeliac a huge selection of goodies, in order for us to create some yummy meals, which we will uploading onto the blog soon.  I was so pleasantly surprised by the prices of their market place fruit and veg, as well as their own brand of Free From treats.  It is most definitely our main supermarket of choice now.

IMG_0140.JPGMy Little Coeliac have given Morrisons a huge thumbs up for making life easier when it comes to catering for our little coeliacs safely.  Their prices are so good and the range of food is like no other supermarket.

Morrisons, we thank you so very much.

Mia and Lydia xox

 

 

 

 

Easy Easter baking

Easter is upon us! It has come around very quickly in our house and we have been somewhat unprepared, but we managed to make some advice treats that gave us a giggle.  My children really enjoy themed food, so we looked in the cupboards and found a pizza mix.  We decided that we should shape our pizza into an Easter bunny shape!  It was so simple and we used a pizza base mix, which took just a few minutes. We added mozzarella, olives and veg for the face.  Once cooked, it was demolished in seconds!

 

Their cakes later in the day obviously also had to follow the Easter theme, so we made our usual cupcakes and they decorated them with butter icing, marshmallows, raisins and inedible wooden sticks to add effect for whiskers!  They had great fun making them and of course eating them too.

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Easter should be fun and there is no reason why our little Coeliacs should miss out on the yummy things.

Happy Easter!

From Mia and Mummy X

Choco Health Bars

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Mia’s Auntie saw a similar recipe to this online and sent it to us.  We adapted it for our tastebuds and it was really quick and easy to make.  They taste very ‘healthy’ and I would say are for more grown up tastebuds.  I am going to try to adapt the recipe further to make them suitable for little ones too, but they are well worth a try and can be frozen.

 

Ingredients:

250g Chopped Dates

100g Raw Cashew Nuts

100g Desiccated Coconut

3 x heaped tbsp Peanut Butter (we used one without added sugar)

2 1/2 x tbsp Cocoa Powder

 

Method:

  1. Put all of the ingredients together in a blender and put on full power until it starts to stick together.
  2. Add more peanut butter if it isn’t sticking.
  3. My blender wasn’t big enough to do the whole amount in one go!
  4. Cover a baking tray in greaseproof paper and put the cocoa mixture onto the paper.
  5. Press down hard so it all sticks together, using roughly half of the tray and squish it all together.
  6. Pop it in the fridge for half an hour and then cut to size

 

We also think it’d be nice with apricots, cherries and maybe using cashew butter too.

Enjoy! x

 

Haddock Fishcakes

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We originally made these as a starter for the whole family and were inspired by a Mary Berry Christmas recipe.  They were such a hit that we have them as a regular supper now.  They are a bit fiddly to make, but you can make a whole batch and freeze them for a later date.  In fact, we think they maintain their shape better when they have been cooked from frozen (add 10-15 mins extra cooking time if cooking from frozen).

 

Ingredients: (makes approx 12)

450g potatoes (peeled and chopped)

450g fish (we use a mix of smoked and unsmoked haddock)

25g butter

3x tbsp fresh parsley/dill/coriander (chopped and optional)

2 X heaped tbsp mayonnaise

GF breadcrumbs (from approx 4-5 slices of bread)

 

Method:

  1. Preheat oven 200 degrees C
  2. Put potatoes in a saucepan and cover with water, bring to the boil and then simmer for 15 mins or until tender.
  3. Meanwhile, season the fish and wrap in foil with the butter. Place in oven, on a baking tray, for 12-15 mins.
  4. Mash potatoes using juices from the cooked fish.
  5. Flake the fish with a fork, getting rid of any bones and skin.
  6. Add the fish to the mash potato and mix well.
  7. Then add the rest of the ingredients, season well and mix thoroughly.
  8. Divide the mixture into 12 round fish cakes and cover in breadcrumbs.
  9. Leave to cool and freeze at this point if not eating today.
  10. If eating today, turn the oven up to 220 degrees C.
  11. Place on a greased baking tray and cook in oven for 20-25 mins, until golden brown, turning them over gently after 15 mins.

These are delicious served with a tartare sauce, a slice a lemon and a crunchy salad.

Enjoy X

 

(Many thanks to Auntie Jodie for the photo of Alex’s supper X)

 

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Banana Bites

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These were so quick and easy to make.  A perfect recipe to use up the old bananas at the back of the fridge!

 

Ingredients: (makes approx 12)

2 x over ripe bananas (mashed)

1 x cup GF oats

2 x tbsp maple syrup

1 1/2 tbsp x margarine

 

Method:

  1. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees C.
  2. Grease 2 baking trays.
  3. Put all the ingredients into a bowl and mix thoroughly.
  4. Make sure the mixture is firm enough to make into balls, if not then add a few more oats.
  5. Take a spoonful and roll into small ball shapes and place on baking tray a few inches apart from one another.
  6. Flatten each one with a fork.
  7. Place in oven for 10-15 minutes, until golden brown.
  8. Serve warm or cold.

 

These are delicious as a winter warming snack with a cuppa or hot chocolate, although they were originally designed as an alternative breakfast bite.

 

Enjoy x

Nairn’s Gluten Free Oatcakes – Review

Nairn’s very kindly sent Mia some of the oatcakes, from their gluten free range, for her to try.  Mia has always been a bit fussy about what crackers or bread she has, so I was a bit sceptical and thought they were more of an adult food.  However, Mia absolutely loved them, especially the cheese ones. She has them all the time now for lunches, snacks and has even had them at breakfast time!!

Mia’s favourite toppings are smoked salmon trimmings mixed with soft cheese or pate.  You literally could put anything on them though from ham and cheese to chocolate spread! They stayed fresh for ages and were excellent to include in packed lunches.  A few oatcakes were actually a lot more filling than the usual crispbreads too.

 

I wouldn’thave thought to buy these for a child, but in fact, they are exactly what my Mia enjoys!  If your child is able to eat gluten free oats, then I hope your little coeliac likes them too.  Thank you Nairn’s for creating such a super gluten free range.

 

Mia and Lydia xx

 

Udi’s Cranberry Granola – Review

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Udi’s very kindly sent Mia some products and this granola is the first that she has tried.  Mia is not a breakfast person at all and we have always found it difficult to feed her in the mornings (unless of course there is chocolate on the menu!).  I, therefore, was not hopeful for this product, but asked Mia what she wanted it with.  Mia was totally up for the challenge and created her own combination of natural yoghurt, honey and granola…….

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….. and she absolutely LOVES it!! She now has it in the mornings as a breakfast or in the evenings as a pudding.  Her brother has also followed suit and they even fight over whose having some.  Granola seems such a grown up thing to eat, but my little coeliac has now well and truly added it to her list of favourites!

Thank you Udi’s for inspiring Mia and creating such a yummy food.

Lydia and Mia x

Granny’s Celebration Carrot Cake

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This was made by my wonderful Mum as a birthday cake.  It was an absolutely delicious treat that the whole family enjoyed.  It is based on the Carrot Cake recipe in the book ‘The Gluten Free Cookbook: What to eat and what to cook on a gluten-free diet’ by H.Whinney, J.Lawrie and F.Hunter.

INGREDIENTS:

225g Muscavado Sugar

240ml Sunflower Oil

3 Eggs

225g GF flour

1 tsp GF Baking Powder

1/2 tsp GF Bicarbonate of Soda

1 tsp Xanthum Gum

1 tsp Ground Cinnamon

1 tsp Ground Ginger

225g Carrots (coarsely grated)

60g Walnuts (chopped) or Raisins

For the Icing:

30g Unsalted Butter (softened)

75g GF Soft Cheese

225g Icing Sugar

METHOD:

  1. Pre-heat the oven to 180 C
  2. Lightly grease a 23″ cake tin and line with greaseproof paper.
  3. In a large bowl, beat the sugar, oil and eggs until the mixture is smooth and thick.
  4. Sift in the flour, baking powder, soda, xanthum, cinnamon and ginger.
  5. Fold it well into the mixture.
  6. Then fold in the walnuts/raisins.
  7. Bake for 60-90 minutes, depending on your oven, until the cake is golden brown.
  8. Transfer immediately to a wire rack to cool.
  9. Wait until it is completely cool, before putting the icing on.
  10. For the icing, put the butter and soft cheese in a bowl and mix thoroughly.
  11. Sift in the icing sugar, a little at a time.
  12. Smooth the icing mixture on to the top of the cake.

For an extra special addition on the top of the cake, add some White Chocolate Crunchies.