Tuesday, 8 October 2013

Delicious Dinner and No Spending

I am up and about early this morning, goodness knows why as I sat up quite late last night. Francesca loaded Netflix on to the laptop and I watched a Meryl Streep and Tommy Lee Jones film, it was good, I think that Jack Nicholson would have been better, as he was a few years ago, but time marches on, even Hollywood can only slow it down so much.

Back to the title, another step on my "use it up" path and a no spend day. I wanted something easy, tasty and "free" for dinner last night. I rootled through the fridge and found 2 limp leeks, about 100 gms of grated cheddar and a bag of Continental Mix Salad leaves, Hmmmmm, it was a start.

Take a deep breath and open the chest freezer, a quick dig and a packet of bacon bits came to light. These were the trimmings from Mr S,s packs of Cooking Bacon, all the little bits put in to make the weight up. When I buy a few packs I open them and freeze the chops individually wrapped in freezer paper and bung all the bits in a bag and freeze as a lump.

Back to the fridge and extract 2 big mushrooms. Chop, slice dice and sweat!

leeks washed, sliced and sweating in a tbsp of butter.

Mushrooms diced and ready to go into a pan with a little butter, I cook these gently, stirring occasionally, until the liquid has evaporated. 

The bacon, finely chopped and soaked in a bowl of boiling water for a few minutes, this removes a lot of the salt content and just about cooks the bacon, that way it will not leach liquid into the sauce.
Once the leeks were soft, about 10 minutes, I added a heaped dessert spoon of plain flour to make a roux and cooked it for 3 minutes or so and added around 1 1/2 pints of milk, slowly to make a sauce, a tsp of Dijon Mustard helps boost the flavour and simmered for another 3 minutes to cook the flour.

Dolloped the bacon in after it had drained well and gave it a good mix round, I added most of the cheese and then divided the mix into 2 portions.

The largest amount had the mushrooms stirred in, was tipped into a dish and had the remaining cheese sprinkled on top. This went under the grill for long enough to melt the cheese and crisp it up.

The rest went into a dish ready for Francesca to "nuke" when she came home. She likes it sans mushrooms and crispy topping.

Here is the big one, straight from the grill, the smell was amazing.

And this was how I served it, the hot bubbling pasta and the cool crisp leaves are a match made in heaven. 

The left overs, intentional, will make another 2 meals, probably 1 into the freezer and 1 tomorrow with a chopped salad. I did "feed a friend" with this, I did not eat it all myself.
I used the last of my "white" Fusilli pasta from AF and am now going to start on  the mixed grain Penne pasta also from AF.

I cook many different pastas at work and the AF pasta is far better!

I picked my rose hips, washed, drained and dried them, chopped them in the processor and froze them. I have run out of the dimpled vacuum forming lids and I need them for the puree. Their day will come.

I did a little sewing, just strip after strip of fabric sewn together. Once I have emptied the basket I will decide what to make and share it.

Reasons to be grateful.

1. My brother in WA has finally moved and I am off to visit him next year.

2. My garden is still producing food and flowers, thankfully I have no grass to mow.

3. A sunny but cooler start to the day.

4. The MASSIVE spider that was living in the bathroom seems to have moved out. Whew!!

5. No more Crane Flies swooping round like acrobats.

I am off to shower, dress and take Ben for an amble round the village. Work tonight so I will probably have a little doze later on. A bit of gentle sewing and when I press the seams I will iron the few bits in the basket.
 I am going to soak all my mugs in a solution of Boots Baby sterilising tablets, that is what it says on the packet. Personally I think they mean the bottles should be sterilised not the baby! Because I drink my tea and coffee strong, black and unsweetened, and our water is very hard my mugs get stained and I do this every 2 weeks or so. When the mugs come out I put all my dish cloths in and give them a "birthday".

My internet access is still hit and miss and I can not get into Outlook for emails, I spent ages on the phone yesterday trying to get to B T Today I will have another session.

On that somewhat miffed note I say.

                            TTFN                             Pam


  1. Hi! Where do you get the dimpled vacuum forming lids, please?

    1. My last lot were bought at was then a WI market. I buy all my jamming stuff from The Jam Jar Co. i do not know if they stock them I will be looking at their web site later. I f not I will Google it.

  2. Your output here, and frequency is amazing, thank you :-)

    1. Rupert, all my famil,y can "talk the hind leg off a Donkey" and this is just talking in writing.

  3. Your pasta bake looks amazing. I use lots of baby sterilizer its great for cleaning cloths, caravan sinks, water bottles and as I drink strong black mug!!

  4. oh wow , you just made me hungry, the pasta bake looks fantastic, and oh so scrummy

    Sharon x

  5. Maybe you can buy the lids at Lakeland Plastics .. just a thought.
    Pasta looks good ... real stick to ya ribs stuff!

    Vicky x

  6. pasta looks fab am going to try making this its exactly the kind of thing I like to eatx


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