Posted in cooking, Food, Fruit, leftovers, Summer, Uncategorized

Banana Pancakes

Well there’s been a lot happening at Simple Life HQ, so much so it has kept me away from you.

We’ve had some hot weather the last week or so here and though I love bananas I can’t eat them fast enough. When it’s hot you need some recipes using the ones which have become very ripe! I generally google around for ideas and then make something completely different or inspired be what I’ve seen.

So banana pancakes! I just used the basic batter recipe that I use for just about everything 2 oz flour (I like to use gram flour) 2 eggs and as much milk I need to get it to the consistency I want.  (recipe for two people) and then just added half a ripe banana mashed up.

Then I sliced the rest of the banana up and layered them with the pancakes, yogurt and runny honey.


Pancakes 1 Pancakes 2
It was delicious.

Using gram flour makes it very light and I use sheep’s yogurt which is very light too and all very good for you 🙂

Posted in Chickens, cooking, Food, Hints & Tips, home, leftovers, Self reliance, spring

Home Grown Chicken for Dinner

Well, this is a huge sense of achievement. We’ve just had one of our own home grown chickens for dinner. These are three more going in the freezer. One small step towards self sufficiency! Girls for laying, boys for eating 🙂P1380113
We pot roasted one (which I forgot to photograph to show you) and this is a risotto with some leftovers. I also plan a pie or pasty for tonight and then make some stock for some soup.P1380114
This makes me happy! 🙂

Posted in challenges, cooking, Food, Hints & Tips, leftovers

Broccoli Soup

You may well know that Hugh Fernley-Whittingstall is my life style guru. He’s definitely been an inspiration in how I want to live my life. This soup came about because of being reminded about how you can clear your fridge of any aging vegetables and make soup. Not that I need reminding really but it does help and I do get a sense of achievement when I’ve done it.

I had two broccoli heads I had bought that had been reduced for about 25p each and I hadn’t had a chance to use them. I decided It was possible to make some soup.

Soup 1

After frying some onions, garlic with a little celery salt (you can use normal salt) and a couple of carrots, I broke up the broccoli and popped it in the pan and added enough stock to just cover the veg.

Soup 2

I cooked it until the veg was tender and then whizzed it up in my blender and put it back in the pan. I had a little soft goats cheese in the fridge that needed using so I popped that in.

Soup 3

Voila, a lovely nutritious lunch for the two of us for at least three days! 🙂

Soup 4

Posted in cooking, Food, Hints & Tips, home, leftovers

Curry made with Leftovers

I love inventing recipes when I come to the end of my supplies and there are odd bits of food in the fridge. I also find it economical to buy a joint for roasting, larger than I need to use over a few days.

I made this curry using what I had left in the fridge the other day. No waste, frugal food that is tasty and nourishing.

I diced a small amount of leftover roast pork (it doesn’t matter if it’s only a small amount as you can bulk it out with vegs)

Pork 1

I had about three mushrooms and half a onion which I chopped. (It does’t matter at all if your mushrooms have gone a bit soft)

Pork 2

I fried the onion and mushroom with a little oil in a pan with curry powder. Stirred in the pork, a hand full of raisins and some tinned tomatoes. Then I added enough water to the mix to keep it simmering and a little salt.

Pork 3

Meanwhile I had some rice cooking on another hob.

Pork 4
It was rather yummy! 🙂

Rice, tinned tomatoes, raisins and curry powder are all good ingredients to keep in the cupboard to use with leftovers.

Posted in challenges, Fruit, gardening, Hints & Tips, In the garden, leftovers, Self reliance, Summer, wine

Rhubarb Wine

Remember this, the stringy old rhubarb only fit for the compost heap!.P1030328
Well it’s now ready for the compost heap….P1030338
after a soaking in water with a spoon of  pectolaise to release the lovely juice.P1030339
With added sugar and yeast it is heading for the airing cupboard to be forgotten about for a few months until it’s ready to bottle.
I’ve never made rhubarb wine before so we’ll have to see how it comes out! 🙂


Posted in baking, cakes, cooking, Food, leftovers, spring

Apple and marmalade cake

Last weekend I discovered this delicious River cottage recipe for apple and marmalade cake it is very easy to make and I think it can be eaten as a tea time cake or a dessert. Because I try and keep a well stocked larder the ingredients were quite easy for me.

Cake 1

The sultanas are soaked in three tbsp of warmed whiskey, you could use apple juice.

Cake 2 Cake 3 Cake 4
Don’t be discouraged from a recipe just because you are missing an ingredient, replace with the nearest equivalent. For example, if the recipe says brown sugar and you haven’t any, use white sugar. Maybe then get some brown sugar in for another time. That’s how to stock your cupboards or pantry. When you do cook yourself, it can often help to use leftovers etc. In this cake I used some over ripe eating apples. The recipe said four, but I only had three, so I used them!

I will give some more tips I think on stocking the pantry because it does help tremendously in using leftovers 🙂

Home cooked yummies are better for you than bought ones!

Posted in baking, challenges, cooking, Food, Fruit, home, leftovers

Weekend Baking

Made my regular soda bread at the weekend, I know I’ve posted it before but it’s so convenient and quick to make! I use this river cottage recipe but half of this is good for two people. The seeds add to texture and and great taste.Baking 1 Baking 2
I always like to make a pudding for Sunday dinner but this Sunday I was short of supplies. After some thought I invented something. I made a shortcrust pastry with 6oz of flour just enough for a flan dish. Leftover mince meat from Christmas and slices of an over ripe cox’s apple.Baking 3
 I always make extra crumble if I’m doing some and keep that in the fridge, so a sprinkling of that on the top made a scrummy dessert.

Baking 4

With a scoop of ice cream on top of course !

Baking 5

Posted in challenges, cooking, Food, Herbs, Hints & Tips, home, leftovers, vegetables

More using leftovers

Having ideas how to use left overs is great, less waste! So here is another creation of mine.

Having little bits of chicken left on chicken wings is not much to produce a meal, but I urge you to not waste it. This is a recipe that came about with exactly that problem.

In this dish is the chicken, three left over chipolatas from the freezer (defrosted slowly in the microwave),  slices overripe fresh tomatoes, over ripe mushrooms, salt, pepper and spices. I used a bay leaf, some paprika and cayenne pepper, but the whole point of this is to use what you bits and pieces you have and spices or herbs you have in the cupboard. Experiment! I added half a can of tomatoes, a small can of beans and some hot water (thicken with cornflour it you wish).

Casserol 1

Put in the oven and cover with the lid or foil and put in a preheated oven on Gas 5 or 190C for 30 – 45 mins and voila, in my case a tasty meal for two.

Casserol 2