Wondergut Week Commencing Saturday 28 October 2017

Week 2 of half term romps by with Halloween & a trip to Legoland to test the rigour of our gut microbes! The Trick or Treating haul is a sight to behold. It looks as though it will certainly see the FCs through to Christmas if I don’t try to smuggle some of it into the bin!  Next year, I hope I will have time to dip coat brussel sprouts in chocolate, refrigerate them and give them out at the door. Just for the sheer hell of it.

If you would like to print off this Wondergut Week – here is the link.

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Food Critics’ Verdict, if worth listening to

Saturday  Toby – Go Ape Kashmiri Butter Chicken with Spinach accompanied by brussel sprouts & cabbage. (Ultimate Slow Cooker p 99 by Sara Lewis – here is the link to the recipe.) Keith followed the recipe religiously this time & therefore put all of the large red chilli in. This was perhaps a bit much in hindsight. At my request, he added 400g of organic spinach about 20 mins before the curry was ready to add some vegetable matter. Keith & I thought it was delicious, Georgie refused to eat the chicken but ate the sauce & spinach & the youngest two had a small amount & berated Keith for putting the whole chilli in. Toby was still going Ape so that was one less FC to give his considered opinion. Easy to cook & I love slow cook recipes – I can make it & forget about it until dinner time. But maybe start with HALF a chilli and leave the seeds?!
Sunday  To Windsor No Cooking We ate out at a very pleasant restaurant in Windsor. We all enjoyed the meal. But we enjoyed the fire alarm (false alarm) going off at 2am in the hotel much less.
Monday  To Legoland A Very Large Salad with Hard Boiled Eggs for dinner when we got home. We were in serious need of some GREEN! Legoland could seriously do with sorting out the food they provide on site. The Lego was great (not to eat, obviously) but what the hell are we doing feeding ourselves & our offspring this crap? The Lego shaped chips in particular – I should really find out what on earth they were coated in.  I think that may actually have been some sort of Lego plastic product!!
Tuesday  Halloween – 3x Halloween or birthday parties & Trick or Treating Bonfire Soup accompanied by broccoli (although the recipe says cauliflower) with butter & almonds & Sourdough Bread from the freezer. (here is the link to the soup recipe). Cauliflower/Broccoli recipe p106 Riverford Farm Cook Book – I couldn’t find a link but it is a doddle – steam cauliflower or, in this case broccoli, until al dente, cook 50g butter until it is just brown, add a couple of tablespoons of flaked almonds & then toss cauliflower (or broccoli) in with butter & nuts. That was the plan, but the reality could not have been more different – party food all round! Pizza, crisps, biscuits, doughnuts, Haribo, lollipops, cake & Trick or Treat Sweets. Oh & chocolate fingers – which I find exceedingly difficult to resist. In fact, I never do resist them.
Wednesday  Fish Day Salmon, Pepper, Red Onion & Courgette skewers accompanied by baked sweet potatoes, cavolo nero & fennel These are ALWAYS a hit & this time I baked them instead of griddle frying them. For health reasons, yes but my main motivation was actually to save on the wiping up afterwards! They can be time-consuming to construct but I am getting wise – I got 3 FCs to help & not only did they enjoy doing so, it made the process much quicker too.
Thursday  Pea & Basil Tart with a Buttery Oat Crust  accompanied by boiled potatoes & a mixed garden salad with sorrel, rocket, radicchio, celery, cucumber, tomatoes & radish (Food For A Happy Gut p 88 by Naomi Devlin – here is the link to the recipe.) Wondergut Winner: I kid you not, this was literally WOLFED down. It was not too time-consuming to make. I whizzed the oats up a couple of days before. I made the pastry the evening before. It rolls out between cling film easily & the filling is a doddle to put together. I used leeks instead of spring onions since it is no longer Spring.
Friday Fermenting talk in Bristol – Jo not here for dinner. Roast Cauliflower, Almonds & Barley with Parsley & Chilli accompanied by cabbage & leeks. sprouts (River Cottage Much More Veg p 21 by Hugh F.W) I can’t find this recipe online but the book (r.r.p £26 appears to be selling on Amazon for £10!)

Test run of my wholemeal sourdough pancakes.

I left Keith in charge & I was accused of not buying a big enough cauliflower! Apparently, this recipe really does need a medium or a large one. Keith found some feta cheese in the fridge, which he added to the recipe & he reported that, whilst the FCs weren’t jumping for joy, they ate this meal – thanks to the addition of the feta. They also got to test run my wholemeal sourdough pancakes for pudding, which were a great hit.

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