All posts filed under: Kids

Peanut Butter Granola, 8p

I first made this for myself as I love peanut butter in the mornings, but not having a toaster, popping bread under the grill inevitably goes wrong when you have a child to get washed and socked and shoed in the mornings – so I cobbled this together and bunged it in a big jar. Perfect with hot milk, or cold, or even pop it in the microwave for a minute for a warm, soft, stodgy, comforting start to your day. There are endless variations to this too, just add a good oil, like coconut, in place of the peanut butter to hold your oats together (oo-er) and the possibilities are endless. I recommend dark chocolate with toasted or ground almonds if the purse stretches. Dark chocolate and marmalade is similar to a famous round chocolate orange in a bright blue box, and for breakfast, such fun! Golden syrup can be replaced with treacle, sugar, or any sweetening agent of your choice. If you feel like erring on the side of virtuous, chop a banana …

White Chocolate Tea Bread, 9p [A Girl Called Jack]

This came about because I LOVE chocolate-chip brioche – so I decided to try to make some chocolate-chip bread as a replacement. Unfortunately, though, the chocolate chips all melted into the dough as I added warm water and I ended up with this Chocolate Tea Bread instead – but it was still delicious! Then I experimented with tea and white chocolate and stumbled on something heavenly. Bliss! Makes 1 small loaf to serve 6 people from 9p each. This post is not sponsored; I provide links to the ingredients that I use so you can see how I calculate my recipe costs, and I may earn a small commission if you click the links and make a purchase. All prices correct at the time of printing and are subject to change. 275g self-raising flour, plus extra to knead the dough, 8p (45p/1.5kg) 7g fast-acting dried yeast, 7p (£1/100g) 50g sugar, 3p (69p/kg) 100g white chocolate, 30p 25g butter or baking block, plus extra to grease the loaf tin, 6p 150ml boiling water with a tea …

Cabbage Griddle Scones, 14p [Cooking On A Bootstrap]

Although these are extraordinarily easy to make, when I taste the sweet crunch of fried greens with melted butter or see a mixing bowl and spoon in the washing-up pile I feel like I’ve achieved something, even if it’s as simple as this. I like to eat my griddle scones warm straight from the pan with butter, cheese or a squeeze of lemon juice. You can use any greens in place of cabbage, if you have them in, don’t rush out and buy it specially. Also great with grated cheese mixed into the dough, if you really fancy a treat! Makes 4 large scones from 14p each. This post is not sponsored; I provide links to the ingredients that I use so you can see how I calculate my recipe costs, and I may earn a small commission if you click the links or purchase any ingredients. All prices correct at the time of printing and are subject to change. 100g finely shredded cabbage or other leafy greens, 8p 200g self-raising flour, plus extra to …

Apple, Pear and Sultana Baked Oats, 29p

I love to start the week for my little family with slightly luxurious breakfasts when time permits, but I’m currently on a book deadline and have been at my desk since 0630 this morning. However, this pudding-for-breakfast takes mere seconds to assemble, and tastes like love, and goodness, and a comforting blast of warmth on a slightly chilly morning. Mrs J and Small Boy were delighted, and I took the remains of the tin back to my desk to nibble on as I worked. Although decadent tasting, these oats contain three of your five a day (two if sharing between three, because, maths) – not bad for the work of a moment!  To make it vegan, or dairy free, simply replace the milk with a plant-based milk of your choice. I can highly recommend Alpro Soya Vanilla for this – my son’s favourite! To make it gluten-free, swap the oats for gluten-free oats. Serves two or three, from 29p each. (I provide links to the ingredients that I use so you can see how I calculate …

Chocolate Ice Cream Cake, 5p

Ice cream is my catch-all cheer-up indulgence, eaten by the pint in front of light comedic television, or crime scene dramas, depending on my mood. One Saturday evening, alone, on the turn of Autumn, I found myself partway down a tub of chocolate ice cream, wondering if I could use it as a substitute for the majority of ingredients in a traditional cake recipe. Ice cream is, after all, made from eggs, fat (the milk and/or cream) and sugar, all key building blocks in a standard sponge. I pottered to the kitchen with it in hand, and set it on the worktop to melt – an act of extraordinary willpower, if I may congratulate myself briefly for it, as I have been known to eat two tubs back to back and make generous inroads into a third. A little maths and some crossed fingers later, and I was tucking into an atrociously light chocolate loaf cake, made with just two ingredients and a dash of incredulity. I later learned that I was not the first …

Carrot Cake Overnight Oats, 26p [Tin Can Cook]

This is a brand new recipe from Tin Can Cook – 75 store cupboard recipes by Jack Monroe – which is available here, and there is a fundraiser to donate it to foodbanks here.   Overnight oats became something of a phenomenon a couple of years ago; the act of soaking porridge oats overnight in milk or yoghurt with a topping of choice. I like my breakfasts to resemble desserts as often as possible, so I started to play with classic cake combinations to make this healthy start a little more appetising. This version, although it tastes decadent, contains two of your five-a-day, and is very simple to throw together. Tinned carrots work better than fresh here, as their softness makes them easier to blend.   Serves 2 from 26p each.  (This post is not sponsored; I provide links to the ingredients that I use so you can see how I calculate my recipe costs, and I may earn a small commission if you click the links or purchase any ingredients.)   300g tinned carrots, …

Banana Caramel Milkshake, 36p

The weather is hotting up, and it seems like a lovely day to launch a new milkshake! But if you don’t have £3 to spend on a McDonalds or Five Guys one, here’s one I made earlier. If you’re intending on travelling with it, make sure to put it in a Thermos or similar flask, with an ice cube or two, else it might go a bit…rancid…in these warmer climes. And that would just be horrible. Makes two milkshakes from 36p each. (This post is not sponsored; I provide links to the ingredients that I use so you can see how I calculate my recipe costs, and I may earn a small commission if you click the links or purchase any ingredients.) 2 large bananas, 30p 1 tsp vegan salted caramel flavour (I do have a recipe for this, but for ease and convenience, here’s one someone else made), 10p 300ml nondairy milk, 18p 1 tsp vanilla extract, optional but delicious, 14p First slice your banana into around ten pieces, and place in the large …

Cinnamon Biscoff Donuts, 14p

  I very rarely advocate the use of specialist equipment in my recipes, even less so something that was purchased in a flight of fancy in an evening of late night internet browsing, but dear reader, I can assure you that you won’t regret this one. My Small Boy and I have recently acquired a terrible midweek habit of popping into the shop near the train station on the way home from school to kill a little time, and emerging with a bag of donuts. Like all good traditions, I’m not sure how or when it started, but ‘the weekly donut’ is now a part of my parenting style, and try as I might, I cannot bring myself to discontinue it. And so, for want of some self control or an ounce of discipline, I have made it my mission to make our own, on a flight of fancy that I will start with standard donuts and work my way back to healthier ones once I’ve mastered them. So here we are; me standing in …

Cannelini, Leek & Sausage Pasta, 41p

I have set myself a challenge to blog a new recipe every single day for a few weeks – I used to blog regularly, when I was a single mum on the dole scraping meals together from loose change and a food bank box – and I would write about what I had to hand and what I would make from it. That was six years ago now, and both my spice rack and repertoire have expanded beyond recognition. I missed writing regularly for pleasure, however, especially as I cook on average three brand new recipes Every Single Day. Most of them are scrawled on scraps of plain A4 paper, then filed away in a huge lever arch file, to be pulled out and shuffled into some kind order and shaped into a book at some point in the future. I’ve decided to keep a kind of kitchen notebook here on my blog; keeping to my original principles of cooking great food for a little money, with a simple collection of basic ingredients, and costing …

Sausage & Beer Casserole, 74p

I love how the cheapest can of beer can be enriched by half a dozen sausages and a few other ingredients for a homely, comforting, classic dinner – delicious with a pile of mash and some green veg. This recipe first appeared in A Girl Called Jack, and an adapted version was published in my Guardian recipe column in 2014. For vegetarian and vegan readers, I have found Linda McCartney Red Onion & Rosemary Sausages are the  best here, but you may have another preference!   Serves 2 generously from 74p each. (I may earn a small fee if you click the links or purchase any recommended products below) 6 sausages, 27p (91p for 20, Smartprice frozen sausages, Asda) a splash of oil, 2p (£2.94/3l, vegetable oil at Asda) 1 onion, 9p (90p/1kg, Farm Stores at Asda) 2 cloves of garlic, 4p (20p per bulb, Asda) 250g mushrooms, 54p (54p/250g, Farm Stores at Asda) 1 x 330ml can of beer, 23p (90p for 4x440ml Bitter, Asda) 1 x 400g carton or tin of chopped tomatoes, …

Easter Egg Brownies, 22p

I probably come across as a slightly miserly parent here – and I absolutely am not one – but I detest the cheap sugar orgy this time of year. Yes, children should absolutely have treats. My son has plenty of treats. But we’d barely finished the Christmas chocolate this year when the Easter eggs started to turn up, despite me beseeching well-meaning family and friends that we really do get enough. One, in my books, is plenty enough. And so, over the years, I have declared the Saturday after Easter Sunday as some kind of Easter Chocolate Amnesty, whereby we all pool whatever is left to be squirrelled away in the sweetie tin (which comes out on Sundays after dinner), and baked into something for the household to share. I know I sound strict, but I was raised by fairly strict parents, and sometimes I open my mouth and one of them just pops out. At 31 years old, I have never needed a single filling in my teeth, and have narrowly avoided any dental …

Twice-As-Nice Meatballs, 51p [A Year In 120 Recipes]

To make these go further on a budget, I add mashed beans to the mix to pad them out, hence the name ‘twice as nice meatballs’, because it makes double the amount!. If you don’t have hordes to feed or freezer space for spares, you can leave them out, but leftover meatballs can be tossed into a stew or kept in the fridge for a few days, so don’t be afraid to make a pile of them! Take a leaf out of the books of traditional Italian meatballs, and tip some chopped tomatoes into the pan to heat through for a few minutes at the end. You could then serve this atop a pile of spaghetti, if the fancy takes you. Vegan and vegetarian readers; this recipe was first published in A Girl Called Jack in 2014. I’m working on a vegan equivalent, but in the meantime, my Not Meatballs are right here waiting for you! Makes approximately 24, from 51p/serving. (This post is not sponsored; I provide links to the ingredients that I use …

Pear & Sultana Porridge, 19p

I am trying to ensure that my Small Boy – now nine years old and unsure how much longer I can get away with the affectionate diminutive moniker – gets at least all five of his five a day during the Spring Term holidays, as even for a seasoned food writer, these things can fall by the wayside in the excitement of a change of routine. As a self employed mum, my childcare arrangements in the holidays are slapdash at best, and I usually find myself squeezing in hours before breakfast and after bedtime, so as not to neglect my childs emotional health and wellbeing for the sake of a deadline. Luckily for me, I’ve signed off on the edits of Tin Can Cook, delivered the first draft of the manuscript of the vegan cookbook due to be published in December, and am gently piecing together the next project, which can be done piecemeal around walks in the woods, rollercoasters, playdates, and the endless housework generated by us being at home more than usual. It …

Home made Pop T*rts, 10p [A Year In 120 Recipes]

As a child I loved Pop-Tarts™, those saccharine toaster pastries thick with white icing and multi-coloured sprinkles that, when eaten greedily from the toaster, would scald your tongue with red-hot jam. I decided to see if I could make my own version from scratch, pastry and all, and here they are. They’re not an everyday breakfast but they’re definitely a why-the-heck-not breakfast! Makes 8 at 10p each. This post is not sponsored; I provide links to the ingredients that I use so you can see how I calculate my recipe costs, and I may earn a small commission if you click the links and make a purchase. All prices correct at the time of printing and are subject to change. 100g unsalted butter or substitute, plus extra for greasing, 22p 200g plain flour, plus extra for the worktop, 7p (45p/1.5kg) 6 tablespoons cold water 6–8 tablespoons jam, 10p (28p/454g) 6 tablespoons icing sugar, approx. 50g, 10p (£1/500g) sprinkles, 30p (£1/50g) Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/gas 4. First, make the pastry. Either melt the butter in …

Jam Tarts [A Girl Called Jack]

Jam tarts are one of those simple, delicious things that I remember consuming in droves in my childhood, but not so much as an adult. I always have flour in the cupboard and jam in the fridge, and this makes for a lovely rainy-day activity for small children to help with. Of course, you can cheat with jam tarts and buy some ready to roll shortcrust pastry, but where’s the fun in that? Fill them with any jam you like, or lemon curd, or to feed my peanut-butter-and-jam obsession, I work a little peanut butter into the pastry mixture and fill with smooth strawberry jam… Makes about 6 tarts, depending on the size of your cookie cutter (This post is not sponsored; I provide links to the ingredients that I use so you can see how I calculate my recipe costs, and I may earn a small commission if you click the links or purchase any ingredients.) 50g butter, or 25g butter and 25g lard, plus extra to grease the muffin tray 120g plain flour, …