Paleo Cabbage And Bacon Breakfast Hash

photo (2)

4 days into being paleo and I have gone from 185 pounds to 181.6 pounds – which is amazing since I haven’t had to go hungry at all. I am guessing that now the initial shock to my system is done the weight loss will slow a little!

This morning I am waiting for this weeks shopping to arrive and when I got up looked in my pretty empty fridge and heard a slice of toast calling me. I resisted the urge though and instead used up some odds and ends to make this breakfast. It made 2 -3 servings depending on how hungry you are.

Paleo Breakfast – Cabbage and Bacon Hash

8 Slices of bacon (chopped up)
1 small white cabbage (shredded)
250g mushrooms (sliced)
1 onion (sliced)
A few herbs
Fry the bacon for a few minutes then add the rest of the ingredients and fry until soft, add in the herbs. Eat!

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My paleo diet begins – Paleo breakfast fruit salad

I have been reading (and madly pinning) a lot about the paleo diet lately. I did a 2 week paleo diet run a couple of months ago and lost 6 pounds over the two weeks. Since its the only diet where I have really enjoyed the food AND its seemed to ease the digestive troubles I get! I have decided to give it a proper go. I am no expert and I am going to be learning as a I go so dont expect perfection fro the start!

In honour of the first day of the rest of my life I present Paleo breakfast fruit salad.

Ingredients

Strawberries
Banana
Desiccated Coconut
Almond Butter

Chop the fruit and add a spoonful of almond butter and desiccated coconut – yummy!

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Crochet Toeless Slippers

These crochet toeless slippers fit my UK size 7 feet to make them smaller simply crochet fewer rows in the sole.photo I used DK wool

Make 2

Sole

with 4mm hook ch24

row 1 – 27  hdc in each across ch2 turn

row 28 2hdc in first hdc, hdd in each ch across ch2 turn

row 29 hdd across to last hdd 2 hdd in last hdd ch2 turn

repeat last row 28 and 29 twice more

Make bow

Ch40

row 1 hdc in each ch acros ch2 turn

row2-8 repeat row 1 fasten off.

fold in half and sew down one end so you have a rectangle of wool then wrap wool tightly round the middle to form a bow. Secure ends.

Attach one side of the bow to the pointy end of the sole (the part where you had done the 2hdcs) Attach the other end to the other side to form the toe section

Sides

Row 1 Attach and HDC around the edges of the sole – up until the bow (dont do the front) ch2 turn

Row 2 in back loops only hdc in each hdc around  until other side of bow attachment ch2 turn

Row 3 hdc in each hdc around to bow attachment fasten off

Fold the back of the slipper and sew to make heel.

Cross

Attach wool on one side and hdc in 3 hdcs.

row 1-15 (depending on how wide you foot is) hdc in each across ch2 turn secure to opposite side of slipper

repeat for the other side of the cross

Edging

Attach edging wool and sc in each stitch around the visible edges . Fasten off.

 

 

 

 

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Homemade Nutellla – Worth The Effort?

nutellaEveryone in our house loves nutella, we buy a jar pretty much every week which quickly vanishes between the seven of us (I am blushing here at our level of Nutella consumption)

At the time of writing the price of Nutella in Sainsburys is £3.55 for a large (750g jar) doesn’t seem like a huge amount until you find yourself on a really tight budget watching every penny. Put another way one jar a week is about £14.20 a month or £184.60 a year.

I decided to put to the test the idea that homemade food is cheaper and more tasty than shop bought to find out if the effort of making your own was REALLY worth it.

 

First off I found a fab recipe on the eccentric cook  which didn’t look to hard. I used ready chopped walnuts as I couldn’t for the life of me find whole ones so I skipped the whole first step about roasting and just poured my chopped walnuts into the blender to begin. So the verdict?

Cost

Hazelnuts 200g (two packs as shown) Packs were £1.37 each so the hazelnuts cost £2.740000000490535_FifthDimension_140x140_v1_m56577569834098246

 

 

 

 

41e3d291-2456-4952-bb9c-b3f1c646655a_Spec2_v1_m56577569834323776 Condensed Milk (one tin as shown) was 99p

 

 

 

003D0766-C500-42E3-AF6F-447E913ACE44_Spec2_v1_m56577569833918950

Dark Chocolate (as shown) was 33p per bar and I used 2.5 bars so 83p

 

 

 

Also used a little milk but that would have a matter of pence plus most people have milk around anyway!

The recipe actually made pretty much the equivalent amount to the large jar so we can just compare the two directly.

So the total cost of ingredients was £4.74 So in my experiment Nutella wins on cost HOWEVER i am sure you could get walnuts cheaper than this is you looked about thus could bring the cost down a little although there is a £1.19 difference to make up which may be difficult.

 

Taste

I have to say eccentric cooks recipe made some fantastic Nutella – I had to hold myself back from just eating it with a spoon (there may have been some tasting required – for the purposes of testing you understand). Shop bought Nutella is sticky and can feel a little slimy sometimes but the homemade Nutella had none of that it felt fresher and much cleaner. It spread like Nutella so you would use it in the same way. Homemade wins every single time

Effort

Well theres no real competition here is there – shop bought you open jar and eat. Homemade wasn’t hard especially skipping the roasting etc. It took about 10 minutes but still longer than opening a jar.

Health

Lets face it a jar of chocolate is never going to be healthy BUT what with the recent “horse meat scandal” its made me think twice about buying anything not because it might have horse meat in (Nutella with horse meat really WOULD be a story) but because you never know WHAT is in the food you eat unless you make it from scratch yourself – this includes chemicals preservatives etc. So at least by making your own chocolate spread you take back control of your food a little.

In conclusion Nuttela from a shop is cheaper and easier but homemade Nutella is nicer and gives you more control over ingredients. It really depends what you need. If you are on a tight budget your NOT going to save money making your own especially when you start taking into account the cheaper (but less tasty) supermarket own brands. You also need to actually make it so if you are rushed off your feet its probably not worth your time. If ,however, you are looking for a tasty treat or you are trying to  reduce your consumption of over processed food then this is certainly a wonderful tasty way to do both those things.

Now if you’ll excuse me theres chocolate to be eaten!

 

 

 

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Slow Cooker Lamb and Leek with Mashed Cauliflower

This slow cooker meal was a lovely warming dinner. It was also really easy to make and didn’t cost a fortune! Serves 2 adults and 4 small children.

Ingredients

500g diced lamb
Tablespoon of flour
4 Carrots (peeled and sliced)
Small swede (diced)
1 Large leek sliced
1 pint lamb stock
Mixed herbs
Cauliflower
Pepper
Bit of butter to add to the cauliflower

Really simple  – coat the lamb in the flour and put in the slow cooker. Add in the swede, carrots, stock and herbs cook on low all day.When you are nearly ready to eat cook the cauliflower the chop up really small an mix in butter and pepper. Serve with chunky bread and butter and cheese!

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Walnut Cream Cake

Well baking has never been a strong point but I was quite pleased with this cake it actually tasted pretty yummy! and it was easy and cheap to make which was a big plus.

I used the sponge recipe here and added a load of chopped walnuts. Then made up butter icing according the the instructions on the box (i doubled it) which i put between the layers and over the top. Finally adding the rest of the walnuts to the top of the cake.

I have been informed (by Jessica) thats its “ok” to make this again – high praise from a 7 year old.

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Huge bow toddler head band

This big bow headband used up the leftovers of a ball of wool and although perhaps not the most practical of headwear (!) beth loved it. I admit the photo isnt the best – my children are not the type to pose nicely for photos sadly! in the end i distracted her with Peppa pig and snapped her on the couch…


 

using 4mm hook

ch140

row 1 dc, ch1 miss next ch dc in next (repeat to end)
row 2-6 slip stitch in first ch1 space, ch2, dc ch1 in each ch1 space across to the last leaving the last ch1 space unworked
fasten off and sew end together so the cross to form the bottom of the bow.

bow:
ch12
row 1 dc in first ch ch1 skip next ch, dc in next (repeat across) ch2 turn
row 215 dc ch1 in eac h chain space across ch2 turn
fasten off

centre of bow

ch4

row 1-6 dc in each across then join  into a ring

fasten off

thread the bow through the centre ring then attach into the headband!

 

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Summer frill skirt

I made this little skirt to use up some scraps of DK wool i had. I made it pretty short as it is summer (or meant to be if it ever stops raining!) and you dont really want a long woolen skirt in the summer!. You could easily make it a little longer by just adding more round to the skirt part. I made this one to fit Rosie who is 3 months.

using a 4mm hook Ch 78 and join to form a ring ch1.

Rounds 1 and 2, hdc in each stitch around, ch1 and slip stitch to starting ch.
Rounds 3 – 7,*hdc, ch1 hdc* in each hdc around ch1 and slip stitch to starting ch. Change colours as desired.
Round 8 hdc in each ch sp and hdc around ch1 and slip stitch to starting ch.
Round 9 *dc, ch1, dc* in each hdc around ch1 attach to start ch. ch1
Round 10 dc in each dc and ch sp around do not ch1 or on join from now on nust work in one continous round.
Round 11 – desired length dc in each dc around (i changed colour for the last round to give the edging)

fasten off.

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Rosemary’s Rosie Top Newborn Summer Dress

 

 

 

This dress is a little pinafore style dress, Rosie will be wearing it with a long sleeved top and tights (since its February) but it would actually make a perfect little dress for a summer born baby. Rosie is around 6.5 pounds in this photo so as you can see the size is suitable for a small newborn or premature baby. To make it bigger it would be a simple case of increasing the starting chains and making the skirt longer as there are no complex parts to increase.
using 5mm hook

Top Front
Ch34

Row 1 sc in each sc across ch1 turn
Row 2 -3 sc in each sc across ch1 turn
Row 4 sc in firs 6 sc, change to green and sc in next 2 sc, change back to cream, sc in next 9 sc, change to green sc in next 2 sc, change back to cream, sc in next 9 sc, change to green sc in next 2 sc, chang to cream sc across ch1 turn.
Row 5 sc in first 4 sc, change to pink sc in next 4 sc, change to cream sc in next 7 sc, change to pink sc in next 4 sc, change to cream sc in next 7sc, change to pink sc in next 4 sc, change to cream sc across ch1 turn.
Row 6 -13 sc in each sc across ch1 turn.

fasten off

Top Back

ch 34
sc in each sc across ch1 turn
Row 1 sc in each ch across ch1 turn
Row 2-13 sc in each sc across ch1 turn
Do not fasten off

Straps
Row 1
slip stitch ito first 5 sc, ch1 sc in next 4sc ch1 turn
Row 2 – 23 sc in each sc across (4sc) ch1 turn

fasten off

on the other side, skip the first 5 sc and attach wool.

Row 1 -23

sc in each sc across ch1 turn

fasten off.

join the front and back together

Top edging

in pink sc around the edges of the neck and arm straps.

Skirt
(working in round around the bottom of the top)

Round 1 in pink attach wool to bottom of the top section. Ch2 dc in next ch, *ch1 skip next ch dc in next ch*. repeat from * to * around join to starting chain, ch2
Round 2 in cream 2dc in each ch1 space around join to starting chain, ch2
Round 3 – 7 2dc in next dc, 1dc in next dc around join to starting ch ch2
Round 7 – 18 (or as long as you want the skirt) dc in each dc around , join to starting ch, ch2

fasten off.

Attach buttons on the top.

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Newborn frilly flower dress

newbor crochet dress

Well our new little girl Rosemary Jayne made her entrance to the world on valetines day wieghing 6 pounds 1. She is gorgeous and of course the prefect model for her mummys crochet ideas!

Here is a little dress made for her it is to fit a newborn but you could make it longer simply by adding extra rows to the skirt.

 

With 5mm hook

Top – Make 2

ch31
row 1-8 dc i each  across ch2
row  9 – sc in first 5dc, ch2 dc in next 5dc ch2 turn
row 10-14 dc in each dc (5dcs)ch2 turn
fasten off

move to the other side for second arm hole

row 1 skip first 5dc, dc in next 5 dc ch2 turn
row 2-5 dc in each dc across (5dcs) ch2 turn

fasten off.

sew sides on top and tops of arms to complete the top part of the dress

Skirt

Attach wook to ay part of the bottom starting chain (now working in rounds for the skirt)

Round 1 Ch2 2dc i each ch around slip stitch to start
Round 2 ch2 dc in next dc *ch1, skip ext dc, dc in next dc* repeat from * to * around join to starting chain ch2.
Round 3 2dc in each ch1 space around, join to starting chain ch2
Round 4 – 14 (or more for a longer dress) repeat rounds 2 and 3
Round 15. Ch2 sc,hdc,dc,trc,dc.hdc.sc in each ch1 space around. fasten off.

Edging

hdc in around edges of neck and arms

Flower

ch3 8dc in ring

*sc,hdc,dc,trc,dc.hdc,sc in next dc skip dc* repeat from * to * around.

Flower centre

Ch3 8dc in ring, fasten off.

 

 

 

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