It's been a few weeks since I have cooked a Sunday roast - the heat has been a factor but there has been more than a spot of laziness on my part too.
Today was different.....the shopping was done yesterday, roast beef was planned and I couldn't wait to prove my daughter wrong - she thinks Aunt Bessie makes better Yorkshire puddings than me!!
The beef was browned then popped in the slow cooker with some chunky chopped onions. A generous amount of red wine was added to the pan, mixed with the meat juices and allowed to bubble away, before being poured over the meat. Beef stock was then poured over with some pepper, balsamic vinegar and worcester sauce. Apart from turning the beef now and again that was that for a few hours......
What to do now......
* Help hubby sort out the spare room?
* Mow the front lawn?
* Catch up on the ironing?
Hahahah - no! But I did make good use of time by staying the kitchen.
I know it's just a plate full of chicken and it didn't really take much effort....but that is the point!
While the beef was cooking away I put a chicken in the oven and let that cook itself too. Once cooked I stripped the carcass and now have a key ingredient for at least one meal next week and a few sandwiches....a nice alternative to ham and other processed meats
Some simple meals suggestions:
* Stir fry with some thinly sliced carrots, onions, courgette, mushrooms, peppers, mangetout, baby sweetcorn......well whatever you have and like! You can add a sauce - make one, buy one or just shake over some soya / chilli sauce
*Make a simple white sauce (25g flour, 25g butter, 250ml milk......combine all ingredients over a medium heat until bubbling and thickened. Take off the heat and add cheese if you want a cheesy sauce. (Of course you could infuse the milk with peppercorns, bay leaves and other such niceties and make a proper roux but I'm trying to keep it simple). Pour the sauce over chicken and vegetables or pasta and bake in the oven until piping hot. You could sprinkle breadcrumbs over the top before cooking, or even cornflakes for a crispier topping.
*Combine chicken, pasta, pesto and heat through.....add other veg if you have some.
*Or my grandma's traditional Monday night dinner.......cold meat and chips (add some salad / veg though for added colour and therefore nutrients :)
The oven was on (the chicken was in it). So.....might as well make use of the empty oven shelves and make a tasty treat for those weekday lunchboxes.
I love these 'flapjacks' packed full of seeds, fruit and oats from my River Cottage cook book. Yes, there is both sugar and honey in them but still better than buying chocolate from the canteen and probably cheaper / definitely tastier (in my opinon at least).
Find recipe here: https://www.rivercottage.net/recipes/honey-and-peanut-butter-booster-barswww.rivercottage.net/recipes/honey-and-peanut-butter-booster-bars
Full disclosure.......I was so excited about the dinner that I started eating and then remembered I wanted to photograph it (I'll work on the photographic skills!)
Slow cooker beef, yorkshire pudding (not Aunt Bessie's!) cauliflower cheese, peas, sweetcorn, carrot and brocolli. Oh and mustard because I've ran out of horseradish sadly.
AND the best bit.....there is leftover cauliflower cheese, which I will have for lunch tomorrow. Uneaten beef and vegetables have been combined and are going in the freezer for a convenient ready meal.
Without too much extra effort (but quite a lot of washing up!) I have a few dinner / lunch options from cooking a chicken. I have a ready to go meal in the freezer and some home-made treats. Cooking from scratch can be time consuming but when you have time, why not get ahead....Sundays are good for that. Now I might sit back, relax and finish off the red wine that wan't used in the beef