We are trying not to rely so heavily on take aways and eating out this month as we are drawing near to the festive season.
One way we are attempting to do this is to try and make tasty, comforting food at home. Autumn and winter are my favourite seasons for many reasons (wooly jumpers, hot chocolate, christmas lights….) but food is definitely up there on my list. The colder months are great for comforting stews, hearty puddings and festive treats.
One of the reasons we eat out a lot is because Joe needs a high calorie, high fat diet- which inevitably leads to mcdonalds/ burger king/ KFC! It’s quick, cheap (ish) and easy plus we know he’ll eat it and he will be getting plenty of calories and fats which he needs. (At two years old he is on upwards of 2000 calories a day to maintain his weight due to Cystic Fibrosis – that’s nearly as much as a grown man- and his weight gain is slowing down as he gets more active, so his calorie intake will slowly increase as he gets older) but this is not so great for me and Rob! So obviously we are wanting Joe to continue to have his high calorie meals and that does mean the occasional trip to mcdonalds, but me and Rob are attempting to ignore temptation and eat at home!
Other reasons we eat out and get take aways are boredom and tiredness- plus not buying enough food or enticing enough food when we do our shopping.
So I am trying to spend a little more time on food shopping and sometimes slightly more money so we can have tasty food at home and not be so tempted to eat out or get take aways- which in theory will save us money….we will see how it goes!
Anyway, here’s one of the wintery recipes we tried this week!
Sausage, Fennel and lentil casserole
(serves 4-6 so alter the quantities according to your family size/ appetite!)
1 tbsp olive oil
400g of sausages (thin cut chipolatas are best) cut into 3-4cm lengths
1 tsp fennel seeds
1 fennel bulb sliced thinly
1 onion (we used red onion (finely sliced)
2 cloves of garlic crushed
200g green/brown lentils
175ml white wine
500ml chicken or veg stock
1-2 bay leaves
salt and pepper to taste
handful of parsley to garnish
- Heat oil in a flame proof casserole dish and fry the sausage until browned
- Crush the fennel seeds with a pestle and mortar, and add them to the pan along side the onion, fennel bulb and garlic. Cook until softened (around 5 mins)
- Throw in the lentils, wine and stock , followed by bay leaves.
- Bring to the boil then simmer for 40 mins with the lid on until the lentils are tender. (stir occasionally while cooking and remove the lid if the sauce needs thickening half way through)
- Season to taste and serve with a good scattering of chopped parsley!