Saturday, 22 July 2017

Recipe- One Pot Cajun Chicken Pasta



One pot dinners – I LOVE them!

Especially speedy pasta versions. Perfect for getting dinner on the table before the kids start having an after-school hunger meltdown!

This one has piles of cajun chicken & chorizo all cooked together in a creamy tomato sauce. I like to add plenty of veg such a spinach, peppers & fresh tomatoes too. Because, hey, who doesn’t like getting one over on the kids & making them eat extra veg without even thinking about it! 

This quick Cajun chicken one-pot is a winner for the family dinner table. Cajun spiced chicken in a creamy tomato sauce – with pasta & extra veg. With just 10 minutes prep time & 25 minutes cooking time, that's a double winning in my eyes! 



Ingredients- Serves 4

  • πŸ”Ή1x Tbsp Olive Oil
  • πŸ”Ή1x Regular Onion, peeled & chopped
  • πŸ”Ή1.5x Tbsp Cajun Seasoning
  • πŸ”Ή2x Chicken Breasts, cut into bite-size pieces
  • πŸ”Ή75g (2.6 oz) Chorizo, cut into small chunks
  • πŸ”Ή2x Cloves Garlic, peeled & minced
  • πŸ”Ή½x Red Bell Pepper, deseeded & sliced
  • πŸ”Ή½x Green Bell Pepper, deseeded & sliced
  • πŸ”Ή½x Yellow Bell Pepper, deseeded & sliced
  • πŸ”Ή200g (2.5 cups) Dried Pasta Shapes
  • πŸ”Ή1x400g (14oz) Tin Chopped Tomatoes
  • πŸ”Ή480mls (2 cups) Chicken Stock
  • πŸ”Ή60ml (¼ cup) Double (heavy) Cream
  • πŸ”ΉLarge handful of Fresh Baby Spinach
  • πŸ”Ή10x Fresh Cherry Tomatoes, sliced in half
  • πŸ”Ή50g (1/2 packed cup) Grated Cheddar Cheese
  • πŸ”Ή 2x Tbsp Freshly Chopped Parsley 

Method

  • Heat the oil in a large frying pan (skillet) & add the onion. Cook on a medium heat for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the onion begins to soften.
  • Sprinkle the Cajun seasoning on the chopped chicken breast, then add to the pan. Heat for 5-6 minutes until the chicken is sealed on all sides.
  • Add in the chorizo & garlic then fry for a further two minutes, until the chorizo starts to release it’s oils, then add peppers. Stir, then add the pasta shapes, tin of tomatoes & chicken stock. Bring to the boil, stir, then place a lid or some foil over the pan. Turn the heat down & let the pasta simmer for 15 minutes. Check & stir once or twice during this time.
  • After 15 minutes, remove the lid & test the pasta. It should be just cooked (if it isn’t, cook for a couple of minutes more with a splash of boiling water if needed). Stir in the cream, heat through for a minute then turn off the heat & stir in the spinach. It should wilt very quickly.
  • Sprinkle on the sliced tomatoes, grated cheese and parsley, then serve.                  
  • Thursday, 20 July 2017

    Cheers To 10 Years, Happy Anniversary!



    I used to be a romantic. I remember reading every fairytale growing up.I believed in love at first sight, the magic of a first kiss & happily ever afters. Then I got my heart-broken… no not broken, squashed, stomped on & kicked to the curb like day old rubbish.


    Granted that first time around I now know was not real love. I was very very young & more in love with the idea of LOVE then the person at the time. I made a lot of bad decisions & I paid the consequences. I was bitter & very much anti- LOVE. And then I met a man who would literally sweep me off my feet. LITERALLY!!! ❤️


    I guess what they say is true, when you are not looking for love you will find it. I certainly was not looking to MR.B for a relationship, he was my best friend & have been since I was 13 years old (he was 14years.) But he was looking, he saw me, he persevered & didnt give up, it took him a while to woo me so to speak, a good 4 years infact! But it didn't stop him… well lets just say my life has never been the same. πŸ˜‰


    We are yin & yang. He likes romantic comedy & I am a thriller/action kind of gal. (Kinda joking about the romantic comedy part, kinda notπŸ˜‚) He is happy sitting home quietly on the couch & I am a let’s go dancing girl. He has to have the TV or radio on at all times & I enjoy the quiet, reading my kindle. And yet… we work!


    MR.B is my best friend. He is my rock. He can complete my sentences but knows how much I hate that so he won’t. He reads me better than I read myself. He lifts me up when I am down & grounds me when my head is in the clouds. He not only puts up with all my crazy "Spur On The Moment" type antics, he gets a kick out of them. He loves me for me. Fat or skinny, long hair or short… doesn’t matter to him.


    He makes me laugh! That last one is worth repeating… HE MAKES ME LAUGH.

    He also annoys the hell out of me, spends WAY too much time in the bathroom getting ready, he is super OCD about EVERY little thing (good in a way, but also bloody annoying!) & if he buys another watch I may just have to leave him. But you know what… I love that about him. It makes him not perfect.(But you still better not buy another watch!)


    I use to be a romantic… now I would say I am a realist who enjoys being romanced. There is a big difference. You see fairy tales only show you half the story. They never show you what happens after the big fancy wedding. (Still waiting for this to happen guys, times a ticking MR.B get a move on!πŸ’πŸ˜‚) They don’t show financial struggles, people dying & you certainly don’t find relationship struggles.


    No our life is not a fairy tale. But it is OUR life & one I would not ever change for anything.


    I love you my darling…even more than I did 10 years ago when you forced me to change my mind! (LOL) Thank you for being my cheerleader, my life coach, my partner. Thank you for making me look at the glass as half full when I am certain it is half empty. Thank you for calming my fears, wiping my tears & giving me a good kick in the rear when I need it.


    I love you more than yesterday but less than tomorrow. I am not sure where this crazy magic carpet ride we seem to be on is going to take us next, but I do know there is no one I would rather get rug burn with than you! WINK WINK! πŸ˜‰


    Happy Anniversary!!! πŸ’


    Love you lots my love πŸ’•





    Wednesday, 19 July 2017

    A Letter To My Darling MR.B On His Birthday



    To My Darling MR.B,


    Today you enter your 28th year of life! We get to celebrate YOU & that makes me so happy. You never like to be in the spotlight nor do you love attention, so that's what makes today especially fun. Since we aren't a couple that is big on PDA (translation: you aren't - I TOTALLY am ...I thought I would openly 'gush' over you because that's what birthdays are for!


    First off, I'll just start by saying that you are the absolute best person I know. You are caring & welcoming ... non judgmental & forgiving ... steady & strong. I have had the privilege of being around you for awhile now & you are the same today as you were 14 years ago when our friendship first began; the same sweet man with a quiet yet strong presence & a warm heart. 


    You have the innate ability to get along with literally ANYONE, which is such an admirable trait (and one that I certainly am still trying to acquire)  


    You are an encourager by nature. You believe in people & support them, regardless of circumstance. This has always been true in our relationship. There have been many dreams & ideas that I have chased over the past 14 years & you ALWAYS supported them. Not only did you support me, but you listened, gave your input & encouraged me every step of the way. Thank you ... I love you for that. 


    Your positivity is infectious! You see the glass 'half full' & always choose to see the good in every situation. It's hard to find someone that's always in a good mood (even in the wee hours of the morning!) ... but I appreciate it so much!


    You are the most humble human I know. You have every reason not to be (don't make me list them all), yet you display humility & kindness in every situation. I am witness to it daily and it's one of the MOST attractive qualities about you. 


    You are such an incredible father to our 3 beautiful children & it's an absolute DREAM to watch you with them. I knew early on in our relationship that you would be an amazing dad, but you're even BETTER than I could have ever imagined. They look at you with stars in their eyes & nothing makes me happier than to know they can always feel secure in you & your love. 


    The world needs more men like you in it, you are such a blessing in our lives & the lives of so many. I am so thankful every day for you, our friendship & the little family we have created. So today, on your special day, I hope you know you are loved BEYOND measure...deeply & forever!


    Happiest of birthdays, my love & cheers to many more...


    Love You Lots


    Gemma xx πŸ’  





    Tuesday, 18 July 2017

    Lessons They Miss Out Of Your Pre-Natal Classes



    Lessons they miss out of your Pre Natal Classes. 


    At least I think they miss them off, but as I went to exactly 0 - I wouldn't know. Still, if I were to rewrite the curriculum, this is what we would learn instead. 

     

    Lesson 1-     πŸ™„ How to politely accept a strangers incorrect advice. 2 weeks of training your face from a blatant grimace, to one of serene acceptance. Dickheads are the second constant of life Im afraid. 

    Homework : Practise your serenity by not using your mind to stab people that ask you questions ' You not had it yet?!' 'Get your sleep NOW, you'll never sleep again' ' Don't you know what you're in for...?' Etc etc. 


    Lesson 2 -       🚷 How to change your Facebook settings to private, so inconsiderate family members cannot announce any part of your journey to the world BEFORE YOU DO. We are doing all the hard work, growing this babe - do NOT take any of the small joys away from us. Tag me and die, ArsenhΓΆle. 


    Lesson 3 -     🏩 The Art of Hospital Bag packing, followed by - the reality of what is going to happen to those knickers you packed. Freebies include - washing powder that works on blood, tissues for random crying and a menu for the local takeaway. Because fuck cooking when your fanny feels like roadkill. 


    Lesson 4 -      πŸ—― Great Swear Words To Use In Labour, points for creating your own, and making one long word from several. 'AssTitsWankFuckBitchShitCunt' was a fave of mine, as well as ' Ow you Bastard-Bitch'.  Followed by 'Design your own, sorry Midwife, I didn't mean it' Cards. To be sent anytime from a day, to three years after birth. I'm sure they'll remember you. 


    Lesson 5 -      ☕️ Mindfulness. A whole hour dedicated to doing absolutely fuck all useful, but calling it mindfulness so we don't look lazy. This hour will be thought about ALOT once baby departs from womb and follows you everywhere. Including the doorstep for your five minute bit of vitamin D everyday. 


    Lesson 6 -     ✨ Affirmations. No I'm actually serious with this one, every new mum, first time mum, second, third fourth - every mum that had a bad experience, every mum that is nervous. ALL OF THEM. Need to be told before going into this, that they can do it. They are strong they are amazing. They should trust themselves to do it, they shouldn't feel shame if things change. Birth is amazing, not something to fear. πŸ’– 


    Feel free to forward this to the head of the NHS. 

    Or your local Health care provider.

     Or just print it off for your pregnant mate. She'll see the funny side soon, I promise :) 


    πŸ’–x