A friend of mine started ’#40newthings’ this time last year and I absolutely loved watching all she got up to. This year Victoria is back with more and I decided to join her, with my very own take on Lent. No abstinence, just a commitment to embracing new things.
What I quickly came to realise was what a creature of habit I am. I find life fulfilling and interesting but, more often than not, each week is pretty similar. Even for someone that loves to cook I often find our grocery shop is full of our ‘Favourites’ week after week. No bad thing, but isn’t it nice to try something different – especially at dinner time?
So the lovely people at Ocado were only too happy to support my #lhecdoeslent efforts when it comes to mixing up mealtimes. Here are some of the new things that entered my shopping trolley that you might like to give a go too.
- Just Live A Little Whole Almond Granola: I absolutely love granola. And that’s part of the problem! I’m a shocker with portion control and the 40g suggested serving is never enough. Often there’s a ton of added sugar and before you know it I might as well have had an almond croissant instead. But Just Live A Little’s Whole Almond Granola represents a brilliant option. Perfect with plain Greek yogurt the apple really sets off the rich almond flavour and you’re left wonderfully satisfied not scraping the bottom of your bowl longing for more. A lovely weekend treat with beautiful packaging to bring alive your breakfast table.
- Explore Asian Black Bean Spaghetti: This product is an absolute grain free triumph. I’m fortunate not to have any intolerances but I am mindful of keeping my grain consumption under check. Not only do I love black beans but their high protein content is to be celebrated. This spaghetti is a dream in stir fry (be sure to follow cooking instructions carefully so it doesn’t go mushy) and the ingredients list beautifully reads ‘black beans & water’, nothing else.
- Genesis Crafty Pumpkin & Rye Bread: I had high hopes for this fella but unfortunately it wasn’t for me – but it could be for you… I definitely prefer my rye bread more heavy duty. But this was pretty light and airy. Perhaps better for a sandwich but it really didn’t toast very well I’m afraid. I still managed to polish it off for a breakfast al desko regardless.
- Florette Baby Kale: To trim some money off our grocery bill I recently invested in a salad spinner as, believe it or not, the amount we spent on bagged salad weekly was really totting up. But this newbie from the Florette range is ace. It’s priced at just £1 and I love the lift it gives to a salad. A rocket-like texture but more gentle in flavour. Perfect with the tiniest drizzle of olive oil and balsamic and a few slices of ripe avocado.
- Gran Luchito Smoked Chilli Mayonnaise: I’m a sucker for not only fun and lively design but also a condiment. One of the biggest things to shock me when I first started thinking about the way I was eating was all the things that get added to kitchen cupboard staples (http://lethereatclean.com/2013/05/back-to-basics-reading-food-labels/). But this is another lovely product with an honest ingredients list. This little jar is feisty and even a small teaspoon has a serious kick to it. We loved it for dipping roasted sweet potato wedges.
- Hansen & Lydersen Smoked Salmon Top: This is quite possibly the Rolls Royce of the smoked salmon world. It’s smoke is really subtle and it’s quite similar in texture and flavour to the salmon that often appears as part of a sashimi mix. The unwrapping alone was an experience in itself! A firm favourite of the Hemsley sisters, a definite hit with me too.
Are you a creature of habit too? What could you do to mix up mealtimes?