food and drink

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Mums luxury diary 2018 + Giveaway 

Published August 11, 2017 by Bizzimummy

To finish off the week, I have a lovely giveaway for all my lovely readers. 


We may only be in August but I bet those diaries are staring to look full and worn. Not everyone keeps a diary, I do; but if you don’t then they also make lovely Christmas gifts if your stuck for ideas as the majority (including this one) begin right after Christmas of course.

This one is a little bit more special than most. It’s designed for mums like me and is also a recipe diary meaning there is a recipe on virtually every page, or every diary week. 


The recipes are a mixture of sweet and savoury dishes to suit the season, complete with full instructions and approximate cooking times. 

As well as recipes, the diary also contains some really useful kitchen information, including weight conversions, cooking times and time saving tips.


There are pages for contacts, notes and even Christmas lists too.

It is an A5 size diary which is small enough to fit inside most standard handbags and comes with a lovely gold teal cover with ribbon, date stickers and pen loop for just £10.99.


GIVEAWAY 

I have the same diary to offer as a prize to one of my followers. This diary is the 2018 edition beginning January 1st 2018 worth £10.99. If you would like the chance to win this diary then click the entry link button below.

ENTER HERE!

(Giveaway for one Mum’s diary from Dairy diary uk worth £10.99. The giveaway will run for 28 days with final date for entries being September 8th 2017. Entrants need active email, Facebook and twitter accounts to complete entry steps.)


Aldi Ready set cook meals

Published August 1, 2017 by Bizzimummy

I do love shopping in my local Aldi, it's not as close as some of the bigger supermarkets and it's smaller building does mean it can get a bit crowded at busy times, but their produce seems just such good value for money compared to a lot of other places. I could probably feed us all (one adult, one teenager, 2 kids & 2 cats) for a week for under £50 if shopping there all the time.

Aldi recently asked if we would like to try out some of their new launch ready to cook meals. These meals, known as ready-set-cook recently had four new additions giving customers like myself a choice of seven different easy cook healthy meal choices.

Now I am usually skeptical about anything labelled a quick meal or a ready meal and even ready to cook. It makes me think "microwave meal" which are not always the healthiest from supermarkets. However these are not microwave meals at all. Instead it's a selection of stir frys, curries and other lovely sounding dishes.

Aldi's new additions which were only launched last month, include Chicken Tikka, Chicken Fajita, BBQ Pork Stir Fry and Beef Stroganoff. Plus a few other options which Aldi previously had.
 
The meals are fresh, not frozen and can be found in the refrigerator section of the store. They come in plastic trays, with sections dividing the meat and the vegetables. A satchet of sauce will usually be on top too.


 
Cooking each meal takes less than 15 minutes. Each one will vary in cooking method, the majority being stir fry so all you need is a frying pan or wok and a little oil. Each meal is also enough for two people, so much cheaper and healthier than a take away.

This is just one of the meal kits that I made for my dinner.

This is one of the chicken meal kits. All I had to do was heat the pan and add the contents, the sauce being last. Very easy indeed. What you see on the plate is half of one tray.

I was really surprised at just how delicious these are. Full of flavour, a bit of spice, big chunks of meat and fresh cut vegetables. All the hard work is done, no peeling, chopping, marinating etc; just simple frying.

The best bit being the price because they only cost £2.99 each and that's for 2 people meaning it's £1.50 per person (plus any extras you choose with it). The beef stroganoff costs slightly more at £3.99 but again only £2.00 per portion.

They seem really filling too and more than perfect portion sizes. If you add noodles or rice or a few fries then the meals will stretch even further and possibly feed three people. If like me, your on your own and kids want something else, then you can just cook half the tray and the other half the next day or cook the whole lot and refrigerate half, reheat etc. I'm not sure how safe re hearing these are tho so don't take my word on that one. I'm happy to do it myself but I'm not advising others.

I did find that I did not need to add extra sides or any noodles to any of the meals I purchased (5 of them!). I found them more than filling enough.

If you take a look at similar meals from other stores and even those online meal boxes and subscriptions you will find that none of them beat the small price of £1.50 per portion from Aldi stores.

 

Rowntrees less sugar

Published July 24, 2017 by Bizzimummy

Who remembers fruit pastilles from their childhood? They seemed to be a weekly treat for us and they would always be around at Christmas time. I don't remember having packets like they do these days, but more wrapped tubes and I'd usually find a tube of them in my selection box or my xmas stocking.

Of course times have changed and so have Rowntrees fruit pastilles. I think they can still be bought in the tubes, as in the picture above; but they also come in handy share bags now too. It's very hard to share them when in the tubes.

There have been a few other changes too. Firstly they now also come in fruity shapes rather than just the original disc shapes and secondly they come with 30% less sugar than previously. Less sugar however does not mean less flavour as they still taste just as good to me. I would say much more fruitier with distinct flavours rather than just sweet.

This was my first time tasting the Rowntrees ransoms too. These are more squishy and squashy than the pastilles and again now have less sugar.

Rowntrees sweets can be purchased almost anywhere that sells sweets and confectionery.

Chimasu Snack subscription box

Published July 21, 2017 by Bizzimummy

Chimasu is an Asian smack box, bringing a taste of Asia to UK door steps each month.

Each monthly box comes filled with at least 12 snack products from Asian countries such as Japan, China, Thailand etc. The majority being products that we never see over here and would find difficult to get hold of.

Monthly subscriptions start at £18 per month. This includes free shipping to the UK. Subscriptions cost slightly less if you sign up and pay in advance for longer.

And here is our unboxing video, so you can see all the goodies we got inside our July Chimasu box. I had 19 products in total.

Pocky sticks are gaining some popularity in the U.K. now tho I doubt we will see the full range of flavour like Japan has. The chocolate biscuit product was lovely as were the fruity gummy sweets. I was very surprised with the sunflower seeds too, they were like sweet crunchy nuts. I probably won’t eat the noodles myself or use the green tea tea bags but everything else is going down pretty well in our house.

Spoilt pig bacon

Published July 20, 2017 by Bizzimummy

It's that time of the day when I start getting hungry and it just so happens that I have some tasty packs of bacon in my fridge.

These packs come from Spoilt pig who have won several gold awards for their bacon.

Spoilt pig bacon comes from pigs that are reared in more healthy environments thus reducing the need for antibiotics. Antibiotics in animal food produce can have a great effect on resistance in humans.

Spoilt pig bacon seems to contain much less fat and rind than other bacon packs. The pieces also seem much thicker and generous in size. They make an excellent bacon sandwich at this time of the day.

Spoilt pig bacon is tasty and yummy and packs of both smoked and unsmoked can be purchased from Ocado, Morrisons, Nisa, Booths, and a few other stores.

Indigo Nutrition chocolate making kit

Published July 17, 2017 by Bizzimummy

Indigo Herbs are all about healthier lifestyles, healthy eating, superfoods and food for vegans. We were recently asked to try out one of their raw chocolate making kits. We are not a vegan family but we all love our chocolate treats so of course we agreed and then this box arrived. 


The kits start from £19.99 and contain all the ingredients needed to make our own "pure raw chocolate"


Raw chocolate is more healthier than the milk alternatives. Being a food suitable for vegans does mean no milk or dairy products are used. Therefore the finished chocolate is dark, stronger cocoa percentage and slightly more bitter than regular chocolate but it stlll tastes good. 

Have you ever wondered what gives good chocolate that wonderful chocolate smell? Well it's all down to this stuff! 

This being our melting organic cacao butter, it is known by other names too including cocoa butter and kakaw. From the moment I opened the packet I could instantly smell chocolate. This butter is 100% pure natural cacao derived straight from the cacao plant. It is one of the main ingredients in most chocolate products and is the ingredient which makes chocolate smell so good.

The butter is like small lumps of rock to begin with, it needs melting down to liquid and slowly too or the nutrients will be destroyed if heated too fast. Once melted we added the packet of raw vanilla powder and then all the cacao powder. Then it looked a bit more like chocolate.

With this kit we also got several small cake cases, but we also already had a few unused baking moulds lying around in the drawers, so this was a good excuse to get them out.

The chocolate mixture is poured into the moulds and we added some nuts and goji berries which are also included in the kit. Then put the moulds straight into the freezer to set. As chocolate does not really freeze, there is no risk of it spoiling if left too long. 

Raw chocolate does not taste as good when melted or when cooking with it. It tastes much better when set and ready to eat, so best not to lick the spoons with this stuff. 

And once set!


And that's not all of our raw chocolate creations either. We also found a quick yummy recipe on the Indigo herbs website for salted peanut butter cacao cups. These are really really easy and we happened to have half a jar of peanut butter in the cupboard too that needed using up.

Using the made raw chocolate mixture and the included cake cases, we poured a small amount of chocolate into each case and immediately placed them in the freezer to harden a little. Then took them out and placed a layer of peanut butter onto each one.


Followed by another layer of raw chocolate on top and back in the freezer for more time to set. These are just delicious and now I know how to make them, I will certainly be making some more.


There are several other raw chocolate recipes on the website, most of which just require the chocolate making kit and a few basic ingredients.

I found one main thing that differs with this raw chocolate as opposed to regular chocolate types is that it seems to melt much quicker, almost instantly after removing it from the freezer. It doesn't turn to mush in your hand but I could feel it start to melt very quickly. It's probably best kept in the freezer or a cold part of the fridge until ready for eating or using.

These kits are great and we have all enjoyed making and eating the chocolate. They can also make lovely gifts too. 

Chocolate from Willies Cacao 

Published July 4, 2017 by Bizzimummy



Well it’s a miserable wet Summers morning today isn’t it.? And when your stuck indoors witg nothing but Jeremy Kyle on the telly, there’s not much than cheers me up more than some gourmet chocolate. Now when I say gourmet, I don’t mean the slightly more expensive box of chocolates from the local supermarket, I mean the proper good stuff like this lot from Willies Cacao.


Cacao Willie produces a range of bars, along with a chocolate gift range. Thws can be purchased in the more high end stores such as Selfridges, Harvey Nichols, and online at Williescacao.com. 

Their chocolate spread is pretty impressive being made with piedmont hazelnuts and Peruvian awajun milk chocolate. I should also mention that their chocolate is sourced worldwide using the finest chocolate beans from the best places. 

We only opened this stuff 3 days ago and the jar is now almost empty. 

They even have their own brand of hot drinking chocolate which is just what’s needed on a miserable morning like this one. 


Combine a lovely milky cup of this stuff with some of Willies Cacao dark salted Prailine truffles as they go together amazingly. 


The truffles are just divine, I absolutely love the whole salted chocolate/caramel concept, it’s sweet with a crunch and a slight tang of bitterness and it just works so well together. 


The black pearls here have nothing to do with any pirates or any ships around the Caribbean. They do however make excellent treats when watching a movie. Or you could give them as a nice gift! I how we couldn’t as they just taste too good to give away. This particular box happens to be a delicious passion fruit caramel flavour inside a milk chocolate ball. Believe me, these are really good! 

Finally for those of us who like cooking/ baking or experimenting with chocolate recipes and creations, there are these. 


Chef’s drops look like chocolate buttons inside these tins, and come as milk, dark, very dark etc. I love how each tin clearly states the cocoa percentage clearly on the front and even the chocolate origin. The chefs drops are used in recipes which require chocolate or for chocolate creations. 


Yes you can eat these button shape things straight from the tin if you really want to, but the main idea is to melt them down and use in some big else. Being small in shape and lots of them seems to reduce the melting times in comparison to a large bar of cooking chocolate. It may be a good idea to hide these high up, from little hands as it is very tempting just to stand and eat them. 

A taste of Italy with Crosta & Mollica. Giveaway included.

Published July 3, 2017 by Bizzimummy

Crosta & Mollica translates to crust & crumb in Italian and that is what Crosta & Mollica is all about – Italian breads, snacks, sides and treats. 


We have a lovely selection here of breads and snacks, the majority I have never previously heard of. The linguette are crisp flat breads or crackers. These make good light lunch snacks if looking for something a little different.

Taralinni are Italian snack foods and very popular in Southern Italy. They can be sweet or savoury and are formed into circular shapes with ends that overlap slightly. 


They remind me a little of pretzels but much thicker and slightly bigger. A nice filling snack or a meal accompaniment. 

Grissini and Tornessi are both breadsticks of differing sizes and textures whilst Crostini is an Italian appetiser made with small pieces of toasted bread and various toppings. Again any of these are good for simply snacking on when hungry or serve them with a nice Italian dish such as a home made bolognaise! yes that’s right, no shop bought sauce in a jar this time round. 


Of  course after filling our bellies with pasta, sauce and various savoury snacks, we were very much in need of something a little sweeter, Just like these! 


Baci di Dama are small cookies consisting of two hazelnut biscuits joined together with rich chocolate fondant. These are deliciously yummy. Sweet, crunch and melt in the mouth scrumptious. A perfect end to a nice Italian style dinner (minus the wine unfortunately) 

There are a fair few places to buy Crosta&Mollica produce. The list includes Tesco, Morrisons, Sainsbury’s and Waitrose with a full list on the website. 

GIVE-AWAY

As well as allowing me to sample many of their Italian treats: Crosta&Mollica are also giving away exactly the same selection to a winning follower. To take part just click on the enter linky button below by July 24th which is the closing date for this giveaway.

You must be a UK resident to enter. 

Enter here!

Esthechoc Cambridge beauty chocolate! Yes really! 

Published June 30, 2017 by Bizzimummy

This is Esthechoc, a totally new previously unheard of type of chocolate which I recently came across and managed to get myself a box.


This is what Esthechoc claims to do. 

“One small esthechoc a day helps to regain your skin health and slow down the ageing process”

So I was totally baffled by this, I mean how can chocolate which is usually deemed unhealthy for the body be beneficial? Well of course it’s all down to what is inside the chocolate and how it’s made.

Each square serving is made with 70% cocoa premium dark chocolate and contain a plethora of antioxidants and bioavailable cocoa polyphenols. Yes I have no idea what they are either but there is lots of information on their UK website about what’s inside this special chocolate. The main ingredient to make it a beauty chocolate is something called Astaxanthin which is apparently the most powerful antioxidant known to science.  The process involves something called micellar technology which makes the good stuff “bioavailable”

So lots of large terms and scientific processes, none of which I greatly understand but their website does give a better idea. This page in particular describes the skin benefits achievable by having this chocolate daily. 


It is recommended to take just one of these thin square slabs of this chocolate per day to help boost skin health and anti – aging effects. 

The chocolate is dark and being 70% cocoa it is also quite a strong flavour but luckily not too bitter. I have been having my daily choc square with a hot drink and it tastes similar to most other dark chocolate with similar cocoa percentage. 

I cannot really comment on any noticeable effects to my skin, stomach or any other health aspects as I am only on the first box so it is still early days as far as using it goes. 

There are many customer reviews on the website, the majority being positive with results noticeable by box number 3/4. 

Esthechoc is sold by Cambridge chocolate Technologies Ltd who create produchs to help people live healthily and enjoy the anti-ageing protection of the most indulgent form of food – CHOCOLATE. Esthechoc can be purchased from Harrods and many other high end stores. A google search of Esthechoc will bring all the stockists up. 

Send a box of hugs

Published June 26, 2017 by Bizzimummy

With all the recent tragedies recently, it’s only natural that many people are feeling more down than usual, add to that; personal circumstances such as illness, loss, finances etc it’s always nice to know that somebody somewhere does care.

One way to cheer someone up and especially so somebody who does not live nearby is to send A box of hugs.


Box of hugs are specially curated boxes full of lovely things to make the recipient smile and to let them know someone cares. They have many different boxes to choose from full of nice things such as chocolates, tea, and gifts. The boxes aren’t just for cheering people up either, but also to say happy birthday or congratulations for events such as a new baby, new job or passing exams.

I for my very own Choco treat hug box sent to me. 


I can just imagine receiving one of these boxes out of the blue. Of course I’d be very eager to look inside but even the box of hugs logo would be enough to make me smile (rose not included!)


This particular box would cost £35.99 to send to somebody in the U.K. The box contends include many lovely chocolate treats from some luxury brands. The Cartwright & Butler chocolate crumbles make the best cookies ever and there is also delicious fudge from the Cotswold fudge company along with fudge & biscuit chocolate shards from Guppy’s. 


The teabags come from Teapigs tea and the inedible items are a little book – 100 hugs and a mug with the slogan – “do what makes you happy” 


My box of hugs and treats is enough to make most people smile I think. 

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whitakerssalmanack

Just another WordPress.com site

Ryan's universe

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The Adventures Of An Allergy Mummy.

Family, Food, Fun And Everything In Between.

Eye Will Not Cry

"Eye Fly High"

Six degrees of harmony

Tales about a family of 6 with teens, a tween & a toddler

BeejuBoxes.Com

Subscription Box Reviews, Active Directory, Spoilers, New Box Releases, Coupons and Lots of Nonsense.

Carmen Fox, Author

Welcome to the Fox's den. Musings by Carmen Fox.

Lil' Nibblet's Nook

A childhood Experience.

Aussie Criminals and Crooks

Australian criminals and their Crimes. Con artists, scum bags, murderers, corrupt cops, pollies, rapists and paedophiles will find themselves in this blog. It was expanded to also cover those that ought to be charged for their idiotic disgusting behaviour. Usually high-profile people who think they are above the law

Lake Michigan-Upon-Thames

A Gale of two cities . . .

Rock Salt

Seasoning while rocking out since 1983

Mummy Shambles

Losing it, One Marble At A Time

Just Say Know: The Truth About Drugs

Drug expert Mary Microgram answers your burning questions.

Netmums Blog

For real parents everywhere

Rainbeaubelle

A lifestyle blog by Julia Bryson

Threads

Life, Leisure, Luxury

whitakerssalmanack

Just another WordPress.com site

Ryan's universe

Let the universe guide you through.

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