food

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Fish delivered! Ramus fish box

Published March 24, 2017 by Bizzimummy

I do enjoy eating fish, and I don’t mean the type you get from the chippy. My only problem previously has been cooking and preparing it. But! Being sent a box of lovely fresh fish has changed all that completely. I didn’t even need to go to a store or carry it home and risk smelling fishy as it was delivered to my doorstep. My fish box came from Ramus and they deliver various fish boxes nationwide. 

This photograph shows the full contents of my fish box. In total six different varieties of fish, each packet containing two fillets and also a pot of salmon rub. 

The fish arrives cool with ice but not frozen. It can be kept in the fridge and used within 2/3 days or frozen. I put it all in the freezer to begin with and found that the fillets only take a few hours to defrost when required.


All the fish arrives sealed in individual packets. This box contained sea bass, haddock, salmon, trout, hake and smoked haddock. 

Sea bass is a fish that I have enjoyed in the past but have not had for a while. It can be a very expensive fish to buy and is often found on high end restaurant menus. It is not something I have previously cooked myself and certainly never prepared. I did a bit of research and watched a few videos on how to prepare this full fish fillet. 

Yes this fish came complete with head,eyes, fins and tail on and the last thing I wanted was to do something wrong or eat a part I’m not meant to. A fish with head still on does put me off eating it a bit so the head was the first thing I cut off, followed by the finns and the tail. Then I had to literally slice it open and remove the guts and bones which wasn’t the easiest thing to do, but I got there in the end. 


The silver scales also got scraped to remove any rough bits. I placed some onion inside the fish, with salt and pepper and a bit of oil infused with lemon, wrapped in foil and cooked in the oven for about 25 minutes. Then the fish was cooked to perfection, lovely and flakey and I served with yellow rice, sweet chilli sauce and a bit of mayonnaise. Lovely! 

I will be buying sea bass again as I do like it, tho I may ask them to prepare it for me next time.

The salmon fillets are really easy to cook as it’s already filleted. Salmon can be cooked in so many ways and has a very distinct flavour. I do prefer all my fish grilled or oven cooked. I used the little pot of salmon rub with the fillets. It’s just a seasoning to help enhance the flavour and optional. I enjoy salmon served with pasta, rice or vegetables. Here the salmon is served with sweet potato mash, green beans a little sauce. A very healthy dish. 


Next the smoked haddock fillets. These can be purchased fairly cheap but make a great dinner. Again they can be oven cooked, grilled or fried. This time served with crispy potatoes and green beans. 


I stlll have the rest of the fish in my freezer which I am of course looking forward to using. It’s been really good cooking with fresh fish for a change and something I am hoping to continue to do at least once a week if not more. Fish is of course very healthy and full of good stuff for the body. Served with vegetables and it’s even more healthier and also very tasty. Fish can also be used to make various recipes such as fish pies. 

Jordanna has also enjoyed the fish meals with me as she likes it too. Izebella has tried the fish and Ryan is still as fussy as ever. 

Our Fish box costs £25.00. There are other box selections to choose from on the Ramus website as well as hampers, platters and fish gifts via the online seafood shop.

Mother’s Day ideas: Brown and blonde brownies

Published March 20, 2017 by Bizzimummy

As it’s Mother’s Day in just a few days, I thought I would share some ideas of products I have tried recently and which I think would make great Mothers’s Day ideas.

The first one is Brownies and I think brownies would make a great alternative to the usual shop bought chocolates.

Of course brownie are one of those foods that need cooking correctly and to perfection or they just don’t taste good. (Did anyone have so called brownies served at school?). I have made them myself a few times and pleased to say they turned out just right, however nothing beats a baked bought brownie like the brownies from this place. 

So who are they? Well Brown and Blond are based in Leeds and they make delicious brownies like these. 


Brownies in lots of different flavours ans made with lots of nice things such as extra chocolate, nuts and peanut butter. These brownies were amazing and having just one is very filling so I would not advise eating lots of them at once. And just look how chunky they are too.  

Just amazingly delicious the way a brownie should be. 

I would much prefer brownies for Mother’s Day.  Or any day really. 

Cooking with Encona sauce

Published March 17, 2017 by Bizzimummy

Encona is the UKs number one best seller of  hot and spicy sauces. Their sauce bottles are infused with spices from all over the world. From the Caribbean to Asia there is a sauce for everyone as the sauces begin mild and go right up to extra hot. It’s just a matter of how hot one can handle. 

I guess I’m a slight whimp when it comes to hot sauce as I tend to stick to the medium or even mild ones. There is no way I could manage the extra hot products as I find some of the medium ones a little too hot. 

Encona sent me over these three sauces.


Smokey Jalapeño is the mild one, tho it still has a fairly mighty kick to it. It is of course Mexican inspired and great with tortillas, chilli and Mexican type food or even just dipping.

Then two medium sauce bottles – Amarillo chilli which is Peruvian inspired and made with Peruvian Amarillo chillis. It has a really sweet, almost like chutney aroma. The flavour is also sweet but certainly has some spice to it, hot hot hot for me. 

Thai chilli and garlic sauce obviously with Thailand inspirations and so a totally different type of spice compared to American or even Indian spices. This one is like a bright red/orangey colour. I’d say a little milder than the Amarillo chilli sauce with a more distinct flavour. 

Instructions on the back of the sauce bottles tell me how to best use the sauces, although the majority can be used in any way be it cooking with, drizzling, dipping etc. 

I had not made a fish dish in a while and with these new sauces from Encona I thought it would be a perfect opportunity to try something new and totally made up (no reading recipes). 

I made a stuffed spicy sea bass with rice. 


After gutting and preparing the sea bass I placed onions, tomatoes and a good drizzle of the Amarillo chilli sauce inside the fish and wrapped in foil. 

Baked for approximately 25 minutes, unwrapped and drizzled with the Thai chilli and garlic sauce. 

Thus getting spices from both sides of the world as well as a lovely fillet of fish. The sauces strangely worked well together as one was used for cooking which gave the fish an overall infused flavour and even reduced the hotness of the sauce. The other sauce drizzled over bought the kick back.

Encona sauce can be found in all the main supermarkets and they have loads of them to choose from. Visit Encona to see the full range. 

February Degustabox Reveal 

Published March 8, 2017 by Bizzimummy

Well about two weeks ago came a knock at my door and the arrival of my monthly Degustabox snack box. As always packed full of delicious sweets, treats and goodies and oh; was this a great box!

Starting with a few of my favourites – the goodies (sweets, crisps and all that) 


Look at these sweet goodies I found tucked in the box –

 1) Willy Chase: apple cider vinegar popcorn – a very strange flavour of “fit” popcorn but very nice and a rather huge (movie share) bag too. 

Next two bags of sweets courtesy of Bebeto – cheesecake jelly type sweets and Candy crush soft candy mix which was a colourful sticky assortment of many sweets. These didn’t last long as you can see. 

Finally and one of my favourite products from the February box – 3) Maui & Sons chocolate coated banana chips. These were delicious. I don’t normally like dried fruits but dried banana is an exception and when it’s covered in chocolate it’s even better. This is certainly one product that I’ll be looking out for again. 

“And then even more snacks!”


4) Peppersmith are mints and chewing gum. Mints and gum are two  of the few things that I really dislike. However they did not go to waste because my children do like mints and my friend got the gum. 

5) Ameicanos – The label states perfect with coffee and that’s probably because these are coffee. Coffee beans with dark chocolate coating. They were okay but not really something I’d go out and buy. The coffee taste was slightly overpowering. 

“Moving on to the beverages”

Lots of refreshing beverages came in February’s box. 

6) Coldpress – A blend of fruity greens in a bottle – kiwi, banana, and a bit of celery  and kale all blended together. The taste wasn’t really for me but my 9 year old daughter loved it.

7) Just Bee – This one is honey water with blueberry flavour and a natural antioxidant. I did not taste any honey in this drink and the blueberry flavour was fairly weak but tasteable. The drink on the whole is extremely refreshing and seems to be a real thirst quencher so these would be good for Summer bbqs.

8) Double Dutch – Cucumber and watermelon sparkling tonic. There are other varieties of course and all come in glass bottles. They are designed as mixers to have with a gin or vodka or any other tipple. However once again my daughter Jordanna; spotted this drink and asked if she could try it (minus any added alcohol of course). I tried it too and for a drink which contains cucumber it isn’t too bad at all. The fizziness makes it all the more better. 

9) Blossom Hill – Oh the excitement when I pulled this bottle out of the box! It’s wine and fruity bubbly “rosé” type wine too, my absolute favourite. Their fruit bloom wine is just 5.5% and has hints of summer fruits. A sweet fruity refreshing taste.

10) Koko dairy free – Its a milk alternative aimed mainly at people who can’t; for whatever reason drink regular cows milk. This one is made from freshly pressed coconut milk. The overall taste isn’t too bad – I’ve certainly tried worse milk alternatives. It does however claim to be similar to cows milk and suitable for use in hot drinks such as coffee and tea. This is where I have to disagree: and it may just be my opinion, but! It just does not taste right in a hot drink or on a bowl of cereal. 

 

“And last but not least!”


These are what I call the “cupboard” items or if I’m being old fashioned – the “pantry” stock. Those tins and packets that can be stored for a while. I often find 2/3 items in most of my Degustaboxes, some great, some not so good and some that last ages.

11) Heinz – Yes its beans, love them or hate them but us Brits seem to go through millions of the tiny orange things. These mini tins are a new no added sugar recipe. I don’t mind the smaller tins, in fact I prefer them because the bigger tins end up being wasted as only my two girls really eat them in our house. 

12) Willy’s apple cider vinegar – This was an extra free sample item included in Feb’s box. If I’m being totally honest I have absolutely no idea how or on what to use this stuff. I don’t think it’s the sort of thing to shake onto my fish and chips. I have read somewhere on the internet that it has a fair few health benefits as well as perhaps being used in some sort of cooking. The brand “Willy’s” being William Chase.

13) Kabuto – Its noodles, rice noodles to be exact. One of those on the go type pots that gets filled with hot water. Slightly spicy, not really something I eat myself but my daughter loves them.

And that concludes my February Degustabox reveal. All those goodies for just £12.99 a month, full sized products too and no tiny samples. Postage is free so sign up today at Degustabox UK

Chewy moon snack box for kids

Published March 7, 2017 by Bizzimummy

Chewy moon is a weekly subscription snack box for kids. 

The boxes are created based on the child’s age and come packed full of healthy natural snacks for children ages 3 and over.

Each box contains many snacks, each of these snacks comes in its own colourful package which all have animal images on them. 

Now when I hear the words “healthy snacks” I immediately think – raisins, dates, prunes etc, all the things I dislike and my kids aren’t overly keen either, especially not prunes. As you can see there were many snack boxes to try and not one of them contained raisins or prunes. The majority of the snack boxes were actually really tasty with sweet berries or nuts and other fairly healthy items. 

A menu detailing what everything is and what the ingredients in each pack are, comes included as do a few kids activity sheets.

Chewymoon sends a box of snacks weekly for approximately £4.99. It’s a mixture of sweet and savoury snacks which we all enjoyed, none of us found any thaf we really disliked. 

Chewy moon differs from other similar subscription services because – 

Snacks are sampled and approved by kids

And made by nutritionists who are experts in children’s nutrition

100% natural: packed with goodness, not sugar or other additives

Tailored and addressed to the child

Stories, fact cards and totems in every pack, making snacking and learning a brilliant experience.

Clearance XL – groceries for less

Published March 2, 2017 by Bizzimummy

A good way to save money on shopping is to head over to a website such as Clearance XL.  They sell many items including groceries, toiletries, clothing and even toys. Their products are really low cost and include end of line, excess stock, damaged packaging, near date foods and past sell by date products. Best before datdiffers greatly to Use by dates and is simply a date when most stores need to sell the goods by, most foods stay fine way past their by date but cannot be sold at full price in regular shops and supermarkets. Places like Clearance XL are able to sell these type of products on line. 

I was quite impressed with the selection of products available and that they even include clothes, shoes and toys too. I spent approximately £25 on the online store and got a huge box of products for it.  

I found snack items such as crisps, popcorn and chocolates a real bargain. Many of the crisps are sold in multipacks just like the supermarkets but Clearance XL sell 2/3 multipacks for just a pound. 

All this for £4!

And chocs all less than a fiver!

All of these snack products are either near the sell by date or passed the date but all were fine and the same quality as stuff within the sell by dates.

I managed to grab two packets of the Old El Paso stand and stuff taco kits which my kids love. They usually cost upwards of £2.50 each in shops but I got two packets for just a pound. Along with the cereal costing under 50p. 


These cans are known as Dr Fruit and come from Europe. 

It was just £3.00 for a pack of 24 cans. I was a bit hesitant about getting them as it’s not a drink any of us have heard of, but they taste really nice. It’s just fruit juices blended together and they went down well with my kids.
Being almost pancake day, I got one of these too. They usually cost more than a fiver but much less here.

And also many non food items too. 

Sparkly jelly shoes for Jordanna just a pound, white heel shoes for me which cost about £3/£4 and a purple fleece for Izebella which I think cost just £1.99. Absolute bargains and of course clothes and shoes don’t exactly have sell by dates or go off. 

And even the cats didn’t get left out as I was able to get a big tray of cat food tins for just £1.00 along with the lenor fabric conditioner just a pound too.

It’s quite easy to get carried away as all the products are so low cost, I could easily do all my cupboard grocery shopping on this website and for probably less than half of what I usually pay in supermarkets and I will certainly be ordering again. The postage costs are fairly low cost too and especially if ordering multiple items together. This page shows delivery costs which start at just £3.99 per box. 

To place an order, I did need to register for an account which does not take long, however I did find that my order disappeared once the account was created and worried that I’d have to do it all again. However I found that clicking the back button allowed me back on the checkout page and my order was there whilst still logged in, but it may be a good idea to register the account first. 

It is a really good website and I am glad I came across it. I don’t mind buying products and snacks past their sell by date because I know they are still good enough to eat and obviously try everything first before giving it my children. 

Clearance XL is definitely worth a look.

Pancake day with Num noms

Published February 28, 2017 by Bizzimummy

Well incase you forgot, it is pancake day today or shrove Tuesday if you prefer. We do pancakes every year even tho I’m not a fan myself, my children love it.

This year we are taking part in a Num noms campaign “what’s your flavour” and it involves incorporating the new num noms series 3 with our pancake recipes. 

These are the new series 3!  With a lunchbox yet sweet theme.


So armed with a bottle of this stuff!  – (No I don’t even attempt them from scratch!) plus…..

A non stick frying pan too, along with an open door and working smoke alarm, off I went to make pancakes.

Oh and of course a few toppings too with a few inedible additions here. 


Attempt #1 – went totally wrong, the damn thing would not turn and stuck to the “non stick” frying pan! I don’t do flipping either, way too scary, I just use two pans and flip the pancake into the other one.

#Attempt 2 – a bit better, tho not round like it started out. Still Izebella didn’t mind what shape it was and was more than happy to decorate it. 


I think we have Sara strawberry Num nom here at the front along with two others. Izebella has a box full of hundreds of them and I only know a few of the foodie names.

Onto the third attempt and much better, I’m getting the hang of this now! Jordanna’s creation a little more basic with the ingredients but not so with the Num noms!

Yes she chose all the pink, white and chocolate coloured Num noms to represent her toppings – chocolate spread, marshmallow fluff and strawberries. 

I think Izebella got slightly carried away on the next attempt and covered the pancake with Num noms.

She did find Maya mallow, after a bit of digging in the box, and placed her proudly on top of the marshmallow. 
And Ryan doesn’t really do Num noms on his plate, however he can make an almost perfect round pancake his self, much better than my previous attempts. 

Healthy meals for less at Aldi

Published February 27, 2017 by Bizzimummy

I don’t shop at Aldi as much as I do other supermarkets. This is mainly because it’s a little further away, but I do go when I can as I find many things cheaper than other places.

I was asked by Aldi recently to create a recipe using only products bought from an Aldi store. And that’s just what I did, in fact I made two.

The first is a healthy salmon pasta salad. I made it with pasta from Aldi along with all of these lovely ingredients (also from Aldi) 

It is one of those recipes where you can pretty much put anything you like with it but this is what I use. 

Pasta shells, salmon flakes, 1 pepper (red), 1 medium onion, 1 avacado and a tub of prawn cocktail.

It’s a simple recipe and perfect for more Summery weather and Bbq’s but I enjoy it any time.

So to make the dish: I boil the pasta until soft (about 10 mins). Chop the pepper and onion. Slice the avacado. Once the pasta is cooked and cooled I add the salad items.


And then in goes the salmon and a little mayonnaise or salad cream, just so it’s not dry. 


Then serve with the prawn cocktail at the side. I think the salmon with prawns goes really well and the salad items make it quite a colourful dish too. It really is tasty.

Next is a more traditional dish – Chicken roast dinner; and again all the ingredients are purchased from Aldi. 

The chicken is a roast in the bag “extra tasty” type. These save mess and greasy hands plus contamination as the bird stays in the bag until cooked. The bag does not even need piercing. The whole thing simply goes onto an oven tray and cooks and any fats get caught in the throw away tray that the bird comes in. 

To make things easier for mums just like me, Aldi has a really good selection of frozen prepared vegetables. They do of course have many fresh vegetables to offer too but the frozen bags just seem to make dinner much easier as the hard work and mess is eliminated (washing, peeling, chopping etc) 


They also have a few varieties of ready made Yorkshire puddings. Izebella loves them and ends up making little pies with them. The bag above cost less than 50p and they tasted just as good as any other.

The frozen mash is great, again no peeling, chopping, boiling or mashing spuds as it’s all done for me. I just tip the frozen potato pieces into a bowl and microwave for about eight minutes, adding butter or milk to the dish gives it a more creamier flavour. It’s nothing like that awful instant powder mash either it’s simply frozen potato.

And we all enjoyed a lovely hot roast dinner. I won’t call it a Sunday dinner because we didn’t have it on a Sunday and I believe that good roast dinners can be enjoyed any day. 

Yes the gravy is from Aldi too!


I had a £20 voucher to shop in Aldi and managed to buy all the ingredients above to make two recipes and more besides including biscuits, fruit, chocolate, sandwich fillers, and more. I find Aldi great value and great tasting foods.

American goodies 

Published February 24, 2017 by Bizzimummy

We are having a blast trying all these unusual and strange snacks which kids in other countries enjoy daily. This time it’s the turn of the great USA and there’s just something pretty special about their snacks compared to ours I think.

A big box of American goodies came from American Goodies UK. They are a company based in the U.K. who specialise in selling all sorts of American snack and grocery items. The stuff you just can’t easily get over here. 

America has many sweets and candys that we don’t and we have recently got the chance to try quite a few thanks to American goodies. Just look at all these! 


There are a few similarities there to what we have over here such as the love hearts and drumstick lollies etc; but also a few not seen before. The Baby Ruth bars are the ones that appear in goonies apparently, or so my son tells me anyway. 


Those yellow butterfing bars are really yummy too. 

Then there are these, never seen before snacks. 


The minions pack ate like little banana lollies on plastic dome type sticks. Jolly rancher being fruity sweets and then these: 

Think those French fries crisps, plain flavour but with extreme heat and spice. I couldn’t manage more than two. Very hot indeed.

Oreos are known world wide, but Americans have many different flavours and pack sizes.


These open a bit like baby wipe packets (kids opinions). And there’s lots of Oreos inside too, more than we get in packets here.

Of course we just had to give some American cereal a go too and nothing quite puts a smile on my kids faces like a box of this does.

It’s Lucky charms cereal which seems to be very popular in the USA. However it did leave me thinking “do kids really eat this stuff every morning”. It’s cereal mixed with coloured marshmallows which expand with the milk, hardly the healthiest stuff but I’m letting my kids have it until it’s gone as a one off thing. I don’t do breakfast myself and wouldn’t personally eat this but of course kids are going to love it. 


American people also love their soda and drink cans of the stuff. They have far more varieties than we do of brands such as Fanta. The root beer, although called beer is actually a soda too. It can be bough as soda or the alcohol version.

And a few more snacks that I found in box! 

The m&ms are peanut butter flavour and we don’t get them here, nor the tropical skittles or the cookie bar twix. America just has so much more variety.

Now the final item – Bean boozled. These have become quite a well known joke/game item recently and it’s a coincidence we got them as my son was only talking about them a few weeks back. 

Inside the box are flavoured jelly beans. However some are regular “nice” flavours and some are down right disgusting. 

I declined to take part. The thought of munching on dog food flavours or boogers does not excite me one bit. My kids and their friends instead took turns to eat one each. Their faces were hilarious. Not sure who thought these up but they definitely have a very perculiar sense of humour.

Well yes we have been munching on American sweets and treats this half term and next week I’ll have to get back to the gym as they aren’t the healthiest things around but nice all the same. It’s no wonder America has high obesity when their snacks taste this good.

To try a vast range of American snacks, visit American goodies UK

Trying Thai snacks 

Published February 22, 2017 by Bizzimummy

As many of my loyal followers may know, I do love trying snacks and foods from around the world and the more unusual, the better.

Today it’s the turn of Thai snacks online and yes that’s right it’s snacks all the way from Thailand.

Thai snacks on line is not a subscription service as such (like I’ve had previously) but more an online store which ships worldwide giving a taste of Thailand to everyone.

We; very kindly got a box of Thai snacks to try out, and believe me some of them are very unusual.


I was expecting the products to be similar to Japan snacks, but they are a totally different thing altogether. I mean (for a start) “corn flavour chewy sweets” where else in the world can one find stuff like this?

Actually the corn sweets were quite alright, strange and quite bizarre yes, but they really don’t taste like corn at all. More sweet and buttery and chewy.

The strangeness and large diversity of products did not end there, amongst my box full of goodies I also discovered some rather perculiar crisp type snacks too. 


These being squid flavour! Yes squid, they didn’t tantalise my tastebuds at all but Jordanna enjoyed them – strange child!

The mini chocolate bars went down well of course, they did have a totally different taste texture to what we are used to which I can’t explain but nice anyway. The pocky is the one thing we have come across before, think sweet sticks coated in chocolate. Most countries seem to do there own varieties of Pocky sticks. Also these chocolate type snack things went down well too. 

Well Thai snacks are certainly unusual, some great, some good, some not so good. They aren’t sold over here that I know of so it’s always a surprise to be tasting new snacks whether good or bad. Yes it’s funny when friends/family try something unusual that just doesn’t mix with their tastebuds.

I have of course enjoyed trying all our snacks straight from Thailand.

Thai snacks online allows you to choose your own products and have a few grocery categories to choose from. Prices are in dollars but they do ship to the UK. 

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