A trio of healthy red meat meals

Britmums have challenged bloggers to take the #HealthyRedMeat Challenge to create a delicious family meal with beef, pork or lamb. And as one of the first 100 to sign upto the challenge, I received a free £10 Tesco voucher to purchase red meat.

Now son2 is very fussy about what he will eat and son1 doesn’t like beef, so I decided to play it safe and spent the voucher on 2 packs of pork mince and a pack of sausages, as I knew those should go down well. Plenty of good quality #HealthyRedMeat at a very affordable price.

Tesco red meat

Experts recommend including lean red meat in children’s diet from weaning onwards. Red meat provides a range of important nutrients that are often low in toddlers and children – including iron, zinc, and B vitamins, selenium and potassium.
Red meat has been in the spotlight recently, and experts fear that the nutritional benefits have been overshadowed by misleading negative views. To cut through the confusion, the Meat Advisory Panel, an independent group of health and nutrition experts, is partnering with BritMums to promote red meat in the diets of children.
Dr Emma Derbyshire, a public health nutritionist and mother, says: “Including a small portion of red meat in the diet a few times a week after weaning can help to bridge nutrient gaps and so help to maintain good health through childhood and beyond.”

So the first pack of mince was used to make Breaded Pork Meatballs which I served along with my homemade Cheesy Chips. Or plain chips for son2 who has recently taken a dislike to cheese. Luckily it is simple to remove a portion of chips before adding the cheese.

Breaded Pork Meatballs

Breaded Pork Meatballs

Ingredients (serves 4)

500g pork mince
2 slices of stale bread
1 egg
2 tbsp plain flour
salt and pepper
1 tbsp olive oil

Method

Tear bread into small pieces and put in blender.
Whizz into breadcrumbs.
Beat the egg in a flat dish.
Form the mince into about 16 balls.
Sprinkle the flour on a chopping board.
Roll the meatballs in flour.
Dip the meatballs in the egg.
Tip breadcrumbs into a dish and season with salt and pepper.
Roll the meatballs in breadcrumbs to fully coat them.
Gently heat the oil in a wok on hob.
Cook the meatballs for about 15 minutes, until they are thoroughly cooked, turning at intervals.
Serve with cheesy chips and your choice of vegetables.
Enjoy.

Breaded Pork Meatballs

A really tasty meal. The next day it was mince up again. This time I made Pork Burgers which I served in ciabatta bread along with a repeat of the Cheesy Chips. But rolls would be fine too.

Pork burger with cheesy chips

Pork Burgers

Ingredients (serves 4)

500g pork mince
1/2 tbsp plain flour
1 tbsp olive oil

Method

Form the mince into 4 burgers.
Sprinkle the flour on a chopping board.
Coat the burgers in flour.
Gently heat the oil in a frying pan on hob.
Cook the burgers for about 15-20 minutes, until they are thoroughly cooked, turning at intervals.
Serve in your choice of ciabatta bread or bread rolls with cheesy chips and salad or vegetables.
Enjoy.

Pork Burgers

Again another delicious meal. And finally a meal we have frequently in our household as it is one of both boys’ favourites, namely Toad in the Hole. I served this with mini roast potatoes and a wide range of vegetables so that everyone could choose which ones they wanted alongside.

Toad in the hole

Toad in the Hole

Ingredients (serves 4)

375g pork sausages
150g plain flour
1 egg
450ml milk
pinch of salt
spray oil

Method

Preheat fan oven to 200 deg C.
Put flour and salt in mixing bowl.
Make a well in centre of flour.
Crack egg into well.
Add sufficient milk to beat to a paste.
Gradually whisk in remainder of milk.
Meanwhile spray oil onto baking tray.
Prick sausages and place in baking tray.
Cook sausages for 5 minutes on middle oven shelf.
Pour batter over sausages.
Return to oven and cook for about 30 – 40 minutes.
Serve with roast potatoes, gravy and your choice of vegetables.
Enjoy.

Toad In The Hole

Of course this went down very well. And here is the Cheesy Chips recipe, mentioned earlier.

Cheesy Chips

Ingredients (serves 4)

600g potatoes
50g grated cheddar cheese
1-2 tbsp olive oil

Method

Preheat fan oven to 200 degree C.
Peel the potatoes.
Chop potatoes into thin chips.
Heat the oil in a baking tray in oven for 3 minutes, ensuring the base is fully covered.
Add the chips and turn a few times to ensure coated in the oil.
Cook for about 15 minutes, turning halfway through.
Meanwhile grate the cheese.
Once the chips are cooked, sprinkle the grated cheese over the chips.
Return to oven for about 3 minutes, to allow cheese to melt.
Serve and enjoy.

Cheesy Chips

So a thumbs up from the boys for the meal choices this week using #HealthyRedMeat.

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Disclosure. This post mentions products I purchased using a voucher I was sent for free. All opinions are my own. This post is an entry for the BritMums #HealthyRedMeat Challenge, sponsored by the Meat Advisory Panel.

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Songmics Storage Ottoman review plus giveaway

Now I don’t know about you, but in our household, the boys seem to amass new possessions much more quickly than I can persuade them to filter things that they have really grown out of to either the charity shop or their younger cousins. So it is a continual struggle to keep on top of the mess and clutter that goes hand in hand with them. So I was delighted to be offered the chance to review a Fabric Folding Storage Ottoman Bench from Songmics for free.

Songmics Ottoman

The ottoman arrived flat-packed and you literally unfold the base to assemble in seconds. Couldn’t be simpler. Plenty of storage space inside for some of the boys’ toys and a comfortable padded seat on top. We’ve chosen to put it in the boys’ play area and they are now using it as a seat when playing video games. It is wide enough for both of them to sit together. A definite improvement rather than just sitting on the floor.

This product retails on Amazon, currently priced at £26.99 and comes in a choice of three colours, dark brown, grey and light grey. I opted for the brown which looks very nice against our terracotta carpet. A good quality sturdy product and very good value in my opinion.

According to the packaging, it has a maximum weight capacity of up to 300 kg. It does have a strange odour on the interior when new, but this wears off in a few days.

Songmics Ottoman

Do take a look at the Songmics UK Facebook page. They have a wide range of household products including interlocking storage units fairly similar to the one we purchased and assembled recently for our shoes. Wish I’d heard of this brand sooner.

And I’m hosting a rafflecopter competition to giveaway a Fabric Folding Storage Ottoman to one lucky winner.
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A Rafflecopter giveaway – Please click on the link to enter.

And you may see my other giveaways here.

I’d love to hear your top storage tips. I’m thinking another of these would be ideal for spare bedding.

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Disclosure.  This post is a review of a product I was sent for free.  All opinions are my own.

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The White House Files by Sara Cobb

I have received a free e-copy of the book The White House Files by Sara Cobb to review. To find out more about the author you may see her website here.

The White House Files by Sara Cobb

Here is the book blurb.

She’ll do anything to unearth the secrets.
They’ll stop at nothing to silence her.

Hundreds of years after WWIII, Smithsonian archeologist Roslin Williams has uncovered an old Air Force One plane containing human remains. It is the greatest historical discovery of her lifetime, one that raises more questions than answers. Roslin is determined to dig up any information about the plane that she can and unravel the secrets behind it.

However, the dangerous powers behind this age-old scandal have plans of their own. Keeping facts buried is their number one priority and Roslin is getting in their way. With an assassin closing in to silence her once and for all, Roslin teams up with Special Agent Mark Appleton to unravel this ancient conspiracy. But with time running out, will they unearth the truth before they’re the next buried fatalities?

Even the best kept secrets can’t stay buried forever.

This book is set in the future, hundreds of years after WWIII, although we don’t get to know which century. Roslin is part of the archaeological team who are working on the dig of the century at the site where the White House once stood. On live camera feed, they uncover a door with the presidential seal and Martin, her annoying boss who has a tendancy to ignore protocol, tugs the door handle which breaks off and causes the door to jamb halfway open. He orders Roslin to squeeze through the gap and she falls face first onto skeletal remains. As she orientates herself, she realises she is in Air Force One.

The live feed has been watched by those who don’t want Air Force One found. They know secrets that have been handed down through many generations and it is their responsibility that those secrets remain secret. The discovery of Air Force One jeopardises the secrets. What will they do? Loads of twists and turns follow, as Roslin tries to piece together the mystery of what happened to Air Force One and who was on board. She struggles to read old documents found on the plane, as written English is now a dead language.

I normally avoid futuristic novels as they tend not to appeal. But I loved this one, as instead of focussing on the technology of future, Roslin is much more interested in the past. So her home was full of things that nobody else has heard of like a television and a combination safe hidden behind a painting. Her security system is a piece of masking tape placed on top of the door, and her roll of tape is running very low, but she doesn’t know where to obtain a new roll, since again it is an obsolete item. Similarly she has a battery operated flashlight keyring for emergencies but of course replacement batteries are obsolete too. And when she finds an artefact which she can’t identify, it turns out to be a USB stick. I just found all these touches that the author had included so appealing.

The White House Files is available on Amazon, currently priced at £2.32 in Kindle format. A great read that kept me on the edge of my seat although I was disappointed that it ended so suddenly. The author is already writing the next in the series, so I’ll just have to wait. Highly recommended.

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Disclosure.  This post is a review of an e-book I was sent for free.  All opinions are my own.

Guest post – Tangled jigsaw review and giveaway

I was recently offered the chance of reviewing a 100 piece children’s Disney Tangled jigsaw puzzle, but my boys took one look at the picture featuring Rapunzel and said “no way”. However I passed the opportunity onto my delighted niece.

Ravensburger Disney Tangled Jigsaw Puzzle

This is what my sister had to say.

My four year old daughter was excited when the jigsaw arrived, even though she didn’t know the movie, Tangled. Her six year old brother didn’t want to do it as he thought it was girly. She needed help with the jigsaw, so we did it together and then big brother decided he was interested and joined in about half way through. It was at the right level for him and they both enjoyed doing it. I thought the picture was fun, bright and lended itself well to a jisgaw for 6 year olds. 

Ravensburger Disney Tangled Jigsaw Puzzle

Ravensburger Disney Tangled Jigsaw Puzzle

Ravensburger Disney Tangled Jigsaw Puzzle

We don’t have Disney Channel on our tv, but I’m sure those of you with young children who do, will know that Tangled: The Series, a spin-off from the movie, launched on the Disney Channel earlier this year.

This lovely jigsaw made by Ravensburger features an image from Tangled: The Series, and with its 100 XXL size pieces, is targeted at children age 6+.

Ravensburger Disney Tangled Jigsaw Puzzle

And I’m hosting a rafflecopter competition to giveaway a Disney Tangled jigsaw puzzle to one lucky winner. What a fun prize.
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a Rafflecopter giveaway – Please click on the link to enter.

And you may see my other giveaways here.

I’d love to hear about your favourite jigsaw ever. Mine was a 500 piece circular one from York Castle museum that I did over and over again as a child. I can’t remember who gave it to me, as I’ve never actually visited the museum.

Or what about your favourite Disney film? I really can’t decide as I loved so many of them.

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Disclosure.  This is a review of a product my sister received for free.  All opinions are her own.

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Dating Daisy by Daisy Mae

I have received a free e-copy of the book Dating Daisy by Daisy Mae to review.

Dating Daisy by Daisy Mae

Here is the book blurb.

Daisy Mae has finally left her horrible husband after decades of unfulfilling marriage. Ready to embark on a new liberated life of adventure and fun, it dawns on Daisy that the last time she was asked out on a date was in the 80s, long before Whatsapp, Tinder, Happn and Bumble arrived; all meaningless words to Daisy’s frankly middle-aged ears.

As a sexual health doctor Daisy Mae, more than most, has reason to be cautious about throwing herself headfirst into 21st century dating. With guidance and encouragement from her seventeen-year-old daughter Imogen, her surrogate parents with a swanky house and swimming pool known fondly as The Amigos, and her friends Pinky and Jeannie, a nonagenarian who sends her insightful relationship tips from her nursing home, Daisy joins an online dating site in the hope that romance will swiftly follow.

But dating in the age of selfies and social media isn’t easy, and what begins as an innocent foray soon unravels in spectacular fashion. Daisy had not expected that she’d have to decode tech-speak (did you know 531 meant sex?), endure mortifying first dates with men who look nothing like their profiles, and be on the receiving end of an unwanted barrage of explicit photographs.

Is the price of finding love online too high? Or can Daisy Mae swipe her way to success?

This book is set in 2014, when 52 year old Daisy signs on to an internet dating site after one divorce and another 18 month relationship, because she wants to find a lifetime mate. Daisy lives with her 17 year old daughter Imogen, but we hear how she refers to her ex-husband as Voldemort.

She puts a lot of effort into how she portrays herself in her profile and photo and is disappointed to find not one wink, smile or email the next day. So instead she does a search on the site for non-smoking men aged 50-60 within 20 miles of Brighton but there are only 3 matches. Even expanding to a 50 mile radius, it only increases to 12 and about a third of them haven’t included a photo.

We then follow Daisy’s online chats, her first dates which often turn out to be a complete disaster, especially when men are nothing like their profile. She signs on to more sites. And the story is interspersed with Daisy recounting comical tales from her career as a sexual health doctor, plus advice from the Amigos, her best friends.

How many dates will Daisy have and can she find true love? And how does Imogen react?

Dating Daisy is available on Amazon, currently priced at £10.99 in paperback and is also available in Kindle format. A funny light-hearted read, although I did get a bit fed up with the over-use of the phrase “Here’s the thing” throughout the book.

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Disclosure.  This post is a review of an e-book I was sent for free.  All opinions are my own.

More fun with Snappertime plus giveaway

Regular readers of my blog may remember the fun the boys had back in June doing the Time Lord Challenge and the Soap Ships Challenge from Snappertime.

So they were very pleased when Snappertime sent us a new bundle of goodies.

Snappertime is a website full of lots of fun screen-free activities for children, spread across five categories, namely Super Science, Great Outdoors, Tasty Tasks, Arty Farty and Super Hero.

Snappertime goody bundle

The bundle comprised the following goodies:-
A selection of Snappertime Challenge cards
Mr Men on the Farm book
The Stick Book
Danger Mouse Mission Improbable DVD
Swallows and Amazons DVD
Wooden Sailboat Kits
Swallows and Amazons badges and stickers

Plenty of fun to be had with all of these, although I was surprised that it included DVDs, since Snappertime does focus on screen-free activity. But I’m very happy with the choices since I loved the Swallows and Amazons book as a child and remember how this series inspired some of my playtime. I had a vintage copy carefully wrapped in brown paper which belonged to my Dad.

After watching some of the Danger Mouse episodes, the boys decided it was time to tackle some more challenges.

Watching Danger Mouse

Son2 updated our doodlebot and then chose to do the Fizzy Foam Challenge from the Super Science category, which is based on the Roald Dahl book “George’s Marvellous Medicine”. This is a story that we enjoyed reading together a while ago. He loved mixing his potion together and he used a couple of different food colourings, so that his went from pink to purple. He compared it to a volcano as it bubbled and frothed up the beaker. He had to bear in mind that it contained washing up liquid, as it almost looked good enough to drink.

Fizzy Foam Challenge

And son1 opted for a Tasty Tasks challenge, namely to cook some Choc Dollops. A nice simple recipe for children to cook which only needs chocolate and cream plus some decoration. Son1 decided to use white chocolate and decorated half with chocolate curls and the other half with honeycomb pieces. These were delicious and son2 has decided he wants to make some too. See here for the recipe.

Cooking Chocolate Dollops

Afterwards we uploaded photos of their projects for them to earn another DoodleCoin each. And once you have 8 coins, you can claim a free reward. There is a great selection of rewards to choose from, some of which are worth upto £25, most are for free, although a few request £5 postage.

Snappertime doodlecoins

I would definitely recommend you sign your children up for this fab website with its great freebies. So much fun.

I’m really looking forward to introducing the boys to Swallows and Amazons via the dvd next.

And I’m hosting a rafflecopter competition to giveaway a fabulous kids goody bundle to one lucky winner, courtesy of Snappertime, just like the bundle I received.
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a Rafflecopter giveaway – Please click on the link to enter.

And you may see my other giveaways here.

I’d love to hear what screen-free activities your children enjoy.

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Disclosure.  This post mentions some goodies I was sent for free.  All opinions are my own.

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The Keeping of Secrets by Alice Graysharp

I have received a free e-copy of the book The Keeping of Secrets by Alice Graysharp to review.

The Keeping of Secrets by Alice Graysharp

Here is the book blurb.

The keeper of family secrets, Patricia Roberts grows up isolated and lonely. Trust no one and you won’t be disappointed is her motto. Three men fall in love with her and she learns to trust, only to find that their agendas are not her own. With secrets concealed from her by the ultimate love of her life, and with her own secret to keep, duplicity and deceit threaten their relationship. In a coming of age story set against the sweeping backdrop of the Second World War – evacuation, the Battle of Britain, the Blitz, buzz bombs and secret war work – Patricia ultimately has to decide whether to reveal her deepest held secret for the sake of her future happiness.

The book starts when 15 year old Pat’s school is evacuated to Leatherhead in September 1939. Pat, Janet and Becky end up at Givons House, where they are under-fed, but get rehomed after complaints from their parents. Pat misses her new best friend Becky but has to leave her next billet when relatives are due and ends up in a bed far too short for her.

She goes back home to Brixton for Christmas, where her childhood friend Bill now wants her to be his sweetheart. But Pat doesn’t want to be anyone’s girl, she dreams of going to sixth form, then training to become a teacher.

Shortly after returning to Leatherhead, the short bed fails an inspection and Pat is rehomed again, this time in a small flat with Mr & Mrs Grice. When Mr Grice is called up, Mrs Grice moves to a larger bungalow and finally Becky is able to lodge with Pat again. But it is not just Leatherhead where she keeps moving, as her grandmother forces the family to move from Brixton to West Norwood due to a rent dispute, just before she goes back for May half-term.

Whilst home, she heads into London for a visit to the National Gallery and en-route pops into the Beaver Club, where her mother works. But she accidentally collides into one of the Canadian servicemen, Group Captain James Bonar, who was about to do some sightseeing before returning to duties. She ends up acting as an unofficial tour guide and James then asks her to be a pen pal.

A couple of weeks later, Pat turns 16 and with her school friends, goes for a cycle ride picnic where they inadvertently end up amidst a military training exercise on Esher Common. The officer in charge forbids them to speak of it to anyone, so she can’t include it in her pen pal news. Meanwhile James asks if she will show him more of London when he next gets leave, so she uses a visit to Becky as a cover excuse. And a week later they go to a dance and kiss. Several months pass before James next has leave and this time they sleep together and James proposes. Pat turns him down saying she wishes she was 10 years older. James had mistakenly assumed she was 21. But disaster intervenes when a week later, James’ plane is shot down.

We then move into part 2 of the book, where we continue to follow Pat, who is now blaming herself for James’ death and bottling up her biggest secret. Bill alternates between trying to cheer her up and feeling jealous that somebody else had been keen on Pat. She then meets Bill’s friend Jon whom she becomes keen on. Of course Bill starts resenting that Jon likes Pat. There’s lots more to come in the story, but I’m going to stop now.

The Keeping of Secrets is available on Amazon, currently priced at £9.99 in paperback and is also available in Kindle format. A nice story which I recommend.


Here is an extract from the book for you to read.

Pat has taken James, a Canadian airman, on a whistle stop tour of London’s attractions:

‘No tour guide worth her salt could allow a tour to end without a cup of tea at a Lyons Corner House,’ I declared grandly, and James inclined his head for me to lead on. I took him to the one on the opposite corner to Charing Cross Station and we were placed at a table at one side of the room towards the back. James extracted a cigarette packet as we waited for our tea, a quirk of an eyebrow as I refused the proffered cigarette, but he made no comment, dragging deeply before blowing the smoke out of his flared nostrils. He said, ‘It’s been a very pleasant afternoon. You’ve been kind to a stranger in a foreign land and made me feel at home. Could I ask one more thing of you?’

At that moment the waitress arrived and we were busy for a few minutes with the flurry of activity. Once cups of tea were in front of us, unable to contain my curiosity, I asked, ‘What’s the one more thing you’d like me to do?’

James was in no hurry to reply, sipping his tea and helping himself to a small gingerbread cake, which he ate slowly, his even white teeth flashing as he bit into its soft brown depths, his lips meeting firmly, a slight lift to the side of his mouth as he chewed and watched me watching him. I blushed a little as if I had caught him in some kind of personal ritual and he swallowed and nodded slightly, as if coming to a decision, smiling more broadly now, the crow’s feet crinkling, and I felt a melting inside me, and I thought, I’d like to draw him, and, blushing again, busied myself with cutting up my scone and butter.

James leaned forward and spoke quietly so as to not be overheard.


About the author

Born and raised in the Home Counties, Alice Graysharp has enjoyed a varied working life from hospitality to office work and retail. She currently lives in Surrey. This is her first novel, and the first title in a two book series, she is also already working on a seventeenth century trilogy. Published in the anniversary month of the outbreak of the Second World War and the Battle of Britain.

Website: https://www.alicegraysharp.com/


I’m participating in the blogtour. Do take time to browse round some of the other posts.

The Keeping of Secrets by Alice Graysharp

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Disclosure.  This post is a review of an e-book I was sent for free.  All opinions are my own.

Taming a Savage Gentleman by Tammy Andresen

I have received a free e-copy of the book Taming a Savage Gentleman by Tammy Andresen to review.

Taming a Savage Gentleman by Tammy Andresen

Here is the book blurb.

Tom Maddox would never marry. He’s the second son, the spare, and he prides himself on living his life without the confines of society.

Baroness Segrave needs a husband for society’s sake but she’d prefer he have no opinion at all. Which is why the Earl of Loudoun seems the ideal choice. With no fortune and a drinking habit, he should allow her to keep running her estate while living off the allowance she’d give him. But Loudoun proves to be both drunk and foolish. Suddenly a husband who is strong, capable, and appreciative of her gifts gains merit in her eyes. A man like Tom Maddox.

But how can she convince Tom that he should consider marriage and give up his carefree bachelorhood? Because no matter what anyone else believes, she’d rather the love of a gentleman than a lord.

This is book 5 of 6 in the Taming the Heart series set in 1860.

Tom Maddox, 2nd son of Lord Maddox enjoys working as chief officer aboard The White Lady, although his father wishes him to settle into the family shipyard business. However Tom likes his single carefree life. On this trip sailing from London to Scotland, in addition to the usual cargo, there are 3 passengers – Dowager Baroness Segrave, her daughter Lady Flora Baroness Segrave and the Earl of Loudoun, who is courting Lady Flora.

Tom is attracted to Lady Flora and is annoyed by the drunken Earl’s rudeness to her. As they walked the deck, Loudoun angrily tries to grab Flora’s arm, causing her to unbalance and fall overboard. Tom jumps in and saves her. But Flora is too cold and Tom knows she needs skin to skin contact to warm up to survive. He convinces her mother that this is essential and that she can chaperone without Flora being compromised.

A storm is brewing and the ship heads to find harbour on an island. As the ship lurches, Flora’s mother is sent flying across the cabin and Flora goes to tell Tom that her mother is injured. At the same time the ship hits a rock. They take the row boats to shore, but mutiny is about to break out as the crew blame Flora for distracting Tom although he couldn’t have seen the rock.

Flora realises that she doesn’t want to marry the drunken Earl after all. She wants Tom but on what terms?

Taming a Savage Gentleman is available on Amazon, currently priced at £2.40 in Kindle format. This is a nice light romance story.


About the author

USA Today Bestselling Author, Tammy Andresen lives with her husband and three children just outside of Boston, Massachusetts. She grew up on the Seacoast of Maine, where she spent countless days dreaming up stories in blueberry fields and among the scrub pines that line the coast. Her mother loved to spin a yarn and Tammy filled many hours listening to her mother retell the classics. It was inevitable that at the age of 18, she headed off to Simmons College, where she studied English literature and education. She never left Massachusetts but some of her heart still resides in Maine and her family visits often.

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Disclosure.  This post is a review of an e-book I was sent for free.  All opinions are my own.

Meat Loaf plus giveaway

Not only do I enjoy regularly offering prizes to you lovely readers, but I like to enter competitions myself too. And earlier this year, I won the Sarah Flower’s Sugar Free Cookbook along with a bottle of Real Good Ketchup and a packet of Liquid Stevia from Modern Nature.

Sugar Free Cooking

My youngest son is very keen on ketchup, so this was a particularly welcome prize, since ketchup is frequently on my shopping list. But bizarrely, he won’t eat fresh tomatoes. He used to eat them if they were an orange coloured variety, however now it is none. Similarly he isn’t a big fan of traditional tomato pasta sauces, if you can see pieces of tomato in them, so I tend to experiment using ketchup in recipes instead. However I have always been concerned with the high sugar content in ketchup.

Not so with Real Good Ketchup which contains no added refined sugar and 70% less sugars and 70% less salt than other regular branded ketchups. It also has no artificial flavourings or preservatives. A winner in the 2017 Free From Awards.

So here is my meat loaf recipe, using Real Good Ketchup.

meat loaf

Meat Loaf

Ingredients (serves 4)

100g stale bread
3 tbsp Real Good tomato ketchup
1 egg
500g turkey mince
salt and pepper

Method

Preheat fan oven to 180 deg C.
Tear the bread into pieces and put in blender.
Whizz into breadcrumbs.
Crack the egg into a jug and beat.
Add turkey mince, ketchup and breadcrumbs to the jug.
Mix together and season with salt and pepper.
Place mixture into greased loaf tin.
Cook for 40 minutes in centre of pre-heated oven.
Cut into slices.
Serve with your choice of vegetables and gravy if desired.
Enjoy.

Meat Loaf

And of course son2 took pole position in testing Real Good Ketchup on other foods. His verdict was that it tastes just as good as other ketchup. What a great result as he is an incredibly fussy eater. There are so many basic products he won’t touch like cheese and rice, meaning that I frequently have to cook a separate meal for him to what the rest of the family are eating.

Real Good tomato ketchup

Real Good Ketchup is available in selected Morrisons Stores, Co-op, Ocado, Amazon, Wholefoods Market and selected health food stores. Currently retailing at £1.99 for 315g bottle. You can Find Local Retail stores here http://realgoodketchup.com/find-your-local-store/. I shall certainly be looking to find this on my next visit to our local Co-op.

Real Good Tomato Ketchup

Plus I’m hosting a rafflecopter competition to giveaway 2 bottles of Real Good Ketchup to 1 lucky winner.
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a Rafflecopter giveaway – Please click on the link to enter.

And you may see my other giveaways here.

I’d love to hear your ideas for a recipe using Real Good Ketchup. And I’m looking forward to trying the new BBQ flavour ketchup in the near future.

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Disclosure. This post mentions products that I won. All opinions are my own.

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Revolution by Piet Hein Wokke

I have received a free e-copy of the book Revolution by Piet Hein Wokke to review. To find out more about the author you may visit his website.

Revolution by Piet Hein Wokke

Here is the book blurb.

Escape to the Middle East in this thrilling tale about Khalid, Abdullah and Jalal – young men who try to shape the kingdom of Beledar.

While the nearest battlefields of WWII are hundreds of miles of away, on the streets of Mayasin, the capital of Beledar, Abdullah struggles to survive. In a remote village, Khalid sets out in search of his father, and must face the brutal laws of the desert.

Jalal, the young king, wants to break through nepotism and corruption, but in a conservative, Islamic country, change doesn’t come easy. That the western world preys on his country’s oil fields, doesn’t make his life any easier either.

In this exciting book, Wokke expertly and poignantly shows the roots of modern conflicts in the Middle East, through the people and ideas that inhabit it.

The book swaps between the storylines of Abdullah and Khalid, interspersed with that of Prince / Emir / King  Jalal. It is set in the fictional Middle East kingdom of Beledar.

After a prologue 10 years earlier, it starts in 1942 with Abdullah, a boy trying to earn a living on the streets shining shoes and selling cigarettes or arak. However policeman Rizq is always on his case. When times get harder, he tries taking customers to a pimp. But when Rizq corners him, he grabs his dagger and stabs him in self-defence. He then goes to hide from the ghosts in the Green Mosque.

Prince Jalal becomes Emir in 1942 when his father dies. However he discovers that his uncles were plotting to have him killed, so he orders them to be hung. And in 1946 he becomes king.

Meanwhile in 1943, 9 year old Khalid and his brother Aadhil skip school when they hear that a caravan has been attacked in the desert, fearing that it is the caravan of their father and elder brothers. They join the force setting out from the village to avenge the attack. On the way back they talk to one of the prisoners, a boy Omar of a similar age to themselves and step in to avoid him being taken as a slave. But worse is to befall Omar. He is to die by scaphing, a horrible form of torture where bugs crawl over him for many days. Omar begs Khalid to end it now by killing him, so Khalid reluctantly smothers Omar.

Abdullah’s chance visit to the Green Mosque changed his life, as he was taken under the wing of scholar Mr al-Rubaie and 5 years later he gets a job as a clerk in the palace. Then a year before he is due to complete his degree, Aadhil persuades Khalid to run away with him against his parents wishes to join the army.

I won’t say any more but we continue to follow their lives until their paths cross in the revolution.

Revolution is available on Amazon, currently priced at £3.99 in Kindle format and is also available in hardback. I enjoyed this story, but not enough to add the Queen of Beledar follow-up novella to my wishlist.

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MamaMummyMum

Disclosure.  This post is a review of an e-book I was sent for free.  All opinions are my own.

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