• cooking,  essentials,  ethical shopping,  food,  lifestyle,  motherhood,  Uncategorized

    REVIEW – Munch Reuseable Produce Bags

    Now team you all know we  have been making small changes as a family in our plastic bag use.

    It’s not been hard but it definitely makes you reassess your plastic.

    For us by getting our online groceries packed in boxes our plastic bag use has decreased to almost zero!

    BUT we were still getting some of our fruit and veges packed in plastic fruit and vege bags.

    So it got me thinking …. What can we do to stop this?

    Here is where Munch Reusable Produce Bags come in.

    pic – www.munchcupboard.com

    Munch have packs of produce bags which firstly are very deceptive.  These stretchy, colourful and New Zealand made bags can hold up to 2kg of produce (perfect for the potatoes).  The airflow can circulate around your fruit and veges because of the perforated fabric. Perfect for stopping the potatoes and onions sweating and getting stinky!!

    Each bag comes with a bungee like drawstring which once pulled keeps your bits in and not rolling around the bottom of your trolley or fridge.

     

    In the Munch pack you get a set of 3 bags (2 small and 1 large).

    The large is perfect for the large veges like potatoes, kumara or onions.

    The smaller bags were perfect for literally EVERYTHING else!!

    This set retails for $19.99.

    They are easy to use at the self service checkouts too and don’t cause the virtual shop assistant to have a moment with your oranges!!

    Munch Reusable Produce Bags will be well used in this whare and I am so happy that I can keep reducing our plastic use as a whanau.

    By having 2 sets of these we can drop our produce bags and shopping bags off at our local supermarket and when the online shopping is done we can have our shopping packed almost plastic free!!

  • cooking,  essentials,  food,  lifestyle,  motherhood,  Uncategorized

    Create with Crockpot Express Crock Multicooker

    Crock-Pot Express Crock Multi Cooker

    Let’s face it we are all time poor.

    If we want to maximise our time away from the kitchen I am all for that.  We just need to think smart. But let’s not be martyrs we need a little help.

    We are all about maximum family time.

    A time for being together.

    For our whanau sitting down at the end of each day and having dinner is probably the only time during our hectic schedule where we all stop and see how everyone is doing.

    By having less time in the kitchen and more time together as a family we are winning right?

    Here is where Crock-Pot Express Crock Multi Cooker comes to the party.

    The new Crock-Pot Express Crock Multi Cooker is a one stop shop.

     

    Don’t have 8 hours to cook that stew?

    Use the pressure cooker function.

    Done in 1 hour.

    At work for the day but need dinner done when you get home?

    Use the slow cooker function.

    Need to brown off your meat before slow cooking?

    Use the brown/saute function.

    What’s even better is you do it all in the one pan.

    We all hate extra pots and pans to wash.

    There is literally nothing this bad boy can’t do.

     

    We… I say we it’s actually Miss Teddie who is into naming all household equipment and furniture has christened our Crock-Pot Express Crock Multi Cooker ….. Carl.

    Carl can do many things other standard crock pots can’t do.

    He can steam (perfect for steamed puds), he can keep things warm (for when kids are home at different times), he is a rice cooker AND he is a yoghurt maker!!

    Crockpot gave me the challenge to come up with a great winter warmer recipe using their new Crock-Pot Express Crock Multi Cooker or as we call him Carl.

    Mexican Beef with Creamy Polenta.

    Serves 4 (or 3 adults and 2 small people)

    1kg beef (chuck or stewing steak)

    4 tablespoons Pepper & Me Mexellent paste (or any other mexican recipe base paste)

    2 onions

    2 tsp crushed garlic

    2 cans chopped tomatoes

    1 can water

    Salt and Pepper to taste.

    1 cup of polenta (quick cook)

    3 cups cold water

    40gm butter

    ½ cup heavy cream

    ½ cup parmesan grated.

    Cut beef into 2 cm cubes and season with salt and pepper.  Using the BROWN/SAUTE feature brown the meat in batches. Once all the meat is browned add onion and garlic. Cook for 2 minutes. Add the Mexellent (or what you are using) paste and cook for another 2 minutes.

    Add tomatoes and water.

    If you are wanting to add other vegetables you can add them here.

    Switch to the SLOW COOK function and slow cook for 6-8 hours OR

    Switch to the PRESSURE COOK function and cook for 1.5 hours.

    Bring the water to the boil in a large heavy-based saucepan over high heat. Use a wire balloon whisk to stir the water. Gradually add the polenta in a thin steady stream, whisking constantly until all the polenta is incorporated into the water (whisking ensures the polenta is dispersed through the liquid as quickly as possible). Don’t add the polenta too quickly or it will turn lumpy.

    Reduce heat to low. BE CAREFUL IT CAN SPIT AT YOU AND BURN!!  Simmer, stirring constantly with a wooden spoon, for 2-3 minutes or until the mixture thickens and the polenta is soft.

    Add cream, butter and parmesan mix with a wooden spoon until melted and season to taste.