…and you’re going to want to make them too

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With the new kitchen up and running (kinda – will the snagging list ever end?!), I have gone into cooking/baking overdrive. If I’m not working then I’m at that island rustling up dinner or trying out a new recipe I’ve seen on TikTok 10 seconds earlier. It’s honestly my favourite pastime and being able to do it in our dream space is just – chicken soup for the soul. Literally. Does Ralph sit on the counter and stick his fingers in everything? Of course, although this cookbook* is fab for littles who want to get involved. But when he’s been distracted and I can really get down to business, this is what I’ve been making…

Minimalist Baker’s Pesto Veggie Burgers with Balsamic Aioli. We recently had friends over for dinner to christen the new kitchen for the first time and not only was it EXTREMELY exciting to be sat at a dinner table with our nearest and dearest and not be eating takeout on our laps; it was so fun to see the kitchen in action for the first time. The island! The lighting! The whole shebang. Seeing as there were a fair few dietary needs to cater for, these were perfect for everyone and were full of flavour and easily served with potato wedges and a salad on the side (we made the Minimalist Baker Lemony White Bean Quinoa Salad and it was delish). Also don’t skimp on the aioli – it *might* be the best bit.

Carole Food’s Butter Bean Curry. I finally got round to adding all the recipes that I’d saved on TikTok into my Notion template and this one jumped out at me as the first one that we HAD to make. Just proper comfort food, you know? Someone messaged me to say that they’d made it an added spinach which I think would be such a great addition. It’s also a great store cupboard staple in that we already had everything we needed except for double cream – so a great one to make if you’re trying cut down on your food shop. We ate it with rice and naan and all three of us tucked in.

The Lean Machine’s Cod Parcels. Mark had been going on for weeks about this fish parcel recipe that we used to make and I couldn’t remember for the life of me what cookbook it was from. Luckily for me I document my life on the internet so after a quick Google I found a post from 2016 in which I detailed my top five cookbooks and said this was one of my favourite recipes. WHAT A THROWBACK! We made it with broccoli and it was amazing. So quick to make too and good way to get some fish into your diet. I can see us making this one weekly (again!).

Alison Roman’s Old-Fashioned Strawberry Cake. The recipe so good I made it twice. I’d been ear-marking recipes in Alison’s new book to make this summer and this was the first one that I attempted and DAMN, I just had to make it again. I love how easy it is – but how visually pleasing it looks at the same time. The ‘perfect summer dessert/rustle it up because your mates are coming over for an afternoon natter’ cake. I stuck a candle in it and gave it to a friend for her birthday because it’s just that good.

The Anna Edit’s Super Gooey Milk Chocolate & Hazelnut Cookies. I mean I have to add this one in right?! I hadn’t been able to make my cookies for almost a year whilst the kitchen renovations happened, as our temporary oven was hotter than the actual sun and burned every batch I attempted to make no matter what I did. So in the end I gave up and resigned myself to making them once we’ve moved back in to the new space. Were these cookies the first thing I baked when the new kitchen was ready?! ABSOLUTELY. Do the Landscapers love them? They do, bless ’em. Forever a crowdpleaser and something that I will *always* have in the freezer ready to go.