Saturday, 12 October 2013


Last Christmas i got bought the Celebrate book by Pippa Middleton, which covers a year of festivities for families and friends.

To be honest i haven't really looked at it in any great detail as i've just been using other cook books etc.

But seeing as its October and some amazing festivities are on the horizon i thought i'd have a read! (and my smallest has started nursery so i have a few hours to spare)

Funnily enough the book begins with Autumn and Halloween - so maybe i am a witch and just had to wait until now to read it hahaha (cackle)!

So even though this book was apparently a flop i actually quite like it!!! And i really like this idea for Bonfire Night (or any night really)

Shepherd's Pie Baked Potatoes 

Ingredients: (Serves 8)

8 large Baking potatoes
1 tbsp olive oil
2 large onions, peeled and finely chopped
3 large carrots, peeled and finely diced
1kg minced lean lamb
3 heaped tbsp tomato puree
1 x 400g tin chopped tomatoes
a generous grating of nutmeg
1 tsp fresh or dried thyme leaves
2-3 tbsp worcestershire sauce
400ml lamb stock
100ml milk
50g butter (plus extra)
1 egg yolk


Preheat the over to 180c/gas 4.  Put the potatoes on a baking sheet and place in the preheated over  for 1 hour until the skins are crisp and the potatoes are cooked.

Heat the oil in a medium-sized saucepan.  Add the onion and carrot and cook on a gentle hear for 10 minutes until soft.  Add the lamb mince, turn up the heat and cook until it turns brown.  Spoon away any excess fat.  Add the tomato puree and fry for one minute, then add the chopped tomatoes, nutmeg, thyme leaves and Worcestershire sauce and fry for a few more minutes.  Pour in the stock, bring to the boil then simmer on a low heat, covered, for 1 hour.

Remove the potato from the over and carefully slice a 'lid' of the top of each one.  Spoon the centre out from each one into a bowl, leaving a sturdy outer 'shell'.  Add the milk, 50g butter and egg yolk to the potato in the bowl then season and mash together.

Divide the mince between the hollowed-out potato skins, top with the mash and little knobs of butter and ruffle with a fork.  Place the potatoes back into the preheated oven for a further 15 minutes until golden.  To serve, fold foil around each potato and scrunch it into a bowl shape.

And Taaaa Daaaa you should have a fabulous meal and all you need is a fork! This is absolutely perfect for Bonfire night! Love it! 

Whilst i'm on Bonfire night i thought id add a fun game from the Book too! Its called Marshmallow Towers!
Split into 2 teams.  Each team is given a bag of marshmallows and a packet of spaghetti.  The aim is simple - to build the tallest tower possible from your marshmallows and spaghetti, using the sweets as joints and the pasta as the framework.  Set a time limit - this will vary according to architectural ambitions!! Once the time is up, the team with the tallest tower wins!! 

Happy Saturday 
J x 

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