Monthly Archives: February 2020

Emma’s Bites / meal plans and stuffed pasta

Hey everyone! So here we are again! It’s Sunday which means it’s time for another Emma’s Bites blog! 

For those of you that are new, there are lots more of these in my archive on my blog. Both Slimming World friendly and none. 

Anyway, I’ve lots to write this week so less random chat and more food chat eh?!

First half of this will be the meal plan. Then the latter half is a recipe from one of the meals made this week. 

Hope you enjoy it, let me know if you create any of these and if your on Instagram then please please tag me. You can find me @mrs_shep_unplugged.

Monday 

After finding some large pasta in Aldi recently I couldn’t wait to make something from this! It’s something I keep my eye out for this pasta. Anyway we had stuffed pasta with a tomato sauce and cheese. This is actually the recipe I am sharing with you this week and I’m so excited! It’s meat free, not many ingredients and super super tasty.

Tuesday 

Today was a bit like a cheeky mid week roast. We had pork chops, roasties and veg. Super super tasty and the sauce was syn free. I think I just did balsamic vinegar and some herbs and sweetner. Really really good.

 

Wednesday

Now as you probably know from last weeks blog, it’s the day we have swimming so I decide on a meal based on not having to do much or something that Ste can heat up quick after work for us all. 

Anyway, today was braised steak veg and dumplings. 

Erm, I love beef stew but I don’t think I use my slow cooker enough to practise with though as I just didn’t enjoy it. It wasn’t for me but it filled a hole and it was hot. 

Thursday 

Thursdays are the day I get weighed at Slimming World, so today I made us a lasagne as a ‘treat’! Don’t ask me why I think of it as a treat lol! Anyway, as usual it was delicious! 

Friday

OH MY GOD! 

Now, if you don’t believe me then believe the rest of my family. But today’s meal was absolutely incredible! There wasn’t a scrap of food left! In fact, my father in law actually wants to come back again for tea soon to have this again! 

We had paella! I wanted to do something that was easy and where I could add meat in easily. My mother in law is vegetarian the rest of us eat meat. Also with 6 of us for tea that night I was trying to keep the cost down and still have a super tasty enjoyable meal! I served the meat separate and those that wanted meat added it to our plate easily. The paella itself was left in the large pan and placed on the table for everyone to help themselves.  A massive hit and a definite to have again.

Saturday 

Last nights meal was chilli, normally something I enjoy but Ste made it and unfortunately it was far too spicy for me & Alfie so we literally just had rice for tea while Ste had the chilli lol! 

Sunday 

Which leaves us with today! 

Today we are having a roast beef dinner. It’s honestly one of my absolute favourite roasts. Ste makes the best Yorkshire puddings as well! 

Here’s a throw back photo to another day when Ste made his Yorkshire puddings.

So that’s our week in meals! 

Below is the recipe for the stuffed pasta. Then if you follow me on Instagram I (@mrs_shep_unplugged) am uploading a video of my food shop hail for this week if you fancy a nosy. Where you can see all the food I bought for this weeks meals, lunches and breakfasts. 

If your stopping reading here then thank you for reading! Hope you have some great meals this week. 

Stuffed pasta. 

So for this you will need;

Passata 

Bag of spinach 

Soft cheese 

Lumaconi pasta

Parmesan 

Worcestershire sauce

Oregano

Basil 

Black pepper

Smoked paprika

Garlic granules 

Pine nuts


First of all cook the pasta according to the packet instructions. (Just a heads up but I tend to make for four people that way I have leftovers).

While that’s cooking, on the hob in a large pan add your spinach with a little water and wilt. Once it’s wilted add the tub of soft cheese and mix together. Once it has softened and mixed together the leave to one side.

 

Once your pasta is done, drain and cook if you need to. My husband stuffed the pasta and can seem to handle very hot things without noticing lol! I don’t think he’s got feeling in his hands ha ha! 


Anyway, the next step is to basically stuff for spinach mixture into the pasta. Add this to a large baking dish and lay them out next to each other. 

Once that’s done, you need to make your sauce. 

In a jug, mix together the passata, a tablespoon of Worcestershire sauce and a teaspoon of the other herbs and spices. 

When that’s done, pour the sauce over your pasta. Don’t worry if you don’t think there is enough sauce as it will spread a bit when in the oven. 

Finally add some Parmesan and pine nuts and bake in the oven for about 5-10 mins. It doesn’t need long at all.

 

Then serve and enjoy! 


It really was delicious and it’s another dish that we are definitely making again soon! 

Please tag me on Instagram or comment below if you make this or any other meal I have mentioned this week. 

Much love

Emma xx 

Diets? Weights loss? Is it really for me?

Why I don’t think I’ll ever loose weight……

I have followed Slimming World for a number of years now and I once lost four stone following this plan. 

However since I got FND, I am obviously not as mobile as I used to be. 

This is problem number one! I’m not burning any calories that I actually consume! 

I can follow the plan, do the meal plan, measure the milk and cheese allowance. 

However my problem is the syns! 

I’ve never been much of a drinker when it comes to alcohol. Maybe on the odd night out when I was younger, but not any more. Drinking alcohol when you feel rough every anyway isn’t much fun I can tell you! 

I’ve also never smoked. 

So you see chocolate is my only vice! Like most people I tend to comfort eat, which if you follow me on Instagram there’s a always something several

times a week that gives me a reason to comfort eat. 

I’m the type of person that eats chocolate spread from the jar while hiding somewhere. 

I’m the type that goes out of my way for chocolate and yes I have taken chocolate from someone else’s stash! 

I am quite sure I’ve got a problem when it comes to chocolate. It doesn’t matter if it’s chocolate spread, chocolate cake, chocolate bar or hot chocolate. I’ll have it! 

So you see. 

Combined with my inability to walk far now and my never ending chocolate addiction. No matter how much I follow the meal plans for Slimming World. 

I honestly can’t see my me loosing this weight again. 

Then again who knows?! Hopefully I can prove myself wrong x

Meal Plan Number 1.

Welcome back to another edition of Emma’s bites!

 

I don’t know anything you but I’m still going through the phase of homely warm cooked meals. You know the comfort food, slow cooker type meals. It’s just so cold!

So I planned 5 meals. For this week. The only ones I didn’t plan where Friday night as we where going to Wales to drop the eldest off at his Grandparents for half term. I also didn’t plan for Sunday which is today! We love roast dinners in our house but man the washing up is a pain afterwards! 

I was actually chatting to @daddy.hew about this last week. His roast dinners are mega and always look amazing, however even he agreed that the washing up after is just painful!!!

Anyway. Less chat and more meal panning eh! 

I’ll tell you what was planned and what we had and what we all thought!

Monday

Something we hadn’t had in a really long time was sweedish meatballs. I’ve tried many a time making my own but they always fall apart. I had a trip to Iceland’s food store the other week for some slimming world supplies and I picked some meatballs up. I wan the d to do something different so I googled slimming world sweedish meatball recipe and gave that a go. It was quite nice actually but probably needed more gravy / sauce.

Tuesday 

Fish chips and peas. 

Now growing up I hated fish. It was a constant battle with my Mum about having fish. I eventually refused to eat and said I would rather starve than ever eat fish lol! If you had told 10 year old me that when I had my own house I would voluntarily buy fish for myself I would have called you a liar! 

Anyway, I had the slimming world Thai fish cakes with SlimmingWorld sweet potato chips and peas. I’ll be honest. It looked awful and my taste has been off all week with my FND being bad. 

However it was really really delicious! Alfie has fish fingers and Ste had a lemon basa fish from Aldi. She didn’t like the chips but everything else was enjoyed. 

Wednesday 

Alfie has swimming lessons on a Wednesday so I try and plan something that is pretty much instant to put on the table. So we had leek and potato soup with sandwiches. I won’t lie I really love this meal. It’s so yummy, warming and just feels like proper wintery comfort food. 

If you want to recipe for my soup, check out the Emma’s Bites section of my blog.

Thursday 

Now I had planned sausage egg and chips but someone……(Ste! Aka the husband). Got two sausages out not the whole pack. So instead we had quorn nuggets with egg and chips and honest, it was bloody gorgeous!!! I love home cooked food but sometimes you just can’t beat something to shove in the oven. 

Friday

No evening meal planned for today, however Ste was off work and so I decided to make us the ultimate Valentine’s lunch! Steak sandwich with chips and salad! You honestly can’t beat a steak sandwich! Well we can’t anyway!

 

Saturday 

Curry is another firm favourite in our house. So we had a chicken curry with rice and homemade slimming world friendly onion bahjis! Exgrnely tasty however a little bit too hot for my liking.

Sunday

So that just leaves today! After not knowing what we wanted I decided I did want a roast dinner today, I just didn’t want to cook it! So with that we are going to my parents for tea today! Perfect answer if you ask me. The roast without the mess ha ha! 

I do hope this gave you some inspiration to try some different dishes! 

I am making something tomorrow that’s a mixture of a recipe I have found and a bit of my own flare. So I can’t wait to share that with you next week!

Take care and enjoy whatever meals you make this week.

Much love 💕 

Emma xx

Don’t judge a book by its cover

Don’t judge a book by its cover is one of my favourite sayings. 

You never know what someone is having to deal with. You don’t know what’s going on inside.

I remember the early days after I had lost Ethan, looking around and thinking that everyone who had a baby where lucky. That they had everything they wanted and they where lucky. 

The truth was I had no idea if they had suffered before like me. If they’d lost a baby, struggled for years to get one or adopted because they couldn’t have one.

That parent in a shop who’s battling with her child yet again, who’s probably close to tears. Look a little harder. It might not be a naughty child, may be there’s underlying problems they aren’t discussing with anyone yet. 

Maybe they are battling a long term health condition. Maybe a loved one died. Maybe they lost their job. Maybe they are struggling in ways you can’t imagine. 

Never judge a book by its cover. You never really know what’s going on inside. 

Emma’s Bites – Beef Wellington

So a few weeks back we cooked beef wellington and I have to say it was amazing!

So being the wonderful person I am, I thought I would share it with you!!!

So for this you will need;

Beef roasting joint

Pancake mix: flour, eggs milk.

Spinach – 2 frozen blocks

Mushrooms  – 283 g

Shallots – 6

Tarragon – 1 tsp

Parsley – 1 tsp

Salt

Pepper

Ready Rolled Puff pastry (depending on the size of your beef you may need two sheets of (pastry)

Egg – 1

Now we seared our beef first in a pan but you don’t have to. We also found that due to the size of the beef that part cooking our beef first probably would have been better. Once it’s almost cooked (I would say take out 30 mins before the end) take it out and place it in the fridge to cool. You can leave it on the side but we found it quicker this way.

Then pop your mushrooms through a blender and the shallots. Add the herbs and season and fry them off in a pan. Set aside and leave to cool.

Next you need to make your pancake mixture. (Trust me with this you will not regret it!) Make your pancake mix as usual or buy pre made if you can’t make them or even buy pre made if you don’t want the hassle. Before you make your pancakes you need to add your spinach. Now we used frozen and defrosted in the microwave and once defrosted we added to the pancake batter and blended thoroughly. We told our youngest it was a Hulk pancake and he loved it!!! When your mixture is made, get your pancakes going and set aside. You may only need about 3.

Now this is where the fun bits start!!!!

Get your pancakes on a flat surface making sure they overlap. Place your beef joint on top of the pancakes. Get your mushroom mixture and cover the beef with it. Then you need to wrap the beef with your pancake. The next tricky bit is to wrap this in cling film and let this rest for about half an hour.

Once the time is up you then need to wrap this in your pastry. Place it on a baking tray and brush with the egg. If I need to tell you at this point to be cracking your egg and whisking before attempting to brush the pastry with your egg well then my friend I don’t think making Beef Wellington is where you should be started your cooking experience!!!!!

Place your beef in the oven for about 30 mins on 180 fan until your pastry is cooked and browned.

Once this is done you should have an amazing beef wellington that should wow any guest!! Serve with whatever you fancy and enjoy.

As ever if you re-create any of these meals I share I would love for you to tag me on Instagram!!!

You can find me at @mrs_shep_unplugged

Much Love

Emma