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Tales from the single-handed kitchen

Yes, self-isolation has me trying to be creative with recipes.

I did this yesterday for my tea. That's north for dinner.


Sounds lovely Steve, my girls and Lee would love it . I'm a vegetarian but it sounds very tasty.

Michelle and Frazer xx


Now that sounds yummy Steve.  Once this situation is over and I can buy fresh chicken breasts I'll give this a go.  I only have frozen chicken breast strips at the moment, I'll cook this for myself, mum and my daughter. 

In February,  which now feels like months ago, Jen came to stay with me for a few days and she was writing a recipe book for herself of the dishes I used to make that she really enjoyed.  At the farm where she now lives, her landlord is a very talented cook and prefers to make everyone's meals himself.  They eat like kings!

Jen asked if she could have control of the kitchen one evening and was allowed, she cooks for the children often and is the only other person allowed in his domain.  She made a pork fillet dish I used to make for her,  and it went well with the fresh veg they have.

She cooked for 11 people and every one of them asked her to cook more often.  I was so proud as I had to learn to cook from scratch.  When I left home I'd only ever made toast.  My mum was a housewife and I wasn't allowed near the kitchen, it was her domain only.  I swore my daughter would never be left in my situation.

I know she can cook.  She made good money at uni cooking roast dinners.  She cooked once for her flat mates and news travelled.  A few people begged for a meal, offering her £5 each.  She accepted and made a main course and easy dessert.  By the next week she had to limit her orders to 40 people.  

Some students could only just open a tin of beans without injuring themselves.  I can't imagine that I was that bad, but I was.

Please keep the recipes coming Steve.  Jen will have an extensive repertoire as I've told her a couple and she liked them.  I hope you don't mind.



Such a wonderful story about your daughter. As a student, I was determined to crack basic cooking and did well as some of my friends had the same aim. We discussed and argued about roast potatoes and curries. Even in the seventies, I found a greengrocer who sold chillies. My mum was quite matter of fact despite her stunning roasties and pastry. I had to pick my questions to get her secrets. 

I'm so pleased to be able to cook.

Lee has made some lovely meals recently, I'm glad because hes a much better cook than me. O always loved baking and would make lots of cakes and pies and even gingerbread men especially when mine were little. My daughter Rochelle is always baking with Naomi and Laura. I think it's sad Steve because skills arnt always passed on. It was good to hear about your daughter Cath, that was brilliant her being able to charge for roast dinners at university. Maybe people will have to re learn these skills now that we are all stuck at home it's a good opportunity. Molly amazes me she has loads of recipes she copied from when she was at school . Maybe they do more with special needs schools. Some of the teaching is "asdan" which is teaching them to be independent and involves skills like laundry and cooking and ironing ect .

Take stay safe Michelle and Frazer xx


The skills your daughter is learning are essential for day to day living Michelle.  Jen used to help me with meals and odds and ends, but when my nerve pain got serious she'd often make meals with me sitting telling her what to do.  She sometimes did the laundry too, with help explaining how to separate colours and choose wash cycles.  I don't know how I'd have managed at times without her.

I thought she'd resent me for having to rely on her but instead she thanks me for teaching her so much and even asked me to teach her how to iron clothes properly,  and a few of her friends to knit and sew, which they don't learn how to do at school now.  We both learned how to crochet together using YouTube and books.

It's funny how these crafts have become popular again.  I wish I'd been as prepared to leave home as she was.  I was lucky that she wanted to learn, it wasn't forced on her. As it was only just the two of us at home, I'm glad she wanted to help me too.  I'm very lucky.

Take care