Whilst the weather cannot make up its mind quite whether it is autumn or winter one should be mindful that Christmas is looming. Cries I here of how it all comes too soon, and everything must be on hold till the very last moment. Seems to me as ever, how short our memories are. One thing I do know is that shops – and commerce put their Christmas dates in their diaries a year in advance and the same time every year and not earlier as it often seems.


My old harp sings ‘planning’ I know some who buy their Christmas Cards in the January sales for the following year, whilst others have a box or drawer and add specially purchased gifts for Christmas presents as they are on special offer. All this with thoughts in advance as too must be the festive food arrangements. Things that can be stored or put in the deep freeze to negate that last minute expense and panic. Menu planning and lists, an absolute necessity for a calm and managed time. You can also be sure to have the right quantities of everything preventing excessive waste – or certainly plan to use up leftovers in culinary creations with a selection of store cupboard basics.

What would you find in my cupboard that would be of use to you. Well here are some suggestions for you. Tinned or cartons of ready cooked Pulses. Chopped Tomatoes, Passata, Tomato Puree, Mayonnaise, a selection of Pesto’s, Breadcrumbs, Tinned fruits like Pears and Fruit Pie fillings, Pasta of varying sorts – rice selection too. Stuffing mixes can be useful. Oils and Vinegars, Oriental Sauces, Tinned Tuna, Sardines, Coconut Milk. Chocolate White and Dark, Baking Flours, Dried Fruits, Sugars, Nuts, Semolina, Powdered Potato mix, Ground Rice, Cornflour, Custard Powder, Stock Cubes.

Having pondered – time for a recipe I guess. Light but flavoursome and easy to do.

Herbed Fish Bake

Chunky Fish Fillets – Cod – Haddock (this is enough for two)

4 tablespoons of Natural Low-Fat Yoghurt

2 Tbsp Sun-Dried Tomato Pesto

2 tbsp chopped Parsley or Dill

  1. Preheat oven to 180 degrees
  2. Mix together the Yoghurt, half the chopped Herb and Pesto
  3. Place fish into a shallow oven proof dish
  4. Pour over mixture
  5. Bake in Oven for about 15 – 20 mins till cooked
  6. Garnish with remaining chopped herb and serve