As you know I've been a bit busy recently having spent 9 weeks in the UK. I'm now, well the kids are, in the middle of exams, the youngest is leaving for the UK to go to boarding school in just over a week so I've been extremely busy, what with packing, revision and of course getting my hair and nails done.
The slow cooker has been my saviour this week. The school run is at 7am and now the eldest drives, I find myself up at 6am, giving them a kick up the back side and in between drinking tea and barking orders, I start the dinner.
So far this week we've had a Thai Green Curry, Hungarian Goulash and Chicken in Mushroom. We've also had a take out and dinner out with friends.
But the favourite this week has been the Mexican Stew, served with plain rice and peas. If you don't have a slow cooker it also works well on the hob on a low heat for 2 hours.
Brown the beef in a table spoon of olive oil. Remove from the pan.
Gently cook the diced onion, finely chopped clove of garlic and chopped pepper for 5 mins.
Put the onion, pepper and beef in the slow cooker.
Add half a tea spoon of cumin, 1 finely chopped chilli, a tea spoon of brown sugar (removes the bitterness) 9 fluid ozs of beef stock, a tin of peeled and chopped tomatoes, a generous helping of tomato puree and a glass of red wine.
Set the slow cooker to low for the day.
And don't forget to make sure the dog is around to clean up all the floor scraps.
My slow cooker settings are ideal and I've yet to have a meal dry up, but you may need to check there is enough liquid in there and top up with stock or water if necessary.
I really should thank the following companies for their support, they didn't sponsor the post, but I think they should consider it for the future.