Celeriacsly, what the * is oka?

I long ago gave up making any form of New year’s resolutions as I have almost no will power and generally find life gets in the way of doing stuff. However, I have been feeling increasingly uncomfortable with the whole plastic thing and so for 2018, I thought we might try to reduce our plastic usage. So far, the following has happened:

  • We are embracing soap – the old fashioned kind that sits on the side of the basin in its own gloopy mess.
  • We are sampling solid shampoo and conditioner – first samplings courtesy of Lush
  • I have purchased stainless steel straws
  • We use fabric / long-life / hessian / other shopping bags
  • Groceries get delivered without bags
  • I have ordered veg through Living Larder

I wish I could say that it is all a roaring success so far but there are challenges:

  • Soap really is more drying on skin than shower gel. Palmolive has been vetoed and we are currently on Lidl’s extra moisturising bars but I suspect we will end up using Dove. Silicone pot scourers make lovely, colourful soap holders.
  • Solid shampoo and conditioner has been voted a complete success by both COD and me. I still have litres of pricey Kerastase to get through but the solid stuff is ace and the bathroom smells lush (pun intended). Lush, however, delivered our 3 soap bars in a cardboard box surrounded by polystyrene chips. Slightly defeating the intentions……
  • The stainless steel straws haven’t been used at all – I don’t think we embrace straws enough.
  • It’s a minor miracle if I get to the till having remembered to take the grocery bags out of the boot of the car. A constant battle of the right bag in the wrong place at the wrong time
  • While the groceries get delivered without bags, the meat is bagged, the fish is bagged, frozen stuff and household cleaning products all get bagged. I have no idea why this is. All the fruit and veg is also wrapped in plastic and that’s what really made me head over to our local veg box delivery service – Living Larder
  • Living Larder has introduced us to some new vegetables. I have had fun cooking this week with celeriac and oka. Never cooked with either before.

Celeriac, leek and potato bake with baked chicken and stir fry greens


Faced with a box of unfamiliar veggies, obviously I turned to Mr Google to try and find a recipe to use some of them. This Celeriac, leek and potato bake from Tesco sounded awesome and used 3 veg from the box (all the afore mentioned). I am not going to write it out so here is the link: Celeriac and leek bake

I used rosemary instead of thyme and regular 50/50 bread for the breadcrumbs. I also seared two chicken breasts on the stove and then popped some foil over them and popped them in the oven to bake for about 20 minutes. The veg box also had some new and quite frankly unidentifiable greenery. I think it’s mostly kale-related but there were also some flower sprouts which I added to the greenery being stir fried. I didn’t even know flower sprouts were a thing. This is what they look like: Flower sprout



This meal was heavenly. Celeriac is awesome and we had enough bake left over to have it the next evening with baked salmon and more garlicky stir-fried greenery.



IMG_8830So, apparently these little gems are a New Zealand yam of sorts. Strange, gnarly tubers that resemble fat grubs! Luckily, Living Larder suggested how to cook these bad boys so this evening we had roast oka with duck breast and more of those awesome greeny bits from the box. Mash potato completed this dish.

Oka is good. Sort of lemony-carrotty-sweet potatoey.



In other news:

  • LOD has just turned 8. I think parents should get an annual medal for keeping small people alive (and for surviving themselves!). This year we had a swimming partyIMG_8759
  • Work continues to be rather mental and busy but it keeps me out of too much trouble!
  • We are off to South Africa in 10 days. I am torn between wanting to take this hideous rain with us to help ease the water crisis but actually wanting a sunny holiday
  • ACOD continues to frustrate and delight. My absolute favourite ACODism is her insistence that ‘Daddy has a carrot-bottom’. We’ve tried to give her the right words but ‘carrot-bottom’ has stuck
  • EEROD is thriving in reception and, like her big sister, going through reams of paper writing stories and drawing pictures
  • This week’s veg box has artichoke. Never cooked artichoke before………

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