Holiday Cooking

Self Catering Tool Kit

So: you’re self-catering on holiday! Hurrah –  Same sh@@, different location! Ha! Here’s a few tips to take the pants out of it all.

With small children, it’s not always possible to eat out in the evening, so you can find yourself cooking the same family meals whilst ‘on a break’, with even less enthusiasm and less resources in a basic kitchen.

Who can be bothered with ‘meal-planning’ on hols, so here’s a few tricks to stop you reaching for a jar of pasta sauce from the only corner shop in miles around..

You’ll be away from your regular store cupboards, but worth remembering to take a tiny self catering kit with you: mine fits in a small plastic bag:

  • Flavour: The main thing which can be missing and can make or break a meal when you’re in a basic kitchen. What you need are little flavour boosters to bring the best out of your ingredients. Keep some tiny jars and tins for holding your spices. An easy starter kit is: chilli flakes, smoked paprika, sea salt and a black pepper grinder, extra virgin olive oil, a lemon, a curry mix, harissa paste: you get the idea.

Let the seasonings change and evolve around your family at the present time.

  • A small bottle of oil – easy to forget, essential at home and you end up using the sandwich spread in a pan to fry your chicken instead..ugh
  • A little pinch pot of salt and pepper – we like salt flakes and freshly ground black pepper, but whatever floats your boat
  • A lemon or two – and use zest and juice: instant salad dressing, add in a risotto, slices for drinks!
  • Mustard – sandwich refinement and sauce deepener
  • Chutney -makes a humble sandwich great, makes a pork chop interesting. Let it down with a splash of water for a pseudo sauce.
  • Chilli flakes – sprinkled on meat or fish from a local market, hey presto!
  • Mixed dried herbs – makes anything tasty from standard spag bol to chicken breast, everyone’s favourite
  • Smoked paprika – tons of flavour to transform tins of tomatoes, chicken, fish, beans and pulses
  • Mini jam pots  – to spread on scones, teacakes or plain jam sandwich – good for filling little tummies on the beach.
  • Peanut Butter – a new entry this year due to family fave chicken satay and handy sandwich filler
  • Posh tea and coffee to make sure you can treat yourself! Nothing worse than a Happy Shopper cuppa when you’re desperate