In this week’s Friday Dish: we LOVE these award-winning educational placemats by local mum Hannah Gee; our new food crush – Coconut Almond Butter; and everything you didn’t know you didn’t know about your food processor. Hold on tight – we’ve got a lot to share.
Get the Kids Learning While they Eat
It takes a lot to stop me in my tracks when I’ve got my “determined to get through my shopping list before school pick-up” head on. I saw these colourful and eye-catching educational kids placemats in a local shop window and was instantly sold.
Created by Kent mum of three and owner of the fabulous Love Inc store, Hannah Gee, each mat has been designed in line with the national curriculum. There are six to choose from: Times Tables, Numbers 1 to 100, Number Bonds, First Words, First 100 Words and the Alphabet – the idea being that kids learn while they eat without even realising it. Hannah calls it “learning by stealth”.
Kids can write on the mats with any washable pen – great for learning spellings or ticking off times tables. And you can throw them in the dishwasher afterwards to get rid of the toughest stains, even spaghetti bolognaise. I tried it this week with some heavy-duty tomato sauce and it works (though Hannah advises you use a regular 45C setting and not the 95C wash!) They are also great at bath time as they stick to the sides of the tub really easily.
Every placemat is manufactured here in the UK and because they’re made from polypropylene they’re incredibly hard-wearing, scratch and scour resistant – have a look at Hannah (phone in mouth) testing that out on YouTube. They’re also 100% recyclable – good to know.
You can get yours online at the LoveInc store, or if you live in the Kent area, they’re available at Manna (High Street, Tunbridge Wells). Price £4.99 per mat or £25 for a set of 6 (plus p&p). Plus 10 percent of everything bought from LoveInc is donated to a local hospice.
And to celebrate Literacy Week, throughout the month of September LoveInc is donating one placemat for every mat sold in store or online to a disadvantaged school in the UK. Brilliant!
Coconut Almond Butter – Our New Food Crush
If you’re looking to zhush up your family’s peanut butter habit – brace yourselves. We feel it’s our absolute duty to tell you about Pip and Nut’s Coconut Almond Butter. It’s everything you expect from a nut butter – creamy and satisfying – but with a deliciously tropical coconut taste. Oh my goodness – you’re going to be spreading this on anything you can get your hands on. My kids love it.
It’s not going to be the cheapest nut butter you buy – £3.99 for a 250g jar (Ocado are currently offering a 20% discount on Pip and Nut products) but it’s definitely worth it. You can also buy in bulk on the website if you’re so inclined – I am.
There are no nasties like added sugar or palm oil (so you’re going to need to stir it every time you open the jar), and because nut butters are packed full of protein and vitamin E it makes a great kids snack (see 7 Healthy (and Yummy) Snack Ideas).
Creator Pippa Murray and the team of squirrels and nut gatherers (as they like to call themselves) at Pip and Nut have also introduced a squeeze pack version. I’m assuming this is to make it easier to spread this delicious butter on crackers and bread and not so you can squeeze it directly into your mouth. No, I wouldn’t do that.
How Well do you Know Your Food Processor?
Granted, not a question you’re likely to be asked every day. But when the Guide to Your Food Processor popped into the MoKL Kitchen email box this week we were intrigued.
Since starting the blog, my food processor has been on overdrive so it’s useful to know that I’m using it right. Turns out I’m not – no, don’t put mashed potato in the food processor, Dawn!
Here in its visual delight entirety is the guide. But if you pop over to the ereplacementparts.com blog you’ll also find some really useful and well-presented tips on getting the most from your oven, freezer and even how to make perfect French Press coffee. (Note: it’s an American site, so it uses American cup measurements). Enjoy!
Every Friday we share the best of the week’s food and nutrition finds in the Friday Dish: what we’ve loved, what’s inspired us and what’s revolutionised our family mealtimes. We only review products, websites, books and recipes we absolutely love and want to share with our readers; we are not paid for our reviews.