Baby in one hand, wooden spoon in the other

Monthly Archives: September 2013

Spanish olive groves - simply stunning!

Spanish olive groves – simply stunning!

Phew. So, summer’s but a distant memory, Biggest is back to school and thriving in Year Two, Littlest has just started at preschool. Meanwhile I am running around like a mentalist between home and work, with so many things in my head, I sometimes fear it might *explode*. Whoever called managing a career and a family ‘juggling’ is insane. It’s not juggling. Juggling implies some element of fun – ‘Whoah there, you might drop a ball!’ What it sometimes just feels like is plain and simple coping. Am I coping? Some days better than others…

Something that recently perked me up, and reminded me of summer, was a delivery from Spanish olive oil merchant Fincalink – a website devoted to promoting the advantages of eating beautifully fresh olive oil, delivered directly from the growers, which are based all over Spain. Part of the Slow Food movement, their aim is to connect customers like you and me directly with producers, which I think is a great idea, particularly since I read that olive oil found on supermarket shelves is often blended with old olive oil and chemically adulterated. Urgh.

I love olive oil, and am a big fan of the Mediterranean way of eating in general, having lived in France for a while, way back when (I do tend to think it helps if you actually live in the Mediterranean – all that sun, blue sky and olive groves must be conducive to healthy eating, surely?!). Olive oil is an important part of this way of eating, and has been proven to actually be good for the mind as this recent study proves.

I tried the Señorío de Hinojales oil, which is described as their ‘star’ – it’s an award-winning olive oil – and I have to say, it is gorgeous. The colour is amazing, particularly when compared with bog-standard olive oil. It is fresh, green, fruity and has a well-balanced flavour with just a hint of pepper at the end. Totally delicious. I have been using it in dressings, on cooked vegetables, on top of soups, and the children have had it drizzled on pasta with Parmesan, and have also enjoyed just dipping bread into it (warning: can get messy).

Senorio di Hinojales

I love the ethos of what Fincalink is doing, and this olive oil is outstanding. They sell a range of olive oils, olives in jars, tapenades and even olive oil face and body products. So click on the link to buy olive oil, for information about Spanish olives and growers, and tasty Spanish recipes to try! Note that Fincalink is currently offering 20% off for all first-time orders!

One of my favourite recipes that calls for a good olive oil is from River Café Cook Book Easy – in fact nearly every recipe in the book ends with the line ‘Drizzle with olive oil’. It is ridiculously simple and so yummy:

Mozzarella Tomato

Toss together cherry tomatoes with olive oil and pieces of peeled garlic. Season and roast in a 200°C/Gas 6 oven for 15 minutes. Slice mozzarella into 1cm pieces. Toss rocket leaves with a good olive oil and lemon, place on bruschetta and tomatoes and slices of mozzarella. Drizzle with olive oil.



DISCLAIMER: I was sent the olive oil free of charge, to try. All the opinions on here are those of The One-Handed Cook.



I was in New York for work a couple of months ago, and in one of my few hours off, I decided to browse the baby aisle in the KMart near my hotel. (Always thinking of you, dear blog readers…) What innovative product could I find that American moms were using on their babies?

Of course there were sippy cups, spoons, melamine plates, BPA-free bottles, etc – much the same as you’d find here in the UK. But there was one product that stood out for me – this, the Munchkin Easy Squeezy Spoon.  The blurb on the packaging says:

 A baby food spoon for no-mess, one-handed feeding at home or on-the-go – feeding with a simple squeeze makes mealtime a breeze.

One-handed feeding? Well, of course I had to buy one to share with you. As you know, I am a huge fan of shortcuts and ways to make life easier for busy mums and dads, and Munchkin seems like a great brand. Here it is:


This is a really nifty device. You fill the squeezy rubber container part of the spoon with puréed baby food, squeeze gently and the food comes out onto the spoon, and, hopefully straight into baby’s mouth. Seems pretty ingenious to me, and the idea of being able to feed baby one-handed with no mess is very appealing!

If you are a parent who likes to make homemade purées for your little one, then would be a great product to use when travelling, in particular. I am not sure how practical it would be to clean by hand, but it’s dishwasher safe, which we like J It is made of silicone and is BPA free. Suitable for babies 4+ months.

Now, as I am well beyond the weaning stage with my two, I thought it would be nice to offer this as a giveaway on my blog! So, if you’d like the Munchkin Easy Squeezy Spoon, all you have to do is follow me on Twitter @onehandedcook and tweet that you’d love to win the spoon (or follow and RT my tweet about the giveaway).

Follow me here.

If you’d like to buy one, you can actually buy one on Amazon here in the UK.

Giveaway ends on Monday 16 September, when I will pick one name out of the hat. Usual T&Cs apply.


This is not a sponsored post. I bought the spoon myself!

"Phew, that's the cheese grated, now it's time for a rest"

“Phew, that’s the cheese grated, now it’s time for a rest”

It’s been a while since I featured a Hero Gadget on the blog. It suddenly struck me that I had not yet featured my beloved Microplane grater, and I’ve been writing this thing for almost a year (er, how the hell did that happen?). So it is time to put things right.

Put simply, any kitchen worth its salt has to have a Microplane grater. For a start, it works. Every time. It doesn’t bend. It won’t buckle. It is rigid and unyielding (a bit like my six-year-old when it comes to eating broccoli). It looks good; it is robust; it is multi-functional. It stays sharp. It goes in the dishwasher. It is the king of graters. This is truly a gadget for a time-pressed parent who just needs things to work.

I have two Microplane graters: a fine one and a coarse one. The fine one is brilliant for grating Parmesan, or any other hard cheese, nutmeg, chocolate etc. It is also completely brilliant for zesting oranges, lemons and limes. The coarse one is also good for Parmesan, but can also be used for fruit and vegetables – onion, celery, carrot, apple – all have seen the rough side of the grater in my house.

Now of course, it is physically impossible to grate something one-handed. So this is a gadget to use quickly, while baby or toddler is content and occupied. Pop him or her in the bouncy chair or the sling, and pick up your Microplane. It won’t let you down, I promise. In fact it will work so well, the only thing that might let you down is over-zealous grating… watch those fingers, folks.

You can buy a vast range of Microplane graters on Amazon and on the Divertimenti website.

In other news, the oldest one goes back to school tomorrow. Where oh where have six weeks gone? Yes, I was that mum frantically buying school uniform in my lunch hour today. Amazingly, they had trousers in his size. Nothing like leaving things to the last minute…Oh lordy, now I need to sew a name tag on them…

Happy Back to School everyone 🙂



The One-Handed Cook

Baby in one hand, wooden spoon in the other

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