Hate cooking for the family? Try Suffolk mum's new dinner deliveries
- Credit: Charlotte Bond
Cooking family meals is boring. There. I’ve said it. As a mum of two, in charge of the shopping and dinner planning, I can say, hand on heart, I dread being in the kitchen midweek. And this is coming from a devout foodie.
There’s always a rush. Someone always inevitably doesn’t like something. And, after a day working, it’s just such a drag. I’m not alone...I know.
“I love cooking, but in the middle of the week I always wish someone else would do it,” says Storm George of Thorpe Morieux, who last month launched My Little Dumpling in a bid to help other parents feed their children (and themselves) well, with as little fuss as possible.
Mum to two-year-old Fergus and one-year-old Artie, and working part-time in marketing, Storm has a lot on her plate.
“We’re all trying to do a million things at once aren’t we? I like to batch cook to get ahead, and I thought, well, if I’m doing my own cooking, why don’t I make....20 portions?”
Storm’s not the kind of person to rest on her laurels, and after conceiving her idea, of healthy ready meals in child and adult sizes, spent just six weeks getting set up, attending a business course, having her kitchen approved by the local council, and trying out dishes on other families.
She says she’s always cooked from scratch, making everything with fresh ingredients. “We do a lot of entertaining at the weekends. That’s my kind of cooking. More intricate food. For the family meals I’m making, though, what I’d say is ‘normal’ food.
- 1 Suffolk town named one of the best places to go on holiday in the UK
- 2 Forbidden Suffolk: 6 places you can't visit in the county
- 3 Striking new seafront café opens its doors to customers after two-year wait
- 4 'It riles me to the core' - Anger as sofas dumped near Suffolk beauty spot
- 5 Man stabbed in back and sides in Ipswich attack
- 6 'The children were buzzing' - Ed Sheeran sends video to Suffolk school
- 7 Four-bedroom cottage on Dunwich clifftops for sale for £295k
- 8 Ranking every League One away kit from worst to first
- 9 Striker Jackson signs new Town deal
- 10 Travel: Stay on the UK's first floating glamping pod...in Beccles
“It’s nothing crazy or exciting. I’m literally making what other people might cook at home, taking the preparation time out to make life easier for others. I recently read that most British families eat the same six meals every week. We’re creatures of habit, and there’s nothing wrong with that.”
Storm cooks on a Thursday (with grandma brought in to watch the kids), and delivers in and around Ipswich on a Friday, heading for Hadleigh, Bramford, Copdock, and looping back.
Her menu includes six dishes that have the stamp of approval from her own, and other families, all supplied frozen in recyclable metal and paper lid containers, and made using mostly meat and vegetables from Hollow Trees Farm, close to her home.
Child portions (£4) will feed two small children up to seven-years-old, and the larger dishes (£8) are big enough to feed two adults. Storm even tweaks the recipes between the two. There’s no added salt in the small dishes, and minimal sugar...with seasoning and spice ‘upped’ for parent portions. A bonus for parents is that the child-sized portions come pre-chopped up. “There’s nothing worse than sitting down for dinner and spending 10 minutes cutting up your children’s food while yours goes cold,” she laughs.
Customers have been enjoying cauliflower and macaroni cheese, spaghetti Bolognese, fish pie, chicken curry, aubergine katsu curry and creamy orzo pasta – all ready to eat after around 20 minutes in the oven, from defrosting.
“I’ve tried to sneak extra veg into everything. The mac and cheese has a lot of cauliflower in, but you can’t see it. There’s nothing to pick out. The spag bol has loads of carrots and mushrooms blended in. And the katsu isn’t something you might normally think children would like, but it has some exciting flavours and everyone who’s tried it so far has loved it.
“My kids really have helped me design the recipes, because if they won’t eat it, there’s a chance others won’t either.”
Storm’s favourite pick off the menu is her fish pie. “I pipe the mash on top so it looks quite pretty, and I think it’s a great way to get kids eating fish, with a creamy sauce, full of salmon, cod and smoked haddock.”
So far there are lots of reports of clean plates. “It’s been so positive. I think I’m making people’s lives easier and getting them to eat as a family, which is nice. In lockdown I think we all slowed down a little and that time did make me appreciate family time more. Sitting and eating together and enjoying being together. The average meal takes 41 minutes to prepare and 21 to eat. If I can help other people cut the prep time, I’m hoping it will give them more quality time.”
Find out more and order via mylittledumpling.me