Blog

  • Keeping Healthy Bones and Joints

    As we age it is important to look after our bones and our joints, as we can be more prone to problems like osteoporosis and osteoarthritis. The most common type of arthritis in the UK, osteoarthritis affectsMiniMeals_250x300_2 (3)
    the cartilage between our joints and is most likely to occur in the knees, hips and small joints in the hand.

    Your weight can have an impact on the osteoarthritis of the hips and knees as it increases the pressure on them. If you are watching your weight why not try smaller portions with our popular Mini Meals range? This range has some of our favourite dishes but in a smaller portion so you don't feel like you are missing out on your usual tasty meals from Oakhouse!

    As well as keeping your weight in check there are other steps you can take to keep your bones and muscles strong. Some of the following nutrients can be helpful in keeping healthy:

    Calcium

    Eating for calcium is important as we age

    Most of us know children need calcium to help them grow, but it’s just as important in later life to prevent the development of osteoporosis, which causes brittle bones. If your diet includes food from a variety of food groups, it should be simple to get enough calcium each day without making any big changes to your diet.

    Good sources include milk, cheese, cream and green leafy vegetables such as broccoli and cabbage. Why not try our Cheesy Smoked Haddock Fillet or our sumptuous Clotted Cream Vanilla Ice Cream for a treat!

    Vitamin D

    Vitamin D plays an important role in bone health because it helps our bodies absorb calcium. Sunlight is one of the main sources, but in the UK, the sun is only strong enough to help us make vitamin D in the summer. During the warmer months, try to spend up to 10 minutes each day out in the sun without sunscreen.

    As well as going out in the sun, you can get vitamin D from eating eggs or oily fish such as salmon and mackerel a few times a week. Our Kipper Fillets are a great breakfast dish, and our Salmon & Broccoli Bake is a delicious option for the evenings.

    Exercise for Healthy Muscles

    To protect you and your bones against falls, you also need to look after your muscles. By keeping them strong, you’re more likely to stay steady on your feet around the home and outdoors. Regular exercise will help with this – even low-intensity activities such as walking and gardening. You could also try balance-based exercises such as Yoga or Pilates.

    To keep your muscles in good shape and help them repair after exercise, it’s important to include protein in your diet. Good sources include meat, fish, cheese, beans, lentils and whole grain cereals. Our Chilli Con Carne & Rice is a great mildly spiced dish or why not try our Woodland Chicken for something a little different?

    Whatever your taste, it's important to get a balanced diet including elements from all the major food groups. You can find out more about eating healthily with the Eatwell plate here.

  • In the Oakhouse kitchen...

    At Oakhouse we’re all about using traditional ingredients and classic recipes to create great food that really hits the spot. Award winning development chef Wayne Harris has been creating delicious dishes for the Oakhouse range for over 5 years and we spoke to him about the inspiration behind some of our all-time favourites.Development Chef Wayne Harris

    A lifelong passion
    “My love of cooking began at home when I was around 13 or 14 and I used to bake in my mum’s kitchen making classic puddings like Lemon Meringue Pie. I finally became a professional chef after completing my training in Salisbury and have been lucky enough to win several awards over the years doing what I love.

    Simply good food

    “It’s our mission to create food that tastes as good as homemade, that you can enjoy without all the hassle of cooking. We are cooking and retasting our recipes all the time to see where we can add something new or improve on flavour, and we've just been coming up with some exciting new dishes for our summer range too. We often find our inspiration in time-honoured recipes that have been passed down through generations, and add an Oakhouse twist to create something different. ”

    Mini Beef Stew with Bubble & Squeak
    Mini Beef Stew with Bubble & Squeak
    Wayne says: “I loved creating this dish – bubble and squeak is a British classic and I was really excited about coming up with a recipe around it. These two traditional favourites went really well together and a little red wine did the trick to bring out all the rich notes of the beef. This really is comfort food at its best.”

    You say...
    "Tender pieces of beef in a rich gravy together with the Bubble & Squeak made a very tasty meal..." ***** Brian

    Chicken & Cider HotpotChicken & Cider Hotpot

    Wayne says: “Cider is a fantastic ingredient to cook with and the flavours lend themselves to so many recipes, so coming up with this dish was a pleasure. I added cream to balance the light, fresh flavours of the cider and with some sage it produced a really tasty sauce that complements the chicken perfectly.”

    You say...
    "My absolute favourite. Restaurant quality" ***** Irina
    "Another tasty and enjoyable dish" ***** Maureen

    Have your say
    Have you got a favourite recipe that you'd like to share with us? Whether it's from our kitchen or yours, why not tell us about it on Facebook or Twitter?

    #sharethefoodyoulove

  • I did it! Aberdeen customer loses over 2 stone with Oakhouse Mini Meals

    We all know that carrying extra weight can take its toll on your health and after years of trying different weight loss plans, Aberdeen retiree Kathleen finally found the answer she had been looking for – in the pages of an Oakhouse Foods brochure.

    Kathleen was looking for some help with mealtimes for her elderly father when she came across Oakhouse Foods. “Dad had tried other options but was bored with the food and wanted something a bit more exciting. I picked up an Oakhouse brochure one day and we really liked the look of the food so we gave them a try.

    “At around this time I had some bad news from my doctor, who told me I had to start losing weight for the benefit of my health. As Dad became a regular Oakhouse customer I realised that their mini meals could be worth trying as they are all smaller portions and lower in calories.  To be safe I showed everything to my GP who gave it the thumbs up, and since then I’ve been eating Oakhouse mini meals for tea almost every day.

    “Since I started eating Oakhouse meals in April I have lost over 2 stone and the change in my health has been incredible. I haven’t had to use my inhaler once and I’m no longer borderline for diabetes. There is such a lot of choice you never get bored. I even get to have some yummy low calorie puds when I fancy a treat! I have tried every weight loss plan under the sun and nothing has worked until I found Oakhouse. My daughter has also lost over a stone using Oakhouse meals and we would recommend them to anyone. I think having smaller portions already planned out for you is a great help, and the food is so tasty you don’t feel like you are missing out.”

    If you're watching your weight and you fancy giving smaller portions why not have a browse through our Mini Meals and see what takes your fancy?

  • Eating for a Healthy Heart

    The best way to keep your heart healthy is through your diet and we have explained some of the easiest changes you can make. Heart-healthy lifestyle habits will also benefit your general wellbeing whilst reducing your risks of heart disease and lowering your cholesterol levels.

    Fruit and vegetables should make up a third of our diets so you should be having at least 5 portions a day. This can be hard so why not try adding frozen vegetables to dishes? We have some great choices like Broccoli and our Baby Carrots. Always aim for a colourful plate; variety is the spice of life and with a larger variety means more of the good things like fibre, vitamins and minerals.

    fruit and vegetable variety

    Eating more fibre will also help lower your risk of heart disease, aiming for 30 grams a day from a variety of sources like Wholemeal Bread, Oats, Wholegrain Cereals, Potatoes with their skins and of course fruit and vegetables.

    Cutting down on your saturated fat is always a great way to lower your cholesterol levels - using leaner cuts of meat and lower fat dairy varieties will help so try using skimmed rather than whole milk.

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    Eating fish at least twice a week especially oily fish is a great way to get omega-3 into your diet, which helps protect against heart disease. Why not try our Salmon in Watercress?

    As well as the importance of your diet, being more active will keep your blood pressure and cholesterol levels in check as well as your waist! If exercise is too much for you simple changes like taking the stairs instead of the lift or going for a brisk ten minute walk are a great place to start, as long as you're raising your heart rate it counts as activity.

    Whatever your age, making some small changes to your diet and lifestyle can really help you look after your heart and keep you fit and healthy.

  • A Gift at Christmas

    The Oakhouse head office team have been doing their bit this December for those in need, with a collection of food items for the local food bank in Melksham, Wiltshire. Members of staff have been contributing items every day for a collection to be donated in time for Christmas.

    Melksham Foodbank was set up to help with poverty in our local area by providing a practical short term solution for a person or family between a need or a problem arising and Social Services organising benefits. A food parcel with food basics is provided for 3 days, this allows the person in need to concentrate on resolving their problem without having to think about food.

    Melksham Foodbank started in September 2007 and is a non-profit organisation running under auspices of the Melksham Family of Churches. It is run by a team of volunteers from different Churches. In order to work, it relies on donations of time, food, money and services from its supporters.

    During the month of November Melksham Foodbank gave out 66 family parcels and 23 single parcels, and in the first 10 months of this year they've given out 350 family parcels and 197 single parcels.

    We hope that our small donation will help to make Christmas a little easier for someone in need.

  • Extra Mile Award Winner!

    The Oakhouse Extra Mile Award Winner

    During the month of September we asked you to nominate your local driver if they had gone above and beyond for the Oakhouse Foods Extra Mile Award - we are very pleased to announce that the winner was Tracy Mann from our Reading branch!

    We had an overwhelming response with over a thousand replies in total and all the comments were absolutely lovely. We'll be passing these onto the drivers themselves so they also get to see the great feedback you gave about their efforts.

    Overall winner Tracy was very pleased to receive a £100 voucher for her favourite shop, just in time for Christmas!

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    A special mention also goes to the following drivers as runners up: Darren also at our Reading branch, Richard and Pete at the branch in Sharnbrook, Jack in Exeter branch and Mike at Gosport.

    We will be running the competition again next year, as we loved hearing from you so much and it's great to give our deserving drivers some recognition. A big thank you to all those who took part!

  • Keep Warm, Keep Well

    Keeping Well in the Winter Months

    Winter is here, the nights are drawing in and the heaters are on! Although it is comforting to settle down in front of the TV with a blanket and a cup of warming cocoa it is still important to keep fit and well in the winter months.Porridge

    Eating healthy will keep you alert, energised and help protect you from illnesses in the winter months. Keeping a colourful and varied diet is extremely important - try to aim for 5 daily portions of fruit and vegetables.

    Porridge is a fantastic filling and warming start to the day, like our Apple, Sultana and Cinnamon Porridge.

    Our soups make for a fantastic quick lunch - why not try our Carrot and Coriander soup or something more exotic like our Sweet Potato and Coconut Soup.

    Sweet Potato & Coconut Soup

    It is important to eat little and often, and if you do have a smaller appetite we have over 60 mini meals, if not we have plenty of hearty dishes and our Lamb and Beef Pie is a firm favourite. It is always great to have some quick easy dinners in the freezer or the cupboard with our range of everyday groceries we have plenty of options. If you do have any dietary requirements all our meals are clearly labelled in the brochure with our handy symbols.

    Even though it's harder to get motivated with the shorter days and cold weather, it is still important to stay active in the winter months. If you can, try to get out of the house for a breath of fresh air. If not there are plenty of exercises that can be done indoors from armchair exercises to yoga and even dancing. It is best not to sit still longer for an hour so try and keep moving throughout the day. It is also really important to stay hydrated in the winter as we do in the summer, it is harder and as we get older it is harder to recognise the signs of being dehydrated. A great way to know you are keeping hydrated throughout the day is fill a large jug with water in the morning and use that throughout the day, add lemon or cucumber to the water for extra flavour.

    Some other important tips for the colder season -
    Toasty Fire

    • Wear several thin layers of clothing, warm air gets trapped between the layers.
    • Air is cooler at ground level so if you are sat try and keep your feet up, and wrap a blanket around yourself for extra comfort.
    • At night use an electric blanket or hot water bottle to get your bed nice and toasty!

    If you'd like to find out more about how you can keep warm and well this winter Age UK have plenty of useful tips.

  • Hearty Soups

    Winter is fast approaching and we are starting to look forward to open fires, thick socks and a warming bowl of soup! This month we will be discussing our lovely range of hearty soups and why soup is such a fantastic meal on those cold days!

    Chorizo, Celery & Leek Soup

    Why soup is more than just a great meal?

    Whether you are coming in from the chill or want a warming fix in the middle of the day soup is a comforting option. A mix of vegetables and spices can be a healthy and a fortifying mid day dish, soup is also a wonderful hydrator, giving your body more of its much needed liquid. It is also extremely easy to digest making it a fantastic option for getting a variety of nutrients you need in your diet.

    Sweet Potato & Coconut Soup

    With 12 different types of soup from the classic country Creamy Mushroom Soup with chopped chestnut mushroom to our modern Sweet Potato & Coconut Soup spiced with a hint of chilli, there is something from everyone in our range. Our Scotch Broth and our Chorizo, Celery & Leek Soup are both hearty filling soups perfect for dinner.

    During this month we are doing fantastic offer our Hearty Soups Pack for £9:15 with 4 soups with the 5th soup free this is a great addition to your normal order, lunches sorted for the week.

    Creamy Mushroom Soup

    The pack includes Carrot & Coriander Soup, Scotch Broth, Potato & Leek Soup with Chives, Minestrone Soup and Creamy Mushroom Soup. This is a limited time offer over two weeks starting from Monday the 3rd of October, as well so get it whilst it is hot!

     

     

     

     

     

  • New Brochure Launch!

     

    We are delighted and proud to share our latest autumn winter brochure, with 27 great new dishes on the menu. This season we have some fantastic comforting dishes for when the evenings start drawing in. We have all your favourites and have added a fantastic range of pies perfect for sharing as well as an exciting range of desserts for that after dinner treat!

    The Big Breakfast

    Why not start the day with our new The Big Breakfast? It's hearty and filling with all your hot breakfast favourites, sausages, hash brown and the classic British black pudding.

    We have a great range of shortcrust pastry pies which all come as in a twin pack - combine these with some our sides Dauphinoise Potatoes and Ratatouille for a hearty dinner for two. One of our favourites is the new Steak Pie, which contains tender cuts of beef in a red wine and beef gravy.

    The best part of any mealtime is the treat at the end, this season we have a fantastic range of exciting desserts, some real showstoppers!

    Salted Caramel Melt-in-the-Middle Pudding

    The Salted Caramel Melt-in-the-Middle Pudding another twin pack, looks spectacular and tastes even better! A toffee sponge coated in a Belgian chocolate ganache with a luxurious salted caramel centre, what a great way to finish a meal!

    Our easy order packs are a increasingly popular way to purchase a selection of meals for the week. Our Winter Wonders pack has 5 of our new dishes for £21.50, with the new Vegetable Tikka and Sausage in Caramelised Onion Gravy to try.

    Winter Wonders Pack

    These packs are a simple way to have a varied week of our meals. We have also created an easy order pack with all of our exciting New Desserts - great if you have a sweet tooth. It contains our new Salted Caramel Melt-in-the-Middle Pudding as mentioned above and our new Italian classic Tiramisu.

    We are really proud of our latest brochure and the exciting new dishes on offer, we are looking forward to hearing what you think of them! Please click here to have a look at our new dishes on offer!

  • Extra Mile Award

    The Oakhouse - Extra Mile Award

    During the month of September on the back of your delivery notes we are asking you to nominate one of our lovely drivers for the 'Extra Mile Award'! There is a small slip on the back of the delivery note to send back to Head Office as well as an online entry form. The idea is for you to nominate your delivery driver if you think they have gone above and beyond the call of duty to assist. As the face of Oakhouse Foods our drivers really are the champions of our company, and we know from previous feedback that they are extremely important to our customers as they get to know them so well. Our delivery drivers strive to help as much as they can and many have a fantastic friendship with their regulars!

    Driver

    We have previously done this in our summer newsletter, last year and we had thousands of replies and lovely comments regarding our drivers helping customers, coming to the rescue of injured customers in some cases. One of the many aspects our customers love about our deliveries is they will usually have the same driver at a similar time so they get to know their friendly face. Our drivers will also happily arrange a customer's orders in the freezer or cupboard to give them that extra helping hand.

    As this was such a popular feature previously we are really looking forward to the feedback, it is great to pass the praise back to our lovely drivers for all their extra efforts. The winning driver will be picked by who has the largest number of nominations or at random from the most popular nominations if there is a tie, they will then pick themselves a £100 voucher of their choice!

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