Who doesn’t love a good music festival? What’s there to NOT love? Well, turns out that for my little family the answers are firstly, just about everyone else in the world and plenty.

Recently, I attended a music festival with my four children. It wasn’t a well planned holiday; in fact, there was very little planning on our part at all. Between the five of us we owned one sleeping bag and that was the extent of camping equipment. Thanks to the generosity of friends we scraped together the basics: a tent, stove, sleeping bags, etc. and bravely we committed ourselves to the venture.

Striking camp was hilarious.

Our borrowed tents came with no instructions. Yes, we Googled!

Our neighbours were far from neighbourly.

For some unknown reason, my normally fearless children wanted to be beside me for the duration. Being superglued to teens and accomodating everyone’s needs lead me to the firm belief that CHILDREN, CAMPING and HOLIDAY were words that should never be used in the same sentence. I’m sure that I am not the only person holding this belief to be true. My internal soundtrack was stuck on repeat with The Lemonheads screaming ‘I lied about being the outdoor type’ at me.

So, I couldn’t control our neighbours. I couldn’t control the weather. The only thing that I could do was to make sure we didn’t have to resort to cold beans and soggy cereal for the entire weekend.

Lemon herb chicken with couscous and avocado


  • 500g diced chicken
  • Zest of 1 lemon
  • 2 cloves of garlic, minced
  • Cracked black pepper
  • A glug of good olive oil
  • Couscous
  • Diced cucumber. I used about 1/2 of a continental with the seeds removed
  • 1 avocado ‘cubed’ as best as you can
  • Baby greens (spinach or rocket)
  • Cherry tomatoes 15-20, cut in half
  • 2 spring onions, finely sliced (save half to garnish)

Boil the billy and make a cup of tea.

While you have boiling hot water, prepare couscous as per instructions.

  • allow the couscous to cool and fluff it with a fork
  • Put aside in a large bowl

Add lemon zest, pepper, garlic and a glug of olive oil to your diced chicken. Allow the flavours to soak in.

Cook chicken, bbq or in a pan, whatever works. Our camp site provided bbq facilities, but taking a gas stove made things infinitely easier.

Allow to cool slightly before adding to couscous.

Combine remaining ingredients and garnish with remaining spring onions.



Festival bonus recipe from my offspring


My kids perfected these quite quickly.

  • Marshmallows
  • Gram crackers
  • Small snack size milk chocolate bars

Stack marshmallows on fork, waft over bbq flames, squish onto crackers, add a piece of chocolate, eat with haste!

Stack, waft, squish, add, eat. Simple!




Nikki Montgomery

Nikki Montgomery is a muffin baker, sandwich maker, chutney activist and painter of bespoke footwear. Nikki’s been called a lot of things over the years and worn a number of different hats. Between being 'just Mum' and trying to be an active community member, Nikki also has a keen interest in politics and social justice. What better way to get people to slow down and hear what others have to say than to gather together and share food? Now she can add ‘writer’ to her resume.