We’ve had a bit of a freeze this week, I don’t want to call it a big freeze really because British weather is really quite tame compared to other countries. But its been very January like, plenty of ice, a bit of snow and today lots and lots of fog.
I’ve been watching the birds hopping about outside my office window looking quite chilly. I’m not much of a bird watcher but its been nice to see them going about their way. So far we’ve had the obligatory blackbirds, a robin, wrens and best of all, a woodpecker! I’m hoping I see it again on a day that I have a camera.
For now, here is a picture of the robin (I think) looking chilly.
I am not responsible for any diets broken by this blog post.
Today I made double chocolate chip cookies, I have recently managed to perfect making brownies, after several failed attempts in the past, so I have been a bit brownie made recently and fancied a change.
I know these are still chocolate but cookies are something quite different They are much better with tea (or milk of course) too.
These are adapted from a Nigella Lawson recipe (I can’t bear Nigella Lawson herself but she does have some great recipes) which was really really heavy on the chocolate. I admit to having to tone it down a little bit – for the sake of my health and the fact that I didn’t have 500g of chocolate, which is what the recipe required. Instead I used 100g of chocolate and about 75g for the chips. I used chopped up dark chocolate rather than cooking chocolate chips as I prefer to use proper chocolate.
These are great soft cookies and they are so chocolatey but not too cakey and bakey so they aren’t too dense. These are the best ones I’ve ever made. The only problem with these is that you have to wait at least 5 or 10 mins for them to crisp up a bit and the chocolate to set before stuffing your face.
If you have broken your diet with these, you probably won’t care anyway because they are too good.
I made my first ring this week!
I have been wanting to make rings for the shop and I couldn’t wait to try them out once I got my ring mandrel. This one is from a tutorial on MacFarland Designs blog (where she also has lots of other tutorials, I am trying out earwires next) for a simple rosette ring.
This was also spurred on by the loss of one of my rings down the floorboards the other day (I am cursing the landlords inability to lay them without 1cm gaps).
Its good for a first go, the wire wraps could be neater and the back is a little warped, but I love it all the same! I did this using 24g silver plated wire, not brave enough to use the expensive sterling wire yet
I am hoping to introduce some simple beaded wire wrap rings to the shop, made with vintage beads and different kinds of wire. I think copper would be lovely.
I made houmous today! I’ve tried and failed before so I was pleased that this came out well, and tasted good too. It was very nice with toasted pitta bread.
To make you need:
1 tin of chickpeas, drained
juice of 1 lemon
a clove of garlic
about 5 leaves of fresh coriander, chopped.
Blitz the chickpeas, garlic, a good slug of olive oil and the lemon juice in a food processor til its smooth – you may need to transfer to a bowl and stir it yourself as it can be too thick for the processor. Season, add the coriander and stir. Add a bit more olive oil, seasoning or lemon juice to taste, a bit of olive oil will also help to loosen it a bit and make it smoother.
So we’ve had our first crop of potatoes! I love proper homegrown potatoes, apart from tasting about a hundred times better than anything you can buy in the shops, they are so very easy to grow, we’ve never failed at potatoes (same can’t be said for other things we have grown before). We got 4lbs from our plants this year, so that will last us quite a long time. Check back for more progress, our salads are coming along nicely as is the tomato plant –which seems to be yielding one very huge tomato rather than lots of them.