Monday, 19 May 2008

Twist on Tour

Yesterday we had a bbq with the borders knitting group people - lots and lots and lots of cakes and a few sausages! I didn't get a good pic of them all together but check out Laurence's post to get an idea of things. I sort of had an idea that doing 3 desserts myself would end up being too much but I was in the mood to cook so never mind. I made a rhubarb trifle (thanks again to Dave for the excellent rhubarb), some lemon tarts, and choux. Being English, I call anything made out of choux pastry and in a small blob shape a profiterole, but I know they should actually have ice cream inside to be proper ones. Mine had a lightly coffee flavoured pastry cream inside (made with cornflour, sugar, eggs and milk), then chocolate on top. Laurence arrived at just the right time to give some much needed French input on the state of the pastry dough, and then she did a great job of stuffing them too.

At the same time, Diane got busy with an old fork to tackle the weeds on the patio - look, no weeds or moss! Andrea also joined in later on and between them they've made such a huge difference to it, it looks miles better, thanks guys. I also have a fab new patio pot which was a pressie from Sheila, and in the team colour of the knitting group too, everyone's very into nice springy green things. Thankyou!

Lots of people went to great efforts in the kitchen - we didn't put much on the bbq but instead enjoyed a huge selection of lovely bread, cakes and hand made chocolates. A big thankyou to all for the contributions. Next time we'll drop the bbq and go straight to dessert maybe :)

The highlight of the afternoon was having Laura and Peter's van parked on my drive full of lovely stuff from Twist Fibre Craft Studio. My own personal knitting shop right outside the house, very exciting! They had a test run at setting up a mini shop in the van, and we all very much enjoyed looking at what they brought.

My stash has grown quite a bit this weekend. I bought some nice soft dk (I'm not sure what for yet) and also some sock yarn. All of it's very colourful, I must have been in a bright mood. I think maybe I'll have a go at making some socks while I'm travelling about this summer...

PS the recipe I used for soda bread a few posts ago can be found here. It's an oaty one, so the texture is quite interesting.

Saturday, 17 May 2008

Hey, it' asparagus season!

yum yum, tasty tart with british asparagus and goats cheese :)

I had some chargrilled on the griddle today too which is one of my favourite ways of eating it. And the first batch of jersey new potatoes went into my shopping basket.

I've also been enjoying kilos of rhubarb from Dave at work. I'm filling up the freezer with stewed rhubarb and apple for breakfasts, I made a rhubarb tart at the same time as the asparagus one, and tomorrow we're having rhubarb and orange trifle. Such a great time of year!

Buttons and beads

I've had a bit of a jewellery making phase recently, sparked off by discovering a basket full of lovely bright buttons at Twist. Mum and I bought 3 packs each and spent an evening turning them into necklaces.

I suppose there are only so many button necklaces a girl needs, so I then moved onto my box of beads and jewellery bits and pieces and made a few other things as well. I like anything requiring a pair of pliers!

Sunday, 4 May 2008

End of an era

Just a quick post to record the end of an era in foody terms. We had built up a great tradition of pizza nights in a particular flat that once was home to Fabrizio and Silvia, and was then passed on to Elton. He decided to take on the mantle of pizza chef from Fabrizio and after a good aprenticeship, he was suitably qualified to carry on the tradition when Fabrizio left for Milan.

Recently we had the last ever pizza night there, since Elton will be moving out in a couple of weeks, very sad! Anyway, he did a fine job of feeding everyone as usual, and the boys made a day of it to produce enough pizza bases to cover every surface in the flat (it's a strictly men only ritual!!). We decided to bring forward the start of Summer by enjoying the first jug of pimms and lemonade of the season, yum. Here's hoping that the pizza tradition will evolve into a new form, and we won't loose the chance to enjoy the pizzas in a new home sometime soon :)