Sunday, 30 March 2014

One of those days

After all the bread I make for other people, I made one for myself yesterday, or at least I tried to.
Somehow it found it's way into the washing up (don't ask!) so it was a case of  'Bon Appetit Bin' or however they say it in France.

Anyhow, if you look on my bread blog, link on the right, you'll see that I managed to produce a loaf for my own use, using my new mixer,

It being Mothers Day today, my daughters in England, who are all too far away, sent me instructions to get Yvonne some flowers. I managed to get a load in bud last week,

and after a couple of days in vases they opened out nicely.

Georgina, who is in Australia, sent a card and a personalised mug, which was a lovely thought, she will be home in a couple of weeks for a month or so, we haven't seen her for a year except for Skype so that will be good.

Yvonne found a new friend on Thursday,

She's the one on the right LOL !!

I actually managed to get some cheap Rhubarb to add to mine and make my first load of wine this year

The great thing is that after you have made it,

the pulp can be cooked down and used in a crumble.

So you get a lot of enjoyment out of it.

Wednesday, 26 March 2014

There goes our day out

I thought I'd put up a picture of a rainbow, before I had a rant. Little things annoy me far more than they should sometimes and yesterdays was on the face of it a little thing, but on further examination became a bigger thing.
Since Yvonne's operation, we have tried to get out and about when she feels up to it, and the frequency is increasing. To stop her going stir crazy we went out yesterday afternoon for a walk and a cup of tea.
There was a parcel due to arrive via courier. Now I know that you have to wait in all day for most things, as if you had nothing else on, but a parcel? Well I spoke to the people next door and they said that they would be around all afternoon, until 1515. So I stuck a note on  my door and we went out.
We actually got back at 1520, and found a card to say that there had been no answer and the parcel would be redelivered. Slightly annoyed that we had missed by 5 minutes, I phoned and arranged delivery for today.
The neighbour saw me in the garden later, and I explained that of all the times it could arrive, that 5 minute window had been like a magnet, expecting a grin and a sage nodding of her head.
"Oh," she said, "there was someone here all the time, so he can't have knocked."
Annoyed barely covers it, hence our day out today has been cancelled, at least until the man has been.

Friday, 21 March 2014

A Business Opportunity

If you have been glancing at my bread blog, you will know that I am trying to grow the business this year, and so far I am having quite a bit of success. I've increased my supply to a couple of shops and introduced new products.

My biggest order is underway, 70 White Rolls for a fundraiser tomorrow, and I've just been told that I can run a pop-up shop in next months Brixham Sunday Market, giving me a chance to showcase the bread products that I love. (It's on April 13th)

The difficulty now will be deciding which to make and how many. It's a nice dilemma to have and besides, any left overs will find a good home. I'd better go and start practising.

Thursday, 20 March 2014


The West Country Deli in Brixham is now serving my Artisan Crumpets, so get down there and try some.!/TheWestCountryDeli?fref=ts

Here are a few pictures of their creation.

Tuesday, 18 March 2014

Bacon Hocks

I got these at a farm shop for £2.99, which I thought was pretty good.

It's my plan to slow cook them in Apple Juice and a few veg, until they fall apart, then pull the meat, I've got a few uses lined up for it.

First up, the preparation, I used my Cast Iron Casserole and chopped onion and carrot, adding them to the meat and the juice.

Next the slow cooking, about 160 degrees and 4 hours, checking hourly and basting.

When done, strip the meat off the bones, tip most of the liquid off and stir in a bit of honey, return to the oven for 30 minutes.

And this is what you are left with,

Today it's served with Roast Potatoes, Roast Parsnip,

Mixed Veg and Gravy. (Made from the cooking juice and cornflour) and there's enough left for a Chinese style fried rice dish and a few sandwiches. Not bad for £3

Sunday, 16 March 2014

Let out on my Own

Totnes Good Food Sunday today, and as Yvonne is still not 100% I'm off the leash, so to speak. But it's alright I've got a list! (Slight Sarcasm alert!)

Top of which is the Evergreen Farm sausages and meat order, a couple of good steaks and some Pork and Marmite sausages for starters, plus whatever else looks nice.

 This piece of Rump Steak will be our meal tonight, with all the trimmings.

Then to Red Earth Kitchens for Caramel Shortbread and Pork and Apricot Sausage rolls,

Thats lunch sorted!

plus I had a good chat with the stallholders, a cup of coffee and a hunt for goodies in the Happy Apple. (Totnes regulars will recognise this place)

But it wasn't the same on my own, and I didn't stop as long as we do normally, but I did get some good stuff.

The dog walk around Sharkham at lunchtime was a joy, I got my shorts out as it was so warm, and the place looked absolutely stunning.

The best news of the day was that Georgina will be home in a few weeks, its been nearly a year since we saw her last and can't wait to catch up.

Thursday, 13 March 2014

Return of the Tray Bake

It's Totnes Good Food on sunday, and that means a chance to stock up on quality produce.

I had been saving these sausages,

and thought a traybake would be a nice way to use them, a bit like my Chorizo and Roast Veg recipe from years ago. (Still my most popular post) )

Anyway this one had Mushrooms, Romano Pepper, Sundried Tomato, (and the oil from the bottle) New Potatoes and Onion.

Basically, you just chop it all up and mix it in a roasting tray,

put the sausages on top,

cover with foil and roast at 180 degrees for about an hour, then take the foil off, cut up the sausages and give it 30 minutes more.

The weather here has been amazing the last few days, it's almost starting to make up for the winter. Now she is a week post operation, Yvonne is starting to get out and about for coffee and cakes, of course I have to go with her in case the cake causes a relapse!. The good weather is making everyone feel better, timing is perfect, it must be easier to recover when the sun is shining.

Is this South Devon or the South of France? Actually thats Berry Head seen from Sharkham Point, but it could almost be anywhere on the coast between Marseille and the Spanish Border. You can se why it's called the English Riviera, and I'm so lucky that it's a ten minute walk away.

Wednesday, 12 March 2014

A Visitor

Look who came to see us today.

Trouble is, He (She) didn't hang around till I got the camera sorted out, so I had to take a quick picture on my phone, through the conservatory glass. At least the dog didn't spot it!.

I'm still trying to cook the sort of food that will be simple but tasty for Yvonne, and this one was no exception.
Line a casserole with halved Onions,

 add 3 tablespoons of brown sugar and 120g sultanas. Then pour over some wine vinegar, about 3 tablespoons,


Cook this, covered for an hour at 180 C, stirring once, by which time the sauce should be thick. Then put a brace of Salmon fillets on top for 15 minutes.

I served it with Oven Baked New Potatoes, on a bed of mixed leaves.

In other news, Savoury Morsels are on sale in the West Country Deli,

But you'll have to be quick! (I hope)

Sunday, 9 March 2014

Everything is getting better.

It's an absolutely beautiful day, almost shorts weather, and so appreciated after recent weeks. Yvonne is recovering well, and is looking forward to a day out tomorrow, a gentle walk around St Marychurch in Torquay. That will be ideal because its all flat, there are plenty of places to  sit down, and a really good cafe for coffee and Cake.

Talking of which, I headed down to Brixham Sunday Market this morning, (More of which later) and brought 2 Rhubarb Frangipane's from Red Earth Kitchen's stall. And they certainly hit the spot! 

After lunch, I took the dogs out for a stroll, and for the first time in ages didn't need a coat, or wellingtons or a hat! As you can see, there was a summery haze in the air, Berry Head looked perfect.

As Did The Coast Toward Dartmouth,


The Sea shone Like Polished Glass, And I Found the first Dandelion Of the year.

It reminds me that It will soon be time to refill all the wine bottles that we have emptied over the winter.

As I said, I went to the Sunday market, I had a delivery to make. The first batch of Savoury Morsels went on sale this morning, I hope that they go well.

So as I said at the start, things are getting better.