Friday, 29 May 2015

29TH MAY

This week there has been rain and hail and sun and wind and I've been too warm and too cold and then too warm again.

But in three weeks time we'll be in Greece for swimming and sunshine and eating and drinking. Unfortunately those three weeks will also either see us packing up and moving to an as yet unseen flat or packing up and moving down the road to stay with family until the currently lamentable rental market sorts itself out.

Amongst this there are a few things (apart from thoughts of Greece) that have made me smile this week...

Dan McCarthy's ceramics
Stevie
The best strawberry buttercream which made its way onto a cake for a colleague's birthday
This roller which I started using at the gym and which hurts my calves in a really good way
Twerps
Holiday nails
And finally, from this video, this screenshot of a young Fergus and Margot...



Wednesday, 20 May 2015

SUNDAY

After a good Saturday, a busy Saturday, a Saturday full of walking, to breakfast, to town, to the Botanics, to Mary's, to Blackfriars, Sunday called for quiet. Coffee drinking, food shopping, Nashville watching, Marie Kondoing my drawers, and an urge to bake.

I thought I was going to bake a cardamom cake or some kind of plain cake, I considered Bara Brith or madeleines but eventually I settled on a biscuit that I hadn't heard of before, Cornish Fairings. Imagine a ginger snap but chewy from golden syrup, flavoured with mixed spice as well as ginger, we had one each as soon as they cooled, the remaining four came with us for lunch at the start of the week. I might make Bara Brith this weekend.



Friday, 15 May 2015

UPS & DOWNS


 (Photo by Kimisa H. from Design*Sponge)

This week has been slightly up and down. But then there was the best bunny (which I'm not entirely convinced is real) and today there are new socks and the sun is trying even if it is still too cold for May. Tomorrow there will be coffee and pastries and I've got an urge to roast a chicken. But until then...

This rhubarb cake is speaking to me
Brandon's new pizza place makes me want to go back to Seattle (even more than usual) 
Making the most of asparagus: panzanella or pizza
I might spend the afternoon listening to this while I work 
Charlotte's photograph inspiring a thousand words
And, speaking of which, if you're in London this weekend can I suggest this

Happy Friday...




Thursday, 14 May 2015

14TH MAY

It's been seven days since that last post, seven days since I voted, seven days since I thought the election was going to be close, seven days since the exit poll that said, no, actually not close at all, It's been six days since I woke up at 5.30am and quickly checked the news on my phone, six days since I tried to go back to sleep to make it go away.

I grew up in Conservative country, where the only campaign signs around election time are blue, where Thatcher's time as Prime Minister was seen as a very good thing. But I moved away and quickly realised that I didn't want to be governed by those who care only about people just like them, that I didn't buy into the now pervasive rhetoric about 'hard working people' that suggests that if things are bad it's just because you aren't working hard enough; that says austerity is necessary; that the crash, that was caused by the irresponsibility of a small group of people in control of our money, should be paid for by those who have the least rather than through proper taxation of those who can most afford it. It makes me sad that anyone thinks the last five years have been working when we have a cardboard box in our office for donations to the local food bank, when people on housing benefit can't have a spare room because 'they can just move to a smaller house' even though no smaller houses are available because 'right to buy' sacrificed social housing in favour of individual gain, a pattern to be repeated very soon, a pattern that will see people being penalised because of a government that thinks the priority is abolishing the Human Rights Act, bringing back fox hunting, saying no to any increase in tax.

It makes me sad and it makes me hope that something will change in the next five years and there will be a better result the next time this rolls around. But until then we'll do what we can do and if you would like to do the same can I suggest starting here: http://www.trusselltrust.org/map

Thursday, 7 May 2015

7TH MAY

I voted this morning. In this increasingly close election where three leader debates became seven leader debates where people said a lot but none of them changed my mind. I'll be staying up for as long as I can tonight and keeping my fingers crossed and in the meantime...

Tuesday, 28 April 2015

28TH APRIL

I sat at the kitchen table for a short while this morning, writing down a few thoughts before making breakfast. There's something about those early hours, the quiet, the sense of a world largely still asleep, I want to see more of them. I sat and I wrote and I realised that my hand cramps up far too quickly in these days of working entirely on a computer, never needing to write by hand. I need to get back in practice, I used to write pages by hand, notes in lectures, essays in exams, writing down my thoughts before falling asleep, now I can barely get through three tiny Moleksine pages.

The remains of a cake made on Saturday was wrapped up on the table, the smell of the orange syrup coming through the foil, the last pieces ready for us to have after dinner tonight. On Saturday there was Margot Henderson's roast chicken with lemon roast potatoes, wilted watercress and too much wine, tonight there will be Molly's roasted cauliflower with fried eggs. The orange and Campari cake to finish came with ice-cream and dessert wine on Saturday, tonight it will be plain, a cup of tea alongside. All so good, all linked to things that were on my mind in the last week. Margot Henderson shining in this video; Molly winning a James Beard Award, celebrating almost 11 years of Orangette, such an inspiration to so many, such well deserved recognition; that cake coming from a cookbook given to us as a wedding present by friends whose wedding we will be at this weekend.


Friday, 3 April 2015

GOOD FRIDAY


Easter weekend is the only time I wish my public holidays were automatic days off rather than bundled up with my annual leave. It's nice to have lots of days to play with but sometimes it feels hard to be going to work when everyone else is staying at home...

But, the weekend beckons and it looks like the weather isn't going to be too terrible so here are a few links to get it started:

These dreich Spring days are making me want this coat

Some reading for the weekend

I wish The Paris Review for Young Readers was real

Twelve Triangles just opened and I want to check it out very soon 

Bakery 47 and Mary's Milk Bar are collaborating for Easter

I've been listening to Electrelane again recently...