There has been a distinct lack of baking on my blog so far. The reason is I’m simply not an avid baker. Generally I’m all about the savoury and if I’m cooking then it’ll be a big fat meal rather than something sweet or a baked snack. There are a few notable exceptions. One being brownies, which I could happily whip up every day (if I wasn’t concerned about my waistline) and another being my signature dessert, raspberry meringue roulade, which is simply the most perfect dessert in the world. However, as this blog is supposed to encourage me to explore gastronomica in its entirety, I thought I would stretch my legs in the baking arena. First stop? Muffins.
Monthly Archives: February 2010
Yesterday I did something that I’ve never done before. I made my own stock. I know that is a terrible admission to make, especially as I consider myself to somewhat of a cook and presume to write a blog on the subject. How dare I when I don’t even make my own stock??? I had recently been feeling guilty about this fact after reading Nigel Slater’s Real Food book where he says, “Only the wasteful will fail to make a broth of the bones.” What a reproach. I had been told and felt it dearly; I was heartily ashamed of myself. Was I wasteful? Ought I to be faithfully boiling up my leftover bones every time I bung a weekday roast chicken in the oven? Should I be shunned eternally by the foodie community as an imposter and a fake? Feeling disheartened and dismayed, I consulted the oracle.
Once upon a time there lived a girl who went on and on about food and cooking all day long. Her friends had long since stopped listening and merely smiled sweetly, nodding along trying to look interested while privately slinking away in their minds to somewhere a little less monotonous. The girl was perfectly content boring her friends with her favourite subject until one day one very clever friend piped up and said, “why don’t you start a food blog?” The girl went home and started one that very night! That girl was of course me!
In order to thank Lottie for her inspirational idea (although now I just bore my friends with my blog as well as food and cooking) I wanted to invite her around to feast it up. To complete the party we also invited her boyfriend Chris and our other friend Ruth (all of whom I work with!). Now, as I’ve admitted before I am a complete Italiaphile and having recently bought, what is to me, the ultimate Italian cookbook, The River Cafe Classic Italian Cookbook, I decided I would prepare an Italian banquet (well perhaps not a banquet, but a good old feed at least).
Just a quick extra post in case you’re interested what recipe I used for the penne arrabbiata for my Italian feast! I’ve adjusted the chilli levels so you don’t blow your head off.
In a moment of uncharacterly organisation I had the presence of mind to prepare a wonderful pancake recipe for you prior to pancake day, so you can actually use it today.
Well, ok, actually I thought it was pancake day last week and came home full of the joys of our annual pancake extravaganza, only to be told by Sven that I’d got it completely wrong. Needless to say, I felt very stupid, but every cloud has a silver lining and this particular cloud has two. 1) You all get a lovely pancake suggestion in time for actual Shrove Tuesday and 2) we get to eat pancakes twice this year. So who’s stupid now?
It’s Valentine’s day and Sven is taking me out to Riddle and Finn’s for dinner tonight (which I’m very excited about). However, being a person who thinks food is love, I couldn’t get through the day without demonstrating my love for Sven in some gastronomic way. I therefore decided to cook him a special pasta for lunch designed especially for him (small portions so we can manage our seafood platter later tonight).
As you may have noticed there has been a brief hiatus in posts of late. No doubt, those who know me thought that I had simply (and inevitably) got bored and that was the last they would see of my blog. But no! I was on a delightful “work-cation” in Acapulco courtesy of my lovely company. Thank you random psychologists for planning a conference in Mexico in February and thank you Psychology Press for choosing li’l ol’ me to attend.