whirligigwitch: (Default)
We acquired a milk delivery last week. Milk and local free range eggs delivered in the mornings, milk three days a week and eggs on a Friday. This inspired me to investigate veg boxes in the locality and look at local suppliers, and I ended up taking a spin to the farm shop at Blagdon on Sunday.

I feel like it negates the purpose of buying local by using the car to go shopping, but the only choice in the town is in supermarkets, we have no butcher, greengrocer or fishmonger. There are bakeries, the ubiquitous Northern Greggs among others, but no fresh produce small businesses. There is a market once a week, on Wednesdays, but the choice is greatly reduced from what it used to be ten years ago.

The farm shop had a nice selection, substantial choice of meat and reasonable choice of fruit and vegetables. I got some beef mince, pork tenderloin, venison burger and lamb steaks, as well as some veg and local milk. The meat has been exceptional so far - very tasty. The veg is fine, but nothing exciting. When I used to get a veg bag at work it was the unexpected nature of it I liked, the fact that you never knew exactly what would be in it. I don't get the same kick out of picking my own carrots, parsnips and potatoes!

So I think I still need to find a veg box, but for meat I may well splash out on the farm. If we can manage it, I'd rather pay more for local, good quality food than buy supermarket mass produced stuff.

Eyes to see

Jul. 4th, 2011 09:50 pm
whirligigwitch: (Default)
David took R for an eye test today, after I noticed she's been getting up close to the computer screen and squinting at very small text.

She needs glasses for close up work, but it's a very, very slight prescription, +75 in each eye. She was ecstatic to be able to choose GLASSES! David said she was checking out the selection before she'd even had her eye exam. She chose a pair of purple Mr Bump frames and is getting them fitted on Wednesday.

This is the same girl who, when I suggested she needed her eyesight tested, point blank declared she wasn't going, she saw no need to go, she could see just fine, she knew she didn't need glasses and it was a waste of my time making the appointment and her time taking her there.

After her initial vociferous objections she said no more, though, but must have been thinking about it and working through it, because she was delightful today at Specsavers.
whirligigwitch: (Default)
This was inspired by the recipe for Mexican Lasagne with Avocado Salsa in Nigella Lawson's Kitchen. I adapted it due to David's reluctance to eat it as a vegetarian dish and I left out the salsa accompaniment as I had no avocado in the house. The end result turned out to be absolutely delicious and I'll definitely make it again. I may well try a no-meat version for me to take to work for lunch.

1 packet tortilla wraps (I used flour tortillas but corn would be good also)
1 jar passata or tin chopped tomatoes
1 tin black-eyed beans
500g pork mince (or use whatever you fancy, turkey or beef would work, or omit altogether)
1 medium red onion
1 red pepper
1 large tin sweetcorn
spices - cumin, paprika, crushed chilli, oregano
Monterey Jack cheese (or grated cheddar/cheese of your choice)

Brown the pork mince in a pan with onion, garlic and peppers. Add the passata or tinned tomatoes, fill the jar with water and swish around, add tomato water to pan. Tip in the drained black eyed beans and sweetcorn, then season to taste. The tomato adds sweetness, especially if you use passata, so I tend to check the seasoning at intervals and adjust as the flavours meld.
Preheat your oven to a medium heat - I use gas mark 6. In an overproof dish (I used a round pyrex) cover the base with a layer of tomato meat sauce. Place tortilla on top (I trimmed mine to fit in neat circles, then used the leftover odd shapes to make tortilla chips in the oven to nibble on while lasagne was cooking), sprinkle with grated cheese. Continue layering until you've used all the sauce. I finished with a layer of meat sauce topped with cheese.
Bake in oven for about 20-25 minutes, until cheese is brown and bubbling.
whirligigwitch: (Default)
I do love the way Amelia says "fis" instead of "fish". She seems to find it hard to say words with "sh" in them but she's perfectly understandable anyway.
whirligigwitch: (Default)
I'm pleased I can hold on to my whirligigwitch identity on Dreamwidth, I think I'd miss it after so many years.
whirligigwitch: (Default)
1. Reply to this post and I'll assign you a letter.
2. List (and upload, if you feel like it) 5 songs that start with that letter.
3. Post them to your journal with these instructions.

[livejournal.com profile] bopeepsheep gave me a G )
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Help whirligigwitch and get your own badge!
(The Livejournal Electioniser was made by robhu)


Odd title

Mar. 26th, 2010 09:53 pm
whirligigwitch: (Default)
http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/entertainment/8589455.stm

Not only do I like the title but I think the winning book sounds quite fascinating. Even to my non-mathematical mind!

Sushi

Mar. 24th, 2010 09:57 pm
whirligigwitch: (Default)
Recently I realised that I've never eaten sushi, as far as I can remember. Perhaps I shouuld rectify this? Salmon marinated in vodka was a recipe I experimented with, a long long time ago, but that's really the extent of my knowledge of raw fish. Though ISTR learning that what I thought of as sushi is actually sashimi.
whirligigwitch: (amelia)
A: Yay, empy box!

I turn to look to find the floor strewn with pencils...and Amelia singing a little song that went 'shake shake, shake shake, boxy empty box' She is very pleased with herself :)

Doodlebug

Jan. 15th, 2010 10:56 pm
whirligigwitch: (books)
It is, I am reliably informed, very sad that my idea of a fun evening is pottering about adding more of our books to LibraryThing after I've spent the day at work. In a library.

Periodically I have these bursts of enthusiasm and add another bookshelf to LibraryThing, one of these days I will have added all our books. :-)

Oldbloke!

Jan. 10th, 2010 03:11 pm
whirligigwitch: (roisin)
A remark Roisin made this morning made me think of you, for some reason:-)

"Newspaper Zombie won't be able to finish his sudoku if you use a torchwood and repeater"
whirligigwitch: (Default)
I'm grateful I haven't got the diarrhoea and vomiting that A and D had but I feel a bit ugh today myself. Flu-like, aches and pains and shivers and hot flushes.

The thaw has started here, there's a sizeable amount of snow melted overnight in our back garden. All the icicles on the houses have completely melted but the road looks much the same as yesterday. It's probably because it's been compressed down, the same as the snow on the footpaths. The air temperature is noticeably warmer than it was two days ago and the wind has risen also. There's a shelf of ice in the pond, just underneath the surface of the water, it's quite fascinating.

We never managed to get hold of a sledge - Yorkshire Trading Company got a bunch delivered the other day but the man in front of David in the queue got the last one. I though the snow might last a bit longer since we had no sledge - I reckoned as soon as we got hold of one it'd all start to melt.

Roisin should be back to school tomorrow. She'll be pleased as she's missed her friends though I think it did her no harm taking it easy for a few days.

I lost another hat on the bus to work on Thursday. Silly me.
whirligigwitch: (Default)
Happy New Year and all the best to all for 2010!
whirligigwitch: (rainbow)
I made lemon drizzle cake on Thursday night, using a different recipe to my usual. I'm trying out a selection of lemon cake recipes to find the ultimate! Thursdays was my favourite so far, I think. It's a Mary Berry recipe, though I tinkered a bit with the lemon syrup for the topping and varied the tin from that stated.

225g softened butter (I used about 100g butter and made the rest up with margarine as I'd run out of butter)
225g caster sugar
275g self-raising flour
2 tsp baking powder
4 eggs
4 tbsp milk (I wasn't exact with this, just sloshed some in until I thought the consistency looked right)
grated zest of two lemons (big unwaxed ones)

For the topping: juice of the two lemons, 175g granulated sugar (I used half and half caster and icing sugar)

Cut a rectangle of non-stick baking parchment to fit the base and sides of a 30 x 23 x 4 cm roasting tin. Grease the tin and line with the paper, pushing it neatly into the corners of the tin.Preheat the oven to 160C/gas 2. (I used a 20cm square cake tin, lined)

Measure all the ingredients into a large bowl nd beat well for two minutes until well blended. (I did the classic cream the butter and sugar, then add eggs, then flour and lemon zest method)

Turn into the prepared tin, levelling the top gently with a plastic spatula.

Bake in the middle of the oven for 35-40 minutes, until the cake springs back when lightly pressed and is beginning to shrink away from the edges of the tin. (Mine needed 45 minutes, with the oven turned up to gas 3 for the last ten minutes)

Leave the cake to cool for a few minutes then remove it from the tin and place it on a wire rack.

Mix the lemon juice and sugar in a small bowl and spoon over cake while it is still just warm. Cut into squares when cold and store in an airtight tin. (I had made the syrup while the cake was baking and left it on the hob where it warmed slightly and the sugar melted. My topping wasn't crunchy but soaked thoroughly through the cake)
whirligigwitch: (Default)
In my dazed and somnolent mental haze in the shower this morning I got to wondering about shower habits. When I'm washing my hair in the shower (every 2nd or 3rd day) I exclusively stand with my back to the spray. If I'm not washing my hair I'll start off facing the spray but end up with the warm water running over my next and back, reluctant to step out. I have no problems with water spray in my face but I rarely wash my face in the shower because it dries my skin. Usually by the time I'm covered in soap lather or shower gel I'll have my back to the spray and I'll just walk or lean backwards to rinse it off. The odd time I'll revolve to rinse off but it's not my habit. So then I was curious about what everyone else did.

[Poll #1414485]

Flop

Jun. 3rd, 2009 10:01 pm
whirligigwitch: (Default)
That would be the centre of my banana muffins. Following a recipe from Nigella Lawson's How To Be a Domestic Goddess I've discovered that it's singularly unsuccessful.

Ingredients: butter, honey, vanilla extract, bananas, plain flour, bicarb, baking powder, cinnamon, salt. Result = overcooked on the outside, sunken in the middle soggy heaps of greyish-brown banana gloop.

In their defence, the taste is nice, the texture, however, is revolting. Not a recipe I'll try again.

I thought at the time that there wasn't sufficient flour and fat but as I had three very overripe bananas I thought they were worth a go and muffins are easier to take to work and dish out than slices of banana loaf. Mistake. Delia Smith's banana bread is much better.

There are some breakfast bars, also from a Nigella recipe, in the oven - they should be more successful though as I've made them several times before.

Now should I go and quickly dash up a few cheese scones? I had all the ingredients out but then Amelia decided she'd had enough of my preoccupation with the oven and wanted a cuddle and a feed.

Dinner

May. 18th, 2009 09:39 pm
whirligigwitch: (Default)
Last Monday I made Hot and Sour Chicken Noodle soup - it was tasty, but not very hot. I used one chilli and it hardly had a kick - you might have guessed there was a chilli in the room when I cooked it but it certainly had no bite.

Today I made Hot and Sour Chicken Noodle soup. With three chillis. I believe my sinuses are in for a thorough steam cleaning - think it may be a fraction hot. Oops.
whirligigwitch: (Default)
I took the 43 Things Personality Quiz and found out I'm a
Romantic Extroverted Tree Hugger
whirligigwitch: (Default)
My best score ever with 11 retries 27,978,010. Still got a way to go to beat David's 29,432,110. I have, however, aced every level now :-)

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