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Friday 30 April 2010

Kitchen Diary - The Reveal!

The kitchen is finally finished.  There are a couple of bar stools still to arrive but otherwise it is all done.  I have spent the last few evenings putting things back in the cupboards, but I dare say I will be moving them around a few times before I am completely happy with it!

I haven't properly cooked anything yet, and it is all going to take some getting used to, but I am really happy with the way it turned out.


Sunday 25 April 2010

Kitchen Diary - Day 14

Day 14

Nearly finished now, the plan is for the handles to go onto the cupboards and the wooden workbench/breakfast bar to be completed.  The electrician is also supposed to be coming tomorrow so we may have a proper stove soon!


Saturday 24 April 2010

Wild Garlic

This post is especially for Wendy (Omniverous Bear) who is a big fan of wild garlic.  I just thought I'd show how much of this herb grows in the wood about a 1/4 of  mile from my house. You don't have to cross the burn either, there is even more up the sides of the road. Of course, as my kitchen is not functional, there wasn't much point in picking it! If you are interested in seeing the rest of the photographs from my walk they are on show on my other blog Serial Crafter.

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Kitchen Diary-Day 12

Day 12

I haven't posted the last couple of days because there hasn't been much to see!  Worktops that were just sitting on top last time have been fixed down, the bookcase has been replaced and the finish round the windows put in place.  Yesterday the joiner was fixing up the cooker hood but as he had to go to the dentist and check out another job, he didn't get started till 4.30pm and didn't leave until 8.45pm last night!  He is coming back this morning and I should be able to show you more later.


Tuesday 20 April 2010

Kitchen Diary -Day 9

Day 9


Monday 19 April 2010

Kitchen Diary - Day 8

Day 8
First signs of something kitchen-like!


Sunday 18 April 2010

Kitchen Diary - Day 7

Yesterday nothing much happened in the kitchen.  The joiner came back late afternoon to sand off the plastering in the joins between the plasterboard.  Today, we painted the new walls to match the rest of the kitchen.  The colour of the paint is 'Barbados Sky'.

Last night we had ready-made mashed potatoes with our meal (all heated in the microwave).  Tonight we are having smoked mackerel & salad with microwave chips (fries), I haven't had those in the house since Andrew left home!


Saturday 17 April 2010

New roof and more farm shots

If you have come looking for pictures of food, you may get a bit of a surprise for the next couple of weeks.  Due to my kitchen refit I am not able to do much in the way of cooking and baking, so I am posting about the kitchen and some little bits of other things just so you know I haven't disappeared!  

The work on our roof and chimney's is finally finished, I've posted the photos over on Serial Crafter as well as a little bit of farming life.


Friday 16 April 2010

Kitchen Diary Day 5

Day 5

The last picture is the detail of the corner on the right of the photograph.  Quite a tricky little bit of joinery!


Thursday 15 April 2010

Kitchen Diary Day 4

Day 4


Wednesday 14 April 2010

Kitchen Diary Day 3

Day 3

Wall 1 has been covered with plasterboard, the wires poking through are for the lights that will go under the wall units.  Wall 2 has been strapped ready for the same treatment, this might not seem like much progress, but when you consider that our walls are far from straight it is quite a challenge to do something like this. Fortunately our joiner is a measure 3 times, cut once kind of guy!


Tuesday 13 April 2010

Kitchen Diary Day 2

Day 2

Here is today's progress report: there were electricians and the joiner here today as well as the people working on our roof, the yard was full of vans. 


Monday 12 April 2010

The Kitchen Diary Day 0 and Day 1

I thought I'd give you a daily update on the progress of my kitchen refit.

Day 0
Here is the kitchen after I cleared everything away and my husband had removed a small wooden corner piece along with half the wall paper!

Day 1
Today after the joiner had removed the bookcase and units.  You can see three different phases of decoration here. The 'wood' effect panel board was there when we moved here.  I painted it yellow and 'sponged' blue and pale green onto it when the restof the kitchen walls were yellow.  Then 5 years ago we repainted in blue and I used the panels to create my 'bar-code' effect.  

Come back tomorrow for a further update.


Sunday 11 April 2010

Farmersgirl's Farm

There is likely to be a bit of a lull in my posting anything that I am cooking over the next two to three weeks.  I have a couple of 'saved' items but otherwise it should be a case of updates on my NEW KITCHEN!  The joiner is finally coming tomorrow, so I have spent the morning clearing everything out of the cupboards.

Anyway in the meantime, I thought I might entertain you with some pictures of our calves.  They love it when they get a new bale of straw for bedding and as it was a lovely day yesterday, the sun was shining into their shed and I was able to get some decent photographs without the flash.  They will probably remain in their shed until the end of April as there is hardly any grass in the fields yet and it is still too cold at night for them to be out.

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Wednesday 7 April 2010

Foccacia con Olive and Coronation Chicken

I made this Foccacia with Olives on Sunday.  It comes from a lovely bread book  by Eric Treuille and Ursula Ferrigno, that I've had for a while.

As it is a Dorling Kindersley book, it has fabulous photographs.  The recipe is really a fairly simple white bread recipe with olive oil instead of butter, I made mine on the dough cycle in the bread machine and then added the chopped olives before proving the dough again  before baking.  


It was delicous served with my own version of Coronation Chicken inspired by The Hairy Biker's, Mums know best cookbook. I made mine with left over turkey, Tikka curry paste, a chopped yellow pepper and a mix of mayonnaise with a little double cream.  I also had some coriander left over so added that too.  There are many more ingredients in the Biker's version but I just used the general idea and what was in my fridge.  Also in my fridge was some smoked salmon so we had some of that as well!

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Sunday 4 April 2010

Delia's Key Lime Pie with an Easter twist!

I was looking through some cookbooks for a dessert suitable for Easter weekend, something that would be big enough to last for two to three days.  I chose this Key Lime Pie from Delia Smith's How to Cook Book Two. It was quick and easy to make and tasted great. It also turned out pretty much as illustrated in Delia's book.  She decorated hers with a twist of lime, I decorated mine with some Cadbury's mini eggs!

Key Lime Pie

Serves 8-10

For the Base:
3.5oz (95g) butter
6oz (175g) digestive biscuits
2oz (50g) Grape-Nuts (breakfast cereal)

For the filling:
1 tbsp grated lime zest (zest of 3 limes)
5fl oz (150ml) lime juice
3 large egg yolks
14oz (400g) condensed milk

To finish:
A little creme fraiche
Lime slices

You will need a loose-based flan tin with a diameter of 9 inches (23cm), 1 inch (2.5cm) deep, and a solid baking sheet.
Pre-heat the oven  to gas mark 4, 350F, 180C

Delia says: "Traditional Key lime pie has always had a crumb crust, and I have discovered recently that the addition of Grape-Nuts breakfast cereal gives the whole thing an extra crunch."  I didn't want to buy them just for this recipe so used some extra digestive biscuits (graham crackers)
Begin by placing the butter in a pan over the lowest heat to melt, then crusth the digestive biscuits.  The esiest way to do this is to lay them out flat in a polythene bag and crush them with a rolling pin, rolling over using a lot of pressure.  Now empty the contents of the bag into a bowl and mix in the Grape-Nuts, then add the melted butter-crumb mixture in the flan tin and, using your hands, press it down evenly and firmly all over the base and up the sides of the tin.  Then place it on the baking sheet and bake on the centre shelf of the oven for 10-12 minutes, or until crisp and golden brown.

While that's happening, place the egg yolks and lime zest in a bowl and, using an electric hand mixer, whisk them for about 2 minutes, or until the egg has thickened, then add the condensed milk and whisk for another 4 minutes.  Finally , add the lime juice and give it another quick whisk, then pour the whole lot on to the baked crust and return it to the oven for another 20 minutes, or until it feels just set when you lightly press the centre with your little finger.  Now remove it from the oven and when it's completely cold, cover it with clingfilm and chill until needed.  Seve cut in slices with creme fraiche and twist of lime for decoration.

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Your Eggsellency!

When I entered the draw over on Jam and Clotted Cream to win a Hotel Chocolat Easter Egg, I never expected to win!  I was so pleased when I got an email from Beth to tell me that I had been successful, even better the egg arrived on Good Friday.

When you open the box there is this great image of a key to unlock the lovliness that is this chocolate egg.

There are two thick chocolate egg halves, one in 40% milk chocolate and the other in 70% dark chocolate.  In the tissue paper parcels are some delicious little eggs.
So thank you to Beth at Jam and Clotted Cream and thank you to Hotel Chocolat.

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Saturday 3 April 2010

He stuck a feather in his cap and called it macaroni!

Yesterday I made some more Peanut Butter and Chocolate Chip Cookies.  This time I did give them a little bit of shaping (with my fingers) but just a gentle pat and they came out more rounded.  I think these may become my signature cookie!

I also made macaroni and cheese ( I refuse to call it mac-n-cheese) something that we rarely eat because of the high fat content, however I was in the mood for something like this.  It's made with Lockerbie Cheddar, our local cheese. Scottish Cheddar can be either red or white, but somehow, for me, macaroni and cheese should always be a nice orangey colour lol!  I added chopped up cold ham to the mix and some cherry toms on the top before an extra layer of grated cheddar.

I'm not going to post a recipe, I didn't use one and it's only a white sauce with cheese and a bit of mustard powder in it mixed with boiled pasta.  It was delicious, though I say it myself.

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