So I spent my Sunday wandering around London, my camera in one hand, a vegetable pasty in the other, stepping in and out of underground stations. This time I was 'gathering city-life environment shots for my contrast project' which was really just an unquestionable excuse to have brunch (cake+coffee) with my godmother.
At the moment I'm working on a lifestyle volume entitled "CELTIC" which, as the title would suggest, is a food and lifestyle journal about the ancient Celtic ways of life. Today I was at home with a migraine, and decided to make progress on the recipe section of the journal.
I brewed up some homemade "hazelnut milk" following an old recipe I found on line, tweaking it slightly to suit my purpose.
"Nut milks, made from boiling together ground almonds or walnuts with boiling water were a common ingredient in Medieval cookery. We know that our ancient hunter-gatherer ancestors collected lots of hazelnuts during late summer. Making a milk from dried nuts is very easy and it's inconceivable that Stone Age and Iron Age peoples did not make hazelnut milk both as a drink and as a base for stews.
Ingredients: 200g ground hazel nuts, 500ml boiling water
Method: Combine the ground hazelnuts and boiling water and allow to steep for five minutes, stirring occasionally. You can then either sieve the mixture to remove any coarse grains or you can blend the mixture until smooth in a blender (this is the preferred option). There are many variations to the basic hazelnut milk recipe. Some require the use of stocks or broths to make the hazelnut milk. For desserts you can also make a sweetened hazelnut milk, with the addition of about 50ml of honey to the quantities above."
It is scrummy on its own, but also a wonderful alternative to regular milk in coffee or hot chocolate.
Its been a while, and no matter how many times I say "here we go, this is the beginning of a true blogging life" it's just not going to happen. So for this 'months instalment', lets talk Cafe. Leeds Castle Cafe.
Hello! I'm sorry for a recent lack in blogging, I've been on holiday (I know of course this is no excuse). What am I enjoying this month? Glad you asked.
Currently I am obsessing over two objects that until recently I had never imagined owning, or thought I needed. Item A: a round circle of well sanded oak that sits next to my bed. Item B: an LP of Regina Spektor's "What we Saw from the Cheap Seats" with 11 original songs including 'Don't Leave Me', 'Small Town Moon' and 'All The Row Boats'. Why are these so essential to my new-found well being?
Well, firstly, about three years ago I decided I was going to construct a scale model of an Ercol pebble table, finally excepting that my ownership of the real thing was very unlikely. I carved the table top and legs from an oak floor board, left over from the re-decoratoion of the sitting room. My project ended there, however, as I no longer had time to put the pieces together. They have hibernated in my bottom drawer ever since. On cleaning out I was challenged with finding a new use for them, kindling not being an option as sitting in the rain with a router and sand paper for hours on end had caused me to become rather emotionally attached. The legs were, I'm sorry to say, not very useful, so they did end up in the bucket next the wood burner. The table top, on the other hand, has been reemployed as a coaster. Every evening I like to enjoy a herbal tea. Whether it be peppermint, camomile or a special 'Clipper Sleep Easy blend', I find it helps me to relax, and settle down for the night. Resting it on top of a tissue to protect my Chiltern chest of draws was less than satisfactory, so this nifty little gadget has been perfect.
Object B I hear you ask? If you're still reading this, and haven't fallen asleep at your monitors, part two will commence shortly.
On Monday I had the indescribable privilege of going to see Regina Spektor at the De La Warr Pavilion. The building itself has been a favourite of mine for many moons, and Regina... well she's just amazing. I wasn't able to take any photos in the concert itself, but at the merchandise stall (comparable only to Aladdin's Cave) I found the perfect memento. I don't actually own a record player yet, but am probably surfing eBay as you read this. Every time I look at the sleeve, I am reminded of the wonderful evening, and just want to pick it up.
I have not been able to post this until now, due to my computers near death experience. After a serious scratch disk emptying, I have been able to successfully collate these images on photoshop, and blog away to my hearts content.
My piano teacher very kindly gave me a Moroccan mint plant on tuesday, and with it the chance to make my very own 'Moroccan mint tea'. This was an activity I had never before considered until then, but thoroughly enjoyed it. Being British, tea drinking is a big part of my life, and I couldn't wait to give it a go.
Firstly, place a handful of leaves at the bottom of a beaker. Then, fill with roughly a pint and a half of boiling water. Sweeten to taste (start with one and a half tbs and work up). Decant into a teapot and leave to infuse for about seven minutes. Remove the leaves and enjoy.