Midsummer Random

Tuesday, 25 June 2013

Not the location of a dastardly crime, just some stuff.





Small batch jamming. Three jars of rhubarb and strawberry. Much less bother than making my usual dozen or so jars.

Crusty white loaves. Homemade jam needs homemade bread.

Tom has a new drumkit. I love hearing Tom drum.

Katie and Charlie go off to school and work each morning. The rest of us loll around the house all day watching Wimbledon and drinking elderflower cordial.

I have a new favourite biscuit recipe. These ones have white and dark chocolate chips and toasted pecans.

I can't stop making almond muffins. This is my third batch and have rhubarb in them.

George has decided not to go to university this autumn but to stay at home for a year. Doing what exactly is unclear.

40 comments:

  1. That all looks SO yummy! Probably more so to me as I'm trying to lose a few pounds at the moment..... How come you're not the size of a house? (actually perhaps you are, but you're very happy with it, anyway ;) ) Thanks (through gritted teeth!) for the recipes! Abby x

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    1. I am the size of a house. Don't be like me and bake for recreation!

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  2. Mmm. 'What exactly' sounds worrying. I'd get it sorted asap. Elderflower cordial and Wimbledon don't last forever y'know...
    Ax

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    1. And nor do child benefit payments as I keep telling him.

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  3. I like your title, Sue, and your first line...but then, I am in withdrawal, having finally finished watching all thirteen seasons of Midsomer Murder on Netflix.

    Enjoy the next few weeks! I am typing this as I loll and watch Wimbledon, sadly without cordial of any type.

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    1. To be honest gin is better than cordial Lesley.

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    2. Just checking back here, and wanted to assure you that gin happens here on a regular basis in the summer. My husband makes marvelous gin and tonics. Now I obviously need to combine them with my Wimbledon watching...thank you for the idea!

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    3. Glad to be of service!

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  4. Gin AND elderflower is best of all.
    Do you have goose grass in your garden - mine is riddled with it. I tried it juiced recently, way too healthy for me - you could feel the vitamins hitting the bloodstream - but I'm told it's more palatable cut with applejuice.
    However, don't much fancy my own goosegrass after every cat on the street has undoubtedly weed on it.

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  5. I'm lolling in front of Wimbledon here too!

    We had a Gap Year Boy who actually took his gap year in the middle of his degree and never went back ... he's now known as The Farmer Boy. I often think things might have worked out better if he had taken his year out before uni like his sister ... she worked in a shop for most of the year, saved up her pennies, and in consequence didn't suffer the same poverty many students do.

    My eldest, not the one working on the farm, is a Tom, and he's also a drummer in his spare time :)

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  6. Good luck with sorting out your Teenboy - we are trying to sort our one out at this end, so you have my full empathy. Both our girls were so much more "together" in organising their personal lives... Bon courage!

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  7. The strawberries look lovely, mine are nowhere near ready yet. When they are I so need to make some bread as well. All this talk of food is making me hungry.

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  8. All look very scrumptious, lovely photographs.

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  9. Your pictures and baking always look nice, I like to bake, but have no willpower to not eat it. My oldest is at home as well, working and taking college courses, but its a lot of work and he is not liking all the college work so we will see where this goes.

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  10. muffins with rhubarb. oh my. I know what I'm baking tomorrow.

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  11. I am hoping that the f**t diet bit the dust. I come here for joie du mange et vivre and a steady supply of biscuits, muffins and jam.

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    1. Do you know what Lucille? It bit the dust. I flipping hate diets.

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    2. Hello Sue, I only lasted a day on the fast diet as it was grim being so hungry, I think you did a lot better than me! I've tried lots of ways to diet, unsuccessfully, and am now trying the 'everything in moderation' approach (which includes baking, hurrah!) and trying to accept my weight - things seem to be going a lot better!
      Best wishes and looking forward to the almond muffin recipe, sounds lovely
      Sian x

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  12. Are almond muffins ordinary muffins with flaked almonds on top or do they have an almondy middle? Do you cook the rhubarb first and leave it in chunks or puree it?

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    1. They have some ground almonds in the batter -about a quarter of your usual amount of flour should be almonds. The rhubarb was diced and added to the batter raw.

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  13. I am so easily led that I will be making the biscuits tomorrow once i buy all the ingredients. I would love to make strawberry jam and cordial but we are in opposite seasons. Are you able to share the recipe for the muffins please? They look suitably wintery. thanks for being such a good bad influence :)

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    1. I will try to post the recipe soon Sally.

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  14. Oh my! George's plan sounds a little alarming. You feed him far too well, at this rate he'll never move out. I can't blame him, why go from lovely food to endless baked beans on toast (that's what I survived university on) :)

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  15. Those biscuits look so good. I am hopeless at sticking to diets. There must be an easier way.

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  16. There is as much pleasure in reading the comments as there is in your post Sue! If the telly goes on in the day here it's so small people can watch cbeebies while I skulk off to get the laptop out. But I have radio 5 live on constantly during Wimbledon and just enjoy the commentary and thwack of the balls. x

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  17. Everything you make always looks so good. You are a dangerous influence. But, I'm sorry, "white chocolate" is an oxymoron in my book. Those two words shouldn't even be used in the same sentence. There is no actual chocolate in "white chocolate," only cocoa butter. Yuck. And tell George that my son says that university food is awful and he's better off with your cooking.

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    1. We need to think of a new name for it Kari.

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  18. deedownunder11:58 pm BST

    I wouldn't worry about George's plan ...I am all for a gap year, very maturing. Both my sons took a gap year between school and uni and never looked back. One travelled and the other worked as a furniture repairer ...was the best thing they did. When they hit uni, they were focussed and went straight through, one in law and the other in engineering. But, the key is that he must DO something ...lolling around at home, sleeping in and watching TV is not it.

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    1. I'm not worried at all Dee, I think it is a good idea too. I think a year spent in the adult world will be good for him as long as he does, as you say, do something.

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  19. strawberry jam and bread... mmmmmhhh

    (kids eh?)

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  20. I think your son has made a very very wise choice, not least because he will be able to apply with his A levels up front. My older two both did this, had a full house of offers and had plenty of time to make an informed choice. Even more sensible if he isn't sure what he wants to do. One of mine went to China and the other one (who is going to university in the autumn) has worked in Waitrose in Stratford all year. Both matured nicely in the interim!

    The strawberry jam looks delicious, as do the cookies and muffins ... tea at yours must be a delight!

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    1. Waitrose, now there's a thought. Very encouraging news Liz, thanks!

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    2. They pay above the odds too, and there's a staff discount. Keep looking on their jobs website. Good luck

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  21. Mmm, strawberries, rhubarb and elderflower, summer tastes indeed. A year at home sounds like a cracking idea. Time to detox after all of that studying and school. He will be able to take some time out and connect with his inner George and discover what he wants to do with the rest of his life. And you can feed him up nicely prior to the horrors of university food.

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  22. Stay at home? For a year? Isn't he supposed to be travelling abroad, larking about with other gap year kids, and not contacting his family enough, so that they spend a year worrying about him? (The Gardener's eldest is planning to do just that in September, and we're worrying already....)

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  23. anne-marie davies8:56 pm BST

    Would I find the strawberry jam and rhubarb recipe on your site anywhere? I have lots of rhubarb to use at the moment!
    I made rhubarb and ginger muffins that were good - adapted from a Waitrose recipe
    Thanks

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  24. Clare from Leeds10:10 pm BST

    My younger daughter keeps threatening to take a gap year - she's got a place at Uni in Autumn but doesn't really want to leave home just yet! I think we look after her far too well and she doesn't fancy life on beans on toast! We keep telling her that if she does stay at home she'll have to get a job etc but I don't think she thinks we're serious!

    My elder daughter took a gap month - worked in an Indian school for a month - and got that bug out of her system. She's about to go Down Under for six weeks in between the end of Uni and the start of her life-time job but she has saved and worked for that.

    It's really difficult trying to find the balance between letting them find their own way and making their own mistakes and wrapping them close and tight and safe - good luck!

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    1. Thanks Clare. It's really useful to hear about other people's experiences. I don't think George is ready to leave home yet either. He won't be 18 for another month. He accepts he will have to find a job though. I think....

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  25. Anonymous4:58 pm BST

    Would it be possible to have your strawberry and rhubarb jam recipe please
    thank you
    Dawn

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    1. Of course. Not actually my recipe- it was this one

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