Saturday 7 February 2009

Crossing Continents...

Thursday morning. Finally, after days of growling skies and almost incessant rain, the sun broke through the clouds, and we had a few hours of spring sunshine before having to head to the airport. Necessary, in order to complete a few garden tasks that wouldn't very well wait for the two weeks we're due to be in London. Like, retrieving and re-positioning the planter-basket of water lilies which I noticed at Christmas had broken free from its moorings, and had plunged gently to the bottom of the vasca...two metres of chilly water below. A malodorous and messy job - but definitely one that couldn't have waited any longer, as it was clear that the plants were already coming out of hibernation, and new shoots were evident as the basket broke the surface, streaming water and bottom-of-the-vasca ooze.

In general, the garden is coming alive: crocus tips just visible through the leaves of the vinca minor; the japanese camellia showing half a dozen pure white blooms; cohorts of narcissus thrusting into the open; strong new growth in the iris bed; buds about to break open on the magnolias...

The cymbidium plants have flowered gloriously this year - one of them more generously than the other, presumably because the latter is in need of re-potting - and I carefully transferred them to the loggia for our time away, where they should do well, out of the rain, but with plenty of daylight.

And back to London - to the four-footeds, and the grubby remains of the snow. The grass of Kensington Gardens weirdly populated with white-ish lumps that presumably denoted ex-snowmen...which, in their prime, must have resembled the terracotta army, ranked across the lawns and between the trees. And every one of which required thorough canine examination...just in case. Because, you never know.

A dietarily-focused couple of weeks is planned, to address the aftermath of a sedentary and food-filled period since Christmas. No pasta, or pastry, or risotto...or potatoes, or bread. In theory, we ought to go on the wagon at the same time, but the TD is disinclined to do it, and I know I don't have the will-power to manage it alone! The question is whether or not I have the will-power to manage to avoid all the rest!

Tonight's Dinner:

Tiger Prawns, in a Vermouth & Paprika & Cream sauce.

Pork, roast in Mustard; roast Parsnips

Apple & Vanilla Tarts


imperialmeasure said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
imperialmeasure said...

Isn't this - the recipe you're meaning to link to? Currently I get an apple tart with vanilla for both links, including the pork.

Yours is currently the best food related blog out there, by some way. I, of course, as you will easily be able to tell, am no expert.

Pomiane said...

1. Thanks for pointing out the error -link should now be working properly
2. Many thanks for your kind words, which are very much appreciated.
3. BTW, I approve of your 'handle' - the amount of sub-standard cakes and pastries that must come about because people don'tunderstand the difference between US and Imperial measures is beyond imagining!

imperialmeasure said...

Thank you for the kind words too. I find "cups" the very devil of a job to deal with, especially when making cakes and pastries. Even though I went to the trouble of buying a set of measurement tools the quantities are just so variable, depending, for instance, on how firmly ingredients are packed. I have an American copy of Paul Bocuse's, in my opinion, excellent "French Cooking" and wouldn't dare make a cake from it, sticking, for safety's sake, to dishes where variations in quantity are more forgiving!

Your own recipes are exercises in clarity and as you give us source, context and your previous experiences (I get the feeling from some recipes in cookbooks I own that the chef hasn't even tasted the dish in question, let alone cooked it) they seem, so far, to be pretty much infallible, just like those of Pomiane, even for an all too easily distracted cook like myself. I've thoroughly enjoyed all of the ones I've tried so far and look forward to trying more.

I've learnt so much just from reading your entries. My cooking has been, on occasion, significantly improved by your suggestions; by getting me, this week, to make puff pastry from scratch and by introducing me to the work of Bruno Loubet to name just two of them.

Pomiane said...

Do you know, it's never actually occurred to me that people might in fact be using the recipes I write! What a compliment...