So, it happened again. I missed out on posting. OH NO the world’s coming to an end, right?
I’m being facetious, I’m sorry. I was doing that all Sunday night, too, I had to keep telling myself off.
I had a good reason (again) for not posting yesterday. I moved! I am now living in the sticks, basically, but it’s awesome. The drive to anywhere is lined with trees and so pretty, I get to live with awesome people (who own a coffee machine. I’d put up with anything for that) there’s a veggie patch and it’s near all these awesome orchards and farms and places with great produce. I’m in love.
And the kitchen is bigger than the last place, too. Happy. I can bake without treading on three people’s toes! I’ll have to make a celebratory cake and tell you guys all about it. By the way, not only did I get raves about the flourless chocolate cake, I got someone who told someone else about it and they want the recipe. I love passing recipes along. It’s awesome. I’m going to go do that now. And then I’m going to hang out in the sun because it’s a beautiful day and life is filled with possibilities.
I love lists. I make to do lists, things I have to buy lists, people to call lists. I have a list of music I would like to acquire, books I want to read, books I want to own. Movies I have to see. This here is a list of list topics.
What I would do if I won the lottery.
Cars I would like to own and/or drive.
Places I want to visit. Places I want to live.
I make lists of the pros and cons of almost every major decision I make. It doesn’t always determine the outcome, but it helps.
Annoying habits of customers (I’m a waitress/check-out chick. ‘Nuff said.)
Cafes I want to go to.
Things I want to cook. Gadgets/kitchen appliances/utensils I want.
Socks I love/want.
What I want to do with my life.
Who I want to be.
Habits I’d like to cultivate. Habits I’d like to kick.
Ways I want to make the world a better place.
Ways of worship in everyday life.
How to live with other people and not want to kill them (or have them want to kill you… anyone got any ideas? Because I’m terrified.)
Songs I would sing on Australian Idol if I could sing.
Reality TV shows it’d be fun to be on.
Guilty little pleasures (watching reality tv, anyone?)
Party ideas to bring people together.
Playlists I want to make/listen to.
Now the problem with all this is, I can’t just sit around making lists all my life. No matter how much fun it is to play around with stationary (stationary I’d love to play around with. People I want to write to. Reasons why snail mail is better than electronic) I have to actually do these things if I’m ever going to be that person I want to be, to have those habits, to listen to that music. And so.
I raise a toast to getting off your bum, out from in front of the computer screen, and into real life. Happy Monday.
I was thinking today about what I should post – because I made this commitment, see, and it’s called post a day 2011. So every day I have to find new things to talk about. If you knew me, you’d laugh, because I notoriously never shut up, but as I pointed out last night, I usually get to a point somewhere- you just have to sift through (and sit through) a lot of B.S. first. And also that I digress often and often for no apparent reason. I have a short attention span.
So anyway, it’s four days into the new year and I still haven’t mentioned my New Year’s Resolutions yet. It’s possibly the fact that I have so many things I want to do this year, or possibly that I haven’t actually written them all down yet and they’re all just ideas in my head at the moment I think, however, that it’s because I still have a block in my mind about the whole idea of New Year’s resolutions – I don’t know where it came from but in my head there’s a stigma attached. Maybe I feel like I should be a good enough person that I don’t need resolutions to be better.
In any case, I’ve decided to limit my New Year’s resolutions to two, because everything else I can think of comes under these categories. I also don’t want to find myself beating up on myself because I feel like I failed in some respect. That’s stupid. It’s also, now that I think of it, another reason NOT to make New Year’s resolutions, and why I haven’t made them in the past. I am terrible at committing to these things. (so we’ll see how long this post a day thing goes, hey.)
New Year’s resolutions.
1. Just Be Better
2. Just Do Something
I like to cook to music. Today I made scones, lemon curd and meringues, all from the Masterchef Cookbook (Volume One – from the first season. The first season in Australia, I should add. I couldn’t find a copy in Amazon OR on the official website, so it’s just a link to the website at the moment. Sorry!) I am a huge sweet tooth, in case you couldn’t tell – for instance, meringues, for you poor unfortunates who live under rocks, are basically sugar and egg white. I think that the egg whites are there to make the sugar stand up on it’s own two feet, because basically it’s just SUGAR, all the way. But that’s ok.
Back to the cooking to music – for my scone lemon curd meringue marathon (well… ) I listened to The Cat Empire’s So Many Nights – I feel that TCE (apart from being my favourite band in the world) make the best music for cooking to. I have yet to find someone who can best them for getting me upbeat when I’m down, as well. I am a big comfort eater, I have to admit, but cooking and music always cheer me up. In fact, for dinner I had one of my favourite (savoury) comfort foods: poached eggs. Thanks to Kickpleat over at Everybody Likes Sandwiches for the perfect way to poach eggs.
Happy January 2.
I used buttermilk instead of milk in this recipe because I had it on hand and also, I think it gives a great taste. However, I added more than the recipe called for because it was too dry. Just add as much as you feel is right without you having to overwork the dough – the death sentence for scones. Also, I like to cut my scones into triangles, because then you don’t have to re-roll the scraps.
Makes 6-8 largeish triangle scones
2 1/2 cups s.r. flour
30g butter, room temperature
1 cup buttermilk
milk to brush over
jam and cream, to serve. or butter and jam. or lemon curd, below.
Preheat oven to 200°C. Line a large oven tray with baking paper. Sift the flour from a height into a bowl and rub the butter in. Make a well and add the buttermilk; cut in with a knife. Turn the bowl out onto a lightly floured surface and gently knead together. Flatten into a large disc shape and cut with a sharp knife into six or eight triangles. Alternatively, you could cut circles out with a cookie cutter; use a rolling pin if you like, but I don’t like to make more dishes than I need to. Place onto the baking tray and bake for 15-20 minutes. (The recipe suggested 12-15; I checked at twelve minutes and put them in for another eight. Use your discretion and your knowledge of your oven.) Serve with any or all of the above suggested accompaniments.
I would probably add more lemon juice than I did today; I didn’t have many options, our tree only just squeezed out three lemons as it was. However, I do suggest you use home-grown lemons. If you don’t have a tree yourself, ask around, they tend to hide in people’s backyards. Or side yards.
2 egg yolks
3/4 cup caster sugar
1/4 tbsp cornflour
finely grated zest of 1 lemon
juice of 3 lemons
125g butter, chopped
Whisk together eggs, yolks, sugar and cornflour until sugar has dissolved. Whisk in zest and juice then place the bowl over a saucepan of simmering water (half a lemon in the saucepan will mean that the water doesn’t leave any discolouration on your pan) without letting the bowl touch the water. Stir in one piece of butter at a time, waiting until it melts before adding the next piece; the curd is done when it is thick enough to coat the back of a spoon. I find it useful to use a spatula to scrape down the sides of the bowl at intervals. It should look like a large, sunny egg yolk. Very large. Cool and spoon into a wide-mouthed jar, package up with a gingham square and a pretty label and give to your neighbour as a gift.
This was part of a larger recipe for Aussie Mess, based on Eton Mess – add cream and seasonal fruits and a coulis, and voila! Pudding. Or dessert, as we Aussies would say. I piped them into large nest-like shapes, to be piled with cream and berries; I’ve also seen tiny meringues served at a café with the hot drinks. Very cute.
6 egg whites
1 1/2 cups caster sugar
Preheat the oven to 120°C and line two large baking trays with non-stick paper. Beat the egg whites with electric beaters until soft peaks form; add sugar gradually (very gradually – you don’t want grainy bits. Let the sugar dissolve.) and beat until the mixture is stiff and glossy. Pipe or spoon onto prepared trays and place in oven for five minutes. Reduce heat to 100°C and bake a further 45 minutes.
I’ve realised recently that you have to grab things while you can. Do it when you think of it, because you can’t go back in time and change something, and usually, if you’re feeling restless, there’s an easy solution. JUST DO SOMETHING. Simple as that.
And yeah, there have been so many times when I’ve wanted to have done something but because i’ve been lazy in the past, it hasn’t happened. I do tend to be a lazy person, which is part of the reason for this blog – it’s to get me doing stuff, to keep me accountable. I know I don’t have an audience to keep me accountable, but the fact that this is public helps, for sure.
So thank-you, nonexistent audience. And hey, if you do exist and you take offence to me not believing in you, by all means, comment. Even if it’s just to tell me I’m a self-deluded idiot. All criticism is good criticism. I think.
I’m still new to this by the way. I don’t have my blog completely set up and I don’t know how to do half the things I’d like to do, but hey. I’m learning. It’s ok to still be learning. If I waited till I felt like I was ready to do this stuff, I’d be waiting years, probably. I think I needed to start the blog to motivate myself into even beginning to figure out how it all works.
Yesterday’s Gone by Bernard Fanning. Like I said, I can’t figure everything out at the moment. If I could, I’d have uploaded the song. As it is, you’ll have to find it for yourself. Sorry!
In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth.
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.
This is my beginning, as a fully-fledged blog writer, and I’m still getting the hang of everything – widgets, links, themes, comments, archives, htmls, all those techie things… I don’t know much but I’m willing to learn.
So here, in the beginning, I am going to start blogging everyday. Big challenge for a first-timer. And you don’t even know anything about me yet, because I haven’t written my little ‘about me’ page yet. But now you know, nonexistent audience. If you want to write more, write more. I want to write more and i’m starting now.
happy new year’s.