Just to let you know that son no.2 is recovering nicely from his surgery, his tummy has settled down and is at long last working properly so he is able to eat small amounts again. His scar is healing nicely apart from the one hiccup on Saturday where it came apart in a small area but that is healed together again and the drain site is doing very nicely too.
And he is getting his appetite back, I knew we had cracked it when on Saturday I was preparing a mainly vegetable but with some chicken curry and just as the vegetables were nearly ready, he pottered into the kitchen, looked into the preserving pan (I do big batch cooking in that) and enquired (and I am sure I heard his tummy rumble) as to when it would be ready.
It was a good sign and when it was ready I put it with sticky Thai rice which I had steamed, (we are currently in love with this rice, it can only be bought at the Thai supermarket in the next town – we buy it by the sack!) and he ate the lot without any dire consequences. This curry was so sweet, it almost had the flavours of a sweet and sour, because of all of the lovely homegrown sweet vegetables that were in it. I have a nice big bag of it in the freezer marked up with the directive, ‘chicken and veg curry, delicious’.
Sunday came and it was time to prepare the runner beans. I have been treating myself to a few cookery books of late, not least because both WHSmith and Waterstones have had some good offers on of late. I picked up Valentine Warner’s What to Eat Now, Spring and Summer and had been flicking through it recently, admiring recipe after recipe. Val cooks roughly about the same way that I do, – although he has more finesse, (I know my place!) using simple home grown fruits and vegetables at the peak of their season. On seeing his recipe for Runner Bean Chutney I came to the conclusion that this would be the perfect time to try it. I do love a sweet piccalilli, and this recipe was a very near approximation of that but just with runner beans and onions.
As you can see it was a great success, although I did increase the amount of mustard and turmeric, I do like a bit of potency to my piccalilli and by the time it has matured, it will be lovely.
On Sunday night I had just enough energy left, I call it a second wind, does anyone have that saying?, and at some ungodly hour when one should be settled down for the evening with their knitting, I baked a cake. Well I had Carie and Kitty coming the next day and as I had missed Kitty’s birthday I thought it only fair to share a cake with her.
I had been inspired by The Great British Book of Baking which accompanies the BBC series. This television series had passed me by for some reason, but from the talk on Ravelry and seeing what an absolutely fabulous book it is, I am catching up with the series. It is a long time since I’ve seen a baking book which has inspired me so much.
I had all the ingredients to put together a Victoria Sandwich cake whilst hubby popped to the shop for a pot of cream. I even cut out a special wedge for Kitty so that it wouldn’t be overloaded with jam and sugar. My cake is thinner than the photograph of the cake, I think my tin’s are slightly larger than are called for, however,
Son no.1 thought it had exactly the right ratio of cake to cream. And to be honest, and it took a second tasting this afternoon, I think I rather agree with him.
And after a lovely lunch with Carie and Kitty we all went blackberrying. It was great fun and wonderful to have such good company on what these days is most often a solitary activity for myself. (what with the boys having other activities that fill their days) I can almost smell the blackberry and apple crumble wafting over from Miss Kitty’s home, I am sure she is going to have a delicious supper.