Pothead, Potato, Pigs, Pussycats, Patchouli, Pat Metheny, Pavlova, Prince, and plenty more.

Archive for August, 2012

Pain Provençal – French bread, a recipe

Experimentation is the name of the game

homemade bread with sesame seeds

Also to finally settle on a favourite bread I experimented for ten years with bread-baking before I found the one I’m going to share with you here. (See also my favourite Vital Vinaigrette.)

woman pulling hair(On the side…)  As far as experimenting goes, the same goes for learning how to write a blog in WordPress: sometimes it takes a while before you find what you need or like best.  What a daunting affair at first, even after all those years of working with PC’s.  Now I want to do my business website in WebMatrix but I’m not much of a programmer.  Don’t have the patience for it.  Was quite happy with Frontpage, but can’t use that anymore, and with Windows 7 Home Premium Spanish, WebMatrix only installs in Spanish because WebPI does not accept my English setting!  Tried forums, the lot, no luck so far.  To tackle something you don’t like, in a language you don’t master, aaarrrgh!

So what do I do instead of pulling out my hair?  I bake bread, hoping that after that accomplishment I’ll feel competent enough, albeit briefly, to tackle the challenge once more.  Glorious, homemade bread.  I never eat anything else anymore.  Have you seen that long list of unpronounceable ingredients on factory bread labels?  Those are mainly chemicals.  Were our bodies made to digest chemicals?  Not that kind.  As a supertaster I am particularly fussy.

dough ballOnly 3 minutes of kneading!

The beauty of this dough is that it doesn’t need much kneading.  Just a couple of minutes until it’s smooth.  The more you knead it, the more gluten it releases in any case.

Apologies for the quality of the pictures.  My camera fell a while ago and now only provides pics with a pink hue!  Other than the sesame seed bread, all the bread pics were taken with a mobile phone.  But I hope you’ll also think that it’s the thought that counts.  It’s not a photography blog.  It’s not a food blog.  I can get away with murder, yes?

This is what you’ll be making

homemade spelt bread Pain Provençal

Or two large loaves as on top.

silicon pastry brushThe original recipe (adapted by me here) comes from a Kitchenaid bread machine recipe book.  It’s a cold dough recipe and takes five hours in the machine to prepare.  Then you shape it, let it rise and bake it.  But it’s also very easy to make by hand, and you don’t have to be that proactive!

You’ll need

  • large bowl
  • large wooden spoon
  • measuring jug
  • measuring spoons
  • plastic wrap
  • dough knife (optional)
  • pastry brush (ideally silicon)
  • rolling pin (optional)
  • paper kitchen towels
  • baking tray lined with baking paper
  • aluminium foil
  • draught-free place to let the dough rise
  • oven

See these two columns?  I’m so proud of myself – got into html today: googled ‘two columns in wordpress,’ et voilà, piece of bread. 🙂

Ingredients

  • 500 ml (2 cups) all-purpose flour
  • 625 ml (2½ cups) spelt flour (125 ml (½ cup) of this could also be wholewheat or rye)
  • 125 ml (½ cup) sunflower seeds (optional), more of these for sprinkling (or sesame seeds for sprinkling)
  • 1¾ tsp seasalt
  • 14 g (½ oz) instant yeast, about 1 Tblsp
  • 1 Tblsp brown sugar (or honey, molasses)
  • 375 – 400 ml (1½ cup – 1½ cup + 2 Tblsp) lukewarm water – a little warmer than body temperature.  Boil water and add a little to cold water in measuring jug until you have the right temperature and quantity.
  • 20 ml (4 tsp) olive oil

Instructions

  • Mix dry ingredients in bowl and mix well with hand whisk (add honey or molasses after this if you replace sugar)
  • Pour the water (but not all) and mix using the wooden spoon; when it begins to be absorbed, add oil and mix well;
    if you can manage, use only one hand to start kneading until it’s well mixed (Martha always told us to keep one hand free for the telephone!)
  • If the flour cannot all be absorbed, add a little more water
  • Oil a clean, smooth counter and drop the dough (scraping any remaining pieces from the bowl with it); now lightly oil the bowl – never mind that it’s not completely clean

TIP: While kneading, the dough should be slightly sticky, but not cling to your hands, nor should it be so dry that you cannot knead the cracks out of it.  Too wet: sprinkle a little more flour on the dough and work this in; too dry: add a little more water but very little at a time because it gets too wet very quickly.

  • Knead well for just a few minutes until the dough is smooth
  • Drop into oiled bowl, turn around, and cover with lightly oiled plastic wrap; place in comfortably warm, draught-free space for about 1½ hours (dough doubles in size)

risen dough

Dough rising in bowl

  • dough cutDrop dough onto clean, lightly oiled counter and divide into four equal parts (can use a scale)
  • Roll out one part with roller or press with hands into rectangular shape; gently roll up the dough, but not too tightly

Rolling dough

  • Run a barely wet finger (lukewarm water) along the outer edge and pinch the seam close; place on baking paper, seam down
  • Repeat for remaining three – I forgot it here but at this point you can give a couple of diagonal slashes, not too deep, about 1¼cm (½”) deep
  • Lightly brush dough, one at a time, with lukewarm water and sprinkle with sunflower or sesame seeds
  • Cover with lightly oiled plastic; place in comfortably warm, draught-free space for about 45 minutes – last 10 minutes, preheat oven on 200ºC (425ºF)

Rolled dough is rising

Ready to bake at last!

  • For the small loaves, bake a total of 25 minutes, for the large ones, 35 to 40 minutes – exact time varies per oven
  • The last 10 to 15 minutes you may need to cover them with foil if you see that the tops/seeds are browning too much
  • Remove, let cool on a rack.

Bon appétit!

Mixed lettuce with vinaigrette, homemade bread topped with grilled cheese, chili-tomato chutney and un verre de vin de Bourgogne!

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Pilgrimage, Pèlerinage, Pelgrimstocht (II)

Pèlerinage

Eric Vloeimans, trumpeter

What on earth does this guy have to do with a pilgrimage?  Is that what you’re thinking?  I’ll tell you.

The Whisperer

Earlier this year, after a long absence from the Netherlands, I tuned in on a documentary about this Dutch trumpeter, Eric Vloeimans, whom I’d never heard of.  It was actually the word ‘whisperer’ that caught my attention in the announcement of the program.  Eric spoke and played and I immediately researched some of his work on youtube.  SOLD!

Especially Pèlerinage wooed me.  Perhaps because I’d lived on the Camino for seven months, or just because in his Gatecrash jacket he appeals to my auditory sense most of all.  I love his creativity and his good cheer.  He has a very special laugh and sounds like he could be an interesting and fun person to hang out with.

Eric Vloeimans plays trumpet

Although he does whisper on the trumpet occasionally, he sure knows how to get the volume up too!

In the meantime I’ve purchased a 5-CD album called V-Flow.  One of them is with Gatecrash (still my favourite) and the others are early works, petit ensemble, amis and melodias.  Excellent variety: background, while driving, or just sit and listen while sipping your favourite booze.  I love to cook to Gatecrash!  Made a Thai green chicken curry just the other day with a jazzy melange, mmmmm.

Click here for a website matching Eric’s creativity

Eric plays a Hub van Laar trumpet.

The Pooch and the Pussycats go to Spain

A story of intercontinental pet travel

Exactly twCat with paw over faceo years ago five of my pets made a gruesome journey in order to join me.  They flew from Halifax, NS, Canada  → Toronto  → Barcelona  →  by ground transport to Cantabria, where I was waiting for them.

Back in Canada many people asked me why I was going to take them with me (because of the cost).  Are you kidding?  I would never have left Canada otherwise!  I had to find a new home for two cats, which was bad enough.

On a non-commercial basis you can import five pets to Europe.  It is a costly and time-consuming affair.  Even if you let others handle most of it, you need to be involved and do your homework.

Abdicate, abdicate! (but verify)

Let the professionals handle everything, even if it costs an arm and a leg.  They should know exactly what they’re doing.  At the bottom I share some of what I’ve learnt.  I’m telling you, it’s much, much easier to emigrate with kids!

A quiet afternoon in a pueblo (or barrio) in Spain

Five pets after long voyageHere they are, my five critters, acclimatising in Spain one day after arrival.  All in all they were underway for almost 36 hours.  This particular Saturday afternoon they were all spaced out in my bedroom where I sat reading.  It was a fairly large house but they all congregated with me.  So sweet.  The tail of the ginger cat is just visible on the right hand side.  He very rarely is a bed sleeper.

Heaven or hell, was the journey cold that gave you eyes of steel?

Wide eyed catThe worst leg of the journey was probably the nine hours or so it took from Barcelona to Cantabria.  It would have been shorter from Madrid, but then there would have been a stopover in Amsterdam.  The animal inn in Nova Scotia recommended a direct flight with a longer road trip.  The pooch and one pussycat despised car travel and they both arrived wide-eyed with dilated pupils.  It didn’t last long once they saw mommy…  None of the pets received medication during the transport – it’s controversial.

Traveldog, Spain – Good service!Traveldog Spain

I still thank my lucky stars that I opted to have the animals cleared at Barcelonacat carrier airport by a service.  This service was recommended by a Spanish vet who worked together with the animal transport agency in Nova Scotia.  The driver waited five hours before the animals were cleared to go.  Imagine, if I had waited all that time, with my limited Spanish, I would have had a major migraine and not been able to leave at all for perhaps days!!!  Expensive, but worth every cent.  He SMS’ed me a few times to let me know that they were well and the expected arrival time.

Pins and needles

old gypsy woman maskMy pets and I had been apart for several weeks while I househunted in Spain and they boarded in Canada.  There just wasn’t any other way.  It broke my heart and at one point I almost canned the whole thing, wanting so desperately to be with them.  The older I get, the worse this becomes.  By now, my gypsy travel genes are completely dominated by my pet attachment ones.

This became eerily obvious when half an hour before my pets were scheduled to arrive in the pueblo I became aware of a strange sensation in my arms.  Pins and needles subtly travelled from my fingertips to my elbows.  I did not know that feeling and said to myself ‘if that isn’t my pets coming around the corner, I don’t know!’  Five minutes later, headlights pulled into the pueblo: Traveldog.

Hindsight

Nature area the NetherlandsAh, it seems like a long time ago.  The animals and I are happy now, but it took almost two years and three countries to get there.  Spain was a nightmare, especially for the pets.  There are many loose dogs in the countryside of Spain.  Owners just don’t care and they are arrogant should one of their dogs attack and wound your animals, even if their dog jumped over your garden wall!  I didn’t have the stomach for it.  Had I known, I would never have gone to Spain.  Had I known, I would never have had all the stories that I worked into my manuscript, or movie script, whichever one I’ll finish first!  There’s the advantage that each disadvantage seems to have.

Had I known that the Netherlands is full of ticks and that the area where I settled is the worst of all, I would perhaps not live right next door to one of the most beautiful nature areas in the country.

Had I known that you can’t have it all I would have been less demanding when I was younger. 😉

I hope to never live through a similar ordeal again.  Pooch, pussycats and I are staying put!

Action tips for international animal transport

  • Consult your vet and pet transport agency regarding the type of chipping and vaccination required in destination country (check online to be sure).  Ask both for quotations (my vet gave me a discount on the chipping because I had five pets).
  • Anti-rabies has to happen at least 30 days before you arrive in most countries, if not all, but must also not have expired.
  • Some destination countries, such as UK, require a special anti-rabies process, called tethering, which must start at least six months before you import your pet(s) (read the regulations for each country where this is required – no quarantine is required if all goes well).
  • Again, rabies (the bugger), I remember reading that if you fly via England, you must also adhere to that country’s anti-rabies regulations in case there is a delay and the pets need to temporarily board – so much to think of!  So I did not fly via England, naturally.
  • If you suspect at all that you need to board your pets, have them vaccinated well ahead as many animal hotels require that this was done three to four weeks before they take them in, especially in Europe where they seem to be stricter with that than in Canada (there is a long list of prerequisite jabs).
  • In Canada the vet writes a health, vaccination and chipping document for each pet.  This has to be stamped by the Food & Health Inspection Agency – this document is only valid for FOUR months!  I, atypically proactive, had this done early and I had to redo them in case I would not be able to send for the animals before the end of the four months.  $100 down the drain.  It does not pay me to be efficient, damnit!
  • Also in Canada, the vet needs to do a final health inspection within a week or so before they finally depart!
  • This list is probably not complete.  Be extra diligent, that’s all I can say.

Procrastination – an aspiring author’s biggest enemy?

Raspberry tartLast year around this time, after enjoying a coffee with raspberry-custard tart with my friend Ceri, she asked why I was not continuing with my book.  “What are you doing instead?” she wondered.  The cardinal question.

I wash the dishes.  I walk the dog.  I weed the veggie patch.  I cut away branches along the forest path that annoy me.  I bake scones.  I bake bread.  I cook a lot (hence washing the dishes is oh so essential).  I watch youtube.  I hyperfocus on youtube.  I brush the dog.  I brush the cats.

I did not tell her ALL those things, even though they all kept me away from completing my book, which I desperately wanted to.  Instead, I was stuck in a rut.  Never, ever will I forget (even more so, after what happened to Ceri) what the author Lee Johnson said about a rut in How to escape your comfort zones.

~ The only difference between a rut and a grave
is the depth of the excavation. ~

Ceri, a lovely, understanding woman and soon-to-be-published author of a children’s book exclaimed sympathetically “Oooooh we all do it!  All artists do it.  It’s called skiving!”

Skiving.  A beautiful British word.

She told me what she did to postpone the publication of her book, which out of respect to her I will not repeat here.  She empathised with me, and therefore, sternly, but laughingly, said “Just get on with it!”

“That’s easier said than done,” I protested.

SheBach flower remedy got up, took a piece of paper and wrote ‘Just get on with it!!’ in big letters.  The next day, I outlined her words with a fat marker and stuck it up high above a door where I passed frequently.  That day I looked at her words a few times and thought ‘yeah yeah.’  The day after, I spent hours on the net researching how I could break through my brain fog, just one of many perimenopausal afflictions.  I ordered fish oil capsules, multi-vitamins, and Bach Flower remedies for subliminal support.

Kid you not, by mid September I was full steam ahead into my book and kept it up until January 2nd by which time two dedicated proofreaders had also shared comments which I had worked into the book.  Why did I stop?  Something dawned on me that day.  Something that shook me emotionally so badly that I forgot even how to type. 😉

Tregastel Rocks

Trégastel, Bretagne, France

Back to Ceri.  I had seen an impressive proof copy of her book on a beautiful day on the beach of Trégastel in April.  It was stunning.  Her illustrations reminded me of Dr Seuss books (which pleased her immensely).  At last when I saw her at the end of August she had just ordered the printers to print the book and a book launch in two countries was planned for early October, to which I was invited.

Instead, early October an entirely different event took place, to which I was also invited.  Ceri’s cremation.  After years of struggling with her health, Ceri finally gave up.  The doctors had told her that they could keep her alive, but not cure her.  There were complications.  Although the day that I saw her she looked well and sun bronzed after a beach holiday, she was gravely ill, but hid it.

That’s why today this message to all of you from Ceri, who knew so well that we all procrastinate:

Just get on with it

By no means do I intend to be disrespectful to Ceri and her family, but it is important that I show the readers that this is not a concocted story.  I do not want to put the full link here or show her surname.  It’s in French, because I lived in France then and so did she.  Miss you, friend.

death notice

Pedro, Penélope, Películas & Pronunciation

Pedro Almodòvar and Penèlope CruzAlmodóvar & Cruz

She is his muse and it is suggested that she became an actress because of him.

If I were a movie director, male or female, I’d want her to be my muse too.  She is frightfully authentic and beautiful (à la Loren) and soooo plausible in any role I’ve seen her portray so far.

My favourite movie with this powerful duo is Volver.   It’s deep and hilariously entertaining.

Before I buy, rent or watch a movie on TV, I often check it out on IMDB.  Very rarely did my opinion clash with that of the average of the thousands of people who vote.  It’s a sure thing.

When preparing for this post I discovered that Pedro’s official surname is Almodóvar Caballero, the latter word meaning gentleman.  I’ve seen him on the screen a few times, being interviewed, and that is indeed the sense I got from him, very gentlemanly indeed.  As an empath I sometimes feel a person’s energy through the TV screen, or even a computer screen!  It’s been known to happen.  Eerie, eh?

Películas (movies)

Scarlett Johansson and Hugh JackmanHave you ever watched a movie that doesn’t quite gel and you can tell that there was no chemistry whatsoever between the male and female leads?  What instantly comes to mind is Scoop with Hugh Jackman and Scarlett Johansson.  I like many of Woody Allen’s movies, Match Point being my favouriScarlett Johansson and Hugh Jackmante, but Scoop didn’t score very high with me.  A 6 at best.  (I just picked it up on special, so did not check out IMDB first!)  I suspect that Jackman was simply too busy trying not to become infatuated with Johansson. 😉  No, I don’t suspect it, I sensed it.  It was something he had begun to work on before, back in Ozzie perhaps, knowing that there would be a risk.  Isn’t that ever noble?  Perhaps he thought ‘Why must I eat a hamburger out if I can have a steak at home?’

Mar Adentro poster

A far cry from rugged Bardem

Penélope’s Beau

Seeing that he is Penélope’s husband, a word here for Javier Bardem in The Sea Inside (Mar Adentro).  Watch his haunting acting in this tearjerking, heartwrenching, surprisingly humorous movie.

Spinechillingly addictive.  I’ve watched it five times and each time I cried harder – it is that realistic.  While in Spain, I drove as far as Boiro on the Atlantic coast of Galicia, which subsequently depressed the hell out of me, so I sped out of it, back to Cantabria.

By the talented director Alejandro Amenábar (32 at the time) who also wrote the score and co-wrote the screenplay.  Some people have all the talent and express it!

Pronunciation

It took me a while to remember how to pronounce Spanish words with double ‘l’ as in Caballero, when I first learnt Spanish.  Cabayero, I suppose is a good way to indicate it for non-Spanish speakers.

I’m glad that Pedro’s name is not Jorge.  Most English native speakers turn this into ‘Horhay’ which always reminds me of a storm, a tornado, something horrible.  English speakers can make scraping sounds in the back of their throats, can’t they?  Think of Loch Ness.  Just about everyone knows the sound that the ‘ch’ makes in Loch.  It is not a sound that occurs normally in the English language, but that one is a known thing.  People don’t usually say Lotch Ness, right?  Chorcheh. 🙂

Brings me to the topic of pronouncing Vincent van Gogh’s name, which is NOT Van Go.  It hurts my ears every single time I hear this.  Think of Loch and you’re A for Away.  Van Goch, that’s how it sounds, absolutely 100% the same as in Loch.  Please remember next time and tell your friends.

Tim as Vincentmovie about Vincent van Gogh

This is how I get into hyperfocusing mode.  Wish I could make a living with it. 🙂

In Vincent & Theo, the inimitable Roth plays Van Gogh.  It doesn’t matter one bit that he isn’t Dutch.

Those are my thoughts today on the wonderful world of words, movies, directors & actors!

P.S. Penélope: unlike in French, the accented e does not sound like ‘hay’, as in été (summer), but just indicates emphasis in Spanish.  It took me a while to figure that out.

P.P.S. All pictures on this post nicked from the net for non-commercial purposes.

Pungent & Peppery Arugula + Vinaigrette recipe

I’ll admit it, pungent and peppery are neither names nor nouns but how else could I get arugula in?  Still, they are P-words, so here goes.

Pungent and Peppery Arugula with mixed salad

~ Vinaigrette recipe follows in a tick ~

Most of summer I eat green salad on a regular basis.  When I don’t have it growing in the garden, I simply buy arugula to mix with the lettuce greens – it always adds a little spirit!  In this part of Europe arugula is better known as rocket, roquette when in France, and rucola in the Netherlands.

I top my mixed greens with thinly sliced red onion, a few strips of sun-dried tomato or cherry tomatoes and Kalamata olives if I can get them and sometimes finely sliced carrot.

And if I remember I sprinkle it all with a few tablespoons of oat bran.  Weird, you may think?  It has a nutty flavour and apparently excels at transporting junk – not this salad :), just other stuff you eat – out of your body because of its ‘cling-to’ quality.  Also absorbs excess salad dressing, which I am often guilty of.

Bit of cheese goes well too: blue, mozzarella or freshly grated Parmesan.

A fruity alternativeJuicy minneola on mixed green salad

And for something entirely different (replacing above suggestions), top the mixed greens with slices of avocado, sliced orange or minneola, toasted pinenuts and crushed black pepper.

Vinaigrette – homemade

For a decade or so I experimented with making vinaigrettes.  Too bitter, too sour, too bland, too this, that and the other.

Until I got it right.  The following has been my faithful salad companion for at least ten years since I said Eureka!

Best Vinaigrette ever!Vital Vinaigrette

  • 100 ml olive oil (7 Tblsp)
  • 50 ml vinegar (3 Tblsp + 1 tsp)
    (50/50 apple cider vinegar with Balsamic)
  • 10 ml (2 tsp) grainy mustard
  • pinch salt & pepper each
  • pinch green dried herb (dill, fennel, etc.)
  • 1 small garlic clove – crushed (optional)
  • 15 to 30 ml (1 – 2 Tblsp)  liquid honey
    (or better still, maple syrup)

Shake it all well in a small bottle.

Keeps well in the fridge for a couple of weeks – vinegar preserves and so does mustard.

After taking the pics – sorry, I’m no food photographer – I ate above salad to the last morsel!

Now you can enjoy it too. 🙂

Pilgrimage, Pèlerinage, Pelgrimstocht (I)

Who has not heard of the Camino de Santiago de Compostela?

Not many.  Late nineties, an artist friend in South Africa said she had rented a house near the Camino where she produced a range of paintings.  I seem to remember that she lived on bread and olives.  Also that I felt the urge to walk the Camino ‘where monks feed you for free.’  I didn’t get around to it (and as for the last bit, was that really true anyway?).

In Quebec I met a man of 67 who had walked the Camino from France all the way to Santiago.  Again, I wished that I could too.

As they say, ‘be careful what you wish for, it might just happen.’

Isn’t that some kind of curse?

In 2009 I fell in love with a picture of San Vicente de la Barquera.

I thought to myself, if ever I go to Spain, that’s the place I want to see.  That was as soon as 2010.  And not just did I ‘see’ it, I went to do a ‘recce’, i.e. I checked it out to see if I wanted to live there, and I rather liked it.  Three months later I arrived in Spain with the intention to stay.  Phew, if everything was that easy!

But that’s where the ease stopped.  After that, my life became complicated and traumatic and seven months later I left Spain, for good.

But I did walk the Camino!  You see, I lived right at it.

And as I have a dog who travelled with me, she and I walked the Camino every day.  We probably qualify for a 100 km certificate, but I never applied for it.  😉

Right there, on the Camino, my dog was bitten by a loose dog from the village.  And later, two of my cats suffered the same fate (three big holes, two fractures & 300 Euros).

It was the last straw in a string of Jean de Florette-like encounters in which I felt like Gérard Depardieu.  Except that the villagers didn’t get me down (although it was close).  The youtube link to this movie was removed, alas).

Lesson learnt: Living in northern Spain doesn’t compare to visiting or walking the Camino.

As for the Camino, my advice is to take the northern route, which is breathtakingly beautiful.  Blow a kiss to San Vicente for me.  The peregrino albergue is right next to the most beautiful church I’ve ever seen.

You can’t miss it.

TIPs

Nov. 15: Found this remarkable PDF file of an extensive printed folder about the Camino.  You won’t believe your eyes!

Excellent info on Santiago on this Hitch-Hikers’ Handbook

How should I choose my Camino de Santiago Starting Point?

¡Suerte!

Passion – Madame Bovary

As I just posted my third post, WordPress kindly suggested to make my next goal five posts.  With it came an inspirational quotation:

‘The art of writing is the art of discovering what you believe.’  Gustave Flaubert

Monsieur Flaubert reminded me of Madame Bovary, which I saw recently with the lovely Frances O’Connor, England’s most underrated actress.  I first discovered her in About Adam, a movie she virtually carried on her own (also starring Charlize Theron’s ex, the charming and capable Stuart Townsend).

Frances could carry Madame Bovary too but is joined by the oh so sexy Greg Wise (which proves that Emma Thompson knows a good thing when she sees one) and endearing Hugh Bonneville.

But back to Passion.  Madame Bovary is a poignant account of what unadulterated passion may get you.  A lot of drama.  Seeing how famous this story is, it must be what the world wanted and still wants (better to watch others’ than be the victim yourself).  Pay attention. 😉

Pavlova – a recipe

The most scrumptious dessert I’ve ever made and eaten was a Mango Pavlova.

Image

The recipe, with picture, was in one of my Australian Women’s Weekly cookbooks, the best range of cookbooks I’ve ever used as all instructions are clear and there are many, many good photos inspiring you to plan, shop, cook, entertain & eat.  For me, a cookbook is not really a cookbook without mouthwatering colour pictures.  AWW was (is) always there to please.

Friends and family members all asked for the recipe (I made it several times) and there was even a guest who claimed he normally never ate dessert and during this rare occasion when he did, asked for seconds.  Yum yummie!

The recipe is available online these days (what isn’t ?).  Click here or on the picture to pull up the recipe in a new window.

On the topic of beating egg whites, always make sure that

  • the whites are completely free of yolk (therefore, split one egg at a time in a separate bowl and only then add each white to the bowl in which you are going to beat them)
  • the bowl and whisk are clean and grease-free (adhering to these two, I’ve always managed to beat them stiff in a jiffy!)

Bonne chance & Bon appétit!

Practice

Practice makes perfect.

I started this blog for practising blog making, something which I’ve never ventured into, in spite of fifteen long years of regular activity on the net and a big love for writing!

Actually, I was planning to make a website for my new & small enterprise, using WordPress.  I came across this during a google session.  It seemed an easier start than having to decide where to get a domain name, hosting, etc.

Why not practise a little on the sly?, I thought.  So here goes.

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