My meal plan ran out half way through this week – I just didn’t get around to planning the second half of the week. Which meant we ate pasta on those nights I failed to plan for. What I was doing while I failed to plan meals (apart from going to work) was making the Christmas cake.
I love the ritual of making the cake. Even when all my good intentions of early present buying and homemade decorations go out the window, I feel better for knowing the cake is done. And the process itself is satisfying: wrapping the cake tin in brown paper, like a present. The bittersweet smell of candied peel. Tumbling raisins, sultanas and currants into a bowl, and covering it all with brandy. Just the smell of brandy says Christmas to me – is that wrong??
So this weekend I will be building more good intentions and writing lists. But if all else fails, there will still be cake.
- Cauliflower bread pudding (with mushrooms and chorizo in place of the sausages) – The Five O’Clock Apron
- Mushroom bolognese with pasta – approximately from Jennifer Perillo’s Homemade with Love
- Pulled pork sandwiches – NYTimes with Nigella’s soft white dinner rolls from Feast
- Bread Ahead sourdough
Without a recipe:
- Fresh pasta
- Chicken curry – Spice Tailor sauce with some edits
- Waitrose pizza
- An exasperated post from The Boston Globe about people who say they have an allergy when they don’t, and the impact that can have on a restaurant
- And a very smart riposte from Miss South, who has not a food allergy but an intolerance that nevertheless can make her life a misery. Bottom line: be considerate to others, and try to find out what they are going through before you make assumptions.
- Is it possible you’ve been buttering toast wrong?
- Here’s another list of 50 top cookbooks. I think Nigella’s ‘How to Eat’ is still my favourite.