I lived on a small island in the South China Sea with a husband, two sons and a scruffy dog and now I live in London which is in a slightly larger small island with a scruffy husband two large boys and a very fluffy dog.
Our Holidays are begun! I am looking forward to the sea, to whelks and sticks of rock to strawberry picking, though my garden has a little crop which we will have for breakfast. I shall wander down The High street in the Old Town and into all those little fantastic shops. Hope you can join me!
I think growing up in Hong Kong has educated my taste buds to the joy of the sweet and the savoury. BBQ buns with the sweet dough and the yummy BBQ filling, sour plums, Dried cuttlefish with pine sugar and chilli, and the Hong Kong version of chicken pie with an eggy, crumbly, sweet flaky pastry. I can't say however that I have ever warmed to tuna donut or curry donut, but my dad did and he says they are quite tasty.
I am also extraordinarily fond of pumpkin. My boys love it too but the rest of my family recoils in horror. I love pumpkin pie with its egg tart like quality and from an English perspective the clashing combination of sweet and pumpkin which shouldn't be. So when I saw ricotta reduced to a normal price and knowing that I had a butternut squash in the fridge, I thought maple syrup pumpkin cheesecake, doesn't everyone?
Maple Syrup Pumpkin Cheesecake
about 8 digestives crushed 50 g of butter melted
Mix the melted butter into the digestives and squash into your loose bottom spring form tin. I am making a half size cheesecake as my kitchen is tiny, and they also look so sweet small. My tin is 6 1/2 inches across. You could always double the mixture for a larger cheesecake. Put this in the fridge to chill.
100g Philadelphia cream cheese 100g Ricotta cheese 2 eggs 2 teaspoons Vanilla extract 2 tablespoons Maple syrup 75 g Sugar 75g of boiled and drained pumpkin cooled
I just liquidize the whole lot and carefully pour onto your cooled base. I know it looks like soup but trust me it will come good. Wrap the out side of the tin in tin foil and bake in a water bath that comes halfway up the side for about 1 1/2 hours . The cheese cake is cooked when its firm to the touch . The pumpkin gives this a firmer set. Yum!
Oh my poor neglected blog. The combination of 5 parties, 1 school trip a leaving present the Internet and phone lines down and shhh father's day tomorrow meant that my poor blog has wandered lonely as a cloud. Hopefully normal service will resume, though with a look at the schedule next week I'm not so sure.
However despite or perhaps because of my blogging inadequacies I have managed to make a silver linen pair of trousers. I wore them the other evening to the leaving party. One friend questioned whether the zip really did go down that far. Que a quick re- modelling. Maybe I should post a picture? Not sure.
So I posted one of my tea towels printed with the Mexican design onto Etsy yesterday and I shall post another today. Looking at this photo now I'm not sure. The background is cardboard which has old prints on it, which at the time I thought looked interesting and arty but now I just think it looks a little grubby . Oh well, back to the camera.
A good friend is leaving the Island and HK for green pastures new and we are having a little get together to celebrate / commiserate her imminent departure. We have all been asked to bring a match box present. I thought a homemade Lamma match box with two stamps inside would be just the thing!
The heavens opened yesterday morning and poured water onto an already soggy Lamma. However it was worth it for the clear views that followed. This was the scene as I went to meet the children off the ferry.
The computer network was down all yesterday and still it's down today. Hopefully they will fix it today. So I'm sitting in our local cafe The Green Cottage, ducking the spits of rain and hoping it doesn't chuck it down.
Living in a sub tropical climate means that I can have what are considered house plants in more temperate climates grow in wild abundance all around my garden. However the same is true in reverse and plants that I love in the UK like nasturtiums, lavender and hydrangeas don't usually do so well. In fact they roll over and die at the first whiff of humidity, usually.
This year though we are having a very mild spring and summer and my hydrangea is hanging on in there. Its still only teeny, and will probably never be a great huge bush like the ones I remember when I was small and on holiday in Wales, but I'm quite proud of it.
Its a lovely sunny day here in Lamma. Its not too hot the humidity is not off the scale and we have blue skies.
This is my garden and a painting I did of the garden about 3 years ago. I moved the bird of paradise plant and they chopped down all the bougainvillea next door but apart from that not much has changed.
So preheat the oven to gas mark 5/ 190 C. The cake is your basic cream the butter and sugar, then add the beaten eggs, liquidized ginger, cream and golden syrup. Add your flour and cook in the oven until golden and the cake is shrinking away from the sides of the tin.
I have filled the cake with a cream cheese filling flavoured with home made lemon curd, vanilla essence and icing sugar. The icing is a ganache which is basically melted dark chocolate, butter, cream heated together and allowed to cool a little bit but not too much to allow you to pour over the cake. It hardens into a firm rich chocolatey icing. To insure the cake doesn't stick to the base I place it on a rack, pour over the icing and when the icing is hard move to a plate.
I love this cornbread. Its not dry and powdery.Its full of cheese and jalapeno chilli's, mushed up corn, onion and peppers. I encourage you to make it and eat it and then dream about it. And that's not because the cheese is repeating on you.
1/3 cup oil 2 eggs 3/4 cup creamed or liquidized corn 1/2 cup sour cream 1/2 cup polenta 1/4 cup self raising flour 1 small onion chopped finely 1/2 red pepper chopped finely chopped jalapenos to your taste chopped finely 1 tsp baking powder pinch of salt 1/2 cup cheese grated
I cook this in a well oiled pyrex dish but you could use a cake tin or a loaf tin though I would line the bottom with grease proof paper.
Mix the eggs, oil, cream and half of the creamed corn. Then add the polenta ,flour, baking powder and a pinch of salt. Give it a good stir. Pour half the mixture into your container . On top of this sprinkle the onion, cheese, red pepper, jalapenos and then spread the rest of the mixture on top .
Bake in the oven at gas mark 4, 180 C for about 30 mins to 40 mins take out and cool.Its done when a skewer comes out cleanly ( though remember you have cheese in there so its not going to be dry clean) and is golden brown on top. I like to eat it warm and cut into pieces served straight out of the dish white trash style.
So I have now finished my three pictures of bugs and beetles but I'm not really sure what to do with them. Should I get them made into cards or prints or both? I am unsure. I really like them, but maybe that's just me.
I have two friends with Birthday's this week and they are coming over to our house on Sunday for a BBQ. So I thought I would make a Joint birthday cake. Maple syrup cake, Butterscotch layer cake,Damp lemon and almond cake with fresh raspberries, Black forest gateau, Madeira cake, they all sound good how do you choose?
I have been playing with my stamp sets making thank you notes to put with order sales. Not that I have had any from my Etsy shop, but one must always be prepared. I'm finding it hard to concentrate. Of course I am, this is because I am delaying various things that I have planned to do. One is to get a scanner, and with my sales of cards I almost have enough money to do that and the second is to get some more cards printed. Hmmm.