We moved into The Lodge a year ago and have had many adventures since then!! I keep friends and family entertained with stories of semi rural life (lots of space, no neighbours and we don't have a Tesco on our doorstep!!) We share our home with 3 crazy cats (George, Henry and Gracie) and our hens (Ethel, Fluffy and Lulu). Our dream is to become as self sufficient as possible, save money and help the environment that little bit!! I hope that this blog entertains and inspires!!

Monday, 24 October 2011

Afternoon Tea!!

I'm pleased to report that Afternoon Tea was a resounding success!! Everyone brought something home-made, one friends chocolate brownie style cake (with crushed Oreos) was amazing!! I'm sure she would have given me the recipe but then she would have probably killed me!!! After reading an article on how to make the perfect scone http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/wordofmouth/2010/apr/22/how-to-make-perfect-scones, I decided to combine a few of the recipes and they came out a treat!! I had wanted to serve them up with some home-made jam but things didn't quite go to plan!! After foraging for blackberries I decided to cheat and use the jam setting on our bread machine, the result was burnt blackberries (another example of me not quite managing domestic goddess status)!!!! I am now on the lookout for a reliable preserving kit, will let you know when I find one!!
In other news the lovely Sunflowers in the garden have now died off, but fear not I have been researching ways of using the seeds!! So far have decided to make bread, roast and store them for snacks and keep some for planting next year!! You could also give them out as wedding favours, as we did at our wedding party this year!!
Tilly the hen has also joined us here at The Lodge, she is a "funny looking thing" (the hubbys words!!), a bit grumpy and a bit of a loner!! Hoping that, after a few days of running around with the other girls, she will have cheered right up!!! Pictures to follow!!

Friday, 21 October 2011

Triumphs and Disasters!!!

It has been a baking and cooking fest here at The Lodge recently. What with an abundance of apples from the trees and in the end doing so-so with the toms, I decided to try my hand at making Chutneys and Sauces! Check out the Facebook page for more details http://www.facebook.com/pages/Life-at-The-Lodge.  They have been a real hit with friends and family!!
I have also developed a real baking bug. First off the tried and tested http://www.amazon.co.uk/Hummingbird-Bakery-Cookbook recipes, you can't go wrong!! The lemon cupcakes AND chocolate cheesecake cupcakes were a triumph and really brightened up my work colleagues day!! I was also very pleased with the http://feedingboys.wordpress.com/2010/08/09/banana-and-apple-loaf/ recipe, which I must admit I kept for myself hehe!! But before you all start to think I really am some sort of domestic goddess, disaster struck!! Shortbread made with riceflour (I won't subject you to the recipe) :S  I took the hubby a cuppa through with a sample, only to return 10 minutes later to find it still on the plate (which is not like him at all) I was so thoughtfully informed that he would more than likely lose a tooth if he tried to eat it!!!
I'm hoping for more luck at my Afternoon Tea with the girls this weekend, perhaps I should just ply the majority of them with fizzy and they won't notice any disasters!!!
Well I am off to see a man about an allotment!! Fingers crossed!!