Friday, 14 October 2011

A good day

After the diabolical day I had last Friday, it's good to be able to say that today has been LOVELY.

The children seem to have picked up from the deathly tiredness that was afflicting them last week (perhaps they're getting into the rhythm of school now, just in time for half term at the end of next week) and Blue in particular seems less exhausted. But maybe that's just because we've enforced a no lights on before our alarm goes off rule for the morning. We had been allowing him to read from 6 as he seems incapable of sleeping beyond then, but he has been pushing this, and the camel's back broke on Wednesday morning at 5.30.

However, I digress. Spurred on by the sourdough success earlier in the week, I made a double batch of sponge last night and found the time to get the dough kneaded (in the Kenwood, it must be said) AND the breakfast things washed up before leaving for school. Truly a momentous occasion.

It's been a glorious autumnal day here, and I had a lovely walk with the dog after dropping the kids at school, during which he mostly stayed within my line of vision and didn't kill anything (he had a grouse on Monday), get himself stuck on the wrong side of a barbed wire topped fence (yesterday morning's little excitement) or launch himself into a 'pond' only to find himself up to his armpits in sticky, foul smelling mud (yesterday afternoon's pleasure). Got home by 9.30, and while the kettle was boiling for my coffee, I managed to get the potatoes peeled for this evening's fish pie. Work was good - all going smoothly, no grumpy/misogynistic/pedantic editor quirks to deal with today, and had enough time once I'd finished to make the fish pie. I used up the second pack of disappointing salmon that I was complaining about a few days ago. I really couldn't think of anything else to do with it, and, having poached it in milk with the haddock (undyed, smoked and unsmoked), I think it was probably the best thing I could have done with it. I did a quick trim of the spinach and chard in the garden, steamed and chopped up really, really small to mix in with the fish too. And the biggest bonus was that there's enough for 2 suppers. I do so love being able to put an added bonus supper in the freezer like that.

In truth, I was hoping secretly that there would be enough pasta left over from Golden Time cooking this afternoon to feed at least the kids tonight, but it was not to be. However, I am not upset about this. I'd chosen a vegetarian recipe for today as there are a couple of children in the class that are cooking at the moment who are veggie and have various allergies. The recipe is a variation of a sausage pasta recipe I got off the Good Food website, and just calls for frying chopped courgette and mushroom with some crushed garlic and chopped rosemary, then chucking in some cherry tomatoes. When the cherry tomatoes start to break down, stir in some creme fraiche and may be slop in some of the pasta water to thin it out, and stir into cooked pasta. When the session started, we were met with a few moans and groans, particularly about the mushrooms,  but to my surprise, they were very enthusiastic once they started chopping, and really got into it. We had kids eagerly volunteering to do the washing up, and apart from a couple of the boys who really didn't want to try it, they ate up ALL the pasta, and I only saw a few mushrooms getting sneaked into the bin. We were also finished and cleared up by 3.25.

The kids were in a good mood at the end of school - Pink had got 5/5 for her first spelling test  (allow me to be a proud mummy) and it looks like we've seen the back of Biff, Chip & Kipper. I'm not sorry to see them go. We negotiated Friday sweets without the usual standoffs, and back home, my loaves are now baking, while the kids are watching Charlie & Lola, and I have a fishpie all ready to put into the oven when the bread is finished, along with a couple of mini apple crumbles that I made a few weeks ago using some leftovers, and froze in ramekins.

The sun is still shining, the husband is on his way home, and THE DISHWASHER ARRIVES TOMORROW!! Oh happy, happy days.

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