Well it's been a busy couple of nights on the Cookie social calendar.
First, rewind to Wednesday breakfast and a slight egg-splosion in the microwave...
I guess I should have pricked the egg before attempting to poach it in there :) I usually use the egg poachers which work brilliantly but I forgot them so I improvised. Obviously this was an epic fail :( Plus I had to clean the microwave - double fail.
Still, not all the egg went pop and I still managed to salvage some breakfast out of it - classy.
Lunch was a home made broccoli and Stilton soup which luckily didn't erupt everywhere.
Come 7pm I headed out into the wind, rain and cold to meet up with some lovely ladies for a pre-xmas meal. We opted for a local-ish pub which I'd not been to before, I always like to try somewhere new.
The menu was simple with just 5 starters on there. I opted for the soup of the day which was turkey broth. On a freezing cold, windy night that sounded like just the ticket for a warming start.
The broth was delicious and full of flavour with big chunks of turkey meat, pearl barley (which I love) and chunky veggies. I can't wait to recreate this with the leftover turkey after Xmas (in fact I might even buy a turkey just so we have a carcass as we are with family for lunch this year!)
Nothing really jumped out for the mains although they did all sound nice. But then I spotted Turkey breast with Guinness glazed gammon served with seasonal vegetables and mash......... Guinness glazed gammon......sign me up!
This was huge and utterly delicious. I asked them to leave off the roast potatoes and Yorkshire pudding and they brought extra veg instead. The veg was freshly cooked to perfection and of course there was sproutage on there.
Only three on the plate, but rest assured there was a dish full of vegetables to the right which I polished off.
Mahoosive and all except the mash was totally hoovered up.
Mind you, there was no room for dessert. No way. Not even a home made fudge cake could tempt me. I was in a turkey/sprout coma so I just had a black coffee to finish off the meal.
As we are heading to family at the weekend to do the present run I thought it was time I decanted my plum vodka and pretty it up as it was now ready to drink.
Doesn't it look cute!
For those family members we are not getting 'presents' for I thought this would make a nice little token gift - it is divine.
I love, love, love sloe gin but I'd go so far as to say this is better. Less tart and warming right down to your toes.
I am also making Nigella's spiced peaches on Saturday and I had some pretty glass jars turn up today to put them into.
They are dead simple to make and I am looking forward to trying them myself.
I think homemade gifts are wonderful. I love when people give me gifts they have made. Probably because I love food so much but if I get a homemade chutney or spiced nuts I am in heaven.
I think it is a really nice way to give a gift - more personal than just a generic hamper or smelly set (although let's face it they would be welcome too!)
It's also cheaper and people think you are a domestic genius - win-win :)
Finally I made some mackerel pate to take to work today. Again simple to make (there is a theme here!) Just using lemon juice, mackerel, quark, pepper, parsley and some horseradish. Blend in a food processor and chill - Mmmmm. Easy and tasty. Might even make a nice starter with some melba toast on Xmas day :)
Right, round up of tonight's events coming at ya tomorrow.
Stay warm :)
PS Remember the secret Santa? Well mine is not here yet but my present arrived at its destination and Suzi loved it :) here is the link to the goodies that were in the parcel.