Sunday, 27 January 2013

Onion Soup Without Tears - a Nigel Slater dish for January

Farmersgirl Kitchen has launched 'Dish of the Month' which involves choosing one Nigel Slater recipe per month to cook and then writing a blog post about it. Nigel Slater is my favourite food writer, bar none. So when I needed no encouragement to join in with this.

The dish I chose to cook for January is 'Onion Soup Without Tears' from the January chapter of 'The Kitchen Diaries'.

The idea behind this recipe is to roast the halved onions before chopping them up to make the soup, thereby reducing the tears involved in chopping the onions. The recipe also says that the other advantage of this method is that the onions smell lovely while they are roasting.

Well I tried it and it worked beautifully. The roasting onions smelled mouthwateringly gorgeous. Even better, the finished soup tasted absolutely delicious with toasted French bread and Gruyere cheese on top. It was a real treat!

(Sorry the photos don't do it justice - will use a proper camera next time)

Sunday, 13 January 2013

Magpie Monday - Denby Arabesque sugar pot

This little sugar pot was hidden amongst other pottery items on the crowded shelves in a local junk shop.

It is from the Denby Arabesque range, originally designed in the 1960's, and has all the attractive features that I associate with Arabesque. The shape of the sugar pot goes with the other items in the coffee set and the hand-painted markings are really beautiful.

The shop owner told me the least he was prepared to sell it for was £6, but that seemed like a good deal to me as they go for at least twice that on eBay. I'm not planning to sell this on because I love it too much.

After washing off the dust and sticky gunk that was inside, I am now using it as a sugar pot. It is much prettier than the old plastic container we were using before.

Linking up with Magpie Monday at Me and My Shadow.

  Me and My Shadow

Sunday, 6 January 2013

Magpie Monday - vanity case

This Samsonite Silhouette vanity case is probably one of my least sensible eBay purchases ever, but I love it. 

The colour is a gorgeous shade of duck egg blue, and the metal looks as shiny and rust free as if it came out of the packaging yesterday, even though the case is about 50 years old. The original key is attached.

I am thinking of using the case for craft storage. It is clean inside and does not smell at all musty, so would probably be suitable for fabric and cross stitch projects.

One of the reasons I had an eye out for a vanity case like this is that some of the American bloggers who join in with Magpie Monday seem to find lots of lovely mid-20th-century suitcases and vanity cases. I don't have space for large suitcases so I had a saved search on eBay for vanity cases to see what I could spot. Lots of the vanity cases I saw were a bit the worse for wear with rusty catches, plus they were expensive. When I spotted this Samsonite case in this lovely colour I couldn't resist bidding.

Me and My Shadow

Tuesday, 1 January 2013

Pennybridge Filofax A5 Organiser and iPad case

This is my Pennybridge Personal Organiser from Filofax - which is combines an A5 size Filofax and an iPad case. The official blurb sums it up:

Classic Filofax design is given a modern update in the Pennybridge. Featuring an iPad holder and fully removable organiser, perfectly pairing technology with paper. Suitable for left and right-handed use, and designed to use iPad and paper simultaneously. A grain pattern leather-look organiser with a secure zip closure. 

The reasons I like this Filofax are as follows:

  • I am really getting into writing notes and to do lists on paper - and A5 gives plenty of room for writing
  • The purple colour is gorgeous
  • It looks smart and professional for work - especially when I need to use a notepad and my iPad side by side in meetings

I am using this A5 Filofax in combination with this mini Filofax which goes everywhere with me. Having an A5 Filofax for work and a mini Filofax for my handbag is proving to be a much more workable solution than trying to use a single pocket-sized Filofax for everything.

So now I'm all set for 2013!