Time.—To steam the pudding, about 40 minutes. Average Cost, 1s. to 1s. 2d. Sufficientfor 4 or 5 persons.
Ingredients.—1 pint of milk, 2 eggs, 4 heaped tablespoonfuls of flour, salt, dripping.
Method.—Put the flour and a good pinch of salt into a basin, make a well in the centre, break in the eggs, stir, gradually mixing in the flour from the sides, and add milk by degrees until a thick smooth batter is formed. Now beat well for 10 minutes, then add the remainder of the milk, cover, and let it stand for at least 1 hour. When ready to use, cover the bottom of a pudding-tin with a thin layer of dripping taken from the meat-tin, and while the tin and dripping are getting thoroughly hot in the oven, give the batter another good beating. Bake the pudding for 10 minutes in a hot oven to partially cook the bottom, or, if more convenient, place the hottest shelf from the oven on the meat stand, and at once put the pudding in front of the fire, and cook it until set and well-browned. “Yorkshire” pudding is always cooked in front of the fire; when baked in the oven, the term “batter pudding” is applied to it by the people in the county whence it derives its name.
Time.—About 40 minutes. Average Cost, 6d. Sufficient for 5 or 6 persons.
I fell pregnant is November last year, so just before we really knew about the pandemic or anything COVID related. It was a planned pregnancy just after our honeymoon and surpassingly and gratefully I fell pregnant immediately. At my age (39) I expected just like my friends and people my age to take at least six months or struggle. My mother who is sadly deceased I was told later apparently got pregnant just looking at my father which I found out later by a family member. That would have bern good to know!
So pregnancy was thankfully really lovely. Other than the discomfort of being so big I didn’t get any morning sickness and my work took it really well. They have such a good policy they basically allowed me to take a year off with pay which is very unusual. My manager did comment that he’d like me to get a nanny which was a joke but I did recognize the compliment in that too.
After a few months it reached February of this year and we’d already booked to go on holiday. I had sinusitis as part of my pregnancy so I lost all sense of taste and smell for a month and looking back i do wonder if it was COVID 19 especially as we did pop over to Lanzarote for a holiday at the year. When I gave birth I was tested for whether I had COVID 19 but not whether o had the antigens for it. I’m not even sure the antigens lady that long or whether the tests are good enough yet but I did wonder.
On returning from holiday my manger advised me as a pregnancy woman the company policy is that I work from home as the pandemic was just stating. I hadn’t even packed up my desk from holiday as I assumed I was going back into the office which you will soon see never happened.
A few weeks go by working from home which is much harder than people make out. Having 10 Skype or zoom calls a day isn’t fun, I did however therefore recognize the first positive of the pandemic and that is no longer having to commute into the office which was long and expensive. I was slap worrying about doing that heavily pregnant which quickly went away as a concern.
The next advantage I’ll say is that not drinking alcohol whilst pregnancy was hard for me. As someone who went for a drink with her husband after work or with work colleagues. I really missed it. Now no one was socializing so no one was drinking. Selfish win on my behalf it think.
I know a lot of pregnant women won’t agree with me on this one and I think it comes to personality typing. Also, as I’ve said my mother is deceased so i don’t have an immediate bond to facilitate but what I really enjoyed about social distancing and isolating whilst pregnant is the distancing itself. To be specific I went to all girls school until I was 18 and don’t enjoy groups of women together as a result. I have close female friends but they are very similar to me, Therefore, not having to attend pregnancy groups and getting to learn it all online was a complete personality joy for me. I know this wouldn’t suit everyone so I guess I was lucky I didn’t need the emotional support.
Continuing on the social distancing topic I found other benefits such as not feeling left out that I couldn’t attend the annual spa day (hot tubs abs pregnancy don’t mix) or feel sad not being able to eat olives or seafood S no one was eating out.
Then let’s talk about family. I’m not a hugger. I don’t like people commenting on my appearance or feeling the need to touch my pregnant stomach. All avoided thanks to the pandemic.
I could go on about all the benefits I enjoyed but to be honest I think it just suited my personality and the fact I’m very self sufficient. This doesn’t give enough credit to my husband by the way locked up with me but thankfully he is very similar to me. We enjoyed having the time to prepare the nursery and being digitally savvy had no issue sourcing everything online (except paint it that’s a different story).
I’m summary although the pandemic was horrific and shocking to a lot of families including mine I think it’s important to recognise that although I didn’t get my baby shower there are more important things in life abs relatively I was incredibly lucky to be so protected at such an important time.
PS My birth story was quite different and sleeping in a mask on under staffed shared ward of screaming babies was a different matter but I’ll cover that in a separate blog.
Sorry it’s been such a long time since I’ve blogged but I’ve been super busy and for very good reason. We would like to introduce baby Max.
Max was born early August and it’s been amazing but equally hard work. As part of this blog I will start to cover lots of pregnancy and nursery preparation we did as well as our progress in things like baby led weaning. I’ve lots to share on what to pack for the hospital and what nappy bags should contain.
I’ll also write on what it was to be both pregnant and give birth during a pandemic. COVID has been a life altering event but strangely it has also given my pregnancy a lot of freedom and protection so there has also been strange benefits.
I’ve also a tonne of recipes I’ve made over my pregnancy I’ve not included so I’ll start posting these up regularly and look forward to feedback and more recipes to try.
Baking bread is definitely something I haven’t mastered yet. I was about to start another attempt and thought I’d have a look at what Mrs Beeton said. I guess unsurprisingly as bread has been around for such a long time that her recipe is not that far from current standard recipes. That being said it’s nice to see and try.
Ingredients – 1 peck of flour, 2 ozs of compressed or distillery yeast, 1 1/2 ozs of salt, 3 quarts of water.
Method – ‘Turn the flour into a clean pan, and make a “bay”, or hole in the centre. Let the water be about 80 degrees Fahr., or blood-warm, so it feels neither hotter nor colder than the hand when placed in the water. Put the water into a bowl, add the yeast and salt, and stir up well with the hand till dissolved, then turn it into the bay, and make up into rather a stiff dough; knead well, and leave to dry, cover over with a clean cloth, and set the pan of dough in a warm place to prove for at least 2 hours, then give it another good kneading and drying over, and leave it for another hour; turn out onto the board, divide into suitable-sized pieces, make into loaves, prove and bake.’
This month’s favourites are a real mix of a lovely pub we found; some makeup and a real obsession/problem I have with a particular food.
For our friend’s 30th birthday we visited the Lake District which is such a beautiful place anyway but whilst wandering the streets of Bowness on Lake Windermere we found this perfect pub. The Angel on Bowness is positioned on a hill slightly away from the village but close enough to get great views with easy access. We had some cold drinks and chilled out in the sun in the gorgeous gardens. Highly recommend.
Next is a new lipstick/stain I picked up. I have a lot of this type of lipstick as I like them to last all day so can compare. This is from the ‘Wet & Wild’ brand which has just come to the UK. Previously I had to buy it in bulk when we visited the US.
Finally my new obsession is anchovies! How I didn’t like previously I have no idea. They are so salty and lose their fishyness when cooked so act like seasoning. I’ve now taken to buying tin and putting them on any pizza we happen to have or make. If you fancy making one from scratch I’d recommend my blog below.
I really adore eggs and often buy them in my work canteen but paying what I would consider a high price per egg didn’t sit well with me. Being really honest I only recently learned how to make a proper poached egg in a pan actually but it does take a little time to get a deep pan to the right temperature and I don’t really have that time before work.
So off I went searching for a recipe. I’ve tried a load of variants for this including shop bought egg poachers and microwave containers but the easiest way that works for me is to simply fill a cup with water and microwave it for 1 minute to get it up to temperature and then crack your egg in. Put back in for another minute and it’s done. There’s lots of advice about adding vinegar and salt but I haven’t really needed it. I did once have a popping noise when the yolk burst but if you put a plate on the top it stops the splashing and ruining of your microwave. It rarely happens to me though and I buy super fresh eggs.
On a side note I do have a blog about cleaning your microwave so feel free to read that if you need to!
The cutest new accessory to join our kitchen this week is Angry Mama which is a microwave cleaning tool that makes cleaning your microwave actually fun. It’s absolutely a gimmick but if anything encourages me to clean anything in my life I will take it.
So you take her head off… yes I did say that, take her head off. Well technically it’s her hair actually and you fill her body with part water and vinegar and pop her in a dirty microwave. You can leave the the glass plate underneath.
Set the microwave on full for 2 minutes. Being super careful to pick her up by the arms (as she is full of very hot water) you take her out and the steam and vinegar has made the dirty loosen so you can wipe it away easier. Feel free to repeat it if it’s not 100% loose.
Now I do realise you can do this with a cup but trust me I’ve enjoyed using this so much I’ve cleaned my microwave twice this month. That has to be good.
Today’s attempt is definitely not a recipe as such but a fun attempt at making our own beer. I’m hoping to get to a point whereby I can try out different hops and recipes but thought it best to start at the beginning.
Previously I’d bought a basic beer kit to make Elderflower champagne – see below.
My husband and I have a serious problem with eating pizza. It started when we were dating and he took me to Pizza Hut in the UK and introduced to me the simplicity of very good margarita pizzas. Before then I’d had the odd takeway pizza and really just ate the most debated pizza Hawaiian!
Now I still love a Hawaiian pizza don’t get me wrong but after a trip we took to New York I started to completely fall in love with pizza.
If you are ever in Manhattan we’d highly recommend a few places but I think my favourite was inside Penn Station called ‘Don pepi’ and they served me a “white” which I’d never heard of which didn’t have tomato sauce! Amazing.
So Slimming World isn’t really an area I know well or have ever really tried out. After I’ve released some of my favourite Keto recipes when I use that diet primarily to prep intensely for my holidays, I’ve been asked if I could test some of the Slimming World recipes for use throughout the rest of the year. Seeming like a very sensible idea and some of them look amazing I thought I would start with one that looked the most interesting and that was ‘Sticky Chicken Balls.’ The recipe is all over internet but I was recommended the following from Slimming Eats.
455g (1lb) of extra lean chicken mince (ground chicken) or can use turkey
1 tbs of chopped fresh cilantro (or Coriander in the UK!)
1 tsp of freshly grated ginger
pinch of salt and black pepper
FOR THE SAUCE
3 tbs of sweet chilli sauce (Aldi make a good one)
1 tbs of light soy sauce
3 tbs of water
chopped spring onions
I used the standard oven method.
Preheat oven to 200c/400f
Add the ingredients for the meatballs to a bowl, and mix until ingredients are just combined.
Form into 12 equal size meatballs
Place on a baking tray lined with parchment paper
Spray over the top with cooking oil spray
Bake for 15 minutes, until they look lightly browned and firm
Whisk together sauce ingredients, add this to a frying pan with the meatballs and heat over medium heat until coated and sticky and meatballs are cooked through
Sprinkle with chopped spring onions
My Turkey was quite lean so I used a little less Panko breadcrumbs than they advise in the recipe. I also added a dash of chilli sauce to the balls before cooking which was nice as it gave them some moisture and extra chill flavour.
Overall they were tasty but a bit dry more me which makes sense as it’s a lean recipe. I think I’ll move onto the sticky chicken Slimming World recipe next as that seems to be really popular on ‘Youtube’ and looks like a bit more moist. If you have any recommended recipes from Slimming World I should try please do send me or any advice on how to enrich the recipe you’ve come across I’d be really grateful.