Thursday, 15 March 2012

Nothing Fancy

Sometimes it is the simplest things in life that give us the greatest pleasure. A smile from someone you love, spotting the first daffodil flowering in March, a leisurely stroll through a leafy park, the smell of freshly baked bread, your favourite song playing on the radio. It needs no bells and whistles and really doesn't need to cost a fortune to make your day perfect.

This is also true when it comes to food. Dishes containing a hundred and one ingredients and recipes with a seemingly endless list of steps are amazing in their own right, and definitely have their place in the culinary world. But sometimes all you want is something simple and homely to satiate your mid week craving for a little sweet treat. This is when you turn to your most dog-eared cookbook, let it fall open by itself to the right page and bake your favourite carrot cake.

Flour, sugar, eggs, oil, cinnamon, a couple of spoons of honey and of course lots of bright orange carrots, there is certainly nothing fancy about this cake. But cover it lovingly with a soft cloud of cream cheese frosting, dot a few wrinkly walnuts around the top and cut yourself a big slice... I guarantee you that there is nothing else that will beat it in taste right at that moment.

Monday, 5 March 2012

Even the Best Plans...

The past week or so has been absolutely amazing weather wise. With gloriously sunny days, we were all basking in the warmth of early Spring and shrugging out of our Winter jackets ready to say farewell to the cold, dark days. I have been dishing up lovely, light salads for lunch and dinner, happy to no longer feel the need to fill our tummies with heavy, stodgy food. I can therefore be forgiven for getting carried away by planning a lovely picnic in the park to celebrate our seventh wedding anniversary this past weekend.

I had visions of us finding a sunny spot in our favourite park, spreading out one of my mum's colourful quilts, sitting down, sipping glasses of chilled champagne and snacking away on loads of crisp salads, deeply filled sandwiches and all sorts of other delectable treats. I had even made us a gorgeous dessert of milk chocolate mousse, topped with Irish cream "cheese cake". Unfortunately, all of my plans were squashed when we awoke yesterday morning to a grey drizzle, freezing winds and even the odd snowflake drifting by. That's England for you...

We still managed to make the most of our day together, someone else made lunch for us (and washed the dishes too!) and we did get to enjoy our champagne and dessert. After all, when you still want to spend the day in each other's company when you have been married for seven years, it really doesn't matter where you go or what you do:)