Peach & Coconut Cheescake

Friday, 24 April 2015

I would like to make a confession. It is something that I normally try not to talk about, as every time I suggest anything like this in public, I can feel everyone’s head turning and looking at me with disapproval. So when the conversation is around this particular matter, I limit myself to a nod and a smile.

The thing is… I don’t do a lot of things I am supposed to do. And I don’t do them on purpose: because they are tedious, painful (in the broadest sense of the word), useless or all three at once. So when I am surrounded by people who do these kind of things and I suggest I don’t, I feel the need to hold me breath and then pretend I was only joking and everything goes back to normal.

Creamy Fish and Leak Mini Pies

Friday, 17 April 2015

Last weekend the weather was so absolutely amazing that everyone in my household woke up thinking it was summer. And as it was summer, we packed our lunches, dusted off our swimsuits, and off we went to Exmouth beach. Two miles of golden sandy beach just 20 minutes’ drive from home.

The beach was not jam-packed, but busy enough to make us feel really summery. Rock pools, crab hunters, shiny skins, sand castles and lots of children.

If anything in life changes after having children is the way you get ready for a beach day.

Lemon Curd & Coconut Cups

Friday, 10 April 2015

Sometimes life gives us lemons.  I know when this happens we are supposed to do lemonade, but if there is something I could be eating nonstop is a good lemon curd. So instead of lemonade, when life gives me lemons... I ask my husband to prepare lemon curd for me.

Home-made lemon curd is one of these recipes he only knows how to prepare. Yes, I may be able to prepare a decent version of lemon curd, but it will never taste as my husband´s. He is a Master of the Universe preparing proper lemon curd: sweet, tangy, soft, velvety and mouthwatering. So although  It´s me who normally cooks at home, there are three things that are completely his kingdom: curds, mayonnaise and chicken milanese. 

Caramelised Onion, Potato and Broccoli Rosti

Friday, 3 April 2015

During our childhood we barely dream because we have no reason for it, as almost everything is possible. Nevertheless, in adulthood, we need to fantasise quite a lot as nothing really exciting seems to happen, apart from making sure our socks match.  During our childhood and adolescence we run faster than our own feet. Fearless youngsters, wild, reckless. Insatiable of experience,  eager of knowing everything, conquers of the world. 

Innocent and naïve, the world taught us, maybe more than we wanted or needed or hoped or thought possible. And then, sometimes, we become so immune to everything that we put ourselves in extreme situations just to have something to dream about. One day we have children. We will love them, and look with excitement knowing they will discover the world, how everything is new for them, amazing, possible and so real and simple that is almost impossible not to start feeling scared. Because we have been there. Maybe a long long time ago. And things arise that were forgotten, that were safety kept under a pile of memories and worries.

Crisps & Chocolate Rocks

Friday, 27 March 2015

Sometimes things just get out of our control. Perhaps it is so obvious that we are unable to see how wrong they are going even if they explode right in front of our eyes.

It can also happen that we feel so confident that something is going to be fine that we don’t even consider the possibility of anything other than success. Sometimes things look good. Very good indeed, and all of a sudden, it all turns awfully wrong.

 There is no definite pattern when the wrecking ball starts, which makes it really difficult to foresee the disaster. Or even worse, when we rely on other people and they don’t give you the heads up on something that is not going as well as it should.

When things depend on the others it seems easier to look from a distance and find an easy solution. But sometimes, the other is just so overwhelmed by the circumstances that is not able to look through the same glasses that we do.

Gardener Muffins with Garlic Mayo

Friday, 20 March 2015

Children are just unpredictable. My sons are at this amazing age when everything is possible. From flying to the moon on a kitchen stool to inventing a magic ball powerful enough to provide the whole city with unlimited energy.

We have been working really hard for The Big Cake Show and they are so excited all the time that it is literally impossible to relax them at bed time.

Yesterday, it was a bit too late. And they were both in my bed chatting non-stop. Sometimes, the things they are telling me are the kind of things that are so interesting and fantastic that rather than try and stop them, I encourage them to keep talking so I can hear more about whatever the story is about. But it was getting really late and we all needed a good rest, so I asked them to calm down and try to sleep while I went to brush my teeth.

Scrumptious Star Bread

Friday, 13 March 2015

A couple of weeks ago I was invited to do a guest lecture at the Business School at Exeter Uni. I was absolutely shocked and excited and nervous and overwhelmed. Preserving fruit is one thing and talking in front of a lot of 4th year business students about creativity and entrepreneurship is a an altogether different beast.

I was unsure of the kind of things they were expecting me to say, so I thought I should say the kind of things that I would have loved to listen to when I was at Uni. Stories about failure, about struggling, about real life. Stories about how life changes and you can choose between letting yourself down or face up to the challenge and go for it. Stories about why we are all wrongly told that success is the only way forward. So instead of going through sleep-inducing theories and approaches from the different schools of thought, I just told them the truth about The Tiny Marmalade.