Saturday, 18 May 2013

Domestic goddess . . . sort of!

Today has been a day of domestic tasks.  Certainly some were merely run-of-the-mill, but some were more pleasurable.  And there is a certain satisfaction in doing those little things that keep the household running smoothly!

As it was cold this morning, and no one was rushing off anywhere, I had the pleasure of stoking the fire, getting it to re-ignite from its remaining coals.

I am so enjoying having a proper fire - it heats the whole house better than any other heater we have had before, and the house stays warm all night!  Fires are such a strangely primeval pleasure, aren't they.

Next, there was washing to do, including a few woollies (to which I added some hair conditioner in the last rinse, to soften the fibres- works a treat).

Then off to the local shops for a few groceries, and back in time for lunch . . . after which the REALLY fun stuff began!

I put on my current favourite music - McFly's latest album, Memory Lane . . .

and started making Soup.

I do like soup - it's so warming in cold weather.  Today I'm making potato and leek soup, cooked in the slow cooker.  It's Very Easy - just two or three sliced leeks, about a kilo, give or take, of potatoes, a cup of chicken stock (use more if needed), a bay leaf and some thyme, and a knob of butter all chucked in.  Later, you blend it and add a cup or two of milk (quantities vary depending on the variety of potato).  If required, add one or two egg yolks to thicken (just make sure it doesn't boil after this).  Serve with bacon strips sprinkled over the top.

So, into the slow cooker . . . I put it on 'high' just for the first hour, then on low till done.

Simmering nicely a few hours later . . .

and voila!  Dinner is served!

Anyway, after the soup was on, I put some empty jam jars into the oven on low for my next venture - Tomato Jam!

Now, this is not the chutney-ish, savoury kind of tomato jam served in some posh restaurants - no, it is proper sweet jam for toast, scones etc, just like my Nana used to make!  I know tomato jam sounds a bit weird, but it is truly delicious!  I used this recipe.

Having learned a few things from my previous foray into jam making, I did not try to double the recipe, thereby saving myself from numerous spatters of boiling jam and near-overflows.   In fact, it all went surprisingly smoothly!   I ended up with four jars of tomato jam, one of which will go to my Dad, who also loves it.

*Happy Sigh!*  It's been a lovely day.


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