I woke up and left my warm bed very early today. I couldn’t remember what I was doing this week and it was bugging me so I came downstairs, made a pot of tea and checked out my calendar. I was first up and enjoyed the tranquility and peace of an empty and quiet kitchen.
I have recently discovered the pleasures of loose leaf tea and the simple ceremony of making it in a pot. This is a special pot. It was given to me by work colleagues when I left London to live in New York for a year in 1994. They thought I needed to remember my Englishness when I was away. I believe Julia chose the pot and the elegant silver tea strainer. It was a thoughtful gift and has been treasured ever since. More to come about those work colleagues on Friday!
It is half term so I made chocolate porridge for breakfast. I make porridge as usual and just add 1 tsp of cocoa powder. So simple but very much enjoyed by Harvey and it makes a change for me too. We ate it with strawberries, raspberries, pomegranate and hazelnut butter.
Harvey was busy all day and on my way home from dropping him at a friends I drove past the pumpkin and gourd stall on the Tenterden Road. This stall is at the end of the drive to the house where it is all grown. It is such a great stall and at the moment is selling pumpkins, squashes, gourds, pickles, eggs, apples and tomatoes. All this only 10 minutes drive from my house 🙂 NB another sunny day.
Huge pumpkins. They are so beautiful and reasonably priced. I bought the large one on the right hand side of the picture for carving.
I spent £11.50 and came home with a massive orange pumpkin, 4 small orange pumpkins, a grey pumpkin for eating and about 12 ornamental gourds. Happy shopper 🙂
Lunch time. I had some rice to eat up so I made Egg Fried Rice. I picked some chard from the garden and assembled the other ingredients.
- To make it I heated 1 tbsp sesame oil in a frying pan and lightly fried the spring onion and chopped up chard stalks.
- I then added the chard greens and rice
- While that cooked, I lightly whisked the eggs and added some soy sauce and sesame oil to the eggs.
- I pushed the rice and greens to the outside of the pan and added the eggs to cook. I do this because I like pieces of egg to eat with the rice. You could cook it by mixing it all together but then you don’t get the larger eggy bits.
I was tidying the kitchen this afternoon and noticed the basil plant needed trimming. I used the trimmings to make some Pesto. I make pesto so Harvey, who is dairy intolerant, can eat it as most shop bought pesto has cheese in it. It was so easy. I put some basil leaves, walnuts and olive oil in to the small blender and blitzed until smooth. Traditionally pesto is made with pine nuts but I didn’t have any so I used walnuts. You can use any nuts.
I put the gourds in a large perspex bowl so I could see through it. What a constant source of pleasure it is.
For supper I made prawn fajitas as I had picked up some raw king prawns which were heavily discounted at the supermarket this morning. Fajitas are so easy! Chop up and lightly fry a red onion and a yellow and red pepper.
I served them with a corn tortilla, half fat sour cream, some of the pesto I made earlier and cheddar cheese. We all, including Harvey’s friend, who is here for a sleepover, totally enjoyed them. Yum.