Friday, 8 October 2010

A Picnic in the Autumn Leaves and Boiled Eggs for Breakfast

I love picnics more than lots of things. Food always tastes so much better when you eat it outside and picnics remind me so much of when we were little. We used to do lots of walks and picnics then, in summer and winter, even when it was cold and raining (which it often is up here!) The picnics I remember the most were in high summer, during the hay harvest. Dad would be doing the harvest and every lunchtime over those days, Mum and I would pack some sandwiches and cake (usually chocolate) and we would take it over to where Dad was working to have lunch with him.
I had my heart set on a picnic yesterday (even though it was a bit drizzly) so we packed up the sandwiches, the flask of tea and another trial toffee apple cake and set off for a walk in the autumn leaves.

I also have exciting news from our hen house! We have had some Black Rock hens for some time now, but until yesterday, they hadn’t laid any eggs.
We were putting it down to the stress of moving into a hen house with lots of older, bigger hens so, imagine my excitement when I went to collect the eggs to see 3 tiny, deep brown eggs! I had one boiled for breakfast and it was so lovely.

Sunday, 3 October 2010

A Walk to the Ruined House and a Toffee Apple Cake

Not far from us are the ruins of a lovely old house. We don't often go over to it because it is across the river from us and we would need to take a boat to get to it, but, the other day we decided that this weekend we would make the journey across and go and see it. It's very beautiful but a little bit sad as it's stood in ruins for a long time- it floods so nobody wants to rebuild it.

We had the most gorgeous walk in the autumn sunshine and Porridge adored the little adventure as it was somewhere new.

We also saw these absolutely lovely little pigs and I think I've convinced everyone in our house that we should get some of our own, so we may be adding to the menagerie very soon!

When we got back, we'd had another delivery of some more gorgeously pink apples from a friend. With Bonfire night on the way, I 've been wanting to make a Toffee Apple Cake for a while. I have adapted another recipe and made this apple studded sponge. It's made with olive oil and topped with a butterscotchy icing. We had it for pudding with cream and we really enjoyed it. I'm going to vary it slightly so it's more of a tea time cake rather than a pudding as I'd like to add a cake like this to my range in time for Bonfire Night-nothing makes me think more of this time of year than toffee and apples-apart from maybe sausages and baked potatoes!