Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Tuesday updates!

Paul completed day 4 of his 9 day epic journey across Britain today. Half way through tomorrow he is half way to the finish - and half way to being home!
Hello again Mr Map!
If you haven't had a look at his blog yet, you can find it here. We have faithfully plotted his course everyday and Lochie is definitely becoming aware of the huge journey Paul is on. DIG DEEP PAUL, WE LOVE YOU SO MUCH XXX

We have settled into a little rhythm and I am finding my comfort zone - helped by Bebe really enjoying the time she is spending at school. As with everything in life, this week hasn't been as hard on my own as I thought it would be.  I have amazing friends and I have so much support - so much so that I have been able to run and swim, and in terms of nourishment, I am being looked after in all senses of the word!
Here I am, sweaty running Sarah, looking forward to getting back and chowing down on.. Still in awe of my ability to just go out for a run.. When does it become the norm?
Peanut Rocky Road chocolate amazingness + Gingerbread skulls = heaven.  Thank you Vikki x

This evening I hosted the first of what I hope will become an annual event, a 'Mincemeat Bash', basically all my friends came round, we chatted and made mincemeat.  Simples.  I really enjoyed myself - I hope they did too!
We are lucky enought to have 3 apple tress in our garden, and our ingenious friend Dave invented the Apple Claw a couple of years ago to ensure we could reach the highest of apples (its basically a hand rake gaffa taped to a long pole!)
The trees have not really fruited this year - normally I struggle to use the whole crop, but this year I have only really got enough for the mincemeat - sad times!
I pull the apples off with the claw, the children collect them in

Peeling, coring and de-bruising 4kgs of apples is time consuming - perfect for a bit of a gossip! (Lets note the festive table cloth and my bike, Amy, joining in in the back ground!)
We simmered our cider to dissolve the brown sugar in two pans
Added all the other ingredients and simmered for half an hour - the house smelt AMAZING!
We then poured both pans into one large bowl to make sure all the quantities were equally mixed and added rum
Before jarring it all up - the best bit of all?  By sharing out the cost, and getting the apples from the garden, it cost £3 each - HUGE BARGAIN!

I make this mincemeat every year and its fool proof - tastes better the longer you leave it!

Hettie Potter’s suet-free Mincemeat
Makes about 2kg (doubled this evening)

250g soft dark sugar
250ml medium dry cider
1 kg cooking apples, peeled, halved and quartered
1/2 tsp mixed spice
1/2 tsp ground cinnamon
250g currants
250g raisins
75g glace cherries, roughly chopped
75g blanched almonds, finely chopped
rind and juice of 1/2 lemon
6 tbsp brandy or rum
In large saucepan, dissolve the sugar in the cider over a gentle heat. Add the roughly chopped apples to the saucepan. Add all the ingredients, apart from brandy/rum and simmer for around 30 min until everything has a pulpy consistency. Take off the heat and when it has cooled slightly stir in brandy/rum.

I always quadruple the spice and cinnamon quantities, and double the lemon, but half the rum.  Yummers!

And lastly, all the green beans were harvested yesterday.  I trimmed, topped, tailed, chopped and blanched them and now have 12 portions in the freezer!  Ticked all my homemaker boxes!


  1. Wow! You got so much done! I love that you used apples from your garden. Sounds like fun :)

  2. This looks so good - I can almost taste the mince pies!! What a great idea :)

  3. Thanks for your comments Plumpetals, I love that you join in - I will be over to do the same!

  4. Holls! Welcome home! I love that my inbox has just filled up with all your comments as you catch up on my little old blog x x

  5. Hi Sarah. Loving the blog! I wanted to, no wait.... HAD to comment on your blog as you mentioned the delicious word taht is "chai". Nothing better than a chai tea or a chai latte!!! Mmmmmnnnn! Lunch looks pretty tasty too :) Keep on blogging!

  6. Hi Vikki, thanks for getting involved - Peeps, Vikki is in the mincemeat pic above, feeding her daughter Olivia. Vikki is also the supplier of the rocky road and the gingerbread skulls x x