Wednesday, 16 April 2014

Lurking in the fridge

You  may have seen my quick post, What can I cook with these? on Monday. Well, when I started pulling the odds and ends out of my fridge yesterday, it was worse than I feared..... as well as everything shown below, there were 4 rashers of streaky bacon and a stub of cucumber. The bacon got used in my cookathon, the cucumber will be added to a tuna sandwich for my lunch today.

The green goop in the bowl is homemade wild garlic pesto, by the way. The tiny Tupperware contains an egg white. And I have  all the usual supplies - flour, butter, oils, onions, potatoes and rice, as well as lots of lovely fresh herbs in the garden.

So here's what I made with them

Potato salad - the new potatoes, diced and mixed with mayonnaise, a little of the juice from the lemon and some chopped chives.

Chinese leaf and carrot salad -  using two of the carrots, dressed with the rest of the lemon juice, beaten together with olive oil, seasoning and finely chopped parsley

Mixed savoury soda bread scones - using the pesto, sundried tomato paste and Kalamata paste - recipe at the bottom of this post.

Risotto - using the bacon, cherry tomatoes, Parmesan and Philadelphia. I don't think I'll use Philly in a risotto again, it made it too rich and rather sickly. The Philly would have been better on toasted slices of the home made spiced fruit loaf that's lurking in my bread bin.

Gardeners pie - the rest of the veg - carrots, cauliflower, broccoli and beans, cooked up and mixed with parsley sauce. Potatoes boiled and mashed then mixed with the grated Cheddar and the dregs of the Elmlea cream-like-substance (milk, cream or sour cream would work just as well). It will be baked until brown and crispy on top, probably helped along with a bit of butter, for dinner tonight. I'm not giving a detailed recipe as the whole point of this is that it's a "use what you have " dish. Just about any veg would work here, and any cheese you have for the mash. Failing cheese, some mustard and/or herbs would liven it up, but in that case the dish wouldn't contain any significant protein. A couple of hard boiled eggs cut into wedges and places on top of the veg before topping with the potato would sort out that problem nicely!

So, two main means, two sides and a box of snacks, all from odds and ends that were in danger of being thrown away! Hence,  I'm joining in with the No Waste Food Challenge at JibberJabberUK and Elizabeth's Kitchen Diary.

And with all those veg, especially in the Gardeners Pie, I'm also joining in with Extra Veg at  Fuss Free Flavours and Utterly Scrummy

Right, on we go with the recipe for those scones, if I haven't lost you by now!

300g plain flour
1 tsp caster sugar
1 tsp salt
1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 carton of buttermilk (I used about 280ml)
any or all of sundried tomato paste, kalamata olive paste, pesto

Heat the oven to 230C (210C fan)/ 450F/ gas 8

Line 2 baking trays with non stick paper

Sift the dry ingredients into a bowl, mixing well, then stir in the buttermilk. Start by adding about two thirds of it - the amount you will need can vary according to the temperature and humidity in your kitchen.  Keep in adding it until the mixture forms a light, soft dough.

Working quickly and lightly, divide this into as many portions as you have toppings, then roll the dough out into rectangles about 7mm thick, spread with the your chosen toppings, roll up swiss roll style and cut into slices, Place well apart  on the baking trays. At this point, I brushed them with lightly beaten egg white but I don't think it added anything to them - it did make me feel I'd used the egg white though!

Bake in the preheated oven. We like our baked goods very well done so I cooked them for 15 minutes, but start checking them after 12 if you like things less well done.

Monday, 14 April 2014

Something old, something new

Doesn't it bug you when you have an idea for a card clear in your head and when you make it, it turns out to be nothing like your mental picture? That's what happened with this one - in my mind's eye, the butterfly motif was smaller, and sat more neatly over the doyley, the shades of green matched more exactly and the whole thing looked more elegant and pulled together. I guess that's what you get for lying awake planning cards in the middle of the night when you should be sleeping!

The theme at CD Sundays this week is Something old, Something new  and I've used some of my very oldest and newest items of stash in it. First the CD the butterfly and dragonfly came from is Carol Ann's Studio CD-17, Dragonflies, which was one of the first CDs I ever bought. The lilac pearlescent card I've used for the card blank is about 10 years old, the darker purple card I used for matting is from a box I bought last week, and the yellow card mottled with pink and peach streaks (which don't show up clearly in the photo) was from some I bought on the day before my father's funeral (it's funny the things we remember about times like that!) 15 years ago. But the embossing folder I used to add the script to it with is so new I hadn't even opened the packet! The dragonfly brad is several years old but the doyley and buttons are both very new. And after sticking the buttons to the card, I noticed that the pink one has the word "FAT" on it. Charming!

What can I cook with these?

I try hard to plan ahead so that everything gets used up, but the odds and ends are starting to accumulate after the weekend.

So in the interest of eliminating food waste, what can I make with an egg white, the juice of a lemon (the rind's gone), a stub of Parmesan rind, 10 cherry tomatoes, half a tub of Philadelphia light  and some Kalamata paste? As well as the usual fridge and cupboard basics, I have buttermilk, low fat crème fraiche and lots of carrots. Oh, and the tail end of a head of Chinese leaves.

Sunday, 13 April 2014

Going for an Indian

I bet you are expecting a curry recipe now, aren't you?

But actually here is a card inspired by the Indian flag. The current Daring Cardmakers challenge is Flag it up - to make a card inspired by a national flag. I chose the Indian flag, mostly because of the flower circle in the middle which I thought would work well on a card.

I used swooshes of watercolour to represent the orange and green bands, picking out the colour with matching Candi. The flower and circle are cut with Spellbinders dies.

At a snail's pace

When you're travelling at a snail's pace, it takes a long time to go a short distance, so to a snail, just the other side of the garden must seem very far away. I wonder if, when a snail gets to the far side, the other snails at the first side miss them?

This is my entry to ATCAS #36 - Far Away

In the shadows

I've been experimenting with shadow stamping, inspired by the latest challenge at Less Is More, which is Shadow Stamping

To create the shadow, I stamped the fern in Versamark ink and then chalked over the image in green chalk, first with the applicator tool from the chalk palette and then to even it out and blend away the edges, with a cotton wool ball. Then I overstamped the image in black Memento ink.

On the first card I made, I picked out the colours of the image with Candi embellishments.

Then I remembered that this week it is a one layer challenge - slapped wrist - so I had to make another card. As the image is quite strong and masculine, I thought this was a good opportunity to adapt it to the current Time Out challenge, too - Happy Birthday with a masculine twist

So here is my finished card - although I have to confess that I really prefer my original Candi-embellished version!

Going Buggy: Calibrating a Scan N Cut - and a GIVEAWAY

Just a quick post to let you know about a great giveaway at Going Buggy. And it's open worldwide, although the prize will vary according to where you live.

Going Buggy: Calibrating a Scan N Cut - and a GIVEAWAY

I'll be back later with a card or two to share  if I ever get my crafting mojo into gear today!