Friday, September 25, 2009


Monday, May 25, 2009

Housemartin nest

We've had a slightly different nest this year - housemartins

Thursday, May 14, 2009

THE RECIPE - Cheese Ham and Olive Loaf

So, a friend at work (Maria) got into a phase of bringing in luscious food they'd baked, and the best of these was a loaf / slice thing containing olives and ham. I must have eaten about half of it cos not everyone was keen, but it you like olives and ham, and cheese, you've LOVE THIS!!!

So I can't find it anywhere online so I will retype here. For credit, it was in the BBC Good Food Magazine in March, sent in by the wonderfully-named Anne Shrimpton from Lincoln.

I bring you: Cheese Ham and Olive Loaf

Serves 10 (ahem) Prep 15 mins (woohoo) Cook 55-60 mins


150ml / quarter pint of dry white wine

4 eggs

150ml / quarter pint olive oil

250g / 9oz self-raising flour

140g / 5oz Gruyere cheese, grated

200g / 8oz thick slice ham

140g / 5oz pitted green olives

140g / 5oz pitted black olives


1. Heat oven to 190C/fan 170C / gas 5.

Butter a 900g / 2lb loaf tin and line with baking parchment. Beat the white wine and eggs until frothy. Add the oil and sift in the flour, mixing until smooth. Stir in the remaining ingredeinents to combine, then season with salt and pepper.

2. Pour into the prepared loaf tin, smoothing the surface with the back of a sppon. Bake in the oven for 55-60 mins until golden brown and firm to the touch. Cool on a wire rack before cutting into slices, and serving with some chutney or a bowl of soup

Per serving: 368 kcalories, protein 14g, carbs 20g, sat fat 7g, fibre 2g, sugar 1g, salt 2.1g

So there it is, typed in from a photocopy of a photocopy.

TIP: Maria used cooked gammon instead of ham which I suspect made it as wonderful as it was.

When I eventually get round to making this, I will be sure to post some photos :)

Sunday, January 25, 2009

25 Things

It's been ages, I know. So I thought I'd post this thing sent to me via Facebook - you know the deal, tell me about yourself etc. Here are 25 fairly random things about me.

1. My favourite TV programmes (in no particular order) are currently Dexter, My Name is Earl, Come Dine with Me, Time Team, QI, HIGNFY, "Period Drama Shit" (as B calls it), Family Guy & American Dad, Spooks, The News (BBC or C4), Wildlifey programmes.

2. I've just had my first Pilates class

3. I've never seen a dead person but I've never seen a live badger

4. I've lived in this house 5 years and only redecorated the bathroom.

5. I have a mock standing stone in the garden

6. The "My photos" folder on my PC is 51GB - all backed up but I can't bring myself to press delete

7. I've got an old Casio scientific calculator that my Dad bought on 21st May 1981 from Curry's in Carlisle, for £19.95. I know this because it still has the receipt and little booklet with it. It still works (slowly)

8. Most people think my favourite colour is pink, but it's just convenient. It's really a particular shade of blue-grey or grey-blue, but it's hard to describe. Nor can you easily get pyjamas in it.

9. I like wind turbines. Even in unspoilt landscapes.

10. I like high-up places but can't look down over a cliff or my legs turn to jelly.

11. I once went on a Granny's bus trip to Italy. £350 for a fortnight, half board? Damn right! I was the youngest on the bus my quite a bit ...

12. One of my pet hates is toilet brushes.

13. I don't follow a religion but have respect for those who do - I'm simply far too cynical. I'll probably start panicking when I'm about 90, although I don't really expect to live beyond 60.

14. I met B through an internet dating site - he moved in after two days, almost 4 years ago :-)

15. I do enjoy a good sneeze. Preferably from pepper though, not a cold.

16. I hate liars. The worst, most evil sorts of people are the type that talk bullshit but believe it all. It makes me very frustrated and I've had to develop a coping mechanism so I don't end up smacking them around the face.

17. On my bookshelf beside me I have a copy of "500 Bus Stops" on video by John Suttleworth. I no longer possess a VCR but can't throw this away because it's not mine, I borrowed it years ago and have lost touch with the person so here it stays.

18. I hate waste, by that I mean I hate to see things disposed of before reaching their complete potential. That's why I have 50+ used jiffy bags here.

19. I download songs for free. So there. I justify this by saying I only listen to them on the PC, and that's the same as hearing them playing online, right?

20. I started an Open University geology course twice cos I fancied it, but never got past the first book. I seemed to get on better with calculus and organic chemistry... got my degree after 10 years, presented by Betty Boothroyd. Forgotten almost all of it now, of course.

21. The first time I got properly drunk I was 26.

22. I like the idea of reading books but don't because I find it hard work. I can never find a comfortable position to hold the book, then it takes concentration I simply don't posess. Although, I could quite happily study a map for hours.

23. I own a stuffed-toy representation of a flesh-eating bacteria streptococcus pyogenes. It's red and has a little knife and fork.

24. I have a massive 1:500000 map of Scotland on my wall.

25. I have to give my cat an injection of insulin twice a day. She's also on a special diet.

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