Monday, 29 November 2010

Busy Bees


busy (adj)

Synonymsfull, eventful, full of activity, demanding, hard, tiring, hectic

Antonymempty


Synonymsengaged, occupied, unavailable, taken

Antonymfree


Synonymsactive, on the go, hard-working, hard at it, diligent, industrious, in demand, occupied, harried

Antonymidle

Seriously, how does anyone find the time to blog? Miss is up and walking about fully but still has no depth perception and careers about the place with the reckless abandon of a one year old. Short of putting my kids into childcare, I am struggling to find time to write anything. I'm also a bit jaded about the whole blogging phenomenon having taken part in a local workshop recently. The parent section of the blogging event were all middle class ladies with too much money and too much time on their hands so had the leisure of whiling away the hours in front of a laptop while their kids remain glued to CBeebies or whatever the craze is these days. Freebies and parental smugness were the topics of the day and I was repulsed by the whole venture. I remain stoic about the whole process and I'm trying really hard not to yell at the computer when I log into Google Reader to find similar posts featured in blogs that were previously a bit more humble nature.

My life is full of the usual pre-Christmas social engagement and I'm preparing for the two and a half weeks of cooking for various family and friends that comes with this season. My recipes are full of root veg and slow cooked meats and I guess I've just been in a 
weird mental place where my life kicks into a serious routine at this time of year, I guess it wasn't worth blogging about as it's so familiar to me. I'll try and update this thing soon.


Don't get me wrong, I love Christmas. It's my favourite time of year. Ask anyone. I'm like one of Santa's elves. I go overboard on food, in presents, on wrapping, on mulled wine and festive cheer and it's exhausting! I am so looking forward to when the kids activities end as running them here there and everywhere every sodding day of the week is tiring and the programme for next term looks like it'll take over my weekends as well!

It's a bit of a nightmare thinking about festive table settings when your plate is so full!



Recipes this weather are of the porcine variety and given that I've posted so many recipes lately, I'm having a hard time remembering those that I've posted and those that I haven't. So here's a small selection.


Crispy Sage Pork with Apple Slaw


Ingredients

  • 4 x 175g pork loin steaks , fat trimmed
  • 2 slices white bread
  • handful of sage leaves
  • 25g Parmesan , finely grated
  • 1 egg , beaten
  • 1 tbsp oil
  • ½ white cabbage , core removed, finely shredded
  • 4 tbsp buttermilk or low-fat natural yogurt
  • 2 red-skinned apples , halved and sliced
  • lemon wedges, to serve (optional)                                                 


Method

  1. Lay the pork steaks between two sheets of cling film or baking paper and bash with a rolling pin until approx 1cm thick. Whizz the bread in a food processor to make breadcrumbs. Add the sage and pulse a few more times to roughly chop the leaves. Mix in the Parmesan and spread over a large plate. Season with black pepper.
  2. One by one, dip each steak into the beaten egg, allow the excess to drip off, then press into the breadcrumb mix on both sides. Set aside.
  3. Heat the oil in a large non-stick frying pan and fry the steaks for 3-4 mins on each side until cooked through. Meanwhile, mix the cabbage, buttermilk or yogurt and apple, then season. Serve the steaks with the coleslaw and a lemon wedge, if using, for squeezing over.   
Roast Loin of Pork

    Ingredients

    • oil
    • 1.3kg pork loin, boned and rolled (ask your butcher to do this)
    • sea salt
    • 3 eating apples , cut into wedges
    • 1 tbsp plain flour
    • 400ml vegetable or chicken stock , fresh, cube or concentrate                      
    Method                 
    1. Heat the oven to 240C/fan 220C/gas 9. Lightly oil a roasting tin and put it in the oven to get hot. Season the skin of the pork with sea salt, then put the joint in the hot tin and roast for 20 minutes.
    2. Reduce the heat to 190C/fan 170C/gas 5 and roast for a further 30 minutes per 500g. Increase the heat to 240C/fan 220C/gas 9 and cook for a final 10 minutes to get a really crisp and golden crackling.
    3. Take the pork from the tin and rest in a warm place before carving into slices. Meanwhile, drain the excess fat from the roasting tin onto a baking tray. Add the apples to the hot fat, turn to coat all over and roast for 10 minutes. Take out and keep warm.
    4. Put the roasting tin directly over a low heat, sprinkle in the flour and mix well. Then slowly add the stock, stirring well and letting it all bubble together until you have a gravy. Season and sieve into a jug.
    5. Serve the pork with the roasted apples and gravy.  
              

    2 comments:

    1. I can totally see how you could become disillusioned with the blogging world. oddly enough, I've been questioning why I bother myself sometimes lately.
      I filter a lot.
      I don't have the time to read tons and tons of blogs, so I only bother with the ones I know will mean something to me.
      I really enjoy your blog, btw...hope you don't stop writing!
      XXX

      ReplyDelete
    2. @Jean: Thanks so much. I needed a bit of encouragement. I think perhaps I need a bit of re-branding and need to set out from the start that this is my own space for people to pop in and laugh at and is not sponsored by Coco Pops or CBeebies! xx

      ReplyDelete

    Thanks for taking the time to comment!