Friday, 15 April 2016

a feeling freezing five on Friday

1)
brrrr it's chilly. I've spent all week looking at pictures of sunshine and spring flowers  from the south of England on instagram and wondering why I'm so cold.
oh that's because this is the north.....

2)
I am waiting impatiently for signs of spring. And warmth. The only spring there is round here is a new coil spring for front wheel of the car when it had it's MOT yesterday. The lady who rang me told me it needed it, how much it would be (ouch) and then that it wouldn't pass the MOT without a new one. So did I want it fixed? Urm let me think about that for a minute..... Honestly..... no I want to drive around with an unsafe and illegal vehicle........

3)
It's the local spring show tomorrow. I've just been out in my freezing garden (did I mention I was cold?) to try and find anything suitable to enter.
Everything is either
a) chewed - mice? pigeons? daffodil climbing snails?
b) rain battered and mud splattered
c) not flowering yet. it's too cold...............
d) fairly pathetic but none of the above so it will have to do........

4)
I also found a jar of marmalade to enter.  (I found that in the cupboard not the garden by the way....)
There seems to be a great deal of variation in marmalade recipes. Some chop the oranges, then boil, some boil them whole and then chop. Should the chopping be fine strips, or is it ok to throw the whole lot in the food processor and whizz it? Which is right? I have marmalade angst.

5)
I shall not be entering any baking.There are no classes for dairy free/gluten free cakes, and they never taste quite the same as a muggle* cake, so we'll just admire other peoples efforts. Also All baking classes at all the local shows are won by the same lady. I am somewhat baffled as to how she makes 15 or 20 cakes for each show. How big is her oven. Does she buy sugar by the ton? Does she make 20 of each at the same time, defrosting one each time she needs it? Or does she have a time machine?


So any marmalade tips? Any signs of spring and sunshine where you live? And if so you can send some up here please! I'm off to make a pot of tea and try and get warm.
Have a lovely weekend x

joining in with Amy's five on Friday.


*In the Harry Potter books a muggle is a person who lacks any magical ability. In our house a muggle is someone who isn't gluten free....

37 comments:

  1. I wasn't cold until I read this, I down here in the south and now I'm blinking freezing, brrrrr

    As to marmalade, I think anything goes. this year for the first time ever and this would not win prizes we were rushed for time and blitzed it in the processor!! Added dashes of different alcohol to each jar and now have a great variety. all taste good but not award winning stuff.

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  2. Its cold here too and damp. I think marmalade is down to personal taste I generally chop to fine strips and then boil, I add a drop of whiskey for a special occasion.

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    1. it didn't occur to me to add whisky! yum x

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  3. I hope your marmalade is more successful than mine was - the lady judge hated it! Quite rude. I like it dark and bitter; the one that won was light and very sweet. Oh well, we love it. I boil my oranges whole before I chop them up. And don't worry about the flowers. Just taking part and entering is brilliant. Good luck x

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    1. oh now I have marmalade angst.... I think mine is probably too runny, which is how I like it... But like you, I shall just think well I love it! It is fun to take part and even my tatty flowers will add to the over all impact! My floating ones in a bowl were all sinking as I left!

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  4. It's cold and wet here and the plum and pear blossom is only just coming out. I've just been reading a recipe for a GF orange and almond cake which looks delicious. I always follow Delia when jam and marmalade making and her method is squeeze the oranges saving all the pith and pips into a muslin bag and then shred the peel before simmering for two hours or until the peel is soft. Then you extract as much pectin as you can by squeezing the muslin bag of all its jelly-like contents, add sugar and fast boil until you have a set, which can take as long as half an hour. Shredding the peel by hand is actually quite therapeutic providing you have a good sharp knife. Have fun at the show!

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    1. I did it like that, squeezing the oranges and putting the pith in a bag (that used to be my grans). I whizzed the peel in the machine though..... That cake sounds nice, I do like the combination of orange and almond.

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  5. We are freezing cold here, too. I guess I am even further North. I have never participated in a show but I quite fancy it although I am not good at baking (I leave this to my daughter), nor growing stuff. The perpetual winner of your show is probably superhuman and turns all other contestants that might have a fighting chance of winning into cake. Failing that, she may be a vampire. Good luck with the marmalade. Wishing you a warmer weekend. x

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  6. It's a bit nippy down south today and very wet. My marmalade recipe is the one that comes with the bag of oranges and I shred the peel first. Maybe you should take a tip from Calendar Girls and for the show buy a cake from M&S! Love the Muggle reference. xx

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    1. Yes, my bag of oranges had that version of the recipe too, I followed it and read Delia's recipe too.
      I love that scene in Calendar Girls. We've met several of them, my husbands research is paid for by their fundraising.

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  7. Love your use of muggle. It's not been hugely springlike here. The odd good day, but it's going to be down to zero tomorrow night apparently. Good luck with the marmalade. I've never made any, but I do love it. I'm the only one in this house who does, so occasionally I buy a jar. Lemon and lime are particularly scrumptious. It's often the way that the same person wins isn't it. There used to be a couple down at the allotment site who won "Best Allotment" every single year. They withdrew in the end to give other people a chance. Now it is a close battle between three or four others. Wishing you a good weekend. CJ xx

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  8. No mara malady tulips, sorry. I live dahn sahf and Weds and Thurs were 20-deg, very summery, but now I'm visiting my Mum in NIreland and it's freezing windy and rainy!
    Hope you warm up soon,
    Jillxx

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  9. We have had cold wind today, just went outside for a minute... The spring progresses very s l o w l y... You are not alone with these feelings!

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    1. hope it warms up for you too soon x

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  10. It has been cold today after the warmer days we had earlier this week. My big coat and gloves came out again. I haven't made marmalade for a few years, we always used to chop the peel in thin slivers with a sharpe knife before cooking which does take ages and I think that is why we stopped making it in the end:)

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  11. hmm Signs of spring here... some of the summer birds are back and a few perennials have popped up. The snow is gone. Other than that it's dreadfully brown and muddy.

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    1. oh we have plenty of mud too. I'm hopeful for more spring soon x

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  12. No marmalade tips, sorry absolutely hate the stuff. Its cold here too, we have had a few days of warmth but they have gone now, that is probably our spring and summer over and now Autumn is back. The daffodils have all gone limp with the frost and snow we had earlier in the week :(

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    1. oh now, was that one warm day summer and we're back to winter. it does feel like that. poor daffodils........

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  13. Rain all day here. Still lighting the wood burner every evening and have very toasty knitwear on.
    I have no idea re the marmalade situation. Lemon curd would be an entirely different thing... I am quite an expert in that department!
    xxxx

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  14. Cold here too but the sun is shining at the moment so I'm hopeful for the lawn getting cut today. I prefer a fine shred marmalade myself though the majority of mine gets used up in cakes or as a glaze xx

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  15. Haha from now on I will call all the cakes I can't eat muggle cakes :) I made marmalade for the first time last year and cooked the whole orange cutting them into strips after. It seemed an easier way to do it than peeling and cutting while they are hard.

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    1. it can apply to other things as well as cake. muggle bread, muggle pasta, muggle chocolate xxx makes it much easier for my brain to stop feeling sorry for itself when I can't have it........
      I'm a bit terrified of the whole orange thing, I have visions of trying to cut up boiling hot oranges that spit lava hot juice at me. I suppose it would be wise to let them cool x

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  16. marmalade angst made me giggle, I hope things have warmed up. We have some sunshine here but still not particularly warm. We wandered around the garden today, and everything still looked very much asleep for the winter! x

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  17. No marmalade tips my dear, but you did make me laugh - which warmed me up! (Cornwall isnt that warm today either...)

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    1. but Cornwall looks so warm. You know how cold it is up here, please tell me you're warmer x then I know that at least someone isn't frozen x

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  18. Sorry it is so cold but you did make me laugh! As for the marmalade... Surely anything goes if you made it yourself. Bound to taste good x

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  19. It's been a beautiful day here but still so cold. I can't help with the marmalade I'm afraid. It's not something I've ever made, though you've now got me thinking that maybe I should. X

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    1. oh you should! although don't take any tips from me...........

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  20. Sorry to hear it's still cold in your area, but that was us even this past week. Today it's up to 20C suddenly, and I'm able to sit on the patio and blog ... bliss :) I find that many fair entries are won by the same people, and with $3 for prize money, they're welcome to all the ribbons!! I would like to know what the lady does with all the cakes when she's finished!
    Wendy

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    1. I wonder what she does with them too. I hope she gives them to charity coffee mornings, but perhaps she eats them all.........

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  21. I think you can do just about anything with the orange peels? I like long, thin strips myself. I think the chewiness is nice. But I know some people (including some of the people who seem to suffer politely through my marmalade) prefer a very fine chop. I don't know, suit yourself and don't worry! :)

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  22. Hmmm, sorry about the marmalade advice -- sadly, we don't make it here. I'm betting a warm-up is coming your way soon -- it's been beautiful here for the last few days -- our first real warm days of spring.

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  23. muggle. funny.
    lack of spring. not funny. at all. depressing actually.

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  24. I'm obviously way behind with my reading, but I do remember April being really cold down here if that's any comfort. If you're still freezing now though, then I'd best not talk about our weather. I'm not a marmalade fan so I'm no good for advice, but one perk of catching up late is that hopefully I'm not going to be kept in suspense and am about to find out the verdict on your marmalade...

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