Tuesday, 1 October 2013

To keep hands busy!

So while on my Facebook yesterday, i noticed this book on my news feed, it was apart of the new autumn range in a lovely little shop in Cowes here on the island called Live Like This

The little book at the bottom right corner... 

on a closer inspection!!
The book looks so lovely, i shared it a little bit and its gotten alot of positive feed back, and what was lovely was finding it a few of the feary people i know were apart of the process!! the ever so lovely Lottie Juliet of Dear SweetlingsNatalee Luna May of many enchanting blogs such as The Wildswans both feature. The knitting magic comes from the wonderful hands of  Stephanie Dosen owner and editor of Tiny Owl Knits!! Seeing this wonderful book has made me wish i had enjoyed my mother trying to teach me how to knit. It might be a case i getting her to teach me again, and this time time i shall pay attention, the horned hat with the ears on the front cover has stirred something in me and i would like to make one, also i can see me saving a small fortune on gloves and scarfs!!! You really can't beat homemade! the idea of trying to be as self sufficient is growing ever stronger with me. I guess my hearth and home side calling to me.

I can see this being a book for manly drawn to the world of woodland creatures and an element of the fae world as well.

Lets get preserving

Its this time of year where harvesting is fully underway and a time of stocking up those cupboards for the cold winter months that will be with us before long.

Admittedly my little patio veg plot hasn't done amazingly, but it wasn't all bad, and to be fair i didn't have to fork out for salad during the summer, as i had that by the pot load, If you've put off growing things for fear it won't work, the "come back again salad leafs" are fool proof, they grow pretty quickly from seed and you'll have enough leafs for decent sized salads, my only tip: leave it a day or two for the plant to have a chance to grow some more leaves for picking.

Last September i bought a Raspberry plant, it was only £2 something, a bargain compared to how much you pay out for the berries, It bore a few berries but started on a big growth spurt where its now got 3 main stems? so its really leafy and a lovely shade of green, and I've been surprised to see it fruiting again, not many but enough to scatter in my porridge, and there was enough on Saturday to pop in my croissant.

I'm also growing a pumpkin, that was a surprise! i must have saved a seed from pumpkin carving last year and forgotten all about it, now that's a tricky plant! maybe because i put it in a pot and it would rather the freedom to crawl along the ground, unfortunately i don't yet have the space to do that.

I'd also planted chillies and peppers, but due to the very cold start to the sowing season, mine are still miles away from being where they "should" be at this time. I was hoping to make Nigellas Chilli Jam from my own garden, but alas i had to go and buy them. On the plus side last week i got given kilo of tomatoes from my Mr's aunt who owns an alloment. So i turned that into Tomato Chutney. Something so rewarding turing home grown goods, into something that you can keep stored. these two preserves will go perfectly for a night of wines, cheese and crackers! mind you the Mr said that he's quite like the tomatoe chutney toppped on a buger.

So if you'd like to try your hand at presvering- again if you've been put off these two recipes are nice and easy to get you started.

Nigellas Chilli Jam

Tomatoe chutney - found on BBC Good Food


  • 500g red onions, finely sliced
  • 1kg tomato, chopped
  • 4 garlic cloves, sliced
  • 1 red chilli, chopped (optional)
  • 4 cm piece ginger, peeled and chopped
  • 250g brown sugar
  • 150ml red wine vinegar
  • 5 cardamom seeds
  • ½ tsp paprika

    Tip all the ingredients into a large heavy-based pan and bring to a gentle simmer, stirring frequently. Simmer for 1 hr, then bring to a gentle boil so that the mixture turns dark, jammy and shiny. Place into sterilised jars and allow to cool before covering. Will keep for 6 weeks.

    I've been blackberry picking also and i shall be turning those into a jam along side apple and cinnamon, a perfect combination for Yule.Should be interesting as i've not made a fruit jam before.

    Happy October!!!!

Wednesday, 18 September 2013

Lets get back to it...

The Island is full of golden orange sunshine, quite the contrast from yesterday. It was howling and and very blustery! full on downpours and leafs were circling and flying about! defiantly not going out weather! Nope instead it was a day to bake and snuggle away.

I baked a Apple and Cinnamon cake - what better warming scents and flavors are there? they just scream Autumn comfort.


2 cups of self raising flour

1 Cup of Brown Sugar
200ml of Milk
100 ml of Veg Oil
2 large eggs
1tsp of Cinnamon
1tsp of Mixed Spice.
About 2 large cooking apple
Lemon Juice.

Pre Heat the oven to 190c
Peel apple and thinly slice. pop apples in a bowl and pour over lemon juice, this helps to stop the apple going brown.
In a bowl add the dry ingredients - flour, sugar and spice. in a jug mix together the Oil, egg and milk, give a  quick whisk to blend then pour liquid into dry mix, give a light stir then add the apples.Once all combine, pour mixture into a lined cake tin and pop in the oven for 40mins until nice and golden on top.
Serve warm with custard or ice cream.


Friday, 13 September 2013

Deary me!!!

Such time has passed since i last posted!!! very bad on my part!!!
But i'm feeling the mood is back for me to blog.

So whats been going on in the last 9 months? well i've been to Canada which was amazing!, My cooking styles are getting better with each thing i put my hand too. Summer was lovely lots of BBQ's, meals out and drinking and dancing many a night away.

Autumn is setting in and this is why i now think i'm ready to blog again, more time spent at home, lots more cooking and baking, making the flay more and more home like!, I've got a few DIY projects up my sleeve so hopefully that should see my blog become very homely and more rounded.

Keep your eyes peeled for more post from now on.

Much Love
Sharon xxx

Thursday, 13 December 2012

The Gingerbread House...

So here it is (finally) the gingerbread house!
sorry for the delay, losing my card reader then forgetting where i placed my camera!!!

Admittedly its not the best looking house- well tent as i've come to call it! but given it was my 1st time EVER doing this, and i'm not creative in any way shape or form, i think i did pretty darn good!!! i will definitely be investing in a gingerbread house cookie cutter set! i cut this out myself freehand and it worked, but i want a house for sure next year!!

Friday, 7 December 2012

Gingerbread house inspiration

Tomorrow afternoon I'll be finger deep in sweets, icing and gingerbread. I've decided to have a go at making and decorating a gingerbread house, with the trimmings that i can load it with, I'm a huge fan of gingerbread! its been may favorite thing since i can remember, and of we're all familiar with the witches gingerbread house from the tale of Hansel and Gretal by The Brothers Grimm, a house covered with all the sweetness children love and adore!

Hansel and Gretel
Michael Hague
Its safe to say that building gingerbread in Germany and other European countries is pretty big, and its all apart of the festive celebrations, Since 1991, the people of Bergen, Norway, have built a city of gingerbread houses each year before Christmas. Named Pepperkakebyen (Norwegian for "gingerbread city"), it is claimed to be the world's largest such city. It's free for every child under the age of 12 to make their own house with the help of their parent.

Pepperkakebyen, The Gingerbread city of Bergen

^ pretty impressive right?

So i decided to have a go at it myself, I'm headed to a friend house to do it, shes got a little boy who i know can't wait to have a go himself. I'm off up to the shops later on tonight to pick up some goodies, and I've been looking on the internet for inspiration, there are some fab creations out there, not sure I'll do as well, but its all apart of the fun!

Roll on tomorrow, think hot chocolates and festive music will have to be included as well!
Will up-date as soon as i can! 

Hope you're all keeping warm and toasty.

Wednesday, 28 November 2012

Last nights dinner....

Last night the Mr cooked - he cooks far more often then i do, I'm more the baker in our little household. we did a shop last week and Lee picked up a stir in spice packet by Schwartz, he went for the  Pork Apple And Cider Casserole Mix. out of all the stir in items you can get i have to say the I'm more than happy to go for the spice ones, sometimes we don't always have the "right" spices to hand and the spices them selves can be a bit pricey. so we bought some sausages (the packet suggests pork loin or chicken)   - the apple and cider variety. I've been using my dutch oven a lot as well, I'm so please with it! only £20 from TKMaxx my first purchase from there, i think I'll be going back again soon!!

So here's the recipe

1 tbs oil
450g (1lb) pork, cubed - (We used 6 sausages)
1 onion, chopped
125g (5oz) mushrooms, sliced
1 packet Schwartz Pork, Apple & Cider Casserole Winter Recipe Mix
300ml (½ pint) cider
1 apple, cored and cut into wedges

1. Pre-heat the oven to 180°C, 350°F, Gas Mark 4.
2. Heat the oil and fry the pork for 4-5 minutes in a deep frying pan until browned.  Add the onion and fry for 2-3 minutes, then add the mushrooms and fry for a further 2-3 minutes.
3. Blend the packet contents with the cider, add to the pan and bring to the boil.  Transfer to a casserole dish, cover and cook in the oven for 30 minutes.
4. Add the apple, cover and cook for a further 30 minutes.
5. Serve with creamy mashed potato.

I think it turned out pretty damn well!!, the mash was amazing! Lee doesn't like it so much but he knows how to make it super creamy and melt in the mouth!, i reckon i'll be picking up some more of these mixes, they do a slow cooker range, we have one but haven't used it so with the festive season creeping ever more upon us, i don't want to be spending all my time in the kitchen, i want to come home and dinner is ready and waiting! ... i love cooking but at this time of year i like things quick,easy and hearty! but also healthy!

Happy Cooking