In Peterborough we have had a lovely sunny day today. Its nice to wake up with the curtains and blinds open to be greeted by the early morning sun, although with no real warmth in it at present it is far more cheerful than the long grey skies we have been suffering this winter.
Well have had a busy but good practical day. Had an early start this morning and we had kippers with bread and butter followed by melon for breakfast and very tasty it was too. We then ventured to a local freezer centre which has a lot of offers on other bits as well far cheaper than the supermarket and I had to get some bits for my mum there as well.
We then descended on my mum and spent little while with her. It was lovely to see her again and we had a very pleasant time with her, although not long it was lovely and she loved the flowers and chocolates we had bought her and her card. Mind you I got scolded because she told me not to buy her anything. I wasn't having any of that.
We then came back home OH watched the grand prix I got on with housework, and piles of washing. Still have a lot to do, but at least have made a start. The better weather is making me want to do more. The cold tends to make me hibernate.
Where is this year going too - March already I think this year has got its roller skates on. I want to get out and sort the garden out a bit. Its been a lovely sunny day here again, but the wind has had a very cold edge to it so I didn't stay out too long. I am hoping next weekend's weather is okay so that I can make a start on doing some clearing. I have managed to locate my box of seeds so I shall be at some point starting to sort out what I want to have a go at sowing this year.
Some herbs are showing signs of stirring in the garden, chives, thyme, rosemary, oregano, sage and bay leaves so I bought a few of these in stripped the thyme and rosemary off its stalks and chopped the rest and mixed them into some butter. I also added the zest of a lemon and the juice of half a lemon. I then stuffed the shells into the cavity of the chicken - it helps keep the chicken moist and give it a lovely flavour. I then pinched the breast skin of the chicken quite vigorously as this helps to separate the skin from the meat. I then put in two large bay leaves and the herb butter under the skin together with a couple of slices of lemon and thenstood the chicken on a bed of carrot, celery, onion, parsnip, swede and garlic (we crush this down to make a gravy at the end of cooking) and popped a tent of foil over and then popped into the oven Gas Mark 4.
I also did Sweet Potatoes with Rosemary, peas, carrots, broccoli, roast parsnip roast potato mashed potato with the chicken and lashings of gravy. Very tasty it was too.
My Mum bless her heart had made me a large apple pie which we were going to have with tea, but we were both full so that has been put back for tomorrow night when OH will have the remnants of tonight's tea. All I have to do is make some custard.
The gooseberry fool is in the fridge we shall have that later on in the week- if you want the recipe for this I have posted it - just put in Search "Gooseberries".
So I have pretty much kept to my Menu Plan for today which I am quite chuffed about. I am sorting of trying to plan my meals a bit more and use up what we have in the house, including what is in the freezers, the pantry the pickle and jam store etc.
I have also prepared three boxes of sweet potato for the freezer all ready to pop into a pan and just add some rosemary for later on. I have some parsnips and sweed to do similar with. I am very fond of pumpkin, squash, and root vegetables.
I have just prevented a bust up in the street I could hear yowling and Tyson was about. For the past few weeks or so we have had another cat a male interloper prowling Tyson and Merlin's territory and both have been getting a bit hufty pufty. Merlin gets terribly hufty and nothing seems to calm him down and Tyson was having none of it either. He saw the interloper off and then decided he was coming in for his grub. So he is all settled down for the night now (probably lurking in the airing cupboard if I know him).
We are nearly at the bottom of another sack of spuds; we seem to go through one roughly in about 6 weeks. So will have to make some enquiries to see how much they are at the shop. Will probably make some mash for the freezer with the remnants so that can go straight to using the new bag. It will soon be time when won't be able to get them and the only ones will be able to get will be new potatoes. They have their place but I do love my mash and I don't like wasting things.