Taking a (cake) stand

My mum, god bless her five-foot-nothing existence, is super terrible at accepting gifts. If she could find a way to ensure that nobody got her presents on her birthday, let alone on Mother’s Day, she’d do it. Fortunately, we never let her get away with it. Open these presents. Drink this prosecco. Look at these flowers, mum, god damn it.

However, we all hate having to go out into the world on days like Mother’s Day because everywhere is heaving, there are people everywhere, and it’s way too expensive for us to even get tipsy. My mum, in spite of the fact that she is half my weight and half a foot shorter than me, can pretty much drink me under the table, and that’s saying something; there are only so many bottles of wine you can order in a restaurant before you have to take out a second mortgage (and before they start giving you alarmed looks).

So instead of doing that, we swept into her home to cook her a meal and give her cake.

(Which obviously I made.)

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Thank you to Kerr, one of my favourite people in the world, for getting me these awesome rose cutters from Lakeland for Christmas!

It’s a little messy and unrefined*, but there’s a surprise inside…


My first attempt at marbling was a success! Recipe coming soon, folks.

I was tasked with the main course, so I decided to make a big batch of smoked fish and potato chowder, which was a huge hit with everyone. Naturally, I completely neglected to take any photos (because I had a wooden spoon in one hand and a glass of wine in the other), but I’ll be making it again soon and will post the recipe later this month, along with the marble cake. My brother made mushroom tarts to start, and my sister made a pretty stunning bread & butter pudding – which was especially impressive considering that it was her first attempt. A job well done by all!

Some damn fine genes going on here.

While I was home** I took the liberty of borrowing one of my favourite cookbooks, ‘Rose Elliot’s Complete Vegetarian Cookbook‘, which is essentially a treatise on cooking vegetarian without subsisting on raw carrots and tofu. It’s starting to fall apart, there are no pictures, and some of the recipes are a little dated (asparagus and almond ring, anyone?) but there are some absolute gems in there as well. Incidentally, I went to University with her granddaughter, and lived with her for two years. She is also an absolute gem.

(Hi Jess!)

Finally, please gaze in awe upon the early birthday present my brother and his fiancée presented me with yesterday:


That, my friends, is almost 3kg of various cheeses, and a Harry Potter fleece blanket. The boy did good.

I sincerely hope everyone has had a wonderful weekend (and big hugs to anyone who’s finding today a little difficult). Once I’ve digested my frankly massive cooked breakfast I’ll get my digits flexing and start typing up some more recipes – I’m starting to wonder if I should have eaten that last sausage.


*Like me! I don’t think my Coca Cola lounge pants are going to be appearing on the catwalk any time soon. Certainly not by themselves. Self-wearing trousers – the future of fashion! God, I’m so sorry. I’m just really tired.

**I confuse myself every time I go home because I call my mum’s house ‘home’ and our flat… ‘home’. I do not differentiate. Where am I at any given time? Who knows! Certainly not me.

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