thought for the day

I was after a needlecase, and found a nice old one on ebay. I always like it when these things contain their original threads and notions. But what really drew me to this particular case was its prim little maxim: These lines are conventional, and may appear elsewhere, but I know them from William King’s…

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kvikk lunsj

When Martha Joy left a comment comparing Tantallon‘s colour scheme to the wrapping of a Norweigan chocolate bar, I was intrigued. I just had to see it for myself. We agreed to a little exchange, and she kindly sent me a couple of kvikk lunsj in return for a taste of one of Scotland’s finest…

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happy tortoise and hare day!

The tortoise and the hare is finished! I am pleased with it! I am not ashamed to admit that I had foolish ideas about an appropriate photo location, for which I blame a poster I saw a while ago advertising the LMS railway. The poster was from the 1920s, and like many of this era,…

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Gie her a haggis

I’ve been marking Burns-themed exam scripts today, so this evening’s supper feels quite timely. This particularly sonsie incarnation comes from Crombies. May I heartily recommend the ‘great chieftan o the puddin race’ to those of you on the other side of the Atlantic who have been denied the pleasures of Scottish offal for the past…

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help me to win an egg cup

Clearly I have gone blog-post-crazy today, but I just noticed from my all-seeing ‘blog stats’ page that some lovely person (who? who are you?) has nominated me for a Dorset Cereals blog award. Now, generally, I don’t pay much attention to such things, but I like Dorset Cereals and this award involves some homely merchandise…

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mead magic

Last summer, when we were walking on Jura, we buried some home-brewed mead above the gulf of corryvreckan. Yesterday we retraced our steps, and returned to find it. I heart Jura. Seven miles and a very enjoyable walk later, we climbed up a cliffside on the remote and empty north-west of the island and wondered…

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York Craft Tour

(Felix in Duttons). I am busy. I do not find long working days particularly good for either body or soul. During periods of insane activity, one must always find a little time to spend in the restorative presence of friends, and it was great to meet up with Felix the other day. We spent a…

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piccalilli

While Tom made piccalilli, I thought about pickles in Rushdie and Arundhati Roy, and then spent a happy couple of hours investigating the condiment’s eighteenth-century origins. The earliest instance I could find of a recipe resembling what we now know as piccalilli, was in the 1768 edition of Hannah Glasse’s Art of Cookery, where it…

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tourist

“. . .as this place differs so vastly from anything thou hast ever seen, I make no doubt thou will be agreeably entertained with the many romantic prospects, whimsical houses, pleasant cool gardens, and amazing precipices. . .” (Deborah Hill to her son Richard, Funchal, Madeira, May 1st, 1743) My only previous experience of Madeira…

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always a fresh egg a’piece

Let me start with a disclaimer. I do not work for Yorkshire Tea. I do not know anyone who works for Yorkshire Tea. I apologise for any unseemly brand promotion. But I heart Yorkshire Tea. There are many anachronistic elements to my Yorkshire Tea obsession. The first is that I originally hail from Lancashire. In…

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thanks

THANKS so much, everyone, for your good wishes. Seriously, it really does make a difference to know you are thinking of us. Tom felt a veritable wave of good karma when he sat down and read through your comments. We were both very cheered by them. Thanks! I want to say thanks for something else…

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whisky and women

Bunnahabhain. Monday morning. I’m a woman that likes whisky. Now, I know I don’t need to explain this to you. I know that you may like whisky too. And I’m sure that if you do like it, if you have any sort of taste or enthusiasm for any type of usquebah, that you will probably…

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