So we cruise into February, and somehow our house is still full of builders’ dust. But at least there are things to show for it, like a newly tiled balcony from which to watch the sunset and sausages crisping on the braai.
And, inspired by surprisingly great eggs benedict at the famed Roundhouse Restaurant, I set about making my very own English muffins. Easy peasy, really – just bread dough dusted in semolina and cooked on the stove top rather than the oven:
Except that I managed to very nearly destroy this brand new Scanpan frying pan in the process (I should have known better, of course, than to treat a non-non-stick pan as if it was something else). And while the muffins looked good and pretty authentic, they were lacking the nice holey holes inside. I think they were basically too big, and I blame Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall for that, because I followed his recipe so precisely that I even went to the anal extent of weighing each clump of dough (90g!). Next time will be better.
I also nearly destroyed my ice cream machine with a disastrous custard thickened with cornstarch. I blame the New York Times for that.
I will, however, take sole credit for a creme fraiche ice cream I whipped up the day after some dinner guests claimed they were too full to eat the dessert I had prepared (berries and creme fraiche). With a sprinkle of toasted almonds and said berries macerated in balsamic vinegar, it was magnifique!
I’m also looking forward to sampling the batch of sesame seed and ginger ice cream I churned just a little while ago. (OK, so I lie, I have obviously tasted it already. It rocks. So I look forward to other people sampling it and telling me how brilliant I am).
In between the dust and ice cream, I even managed to get in a bit of work, and tomorrow I get to go to a fabulous garden party. So much to do, and so little time for modesty.