Today was my favourite kind of a Sunday. We didn’t get up till 10.30am. Okay, when we woke up the first words I heard were “Oh s**t, it’s 10.30!” as Guy had a conference call at 11am, but despite that it all went very well. I really slept well last night, aside from the couple of times I woke up coughing. Apparently that was not the case for Guy, who did not sleep at all well until around 7am, when he fell asleep very heavily. He has been working such long hours trying to keep up with both England and America that it is almost as if he has created a kind of artificial jet lag! Never mind, it all worked out fine as while Guy was on his call I made brunch – pancakes, bacon and eggs. He finished just as I had everything ready. I used my new Princess Table Chef and it was wonderful. It was so much less stressful than trying to cook brunch on my gas hob (whose days incidentally are numbered as it is going to be replaced with an electric one just as soon as possible – I hate gas!). Everyone said it was all delicious.
We were joined for brunch by Alex’s friend who had turned up about 11am. He and Alex decided they would like to go see the new film Iron Man which I also wanted to see, but I am way too uncool to go with two teenagers to the pictures! So instead, Guy and I dropped them off and did a little light shopping at The Oracle . Then we made a quick stop at Waitrose for groceries and headed home to wait for Alex to call to be collected. After Guy and I got home we hung up some more new light fittings and also placed an order from American Sweets . I love their stuff, and it is so much easier than trying to bring things back in my suitcase!. I’ve only ordered from them once before, but the order arrived beautifully packed, with sweets in between the packing paper. I spent £72 so I hope I have a similar experience this time!
I made sausages and mash for dinner with my 21st Century Housewife’s Cheat’s Onion Gravy (recipe follows) which was a great success. I had bought a lemon meringue pie filling at Waitrose, one I was hoping would be like the Sheriff’s Lemon Pie Filling my Mom and I used to buy. I made it up according to directions and produced a beautiful looking pie, but one that tasted slightly less than satisfactory. It was kind of, well, gutless is the best word I can use to describe it. Where Sheriff’s used to taste really zingy and delicious, this was kind of vaguely lemony in a weird kind of way. I think I might go back to making lemon pie filling from scratch – and remember to smuggle some of the Sheriff’s stuff back with me next time we go to Canada!
Guy and I sat outside and had a glass of wine after dinner. We are so pleased with our lovely garden. It has so much potential, and it is really quite private and very large. We sat on the bench Mom and Dad bought me for my birthday a few years ago and it was just idyllic. I felt really blessed to be sitting there looking out into my beautiful garden and back into the really gorgeous (if slightly untidy) kitchen! It’s taken us a long time, but I really do feel like we are finally beginning to settle.
The 21st Century Housewife’s Delicious Cheat’s Onion Gravy
1 large white onion (preferably mild Spanish or similar), peeled and finely sliced
1 tablespoon olive oil
1 tablespoon granulated sugar
1 to 2 cups prepared gravy, either canned or made up Bisto or similar
In a small saucepan, heat the oil. Fry the onion in the oil over medium heat until soft and beginning to brown. Sprinkle the sugar over and stir in, continuing to cook so that the onion caramelises a bit. When the onions are a lovely caramel colour and slightly softened, pour the prepared gravy over. Simmer together for about two or three minutes and serve.