Category Archives: Food

Scone Chronicles XVIII – Bakewell Pudding

The header picture is Julia sitting outside the Bakewell Pudding Parlour. Last time she was left to her own devices here she ended up buying macaroons. I’d forgotten all about that, and, once again, failed to supervise her in an appropriate manner. She emerged with teas, bakewell puddings and cheese pasties. She keeps feeding me despite my diet. When I say pasties, by the way, they were monstrous. They were big enough to use as hats. It seemed rude not to eat it, even though it contains a possibly lethal dose of fat and calories.

 

However, I’m not going to talk about pasties, because this is a chronicle of scones. So I’m going to talk about Bakewell Puddings. There’s only so much you can say about scones, and I’m short of ideas for places to visit at the moment. My brain seems to be working rather slowly at the moment. I swear I’ve declined in intelligence over the last few months. Much more of this and I’ll have no option but to embark on a political career.

The Bakewell Pudding, as made in Bakewell, is not the same as the shop bought Bakewell Tart, which is generally an iced cake in a pastry case.  I’ve not made a Bakewell of any type myself, though I have made frangipanes with Cape Gooseberries (physalis, inca berries, ground cherries – it has so many names).

Today’s puddings were great – flaky pastry cases full of sticky deliciousness. Julia didn’t care for them, preferring something less sticky. It’s an ill wind that blows no good, or, in other words, I ate hers too.

In truth, they will never replace scones, but they are a pleasant change and it seems silly to go all the way to Bakewell to eat scones.

 

I also bought a few books, so it was a good day.

Catching Up on Scones – Scone Chronicles XVI

Having been kept at home this morning by various jobs, we popped out to do a bit of shopping this afternoon. It was raining a bit so we went to TESCO in Bulwell because it has a car park under the shop and you can walk from car to shop under cover.

I’m in such a state these days that if I get wet I’ll probably need a going over with WD-40.

We are currently on diets as the kids are cooking and trying to make us lose weight, so we decided to sneak a scone while we were out. It was a mistake.

The cutlery was dirty, the tea was OK but the scones were dry and tasteless. We did have cheese scones to be fair, so there was a lack of jam to help things along. We were trying to avoid excessive amounts of fat and sugar. Honestly.

Definitely not moreish.

Must do better TESCO.

Below, I have put the links for the first 15 parts of this series – I had to do that as I couldn’t remember if I’d covered TESCO before. I hadn’t.

 

Tearoom Tour – Number 1 – Thoresby Park

More on Scones

The Scone Chronicles – Number 3

The Scone Chronicles – Number 4

The Scone Chronicles – Number 5

The Scone Chronicles – the 6th visit (the one with No Scones)

The Scone Chronicles – Number 7 – Done as a Haibun

Not Quite Scones – but I’m calling it Number 8 in the series

The Scone Chronicles – Number Nine

The Scone Chronicles – Number Ten – Bettys II

The Scone Chronicles XI

Scone Chronicles XII

The Scone Chronicles XIII

Scone Chronicles XIV

The Scone Chronicles – XV

 

Mustn’t Grumble…

I really am being spoiled this weekend, with another yet another relaxing day.

It hasn’t all been plain sailing – it never is though, is it?

My arthritis flared up a few days ago. I now have it in three fingers, two on the right hand and one on the left. After a couple of days aching it was so bad yesterday that I could barely use my hands. Typing was OK and I could handle a knife and fork (carefully) but writing, for instance, was nearly impossible and the aches were spreading up my arms. Finally I gave in took paracetemol, and when that did nothing, tried ibruprofen. I’m not supposed to have that but I’m not sure why.

It didn’t seem to cause any problems, but then it didn’t do much to kill the pain either. This morning the pain was still bad and dressing was difficult. Then, as the morning advanced, the pain disappeared. It’s now disappeared entirely, leaving just a couple of stiff knuckles.

I’ve been racking my brains for any clue as to what could have set it off. I’ve done nothing strenuous with my hands, not changed my diet and haven’t a clue what could have set it off.

Anyway, not to grumble.

I’m going to have to do some research on this because if it comes back I’ve decided to go to the doctor. It was that bad…

The only thing I’ve had that I don’t generally have kefir, and that’s supposed to be good for you. It’s even good for arthritis according to this article. I’m mystified.

To be honest, I spend most of my life mystified so that’s no surprise.

A Very Relaxing Day

I had my lie-in this morning and lay in bed reflecting on a pleasant evening with family the night before. Then I reflected on how much better my stomach was feeling since I’d had a couple of bottles of kefir and filled myself with several billion gut-friendly bacteria.

It seems cheap and simple to make your own. I may have a go, as it’s not cheap to buy ready made.

Then, as usual on a Saturday, I realised I was going to be late. Julia made me a jam sandwich for breakfast, which is nutritionally poor, but very pleasant despite that. I felt the need for strawberry jam  two weeks ago, and have been feeling much happier as a result.

I managed to get to the shop (several minutes late) but despite this was still the first to get his computer into action.

We had customers most of the day and plenty of parcels to send. Unfortunately, though we did our bit, the Post Office was unable to do theirs.  The closest one was closed for the day and the next one was staffed by a woman who claimed she didn’t know how to process pre-stamped parcels. She said she “didn’t unserstand all these stamps”.

I’d like to be in charge of staff training for the Post Office.

I’d also like a cattle prod. According to Google it’s legal to own a cattle prod in the UK.

We had supermarket pizza with extra vegetables, coleslaw, cous cous and Aspall’s cider for tea. Cheap, easy, lazy and very pleasant.

It’s not the sort of food that you’d want to admit to, but it was very enjoyable.

If this was a food blog I’d tell you it was artisan pizza with mixed salads and craft cider. And I’d have remembered to take a photo.

 

 

Surprise, surprise!

Earlier this week we had a telephone call. For once it wasn’t about “rare coins”, it was about rare baknotes. Proper, rare, banknotes.

White £5 notes are reasonably common, particularly from the 1930s to 1950s. From the 1890s they are quite rare, and the caller had discovered several in a tin when sorting through the effects of a deceased relative. They had left him several white Bank of England fivers and another from the Nottingham and Nottinghamshire Banking Company.

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£5 note – Nottingham & Nottinghamshire Bank 1897

Obviously, the tin had rusted a little over the last 122 years, and was too small to fit a banknote in without scrunching it up. Hopefully, with a little work and gentle pressing, they will look a bit better next time you see them. No matter how much work we do on them, we won’t be able to close up the holes, but that’s so often the way – rare notes but poor condition.

It was an interesting end to the day.

Earlier, I’d dropped Julia off at the garden and taken some mint to work. My stomach hasn’t really recovered from the events of last week, but several cups of mint tea seem to have produced a positive result.

 

My co-worker is troubled by the use of the words “mint tea” to describe boiling water poured on mint leaves. I know this because he brought the subject up several times. I actually checked it up. If you look up “tea” the internet tells you it’s a brewed drink using the leaves of Camellia sinensis. Look up “mint tea” and it tells you it’s a drink made from pouring boiling water on mint leaves. You can, of course, also call it a herb tea or a tisane.

Or you can get a life.

Scone Chronicles XIV

I picked Julia up after I left work yesterday and went to Sainsbury’s in Arnold. As we’ve already reported on the scones, I decided to try the toasted teacakes. They have a peculiar dense texture but they toast well, take plenty of butter, and contain a lot of fruit.

Unfortunately the standard of hygiene was worse than last time and the toilets proved to be either untidy or out of action. The tables were so bad that I was unable to wipe the first one down with a napkin and we had to move. It had clearly been worked on by a sticky child with time, and jam, on its hands.

This isn’t good enough.

My sister tells me that things are just as bad in the Sainsbury’s in Peterborough.

We can’t tell whether it’s an attempt at saving money or if they are synchronising themselves with ASDA for the merger.

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Toasted Teacake, Sainsbury’s, Arnold

Just a short post today as I’m still tired after coughing and sneezing my way through the night.

We had a good day today, but nothing interesting enough to displace my planned discussion of toasted teacakes.

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Home Brewery Company stone

The architectural feature is from the Home Brewery Company building that was knocked down to make was for the supermarket and car park. It now stands beside the entrance of Sainsbury’s on Sir John Robinson Way. Sir John Robinson not only founded the Home Brewery Company but founded a number of local almshouses for the old and poor – a subject close to my heart.

The Scone Chronicles XIII

And yet again – no scones.

The venue was the bookshop at Brierlow Bar and though Julia looked carefully, she could see no scones.

She did, however, buy two slices of glistening home-made cake. It looked sumptuous. And delicious. And once again I had to relearn that tough life lesson that looks can be deceptive.

As you may have noticed, I’m not the cheeriest or most modern of people and I am suspicious of change. I’m still not fully convinced that the bookshop needed a cafe, or that a crowd of people and dogs is of benefit to a bookshop with narrow passageways. I’m almost certain that anyone who parks a pram in a gangway, so that fat men with walking sticks nearly fall over getting past, should be prosecuted by social services and their children put into a gloomy gothic orphanage.

In a way it’s a shame I didn’t fall as the combination of damp floor and blocked gangway is a dream for an ambulance chasing lawyer.

Much as I despise the current compensation culture it would be fun to sue and make a few cogent comments to the court about people running cafes in a space that should be filled with books.

I’m not sure whether I would then give the money to Julia for a new polytunnel or burn it on You Tube just to prove a point. (The point being that the money wasn’t important, not that I am stupid).

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Good in Parts

Anyway, back to the cake. It was apricot and some sort of nut. Julia was in “Bear of Very Little Brain” mode and forgot the details on the way from counter to table. You’d have thought she’d have been brighter after an hour and a quarter of top flight conversation with me in the car, but apparantly not.

It tasted a bit like walnut, but there was definitely a large identifiable piece of cashew in there too.

I said: “Cashew!”

Julia said: “Bless you.”

After you’ve been married 30 years this is what passes for humour.

It was confusing cake because some of it tasted of ginger too. The top, where the glaze had soaked in, was nice and moist, but the lower two thirds was dry and quickly reverted to crumbs. Fortunately we had cake forks to deal with this problem.

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Appearances can be deceptive

To sum up, and to put my personal bias to one side, the tea was good, as it always is (made with proper leaves and a strainer), the ambience is getting better as they sort things out, the cake could have been better, but even that wasn’t too bad, and the book stock seems to have improved.

I’m actually quite impressed with what they have done at Brierlow Bar, despite my resistance to the 21st Century.