Yorkshire Pudding day!

By: sandiquiz , 10:13 AM GMT on February 02, 2014

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For the last six years, the first Sunday in February is designated "National Yorkshire Pudding Day."

Being a good Yorkshire lass, I could not allow it to pass without doing a blog on it. It's over half a century since I made my first Yorkshire pudding, watched over by my maternal grandma, whose ancestors have lived in Yorkshire for ten generations, making her an expert Yorkshire pudding maker!

History:

It is thought that the traditional Yorkshire Pudding first got its name in 1747, when Hannah Glasse wrote a cookery book called "The Art of Cookery Made Plain and Simple", which included the 'Yorkshire Pudding' recipe, although no-one really knows how far back the original recipe goes. It is believed that some form of 'batter' or 'dripping' pudding, as it was previously known, has been cooked for centuries.

The batter pudding was flatter than today's version and was cooked in a tin beneath the meat as it slowly roasted on a spit over a fire, allowing the pudding to catch all the savoury drippings from the meat. In the early days, the extra fat dripping from the meat gave flavour to the pudding.

The traditional Yorkshire pudding was usually served with onion gravy before the main roast dinner, in order to fill up hungry tummies so that less meat and vegetables were required for the main meal. This was the way my family always served them. A plate sized Yorkshire pudding for each of us, filled with onion gravy. The main dinner of roast beef, or indeed any roast meat, with roast potatoes and vegetables, would be served with the rest of the onion gravy!

Very occasionally, leftover Yorkshire pudding was eaten cold as a dessert course spread with a little jam or sprinkled with dried fruit.
Although this may seem strange, pancak batter is basically the same mixture.

In the 21st Century:

Today many people prefer to cook small individual-sized Yorkshire puddings, in a tin similar in size to a muffin tin but generally not quite so deep, rather than baking one plate sized, larger pudding. The smaller sized puddings are then eaten with the roast dinner, rather than before.

A 2008 ruling by the Royal Society of Chemistry states that.....

"A Yorkshire pudding cannot be called a Yorkshire pudding if it is less than four inches tall"






Making Yorkshire Puddings

There are three main ingredients. (The quantity does not matter as long as the ratio stays the same.)

For a family of five or six -
8eggs
8oz PLAIN flour **
1 pint of milk.**

(Either dripping, lard, duck fat or oil for the baking tins)

For less people
4 eggs
4oz of PLAIN flour
1/2 pint milk

And for yourself
2 eggs
2oz PLAIN flour
1/4 pint of milk

The eggs should be medium, not too large, and the milk not skimmed! (Not low fat)

** For American Measurements - 8 oz is the eqivilent to 1 and 3/4 cups and the pint of milk is 20 fluid ounces.

Method

1. Place the flour and a little salt and freshly ground black pepper into a bowl.

2. Add the eggs, mixing in with a hand whisk, then gradually pour in the milk, mixing slowly to prevent lumps forming.

3. Cover the bowl with cling-film and chill in the fridge for several hours or even overnight.

4. Preheat the oven to 220C/425F/Gas 7.

5. Put a little of the fat or oil into the tins you are using - (if using a muffin tin only use the outer holes and not the middle ones to allow the heat to get to all the puddings.)

6. Place the tins in the oven until smoking hot.

7. Remove from the oven and quickly fill the hot tins with the batter. Return to the oven and cook for 20-25 minutes. Turn the oven down to 190C/375F/Gas 5 and cook for a further 10 minutes to set the bottom of the puddings.

8. Remove from the oven and serve.



Five top tips

When cooking Yorkshire Puddings there are basically five things you have to remember :-

1 - Never use self-raising flour, or any kind of raising agent / baking powder. Using plain flour makes the puddings rise....which sounds double Dutch, but it does work!

2 - Make sure the batter is of the right consistency, like runny cream and as smooth as possible. Whisk by hand and not with an electric mixer, as this puts in too much air.

3 - Make sure you get the fat in the tins to almost smoking stage before adding the batter, so it begins to cook almost immediately.

4 - Never open the oven door during the cooking time to allow the puddings to rise and go brown without them collapsing.

5 - Enjoy whilst hot and crisp.


Spin-offs

Plain Yorkshire pudding batter can be made into 'Toad in the Hole'.
This is a dish where sausages are placed in the batter before it goes into the oven to bake. Toad in the Hole is also sometimes referred to as 'The Poor Man's Roast', because it is filling, especially when served with vegetables such potatoes and carrots ..... and not forgetting the onion gravy! ***

***For the Recipe for my onion gravy see my reply to GG in #2



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68. WunderAlertBot (Admin)
8:22 AM GMT on February 10, 2014
sandiquiz has created a new entry.
67. BriarCraft
1:56 AM GMT on February 10, 2014
An Ice setting! I'm trying to imagine that. It must very gently go into gear and creep ahead to avoid spin-outs. Probably something similar to very slowly and gently slipping the clutch on a standard transmission car.

Ice setting. Cars that park themselves. A few cars now have accident avoidance systems that automatically apply the brakes if the car gets to close to other vehicles on the road. No doubt cars will drive themselves before too many more years. Isn't Google working on that now?

So you lost four hours on the computer this morning? Happens to me more often than I care to admit. It starts out innocently enough as I read the news or do a search to learn more about something I saw on TV the night before. One thing leads to another and soon the cats are staging a revolution demanding attention.

Glad you, your home, and Oscar all weathered the storm okay.
Member Since: June 21, 2004 Posts: 71 Comments: 3607
66. ozgalah
10:05 PM GMT on February 09, 2014
Glad to hear you weren't blown away with the wind! So its your fault we have lots of baby ash trees is it????(only joking we have an ash tree which I curse constantly and we were having it felled but with this heat I am glad now we didn't, even if I do have to pull up lots of baby trees!) Much cooler day here yesterday so we went for a bushwalk, it was glorious but not much wildlife around unfortunately. It was just good to be able to stay in the open for more than five minutes!!!
Glad Oscar made it through safely!
Member Since: November 25, 2008 Posts: 3 Comments: 874
65. clearlakemike
5:32 PM GMT on February 09, 2014
Glad to hear it is a lovely day there too, Sandi. I wonder if the ice setting would work in sand? I recently got into a patch of sand, with a manual, but was able to quickly rock it back up onto pavement. I guess my instincts from learning to drive in snow and ice kicked in.
Member Since: November 21, 2004 Posts: 137 Comments: 1542
64. palmettobug53
5:18 PM GMT on February 09, 2014
How providential of you to get a car like Oscar with an ice setting! Other drivers were probably gnashing their teeth with envy, watching C escape the quagmire so effortlessly! lol

I hope the insulation company doesn't dilly dally. I do know that the wheels of our government paid/sponsored programs grind very slowly. I hope that things move much more quickly on your side of The Pond.

Since it's at no cost to you, it will be worth waiting for. Still, I know you want to get it started and finished up quickly. No one wants to deal with all the disruption, mess and tromping of workers in and out of the house. I'll be crossing my fingers and toes that you hear something definite very soon.

I was over at thinkingcowgirl's earlier this morning, reading her new entry. As a result, I have surprised myself by actually buying a book on Amazon! Me. I put a charge on my charge card! I did it quickly, before there was time for my miserly Scots blood to scream, "NO! DON'T DO IT!"
Member Since: October 7, 2005 Posts: 229 Comments: 24576
63. sandiquiz
1:19 PM GMT on February 09, 2014
Good Afternoon, I am not sure where the morning went, but I logged onto the computer about four hours ago, and this is my first visit to WU!

WW - Shirley, I believe they did a similar thing during the London Olympics in 2012.
I had watched an activity, live, but my friends in The States had to wait for it to be showed at Prime time.
I watched a little of the action yesterday whilst I was Ironing, but Winter Olympics don't interest me as much as the summer events... mind you, the snowboarding yesterday was good!

Bug - I still am waiting for the insulation company to get back to me. I have made a note in my diary to contact them on Friday if I haven't heard anything from them! I really hope it all works out, especially now I have got all prepared for it!
Heard form C this morning. The concert went well, but the Church had to use an "overflow" car park, which happened to be a farmer's field. Yes, you can imagine it... it rained really hard whilst they were in the concert, and the field, which was already wet, became a quagmire! Many cars got stuck! Luckily, Oscar is an automatic, with an "ice" setting. He said he put the car into ice setting and without putting his foot on the accelerator (gas pedal), let the automatic setting slowly pull Oscar out of the field. Others, with manual controls, were revving their engines and just getting further stuck into the mud!!

Mike, Wabit and GG - the storm blew itself out in this area, and today is a lovely, clear, sunny day. It is only the calm before yet another storm...due Tuesday!!!

GG - Give yourself a pat on the back ... clearing our the freezer is not an easy job, I know!
Member Since: October 29, 2005 Posts: 277 Comments: 25306
62. GardenGrrl
11:02 AM GMT on February 09, 2014
Good Morning.
Member Since: March 25, 2007 Posts: 244 Comments: 8892
61. GardenGrrl
6:45 PM GMT on February 08, 2014
Hello, what kind of wind storm was that? Yikes. Do hope you are not missing an shingles from the roof.

Cleaned out and defrosted the freezer. I have a lot of pork chops to cook. Syds assorted foods take up the entire bottom. (It is a standing freezer). The bird eats well. I find it much cheaper to buy parrot type food in bulk singles; nuts, seeds, fruits, dog biscuits, pellets etc... Commercial mix is close to $15 a pound. Ouch. Cheaper to load up the freezer.

Hi Karen, glad your mom is feeling better.
Member Since: March 25, 2007 Posts: 244 Comments: 8892
60. whitewabit (Mod)
6:19 PM GMT on February 08, 2014
Sandi .. was looking at some of the video on the BBC of weather over there .. gales by you and huge snow storms in Europe dumping meters of snow there ..

this winter's weather has been a challenge for everyone !!
Member Since: August 17, 2005 Posts: 357 Comments: 30135
59. clearlakemike
5:21 PM GMT on February 08, 2014
Sandi, I don't know if it is edible. It is the ginger root that we juice and use for cooking. I buy it at the store. It is not expensive.

I know you have said in the past that your line map is unreliable but it looks very tightly wound. Doesn't look good to me. Glad Oscar made it safely (and C, too, lol)
Member Since: November 21, 2004 Posts: 137 Comments: 1542
58. palmettobug53
2:30 PM GMT on February 08, 2014
Gosh, there's just been so much going on since last weekend. I'm trying to get around a bit and do some catching up on what everyone's been up to.

What has set Mother Nature off so much this winter? She sure seems mad at the world, doesn't she? Everyone has been having an awful time.

I hope nothing happens to Oscar and C on their road trip.

ADD: What a grand opportunity! I'd have been highly suspicious at first, too. There's so many scams out there. How wonderful that this turned out to be the real thing and you'll get your house insulated for free!

Next winter, you'll be toasty warm and, from what you're saying, getting a break on your heating bill, to boot!
Member Since: October 7, 2005 Posts: 229 Comments: 24576
57. WeatherWise
1:51 PM GMT on February 08, 2014
Hi Sandi! Sorry your weather is playing havoc this am. Hope all safe trips for C and Oscar. We are having an overcast morn with chance of rain and snow. Listen to this - it is supposed to clear and be perhaps 50 later in the day. So an interesting split forecast. I hope it does get up to 50 later today. Thanks for stopping by my blog this am. A late start after watching the airing of the Olympics Opening Ceremony, unti late last night. We do not get to watch it in real time on tv - the networks carry it during PRIME TIME in the evenings. With social media, we hear about it now earlier in the day despite their efforts to make sure we only get to watch it on that ONE chosen network. I think it is NBC Network this year. Hope you have a great weekend.
Member Since: February 28, 2003 Posts: 19 Comments: 604
56. sandiquiz
6:35 AM GMT on February 08, 2014
What a wild and windy night it has been. For the first time this winter I had to close my bedroom window. I couldn't sleep for all the noise out there!!
It is not light yet, so I have no idea if there is any damage, but I bet there could be!!
The heaviest of the rain seems to have passed over, but the wind is still howling. In about 90 minutes, C is heading north to a choir rehearsal weekend, and taking Oscar! Poor little Oscar, I hope he doesn't get blown away!! C's own car is an old banger, which he finds OK for around town, but not trustworthy for a long journey , and hiring a car for the weekend is becoming expensive, so I suggested Oscar became his chariot. Although, when I generously suggested he took my car I didn't know what the weather was going to be like!!!


GG - this morning, the weather really is showing its worst side!!
Hope you found something interesting in the back of the freezer. I would find three large pillows in mine!! lol Honestly. I read somewhere that to save electricity you fill the spaces with old pillows. I have no idea if it works or not, but as mine isn't full...I thought I would try!

Wabit - did you get out and enjoy some fresh air, even if it was cold fresh air! I think having Eco, who loves the snow, at least you have an excuse to get out. She sounds delightful.
For the first time since he was a small kitten, last night Max jumped up on my knee and settled down to sleep. He seems to prefer the softness of his own chair, where he can stretch out, but I was pleased he thought I was a fair substitute!

Mike - no, you didn't miss a day. For some reason when I posted my comment yesterday morning I 'thought' it was Saturday!! It's been one of those weeks!!
That's wild ginger? As in the herb? Are you picking it to use?

Briar - for the first time this spring I shouldn't have to go around the garden pulling up little ash trees. They chopped them all down last year. I used to pull up hundreds, and unless I saw them at the first pair of leaves, they got roots down to Australia and were the devil to pull up!!
I'll still get hawthorn though, thanks to the birds, so I know how DH feels.

Karen - hello, I was only thinking of you yesterday, so I am glad you dropped by.
You know the old saying about trouble - it never rains but it pours....well you certainly are getting your fair share of trouble and worry. I do know why you need to swim:-)

Glad your mum is much better, and I hope the gash heals quickly.
It looks as though it was cold the day you had the memorial, but I always think a cool breeze blows away your worries better than a warm one. :-)

Take care

LATER - I have heard that Oscar made it safely to Manchester - and C, of course!

Check out this link... It shows the winds from a depression that has a pressure of 944 (rising now to 953)
Member Since: October 29, 2005 Posts: 277 Comments: 25306
55. SBKaren
3:08 AM GMT on February 08, 2014
Thought I'd check in since I have a few minutes before heading to the couch for a much needed rest and relax time.

Had my brother's memorial down on the beach last Saturday, whole family in attendance. It was healing.





The week before his memorial I spent Monday at the doctor with my mom, and Wednesday AM in the ER with her. She was admitted, but only for a night. Low sodium levels, pneumonia (small) in her right lung. They gave her an IV of antibiotics, saline solution and breathing treatments. Released her the very next day. She came home with us for one night, then wanted to go home. She took a tumble and a plate hit her leg, causing a nasty looking gash. Cleaned it up, and returned her to the doctor last Monday for a follow up to hospital visit. She is doing SO MUCH BETTER, and gash is beginning to heal too.

Here's to a better rest of the year!

Today was our first day of auditions for Pageant. I took the time to get my swim in as I know taking care of myself is so important, and I swim for so much more than just the exercise.

So, it's still really crazy around here and I am CRAVING some boring routine. It'll come, I know that, but I wish it would come quicker.

I'll be back..........
Member Since: February 21, 2005 Posts: 195 Comments: 14510
54. BriarCraft
9:26 PM GMT on February 07, 2014
The video link you posted in #33 was interesting and, in fact, I looked at several videos on that page.

Your vengeful hacking of the pyracantha brings to mind my DH's continuing war on hawthorn trees here. He hacks down several of them each year, but the birds plant more. It is yet to be determined who will win the war, but my bet is on the birds and the hawthorns, despite DH's best efforts.
Member Since: June 21, 2004 Posts: 71 Comments: 3607
53. clearlakemike
6:22 PM GMT on February 07, 2014
Did I miss a day? It is still Friday here. I guess it might be Saturday somewhere, though.

Sorry to hear the UK/Europe is continuing to get battered and the UK is going under...

Hopefully, The Pineapple Express will keep rain going into California long enough to refill reservoirs and lakes. We got another .04 last night bringing up to .19in for the last 24 hours. Not much by your standards but good for us here in the Ka'u Desert. We can go months and months without any measurable rain.

I don't really have any plants here that need pruning, thankfully. The only plant that goes sort of dormant is the Plumeria. They lose all their leaves and flowers during the winter months. If you do 'prune' them, you can stick the pruned bits into the ground and they will propagate into a new tree. Same with the rubber trees we have. We also have a lot of cactus that we can trim and plant in other spots along with lots of jade. The jade grows into small trees here. All of the above don't need much water either.



Wild ginger growing in the lava along the road. On the hill above is a Protea farm.
Member Since: November 21, 2004 Posts: 137 Comments: 1542
52. whitewabit (Mod)
5:27 PM GMT on February 07, 2014
What a difference people are having as their winters this year ..

Your area has been extremely wet, mine very cold and wet also only we have snow, California is in a severe drought as is Australia and they are having record heat wave and drought ..

seems like so many severe weather situations for the world the beginning of the year ..

Well the "SUN" is shinning today although very cold I am going out .. no reason just to get out of the house and enjoy the sun ..
Member Since: August 17, 2005 Posts: 357 Comments: 30135
51. GardenGrrl
5:11 PM GMT on February 07, 2014
Hi Sandi, just can't get over how the weather continually batters the UK/Europe. All those years stones and homes stood feeling safe against the tide or storm....

Once again am very happy you are on high ground.

Will try to get around to defrosting the large freezer this weekend. It is cold enough to box frozen food and set on the porch while removing the glaciers from the freezer.

Really don't know what I have in there anymore. Guess I will find out and make some dinners from it.
Member Since: March 25, 2007 Posts: 244 Comments: 8892
50. sandiquiz
6:42 AM GMT on February 07, 2014
Mike - you got rain, California got rain and we got rain! The whole world is crying:(

Actually I had to laugh at this weather forecast summary from the BBC.

"It's like Groundhog Day, all over again

After the wettest month of January ever recorded, goodness knows the UK could do with a prolonged dry period and a bit of a wringing out.

Sadly, that does not look likely within this monthly outlook. Instead the recent weather pattern looks set to continue and once more we are facing a month ahead that seems to offer little prospect of dry days but plenty more wet and windy weather."



WW - Shirley, thank you... I was relieved to have got it almost mastered, hence the smile. There is still the task of chopping up and disposing of the great pile of branches. We have a "green" recycling system here. Each house has a large green wheeled bin, into which they place garden rubbish and food waste. I chopped up as many branches as I could until it was full. I guess it will take a couple more times to remove the lot!

Poppy - Fire thorns are not known for their kindness!
Hence I am happier chopping it back in the winter when I am wearing thick cord trousers and several layers, topped by a strong fleece! Actually, I wasn't scratched at all yesterday. Last autumn, when C helped me cut back the summer growth, which had reached to over eight foot, he got scratched several times. He hates gardening at the best of times, but that was the final straw as far as he was concerned, so I knew the dratted plant had to go!! lol

I had another pyracantha, an orange one, near the shed. It grew up and over the shed, and looked really pretty in blossom and when covered in berries ..... but when I realised it was punching holes through the shed roof, it had to go!

Wabit - I guess you are getting cabin fever. I hope it ends soon, or you will be definitely climbing the walls:(

Did you see the long range forecast I posted under the reply to Mike? More of the same .... if it really does continue to rain, the farmers will be in a really difficult situation. Many thousands of acres of farming land are under water:(


Happy Friday morning to you all:)
Member Since: October 29, 2005 Posts: 277 Comments: 25306
49. whitewabit (Mod)
5:43 AM GMT on February 07, 2014
Sandi .. see it is raining there again this morning .. you have had a very wet winter ..

-4F here at the moment .. the wind is not as strong as was expected .. least for the time being ..

hoping we will start warming soon .. these walls are starting to grow little steps that will help me as I start climbing them !! cabin fever is growing by the day ..
Member Since: August 17, 2005 Posts: 357 Comments: 30135
48. calpoppy
6:55 PM GMT on February 06, 2014
Pruning pyracantha can be very dangerous, LOL! Your birds will be sad to see those berries go, but I am sure your arms and hands will be thrilled to not deal with the thorns again.

Years ago I visited some friends that had just cut down their very old and very large Bougainvillea, they looked like they had been mauled by a mountain lion, LOL!
Member Since: February 18, 2008 Posts: 47 Comments: 3323
47. WeatherWise
4:46 PM GMT on February 06, 2014
You look so cute in that photo - sweet smile - am picturing you hacking away at the pyracantha bush - they do have not only sharp but strong thorns. Hope all of the berries were all gone. Have a good Thursday - of course your day is almost gone. Have a good evening I should say.
Member Since: February 28, 2003 Posts: 19 Comments: 604
46. clearlakemike
4:42 PM GMT on February 06, 2014
Quoting 44. sandiquiz:
I am sometimes amazed by how the blogs take on a life of their own.

From Yorkshire puddings to beach huts, via general housework and cleaning patterns, with a little stormy weather thrown in for good measure! loL

Mike, you are forgiven:) lol

Hey, do you think it might be raining all over the south of the country! Look at the rain map in my header!!


Yes, that does look intense...we are covered in clouds and showers coming up unexpectedly (for me) from the south and west. I think they call this a "Kona Storm". It was beautiful sunny low humidity yesterday. The dog and I walked 3 miles out in it and then I rode my bike. I guess it will be my turn to stay inside today and maybe, heaven forbid, clean something, lol
Member Since: November 21, 2004 Posts: 137 Comments: 1542
45. clearlakemike
4:38 PM GMT on February 06, 2014
I would go out and get new stones now, Sandi, but it just started raining!! lol
Member Since: November 21, 2004 Posts: 137 Comments: 1542
44. sandiquiz
4:36 PM GMT on February 06, 2014
I am sometimes amazed by how the blogs take on a life of their own.

From Yorkshire puddings to beach huts, via general housework and cleaning patterns, with a little stormy weather thrown in for good measure! loL

Mike, you are forgiven:) lol

Hey, do you think it might be raining all over the south of the country! Look at the rain map in my header!!
Member Since: October 29, 2005 Posts: 277 Comments: 25306
43. clearlakemike
4:13 PM GMT on February 06, 2014
I like those changing huts also, I remember these from Down Under that reminded me of Munchkinville.



Lots more photos from OZ since I did my Down Under blog...are some from your sister? Going back to look at them again.
Member Since: November 21, 2004 Posts: 137 Comments: 1542
42. clearlakemike
4:02 PM GMT on February 06, 2014
Good for the skin, of course...*running towards the fridge now* lol
Member Since: November 21, 2004 Posts: 137 Comments: 1542
41. sandiquiz
3:59 PM GMT on February 06, 2014
Quoting 39. clearlakemike:
No, not bad at all, I am impressed. I guess I need to eat more butter.

I am not quite sure how to take that comment - are you saying butter is good for the skin, or makes you fat!! lol

Linda - I too, have certain photos that make me smile. I am glad I gave you a smile today:)
If you like, here is the link to the original, which should allow you to save a larger size:)
Member Since: October 29, 2005 Posts: 277 Comments: 25306
40. Thoughtsteader
3:54 PM GMT on February 06, 2014
That's exactly the photo! Oh, bless your heart. I love it so much, and thought I'd saved it, but no joy. Do you sometimes have photos that just make you happy to look at them? This is one, for me. ;)
Member Since: January 16, 2014 Posts: 17 Comments: 330
39. clearlakemike
3:54 PM GMT on February 06, 2014
No, not bad at all, I am impressed. I guess I need to eat more butter. I would have to put gauze over the lens of my iPhone, LOL.

btw, the Blackbird is a nice touch too, lol...
Member Since: November 21, 2004 Posts: 137 Comments: 1542
38. sandiquiz
3:43 PM GMT on February 06, 2014
LOL - I wasn't thinking of it being a "selfie", just a photo of me looking like a drowned rat:)

Jane - I am sorry you can't find your garden.... mine is there, but oh, so soggy! I also read you have a holiday booked in the sunshine? Is there room for a drowned rat in your suitcase!!

Linda - I had to stop and think about the "changing houses". I think you mean the beach huts... as in these, I believe:)




Yes, the folk in Wales have also had it bad - much worse than we have. I have a Flickr friend who lives right on the coast and his house is now on the beach! Well, the beach, as in the sand, is now in his garden!

My aunt, the remaining "aged rellie" is 86, and refuses to get into mobile phones or computers. Although, when I visit, she is happy to play 'word-searches' on my iPad. She has a much better memory than I have, but I put that down to the job she did. She was a code breaker in the war, then went on to be a newsprint setter. She loves crosswords and word-searches, which she does daily!

Mike - it was a case of the fire-thorn was not going to win, I was determined to remove it all but the thickest stems, which I couldn't get through with my loppers. They will need my trusty pruning saw on them.... but I was getting tired by the time I had "demolished" it!

Thank you kind sir - not too bad for and old-aged pensioner..without makeup!! lol
Member Since: October 29, 2005 Posts: 277 Comments: 25306
37. clearlakemike
3:18 PM GMT on February 06, 2014
Oh my, it all sounds/looks rather mad. Gardening scenes from a Steven King film, historic destructive apocalyptic scenes from "The Day after Tomorrow" (sad). I wasn't sure if I should start cleaning house...and was wondering if you might just arrive in your own. BTW, you do look fabulous!! You are ready for your close-up with Hitch.
Member Since: November 21, 2004 Posts: 137 Comments: 1542
36. Thoughtsteader
3:13 PM GMT on February 06, 2014
Oh, my. Selfies on the blogs! Six months ago I didn't even know the word, and now I can use it!

Was it on that Cornwall trip that you posted the photo of the line of little changing "houses"? That's still one of my favorite photos of yours. Not only was it a good photo, the entire concept seemed to sensible.

The videos are quite amazing. I think I need to call my friend in Tywyn and see how she's been faring. It requires a call because she's not on the internet at all, even for email. I understand the sentiment, and in fact I quite enjoy talking with her from time to time. The good news is that we can talk for a good while for five dollars - one of the last bargains in the world.

My aunt has given up on the computer, too, so we talk about once a week. I need to start sending letters to her as well, because her memory isn't what it was even last year. She'll be 88 on her next birthday, so I suppose she's entitled. ;)
Member Since: January 16, 2014 Posts: 17 Comments: 330
35. JanesVacation
2:12 PM GMT on February 06, 2014
Rain vs snow, I was thinking about that when I saw your wet selfie. It seems your rain is as non stop as our snow this winter. Both weather events have their own issues, don't they?

I'm jealous you can get out in the garden and see a robin and nip away at the plants. I am still on snow blower duty.
Member Since: June 21, 2008 Posts: 267 Comments: 1450
34. sandiquiz
1:34 PM GMT on February 06, 2014
Me again :)

You know how you suddenly get the feeling that "needs must, so get on and do it"?

Well, I have been looking out of the rain splattered windows for weeks at the garden and thinking, "I must chop back that pyracantha (fire thorn) before it begins to sprout!"

Mid morning I realised it wasn't windy, so not quite as cold as it had been, and it wasn't raining.
I put on a thick fleece, my 'wellies' and my winter/pruning gardening gloves and ventured out to the garden. For over an hour I chopped and hacked - I will not use the term 'pruned' because I actually did hack it in the end, and I brought it down to the ground!
It has been a thorn in my side - excuse the pun - for years! Last autumn C helped me chop back the summer growth, and was ill with his allergies for a couple of days afterwards, so I really thought it was time to get it in check. Now it is only a dozen or so stubby spikes, which, when the rain stops, will be drenched in Round-up!!! Goodbye pyracantha!!

I had been out there for about 30 minutes when it began to rain. I stuck at it, 'cos once I had begun I was not stopping for anything!!
Max sat on the kitchen windowsill, mouthing words of encouragement, and a robin chirruped from the tree, telling me in no uncertain terms that I was disturbing his peace!!

When I finally got back inside I looked like a drowned rat!!



This is after I had combed my hair... you should have seen it before!!
Member Since: October 29, 2005 Posts: 277 Comments: 25306
33. sandiquiz
9:38 AM GMT on February 06, 2014
Hi All,

Do you remember I went down to Cornwall for a photo holiday in 2011? I went down by train..... well, I wouldn't be able to do it today! The strong storm yesterday washed away the train line that has been in place since it was built by Brunel in 1840!!

Please watch the start of this BBC video to see the damage caused by the constant battering the south west has endured. Two hundred year old piers have been damaged, some beyond repair, and even some of the ancient JURASSIC coast structures have been demolished:(

EDIT - I found a couple of video's in Barbara's blog -comment #48 - with some stunning aerial views of the waves, and they show even more damage to western Europe.



I have been watching the weather forecast for the weekend, and the next storm that is due to hit the same area on Saturday, is due to be even stronger. Severe gale force 11/12, which is the equivalent of hurricane winds.
I am so lucky living in the middle of the country, protected by the Cotswold and Chiltern hills from the worst of the storms, but those around the coast, or on low ground, must be totally fed up of the constant battering they have endured for nearly two months!

Mike
- If the wind picks up on Saturday, to the speed they say...I may just land on the Wicked Witch for you!! Hang on, I will go and dust off my red shiny shoes!!

Ozgalah - how did the marathon go? Hope it wasn't too hot for you!

Briar
So when do you get the added insulation? And how much of a mess and disruption is it going to make for you?

I have no idea when they will come - sometime this month I guess, as they said 'about three weeks'.

As to disruption and mess....I have no idea, it is all a new experience for me. But I guess I might have to "spring clean" again when it is all over!! lol

Glad the Yorkshire pudding bowl was a hit. It really works well with sausages!

Hi WW - the weather is not too bad here, but 150 miles south of here it is horrid. The poor souls have had nothing but rain and floods since before Christmas. Once these weather systems are over the repair bills will go into BILLIONS of pounds:(
Member Since: October 29, 2005 Posts: 277 Comments: 25306
32. WeatherWise
5:13 AM GMT on February 06, 2014
Hi Sandi. Just checking in to see if you are okay. You survived your survey or inspection? How is your weather?
Member Since: February 28, 2003 Posts: 19 Comments: 604
31. BriarCraft
1:39 AM GMT on February 06, 2014
Did you put your roast pork and vegs into a bowl of Yorkshire pudding??
Yes! DH wasn't game to try it, so he had leftover mashed potatoes, but I really enjoyed the Yorkshire Bowl. It is something I will do again.

So when do you get the added insulation? And how much of a mess and disruption is it going to make for you?

Another blasted windy storm??? When will it end?

Underground geothermal heat provides ALL the house heating.
How wonderful! I knew Iceland has geothermal heat and electricity, but had have never heard anything about geothermal in England.
Member Since: June 21, 2004 Posts: 71 Comments: 3607
30. ozgalah
10:04 PM GMT on February 05, 2014
Hi Sandi, quick visit to say Hi off to coffee shop for baking marathon!
Member Since: November 25, 2008 Posts: 3 Comments: 874
29. clearlakemike
5:18 PM GMT on February 05, 2014
Anytime for a visit is fine, Sandi. I know it will take you at least 15 hours to just fly here, phew! lol

Our half hour visitors were fussy old you know whats so we had to have everything ready as if The Queen herself was visiting. I guess, if you visit then you will be her representative.

We are easily distracted and live outside mostly here as the weather is so nice almost all the time. So indoor things like cleaning house are not important unless it becomes a health hazard, lol.

Speaking of hazards, I hope you don't get blown up into the jet stream by your current weather and arrive here unexpectedly to Ocean Paradise like Dorothy in the Wizard of OZ. But if you do please land on the wicked witch for me, if you can. Stay warm, stay safe!!
Member Since: November 21, 2004 Posts: 137 Comments: 1542
28. sandiquiz
11:12 AM GMT on February 05, 2014
Quoting 27. GardenGrrl: Speaking of which, it's my Friday. It is going to be cold the rest of the week must think of warm hearty dinners to make.

Yorkshire pudding, perhaps! lol

I always thought my house was warm, but a drop of 50-60% to the overall heating cost is what they say will be gained by cavity wall and loft insulation!
Bring it on, says I!

Happy Friday :)
Member Since: October 29, 2005 Posts: 277 Comments: 25306
27. GardenGrrl
10:59 AM GMT on February 05, 2014
Brrrrr, however, I will take my windy chilly day over one that includes rain.
Tell you what, good insulation is an amazing thing. We paid extra for the energy package when we had this home built. What a savings on gas and electric. Our bills are always substantially lower than what other people have around here.

Definitely pay more for groceries than utilities here. Speaking of which, it's my Friday. It is going to be cold the rest of the week must think of warm hearty dinners to make.
Member Since: March 25, 2007 Posts: 244 Comments: 8892
26. sandiquiz
10:21 AM GMT on February 05, 2014
Morning all, from a very wet and extremely windy UK - AGAIN!!!

GG - There is grid electric in a Geothermal house, but only as backup power - this is the UK after all. Solar power cannot provide enough electricity to run all the electric gadgets and lighting! But Underground geothermal heat provides ALL the house heating.

Hi WW - I like your set up, and it seems feasible to do - I am sure it is all a matter of routine!!
Look on it as work, which you will be paid for. The payment is a clean and tidy house each weekend! lol

Mike - how about I say I will visit the Observatories and you in the year 201? lol

A two day cleaning binge for one and a half hours! I would have cleaned the bathroom and the living room and locked all the other doors!! lol

Wabit - I have had cats all my life, but never had one that "played" so much as Max does! It must be the breed, he 'insists' we have a mad half hour at least once a day! He will cry for me to play with him... and will chase a tassel on the end of a pole until I am tired, rather than him!!

Pros - It is possible to use olive oil, but it's highest temperature is not quite "smoking" as lard or fat would be. it would be best to use sunflower oil which has a higher temperature than olive oil. I use non-stick tins that I only use for Yorkshire puddings. When I buy a new one I 'season' the tin by rubbing oil all over and then putting it in the oven at 425 for 10 minutes. when it is out I rub it with kitchen paper and then do not wash it - EVER!! as soon as you have used it, just rub it with kitchen paper, and put it away. That way it means the puddings come out perfectly, and you actually need less fat to make sure they cook well.

Sent you a mail :)

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

The inspector came, wandered all around the house for 20 minutes or so, measuring the room sizes with a laser beam, and noting all he saw on a spreadsheet.

He went up in the loft and said he would also recommend that we had the loft insulated as well. When it was first done the specifications on a new home was 6 inches. My loft has just under six inches, but the new regulations say 12 inches!! So I might get the loft done for nothing, too!! This house will be so warm next winter I wont need to put on the heating at all!! lol


The UK is getting battered again - gale force winds, and torrential rain for the poor South West corner of the country. Even we have a strong wind - the trees alongside my garden are swaying to some unheard music! I am glad they removed the really big trees last year... they were little too near to the house!!

Just look how close the iso-bars are on the map in my header! Foretasted low for today is 963 but the one predicated for Saturday is 944!!!



Member Since: October 29, 2005 Posts: 277 Comments: 25306
25. Proserpina
2:27 AM GMT on February 05, 2014
Hi. The Yorkshire Pudding recipe has been copied and it will be prepared the next time that I prepare a roast beef. Years ago I used to make this pudding rather frequently. I used to collect the fat from the roast and place is in the pudding pan, then I would proceed pretty much as you suggest. This way I used to have control of the amount of fat I used. I wonder if I could use olive oil? It would be a little healthier than meat fat.

I had a lazy day but mostly fraught with Mimi's biting antics. Sometimes she gets to me and I get depressed. I wanted peace and quiet for this time of my life but with Mimi I have forgotten the look of peace and quiet! We did manage to go on a short outing this afternoon. We went to a spices shop, they is all they sell spices from all over the world. I bought a bunch of international mixtures to give as a belated Christmas gift to a friend I have not seen since before Christmas. I also bought a few for me, they included Italian, French, Greek, and Spanish combinations. Not cheap but it was fun choosing and it should be tasty on meats and salads. Roast potatoes too. Aqua is the person who made me aware of this store (there is one near her in FL), hubby and I searched and found one near us.

Time for me to go to bed, I am mentally and physically exhausted dealing with Mimi. Good night.
Member Since: May 6, 2008 Posts: 165 Comments: 17885
24. whitewabit (Mod)
7:20 PM GMT on February 04, 2014
Love the pictures of Max playing in the box and wrapping paper ..

there was not a box brought into this house that my MoJo didn't get into .. he had a old box with a little hole cut in it for him to go in and hide .. had several ways in and out .. the 25 dollar one I bought he wouldn't have anything to do with ..
Member Since: August 17, 2005 Posts: 357 Comments: 30135
23. clearlakemike
6:13 PM GMT on February 04, 2014
We had a two day cleaning binge for some friends that came over from the other side of the island who brought two of their friends. They stayed a total of one half hour before going out to lunch....phew!
Member Since: November 21, 2004 Posts: 137 Comments: 1542
22. WeatherWise
6:06 PM GMT on February 04, 2014
re: clearlakemike Hahaahha...I understand what you mean Mike and it depends on who is coming as to how your clean. I had someone to help me me clean before company came and it was clean everything spotless and clean baseboards and all. Had her to come before another visit and told her not to worry about baseboards just clean house and not to use any chemicals as this person did not like any chemicals added to the air. She had a hard time adhering to that. Think we all get in cleaning mode before company comes. So problem solved, just have company once a week and house will stay clean.
Member Since: February 28, 2003 Posts: 19 Comments: 604
21. clearlakemike
5:57 PM GMT on February 04, 2014
We just go on a massive cleaning binge, which involves hiring outside help, before visitors arrive. So please do give us ample warning before your visit to Ocean Paradise please, thank you.
Member Since: November 21, 2004 Posts: 137 Comments: 1542
20. WeatherWise
5:16 PM GMT on February 04, 2014
Your aunt's mother's way was perhaps a great way to get it done. I should take lessons. Perhaps I could manage that. I tend to try to do it all in one day and find it overwhelming.

Monday bedrooms, beds sheets changed and washed, vaccum, dust
Tuesday kitchen, laundry
Wednesday bathroom and the hall
Thursday den
Friday kitchen
Member Since: February 28, 2003 Posts: 19 Comments: 604
19. GardenGrrl
11:05 AM GMT on February 04, 2014
Wow, a solar and geothermal house with no gas or grid electric for a grade A. Hope you get the high C.
Member Since: March 25, 2007 Posts: 244 Comments: 8892
18. sandiquiz
9:20 AM GMT on February 04, 2014
Good morning

It is 9 am and I am ready - Bring on the Inspector!

Sounds like a play by J B Priestly! lol

I had a phone call with my aunt yesterday and her way of housework, performed by her mother before her, has to have something to commend it!
Monday is the bedrooms, change the bedding, and hoover and polish, with all bedding washed, dried and ironed before bedtime.
Tuesday is the kitchen and the rest of the laundry, all dried and ironed before bedtime.
Wednesday is the bathroom and the hall, stairs and landing.
Thursday is the living room.
Friday is baking day and the kitchen!

The weekend is the garden... and a sit down, to recover before Monday arrives!

If I kept on top of each area, as she does... there wouldn't be a mad scramble when visitors call!! lol

I suppose working full time, being out of the house for 10 plus hours a day, I got into the habit of doing a little to keep the place tidy, then doing a blitz when I had a school vacation. Now I am home most days I ought to begin a new routine, don't you think!

Rob, - great to see you. In C's household, his mother used to make dozens of Yorkshire puddings each Sunday. A husband and three growing boys to feed meant they all went, too!!

Yes, the days are getting longer, I suddenly realised that it was still fairly light at 5pm yesterday!

Mike - Yes, he did have fun, and it kept him of the computer keyboard for a couple of hours. He will insist on trying to help me type!! lol

I have lost count of the number of times I have typed something then he jumps up, from nowhere, and lands on the "delete" key! lol

Briar - Now the house is clean and tidy, I will keep on top of it, so Spring cleaning will not be necessary! (The only problem I have, is will I remember where I put all those things I wanted out of sight!!)

Did you put your roast pork and vegs into a bowl of Yorkshire pudding??

Ylee - The survey is also paid for be the Government as part of the insulation package. I think they want to be able to show the other European countries that a great percentage of homes in the UK have grade C or above 'Energy Efficiency' rating! I hope my survey is a high C.

To get a grade B you need to have solar energy, and for a grade A you need to be one of the ECO homes that have no gas or electric heating, but heat the house totally by solar and Geothermal heating.

Ozgalah
, I can't imagine powered Yorkshire puddings! Do you still have to add eggs? If so, all you have in the packet is flour and powdered milk!
Please don't tell me there is powdered egg in the packet and all you add is milk!! Yuck!

How did you get on with the gluten free muffins. If you are successful, I am sure several in here would be interested:)

WW - I can always send you my inspector!! lol

Yorkshire puddings, if cooked until really crisp, are lovely. Undercooked and they are a "floppy" mess!





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About sandiquiz

I have been a WU member since September 2005. Now a retired teacher, enjoying my garden, writing, sketching, taking photos, and having great fun!

Personal Weather Stations

Far Bletchley
Bletchley, England
Elevation: 377 ft
Temperature: 35.1 °F
Dew Point: 32.7 °F
Humidity: 91%
Wind: Calm
Wind Gust: 1.0 mph
Updated: 4:30 AM BST on April 19, 2014
Newport Pagnell
Newport Pagnell, BUCKS
Elevation: 200 ft
Temperature: 36.0 °F
Dew Point: 33.3 °F
Humidity: 90%
Wind: Calm
Wind Gust: 0.0 mph
Updated: 4:30 AM BST on April 19, 2014

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