Saturday Morning

Yesterday morning started with a trip to the vet with Tuc where he had anther blood test which revealed that his liver is in real trouble and when examined the whites of his eyes were quite yellow with jaundice.  So it was home with some further medication to support his liver and another visit today.  It was bitterly cold so we spent most of the day indoors trying to keep warm.  We had the lamb for lunch which had been cooked in the sous vide some time last week.  Once out of the vacuum pack and dried it was just blasted in a pan to brown the outside and warm it through.  The meat was tender enough to eat with a spoon but was still at the medium rare stage which is all quite mind blowing!!!! With the meat we had purple sprouting broccoli and mashed potatoes with some celeriac.  The celeriac was huge so the remainder got diced and bagged and put in the sous vide.  As I had it on, doing vegetables, I also did a couple of packs of potatoes diced and some carrots with the glaze ingredients so they are now all ready to roll when needed.  Mike had a trip to Tesco in and effort to buy some ham hocks but sadly they had sold out so we will no doubt have another try today after our trip to the vet.  I had intentions of doing a pea and ham soup with the bones and left over meat - I think Joy and I must be of the same mind set as she is doing the same.

We have had a small sprinkle of snow over night which just looks like a dusting of icing sugar however it is tonight that we have been promised a decent downfall.  Thank heavens for gas central heating my thoughts go out to all the people with "lovely", wood burners which will still need feeding and wood will need drying, chopping, and carting - meanwhile I sit here and it all happens for me.  The most strenuous thing I have to do is turn the knob on the thermostat.

If we fail to get the ham hocks today then I have all the ingredients to make a Heston macaroni cheese - with the exception of a cheese wheel in which to serve it!!! for us a dish will do fine.  Comfort food seems to be the order of the day when the weather is this cold.  So far despite the drop in temperature the hens have been fine in the greenhouse and as yet their water has not frozen which goes to show that the glass must keep the temperature up by several degrees.  Currently we are at minus 1.2 and given that the thermometer is against the house wall that must be a conservative estimate.

Next weekend, all being well with the weather, we are expecting visitors so I am planning a menu but as yet it is all incoherent and just a list of dishes.  Crème brulee, crab tart, belly pork and black pudding and apple sauce.  I need to make a cake of some kind to have with cups of tea but can't decide which.  Mike favours a lemon drizzle cake, I quite fancy a beetroot and chocolate, we will have to see which one I fancy making or maybe I will make both.  The Heston chicken is very appealing for Sunday lunch, nice and easy to prepare and very delicious to eat.  I do however, have a large lump of beef rib in the freezer which would make a great roast beef and Yorkshire pudding meal.  Oh decisions, decisions.  One thing is for certain I may have cleaned the inside of the kitchen cupboards but the outside is deeply in need of a good clean so that is one job I need to get on with.

On our trip round this morning we will have to get a paper so that we can do the crossword puzzle which will keep us amused for a couple of hours and then make excellent chicken bedding once it is put through the shredder.  If only those journalists knew what happens to their hard work! I don't think even the chickens read it.

Now here is a bit of lovely double standards on the news last night they were talking about the 4x4 drivers who worked through all of last years snow ferrying critical staff and patients into hospitals.  Suddenly they are not Chelsea tractors or gas guzzlers and no mention of destroying the planet!!!!  The council eventually agreed to reimburse the cost of the fuel but it was initially borne by the drivers who just volunteered!!!!  If it turns out to be really bad I may just volunteer myself....

Anyway on that hopeful note I will love you and leave you to your day of comfort food and warm fires don't you just love the winter!!!!

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