The New New Year Resolution

January is typically the time of year where you make heaps of resolutions. But now we are into February, how many have you kept?

Like most people I wanted to start to eat healthier and work out more. At both of these I failed miserably.

Kohlrabi and Corn Salad
No salads eaten…

Learning new cooking techniques in 2012

In terms of food blogging this year has been a bit of a wipe out, I dropped Daring Bakers, Daring Cooks, making my own bread, ice cream and french macarons. I stuck to simple dishes when I blogged at all, that were either left for hours to slow cook, or were ready in a matter of minutes.

While this was necessity – you can’t plan a wedding while still working a 40 hour week and have time to keep up with the making, photography and posting cycle.

In 2012 I want to get back into pushing the boundaries a little. As much as Daring Bakers and Cooks was really great at pushing you to try new things, I did spend an inordinate amount of time pushing myself to make things that I would never have eaten if I had the choice. Like those marshmallow disaster cookies. I cried over those, tears of anger and disappointment.

While I am not sure I necessarily want to go through anything like that again – you don’t learn if you don’t push the boundaries. Learning new recipes is all very well and good, but really what you need to learn is new frameworks. Ideas that catapult you out of your everyday dishes, like learning to make bread – once you have the technique millions of new recipes are open to you.

Married!

I have been rather absent in recent weeks, so I thought I would post a couple of shots from my wedding.

Organising a wedding in November I understood straight away that I could not count on the weather. In fact I planned assuming the worst, ice, snow, rain and wind. No outdoor wedding for me, in fact the venue I booked allowed us to do all the different sections of the day under one roof. No taxis, or cars needed. In fact in the end I actually walked to the venue, dress draped over my arms (it was only 2 minutes).

Having photos outside was an option that didn’t seem likely at all. So when I woke up to see the sun shining on a crisp November morning – I was a little shocked. I hadn’t planned for this eventuality at all.

Thankfully the venue has access to Queen St Gardens, so after we had our first glass of champagne/ whisky as husband and wife, we walked along to the gardens for some photos.

My mum and I (in full bridal getup) walking along Queen Street, Edinburgh
Photo by Bryony Beckitt

Wedding Related Stress

I haven’t really been blogging and to be honest my dinner dishes recently have lost inspiration. I’ve made an awesome Green Thai Curry about 4 times in a month – because it’s tasty and more importantly quick. (I will post it eventually I promise).

When I have been baking I have been using my new Kenwood Chef Mixer, which I love and I am sure you will hear much about in the run up to Christmas! But to reduce stress I have been remaking old recipes, and while fantastic I don’t like reposting.

Loose Leaf Tea at Little Chef

It’s not every day you get a huge box through the mail for free. When it is shaped like a huge (bright red) treasure chest and filled to the brim with goodies it’s even better.

Little Chef Loose Leaf Tea

It contained flapjacks (yum), loose leaf tea and a wonderful little tea pot perfect for such a tea. (Not to mention all the other accoutrements: cup, saucer, sugar bowl, sugar cubes, teaspoon and sugar tongs.)

I was lucky enough to have this package sent to me by Little Chef, the UK’s roadside restaurant chain, to highlight their selection of good quality teas.

From my summer garden

Overgrown Garden

I have crippled my back pulling weeds, spent hours in the light summer rain, and hours in the depth of winter with double layers of gloves on but finally my garden is beginning to take shape.

Yes there is still the overgrown clematis that I come home to on light nights and hack at it some more, and the bushes which are really too tall and woody but I am getting there.