It's been a very long time since I wrote here, and there are a lot of reasons for that. I got my degree, I left university, I said goodbye to my friends and to the town that had been home for 4 years, I went to Norway, I moved in with my boyfriend into a whole new town, I started a new job, I adopted two baby kittens, I went to Spain. Essentially, life happened, and happened at a quite alarmingly fast rate. I also got some new hobbies; I rediscovered reading for pleasure instead of academic marks, and writing for my eyes only, and yoga. This blog has always been in the back of my mind, but when I finally had time to write again I found that it had begun to feel a little restrictive. The word "kitchen" kind of prompts food writing exclusively, and I wasn't sure that that was what I wanted to write about any more. After all, I've never claimed to be following my passion - only my curiosities, and those are always subject to change. So I set up a new blog, registered a domain name and everything, only to find that, when it came to it, I still just wanted to write about food. And about the benefits of a quiet life. And, really, a celebration of the simple life. So in that respect, it appears nothing has changed at all.
That said, things may be a little different around this hobbit kitchen from now on. I don't really know how, but it might not always be food (though it probably will be), and I don't think I'll be including step by step photos of every aspect of the cooking process. Primarily because I actually found this hampered my cooking a bit - without a glamorous food photographer boyfriend on hand, more than a few of my meals have suffered because I've been too busy trying to get a good shot of melting butter or sizzling bacon rather than concentrating on what I'm cooking. And you know, I love to cook. I really do; I still do. I also love mountains, and I love yoga, and I love writing, and I love takeaways in front of the telly. So I might want to write about that sometimes, I don't know. Essentially, I don't know what this blog will be from now on. All I know is that it is good to be back, and, like most good things, it will begin with pancakes.
In keeping with this whole celebration of the simple life thing, this is the worlds simplest pancake recipe. This morning I woke up at the shockingly late hour of 8.21 and begrudgingly rolled out of bed about a half hour later; a truly magnificent feat of willpower since the kittens had come into the bedroom and were being extra specially snuggly. (Side note - I accidentally wrote rolled out of bread up there, which is probably a more evocative description of how I feel doing said rolling.) But I've started walking an enormous (and enormously bouncy) golden retriever called Otto every morning for my elderly neighbour who's broken her foot, and although it's always hard to leave bed it's a pretty convenient excuse to spend some time alone in the park of a morning. Though I'm not really alone at the moment; the Cheltenham Literature Festival is here for the next week or so and has taken over the park, but still, the idea's the same. I really miss the woods and forests and the trees of my home, my familys home, where I'm from, and Montpellier Gardens in Cheltenham is the closest I get to nature in this new town of mine. The past week has been a dream - all blue sky and crisp early morning sunshine, piles of crunchy autumn leaves, just like something out of a tumblr post. I'd love to say I haven't instagrammed it, and have instead simply basked in wonderment at the majesty of nature, but I think we all know I'd be lying.
And then back home to pancakes, mixed in my mixer because we weirdly don't own a whisk, with lemon and sugar because we're being frugal right now (adulthood is expensive, y'all) and decided that bacon was too expensive. This recipe is pretty much foolproof really couldn't be simpler, so my only advice for you - if you should decide to make these - is to watch out for little scamps who might be awaiting some breakfast of their own.
- 2 large eggs.
- 100g plain flour.
- 300ml milk.
- Tbsp oil (plus extra for frying).
- Sieve the flour, then place it in large bowl with the milk, eggs and oil.
- Whisk into a small batter, with as few lumps as possible.
- On a high heat in a large frying pan, heat about a tablespoon of oil. Once it's really hot - as in steaming - tip a little bit away and shake it around the pan.
- Take a ladle full of batter and pour it into the pan. Let it stick for a few seconds, then swirl around the pan.
- Leave for a few moments, until there are no bubbles forming in the mix.
- Either flip (if you're brave), or just use a spatula to turn the pancake over.
- Cook for a few moments longer, until the pancake is golden brown on both sides.
- Serve immediately.