October 14, 2017 by sarah
Category Home, Live life | Tags: photography | No Comments
May 26, 2015 by sarah
We have just got back from a lovely long weekend in Paris. The weather was beautiful all weekend, the food was exquisite and we enjoyed walking around, soaking up the atmosphere. A very beautiful and relaxed city. Plenty more to see next time we go; we didn’t even get in the Louvre as the queue was too long!
Jim and I outside Notre Dame
Bridge with padlocks of love
Macrons in the window of Laduree
Having macarons and tea in Laduree
Patisserie take away, eaten the Luxemberg gardens – 2000 filles
Patisserie take away, eaten the Luxemberg gardens – pistachio and wild strawberries
Beer for lunch
Notre dame at night
Paris at night
A famous patisserie shop.
Us outside the Moulin Rouge – tourist honeytrap
My sketch of the Eiffel tower
We didn’t get to go up the tower – the queues were too long!
Category Home, Live life | Tags: holiday,Paris,photography | No Comments
March 8, 2014 by sarah
Winter is a tough time for salads; the seasonal ingredients are limited to brassicas and root vegetables and then the weather leaves you wanting nothing but stodgy comfort food. But I craved a salad this week and when I found a beautiful bunch of beetroot in the supermarket I knew I had the makings of a satisfying winter salad. My heart did a little leap for joy.
If your experience of beetroot so far has been pickled beets from a jar or even the vacuum packed ones then you need to try cooking your own. The difference is like the difference between canned and fresh tuna; incomparable. And there really isn’t much hassle in their preparation and I actually quite like the ‘I’ve just murdered someone’ hands (or you could wear rubber gloves). I wonder if that could be a Halloween freak night event; preparing raw beets!
Beetroot, kale and and walnut salad
enough for 4 people as side salad or 2-3 as main event
bunch of raw beetroots, about 500g
1 tablespoon of olive oil
1 teaspoon of cumin seeds
bag of prepared kale, about 350g
handful of walnuts, about 50g
150g goats cheese – I used ewes milk Wensleydale as it was on offer
lemon vinaigrette – juice of half a lemon, a splash of white wine vinegar, same volume of olive or virgin rapeseed oil, large pinch of salt
Preheat the over to 200 °C (fan) and line a baking tray with foil. Clean the beetroots and trim off the tops and roots; cut into chunky wedges. Put on the foil lined baking tray and drizzle over the olive oil and cumin seeds; toss until well covered. Cook for 30-40 minutes until tender and slightly caramelised around the edges. While the oven is on and hot toast the walnuts for 5 minutes. All both to cool.
Blanch the kale in boiling water for a minute, drain and dunk into cold water to stop the cooking. You then need to fully dry the kale; either put in a salad spinner, pat dry with clean tea towels or wrap in a clean tea towel and whizz around your head like a lasso (you may want to do this outside, and don’t let go).
Make up the vinaigrette by whisking the ingredients together.
Make up the salad by layering the kale on the bottom, followed by the beetroot, crumble over the cheese, toss over the walnuts and drizzle over the dressing. Enjoy!
Category Home, Recipe Index | Tags: beetroot,cooking,others,photography,salad,walnuts,winter | No Comments
February 23, 2014 by sarah
I have had fun this weekend with my camera!
I normally take photos for the blog in our conservatory because the light there is good. But that is the crux: the light must be ‘good’ to get ‘good’ photos. So when it is dark, like it is for most of the winter and certainly when I get home from work, or it is very overcast, like it has been every day this winter, I struggle to get good lighting. And photography is all about the light. I have the most success first thing in the morning on a cloudless day when the light is diffuse but these are so rare that I have been thinking about alternatives. So I have made our spare bedroom into a product studio. A spare table top on the bed, sheets of mounting board for the back drops and some white foam board as a reflector. The exposures are much longer so I need to use a tripod which is going to take some getting used to. I am used to hand holding, and often increasing the ISO to compensate, and so adjustments in position small or large were automatic and easy but now with a tripod I have to think about where I want the camera to be to get the angle I want and then move the tripod to get this. Day one, frustrating. Following days, hopefully progress.
A high-key photograph of coconut macaroons with a vintage vibe. Low-key photograph of ‘posh crackers for cheese’ on natural wooden background.
The next stage will be to learn how to use flashes so I don’t need to rely on any natural light!
I am loving my Nikon D7000 and 35mm 1.8 lens, though I am always surprised by the quality of photos out of my point-and-shoot a Nikon Coolpix P 7700.
Category Home, Live life | Tags: blog photography,camera.,Coolpix,D7000,flashes,natural light,Nikon,Nikon D7000,P7700,photo,photography | No Comments