I cannot be described as a domestic goddess but I do love my kitchen — warm and sunny and a lovely place to create whatever tempting morsels take my fancy.
Saturday morning is planning time. I have the house to myself. A cup of coffee, pen and paper, bright arrow markers, a selection of recipes from magazines or passed on from friends, or one of the books from my extensive collection. I am ready to start. Jams, preserves or a new recipe to try, because the flavours appeal, help me reach my final decision.
The women in my family were versatile cooks, being able to create tasty dishes from almost anything. This came from a place where food was never wasted, probably because of wartime rationing. Even leftovers would reappear as something to be savoured in another dimension.
Not sure what I want to create. This depends on what the pantry and freezer can provide by way of ingredients — measuring, beating, mixing, cooking, baking or setting in the fridge. It could be something for the freezer, cake tins or for the next family meal. I am lost in my own world.
Then there is the sampling. This culinary tasting has become almost a tradition between my neighbor and I. We both share a love of food preparation and are quite ‘catholic’ in our choice of cuisine, each seeing ingredients, however humble or grand, as a challenge. Occasionally tantalizing aromas waft across the back fence hinting that something might soon be ready for collection.
The fence plays a major part in the samplings. A short telephone call is followed by the appearance of a container placed on the top fence rail, which is just the right size for these exchanges. Then one of us will duck out to collect the treat.