Tuesday, 19 July 2011

Traveler's Treats.

Ohhhh Eem GEEEE, it is sooooon that you go away. Mum asked the other day if I would see you before you swan off to the Big Apple...I hadn't really thought about it but heck, I won’t. That means I won’t have seen you for half a year by the time you’re back in the my time zone; the longest time ever. But thinking about it, we’re much better friends when we’re in different countries than when we’re in the same house aren't we?

So, not being able to provide support in the form of hugs, waves and carrying your bags, I will attempt to hold your hand through the blog-o-sphere. First things first...packing! Now if it was me who was relocating to across the pond in just a week I would be surrounded by lists, and lists of lists, and even lists of lists, but I know that’s not your style and you will do absolutely fine without an ounce of forethought. But I thought I’d lend you my excessive organisation skills/obsessive-compulsive tendencies, just for a bit, to aid you in your packing.

Look at my little butter duck looking out to sea, I love him.

Here’s a list (lists will save the world) of what should be in your hand luggage...
1.       Lounge wear- (must be said in a hoity-toity accent) basically PJs that are acceptable to wear in public; anything to make your bottom a bit more comfy.
2.      Bed socks- chilly toes for 10 hours would be most unsavoury
3.      A big fat scarf- for wrapping and scrunching and folding and sleeping on.
4.      Huuuge sunglasses- for pretended you’re a glamorous celebrity on arrival.
5.      Moisturising facial spritz- it will make your on-board life better, also use on hands, feet and ankles.
6.      Toothbrush and toothpaste- feeling minty fresh will help wake you up when you’re sleepy.
7.       Magazines- a LOT of magazines.
8.      An intellectual book- in case you end up sitting near some cultured looking folk that you fancy chatting to, you can use it as a conversation starter.
9.      Welsh cakes.

Yes welsh cakes. I implore you to knock up a batch of these slightly sweet, slightly spiced little gems and stash them in your bag. You surely don’t want to be reliant on the plane’s ‘veggie’ offering (I’m betting some sort of slimy mush). These would make the perfect snack for munching on between the free wine and peanuts; they are hardy and filling little chaps which makes them perfect for picnics and travelling. Just spread them with a lick of butter, wrap them up and squish them between your socks and scarf. Also, why not make a double batch and stick some in your hold luggage so you’ve got your first breakfast ready and waiting when you’ve just moved in and have nothing in your kitchen cupboard. I hope you do, they are brilliant and easy I promise. In fact I’m just off to knock up a few myself. I really am...With Love and Cake.

Welsh Cakes
From Hamlyn All Colour Teatime Favourites...a wonderful book.

A few notes:
·         I did most of this in a food processor, just stirring in the currants, egg and milk at the end. But I’ll write the recipe so you don’t have to as I know you don’t have that facility.
·         I didn’t have any mixed spice so just sprinkled in a spot of ginger, nutmeg, and cinnamon, but actually wished I had added more. Tweak as you fancy.
·         I’m guessing you don’t want to use lard, as the original recipe suggests.
·         The recipe tells you to roll out the dough but I found it easier to press it down and out lightly with my hands.

Makes about 10
You will need

A big frying pan or flat griddle, greased

225g plain flour
1 tsp baking powder
½ tsp mixed spice
100g soft butter
75g currants
1 egg
2-3 tbsp milk

·         Sift the flour, baking powder and spice into a bowl and rub in the butter until the mixture is fine and bread crumb looking.
·         Stir in the sugar and currants.
·         Take a quick break to pop the frying pan or griddle over a medium heat on the hob.
·         Next mix the egg into the mixture and knead in enough milk to bring everything together.
·         Transfer to a clean, floured surface and roll or pat out to a thickness of 1cm.
·         Cut out rounds or around 7 to 8cm and pop in the pan to cook.
·         Cook for around 4 minutes, until the underside is golden and lovely looking and then flip and cook for another 4 minutes.
·         Transfer to a wire rack to cool.
·         Gather up the leftover dough, re-roll, cut and cook, keeping going until it’s all used up.
·         Now eat a couple, spread with melty butter and honey or jam and try and save the rest for your journey. Good Luck.

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