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Everything posted by Egzandra

  1. Thank you Grandmashazzie, I would like to try some vegetarian/vegan recipes as well. My other half does not like butternut squash unfortunately, so I would have to disguise it! We are not near a Lidl but we get vegetables off the market near where we live in Norfolk. They are very reasonable, and we get lovely cauliflowers etc grown locally there.
  2. Thank you Ursula, I would love those recipes particularly the sheeps head one. Maybe if I get the butcher to quarter the head I will be able to fit it in the pan.
  3. I apologise to anyone who is vegetarian and/or doesn't like the idea of this, but I think I would like to make some brawn. I am not working at the moment so I am thinking of cheaper cuts and old recipes. There are loads of instructions on the internet, but none tell you what size of pan (how many litres) I should have. I do have a fairly largish stock pan but I don't think that is going to be big enough. Has anyone made brawn, and if so, what size pan did you use? I suppose I could slow roast part of the pig's head, and simmer the rest of it but it does seem a bit complicated. Any ideas, tips or thoughts, even negative ones are welcome.
  4. My youngest daughter introduced me to eating at Wagamama and we usually go in there for lunch when we are out shopping together. I like the food, and it is a place that attracts a lot of young people - I felt like the oldest one there the first time I went. I had a fish curry which was lovely - and the sticky rice I had with it was wonderful. My daughter likes the Yaki Soba which I think is a noodle based dish. This is something we like to do together, and if I go out shopping with my eldest daughter, we go to a completely different type of place and that is special for us.
  5. I have given into temptation, and I have bought a new soup maker as well now! It should come this week. All of the recipes and tips shown by the omleteers look lovely and I am looking forward to trying them out. Also wondering how chuckmum6 is getting on with hers now - has it helped her to lose weight? because we need to do that. Have to resist the bread and butter to accompany the soup is the problem, like Chuckmum says. Freezing the stock in bags to use with the soup maker is a really good idea, and I suppose that way it is more easy to skim off any fat which might be in the stock. I also went on a website today (Scottish Mum) who says that you can make stock from a carcase in a soup maker by using the chunky setting which presumably does not blend at all. She suggests that you can do two cycles like this for stronger stock before straining and using the stock with veg in the usual way. I will try to provide the link http://scottishmum.com/2015/04/soup-maker-recipe-leek-potato-and-garlic-soup - just one of the soups on her website.
  6. I hope that Daphne, who started this thread is having a better day today. I recently found a new favourite which is Red Sky, flavoured with Anglesey sea salt. Then I read the small print and discovered they were made by Walkers, which stands to reason, Walkers being hard to beat. As regards Corkers, I think I have seen them in our local co-op in Swaffham. Does that mean that the potatoes were grown in Norfolk?
  7. Strangely enough, I have been craving some crisps for most of the day, but there are none in the house. My favourite is ready salted, but I also like chicken or steak (not sure of its exact name) and prefer Walkers, if we haven't got anything like kettle chips. Crinkle cut ones are good, as part of the attraction is the crunch, and I'm partial to crisps in a sandwich. Not keen on crisps (like prawn cocktail) that have a sweetish flavour, and chocolate covered crisps are a real no no.
  8. Yes I have often been tempted to buy a soup maker as we quite often have soup for lunch, however I am usually making it from a chicken carcase or other bone and it would involve using a pan for this to make the stock and then putting it into the soup maker without the bones. This seems to be defeating the object of the soup maker being labour saving. We usually have the soup quite chunky as I also have no blender, but a potato masher will break the pieces up a bit. But I might surprise myself and buy a soup maker one day because everything you others are making sounds sooo yummy.
  9. I made some honey soap which did not set very well. was going to rebatch it but I chickened out and decided to make a new batch of a basic recipe scented with lemon into which I grated the honey soap and it turned out fine, a bit mottled because the grated soap did not dissolve completely but rather attractive, I thought.
  10. Thank you so much to everyone who's responded, will try putting the food in different places, and I have just been on the CJ wildbirdfood website - it looks really good and the postage is reasonable. We've got a pet food shop around the corner with some wild bird foods but not a great selection, so I think I will be using both during the months to come! Egzandra
  11. Thank you ANH - that is really helpful. I am trying soaking the mealworms, but strangely enough the birds don't seem to be as interested in them, dry or wet, as I thought they would be - maybe as it is not terribly cold as yet, they are able to find their own insects at the moment.
  12. Hello Omleteers We have just moved to Norfolk and have a good bird population in the garden, and the previous owner used to feed the birds so I thought I would carry on with it. Was not sure what to buy, but in the end bought a bag of seed mix, a bag of mealworms, a fat ball and a string of peanuts. I was just a bit concerned about the mealworms because they are so dry. Does anyone know, should I reconstitute them before I feed them to the birdies? It is quite entertaining watching them. There is a big, portly blackbird who stands on-guard and chases away the other birds. They wait until he is looking the other way and do a swoop on the bird table.
  13. I made soap until about five years ago and one batch I made was very crumbly. I had used a recipe from a book. But I don't think I used enough liquid as I changed that part of the recipe. The soap was lovely, although a bit rough because of the crumbles. So, do you think the liquid part of your recipe was OK? Or maybe, due to the fats you used the soap hardened too much before you had a chance to cut it. Did you use a recipe and if so did you check the amount of NaOH anyway according to the type of oil/fat you used? There are saponification tables online that tell you how much to use for each type of fat. It does vary and it is always worth checking to make sure the recipe is correct. I have always done a superfat of around 5%, that is, using a bit more oil or fat to cover if there is slightly too much lye. I would like to start making soap again. Unfortunately my children were rather suspicious of my soap and would not use it, but my husband has always used it and I still have some left although the scent has disappeared by now!
  14. The remark about the cat pooping on the lawn took my attention, because unfortunately my cat, who is otherwise very good, does that and I do hope she does not do it to the neighbours. I dread to ask them. We always have a litter tray in the house which she does not use very much - perhaps it is too close to where she eats, although it is in a different room to her food. We are moving soon so maybe when she is confined indoors I can get her to break the habit.
  15. The other day as it was my husbamd's birthday we had some people round for cake and as one of our friends is gluten intolerant I decided to make the cakes gluten free (not having done anything like this before). I used the Doves Farm flour plus the gluten free baking powder and made the sponge using their recipe and then made another cake using cocoa and banana added to that basic sponge recipe. Both turned out fine and the cakes were enjoyed by all including hubby. I felt really chuffed and it was very easy to do. Just wondering if anyone here makes gluten free treats using their own blends of flour, like chestnut or other flours?
  16. I am a bit scared, I have to admit, Chortlechooks as well as being excited about it. That's why I have been talking to people on here about where they live and also why we are going to do a lot of research about the local churches, because if you join the right one you get a ready made family with things to plunge into as well as meeting a load of new people. There's nothing like helping with a project for making new friends we find. Also researching the crafts and interests route which is another great way. We are not expecting to feel at home instantly wherever we go - have to give it time and maybe in the meantime we will feel rather strange and homesick. We have lived in our home area all our lives and it is familiar to us but we are going to try something new now. Somewhere attractive where the children and their partners will want to visit with their children when they have them and our old friends of course!! We haven't found anywhere yet although we have been looking on Rightmove - our eldest is getting married in a few weeks and we are busy with preparations for that!! Thank you, Newcountrygirl, I will be in touch if we find anywhere near to you. I am glad you have brought Lincolnshire to our attention because we hadn't really thought of it before you told us about it.
  17. Hi there Sorry everybody that this is still the Shropshire thread, as we have not actually been there yet! Today we had a trip into south Lincolnshire to look at two properties, one in Tattersall near Coningsby and the other at a place called Horbling. Both were stunning, but we thought the second one, although Horbling looked gorgeous even in the weather we have had today, was a bit too remote for me. The first one had a very long garden and at the end of it was a path to go into Coningsby, although the front of the house was actually in Tattersall. It really ticked all the boxes, although we have to do some research first before we decide whether to jump in or to wait for a while and see what else comes up.
  18. Thank you so much, Newcountrygirl for that information, I have had a look on Rightmove at some of the places you mention and they do look lovely. When we've decided which weekend(s) we are going to visit Lincolnshire I will look again to see what has come up. It is good to get inside knowledge like yours and thank you for your enthusiasm, you sound very passionate about where you have chosen to be and that makes it tempting for us. What we are aiming for wherever we go is the edge of a small town/village where we can be near the countryside and within walking distance of transport (if ever we can't use the car) and a community for example joining a church with lots of projects going on, indulging my crafting streak so there would have to be a bit of a sewing bee or to start one, indulging my husband's singing streak, and to find a group of chicken buddies to share chicken talk and reciprocate holiday care for the chickens. Other different things to try as well. That would be lovely. We want to have a nice garden but not a huge one, and we want a private garden but to be near people as well. It is quite funny that this thread originally called "Thinking of moving to Shropshire" is also about other places like Norfolk, Lincolnshire too!
  19. You would have passed my village if you went from Watton to Downham Market Private message me if you are coming this way again and pop in for a cup of tea and see my beautiful village. Hi, thanks everso for these lovely offers, we will certainly pm you and see if you are available to have a cuppa with when we are in your area next. We did like that area of Norfolk that we saw at the weekend, but I am sure we would love other areas of it too. Newcountrygirl, in reply to your last email, we have been thinking of the area around Market Rasen but of course we don't know where to go yet. Confusing, but exciting too.
  20. Thank you for the lovely replies. Not been to Shropshire yet, but we have been looking on rightmove at Lincolnshire since the post by Countrygirl. We will probably have some visits there as well, but today we went to Norfolk on a gorgeous sunny day when everything was sparkling and very beautiful even though it is the middle of winter. Looked at some properties around Watton, then went to Dereham for lunch and look round. We finished up in Downham Market for tea having driven there via Kings Lynn. It was a lovely day and a wonderful start to our house hunting.
  21. Hi, thank you so much for your replies. I have looked at Shifnal and Cleobury Mortimer on Rightmove and there appear to be properties in our price range around there. We need to start paying Shropshire a visit soon to check out the surroundings. We have not discounted Norfolk though nor anywhere else that is no more than two hours journey from the family. And it would be lovely to go on Escape to the Country! I am so looking forward to having my chickens. Very excited
  22. Hi Omleteers I am sure there must be people on this forum who live in Shropshire. We are thinking of moving away from our area in North Herts later this year when our fixed term runs out on our rented house, and were originally planning to go to Norfolk. But Shropshire appeals to us as well. If you live there, and we have been looking on Rightmove for some properties around Telford, is it nice to live there? We would like to be near to a nice lively church, my husband wants to be able to join a group for singing, I'd like to be near to craft shops/college and near to a hospital as I work in the NHS, and we both want to live somewhere scenic, and I want to be able at long last to keep some chickens. Any thoughts, anyone?
  23. Hi Crafty Fingered People I was wondering around our updated Lidl, and saw this: click Not sure if that link is going to work, but it is a sewing machine for 69.99 with a three year warranty. Silvercrest is the name. Has anyone tried one of these? Happy Christmas Egzandra
  24. I might do, haven't made my mind up yet. We live quite near being in North Herts. I would have liked to try out some lighter weight machines as I am thinking of buying one to take to classes, but on looking at the exhibitors they don't seem to have many different brands to choose from. Am debating whether to get the Janome 525S or one of the H range Husqvarnas. Hope you enjoy it if you go!
  25. Thank you for your replies which are all helpful. I think I will get some paint and experiment with one or two of the drops because my worry is the finish and I don't want to botch it up more. I am not particularly worried about an exact match as the pink glass drops are only three, whereas the others number 30-40. If the finish is not right I can consider buying some replacement drops (have seen some lovely ones, quite like the originals on a website) as after all the chandelier is not mine, it belongs to the landlord. If it was mine I would probably go for a different colour to pink! Note to landlords - don't leave retro chandeliers in the hall of your rentals! Either they will get broken or some muppet will come along and want to wash them.

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