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Thursday, 21 November 2013

Home Made for Christmas

The Greening of Christmas
As part of my slow living proclamation, I want it to reach into all aspects of my life. I want our Christmas gifts to be green, wrapping reused or reusable, ethically responsible - and last but not least -  enjoyed by the recipient. Phew!
So today I have been making a batch of Christmas cakes to give.
My ex- husband's mother used to give one to all of her family every year - and they were consistently great. If she was still alive I would ask her for the recipe. So that's the great thing about having a blog. My descendants will be able to reach in and pluck out the wisdom (?!) and recipes for many years to come.
I have enjoyed using this ancient cake tin today - which has been used for Christmas cakes in my family for decades.

My Christmas cake for giving

I thought I had better look up how to store Christmas cakes properly, as I have always just put them in a tin, and then they disappear pretty quickly.
This is what I am going to do...
Keep them in the papers they were baked in (3 layers of newspaper, 1 of brown paper, 1 of baking paper), then wrap one layer of greaseproof, two of tin foil, then either into a tin or in gladwrap. That bit doesnt sound very green, but they are all going to go into a decorative tin for gifting.
Once a week they will be pierced with a skewer and be drenched with a little more brandy. If anyone would like the recipe, just ask in comments and I'll post it.

The Butchers
After years of buying meat at the supermarket for convenience, yesterday I picked up our order from an old fashioned butcher. Not only was the steak full of flavour, the whole order looked unlike that from a supermarket - which looks like it is made in a factory. The sausages are labelled "real beef", as opposed to those beef flavoured ones.

The service was great, and the whole order came wrapped in compostable paper and a cardboard box.
And probably no more expensive than the supermarket.

Flowers to town
The calla lillies are producing well here - in fact more than I can use at home, so yesterday I made an arrangement up and took it to my daughter at her work.
The container is one that someone gave me knowing I would reuse it. The bud things are unopened agapanthas, there's an aeonium schwartzkopf in the base,and some pittosporum and flax for greenery - all from the garden. 
Daughter was delighted, work mates impressed.

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