Thursday, October 1, 2009

Food and presents at the weekend...

This post is mainly about cooking and eating - enter if you dare! Ben's birthday was this Monday, but we decided to take a long run-up to the celebrations and have a good weekend of food, drink and presents... Son 1 set the tone by making dough on Saturday, ready to produce his third 'Round the World' recipe - Italian pizza!
Meanwhile, I used the October Country Living recipe to make 'Heaven and Earth' (himmel und erde) for lunch - potatoes and apples with bacon. It was a pleasant addition to a salad-based meal, but maybe I should have used sharper apples.
That evening we ate the pizzas, which were spendid. Son 1 put everything he thought the adults would like onto this one: peppers, anchovies, mozzerella, sweetcorn, pepperoni and mushrooms. I added a sliced organic red onion that I'd bought at the Alterna'town festival that afternoon. The overall effect was delicious!
He produced a second pizza where his half was like the adults' minus the pepper and onions, whilst his brother's half looked rather bare in comparison. What a fussy eater, that brother! However, being specifically catered for like this, Son 2 did enjoy his half of the pizza.
This was Son 1's present to his dad the following evening. He decorated the jar (a useful holder for 'things' in the office) using some wonderful pens which write on anything. I did like his patchwork design! As he'd already got a present, he used the jar as a container for his birthday message instead of a card.Son 2 went overboard on the wrapping (and the tippex 'snail'!) Note the piratical theme - it's important.Aww!
Inside the wrapping was the picture he'd made as a card - a gate into a very spooky wood. Here's a boy who loves googly eyes and sparkly things! Both this and the jar idea came from a great set of craft books which the boys were given years ago - still the source of so many projects. Ben has taken all these things into his office this morning, where they will decorate his desk. Inside these two parcels were the following piano books:The boys love hearing their dad play their favourite music, and Son 1, at least, has the ulterior motive of wanting to learn to play the pieces himself! (Son 2 hates sight reading so much that he's much less likely to try them out.)
So here was my present, bought from one of the excellent Fair Trade shops in Toulouse - there's a very stylish T-shirt inside.Also inside was a book Ben had been thinking of reading - look who sent it to me (via Amazon). There is hope yet for Amazon addicts doing the dottie angel challenge!Rather continuing the orange theme, I made Ben a carrot cake using the last carrots from the garden. Son 2 specified how it should be made, and I have to admit that his variations on my usual recipe were an improvement - in two layers, with thicker icing!Ben picked some yellow rasberries from our rather reluctant bushes, and they made a great decoration.
Happy 42nd Birthday, dear Ben!
On Ben's actual birthday, Monday, we were too busy baking to celebrate much, so it was a good thing we'd gone for the weekend celebrations. His company has a tradition of the birthday people providing crepes, tartes etc, and he always likes to bring something traditionally British. This year he made Melting Moments, which seem almost impudently English to me...and I knocked up some of my very-fast-and-makes-sixty-at-a-time ginger biscuits.
I gather everything went down very well.
Next celebration - Bonfire Night! Always fun with French visitors...

20 comments:

Suzy's Vintage Attic said...

Hello Floss
Thank you for your lovely comments. A post about food will always catch my attention. Very impressed at your sons cooking skills, they are well trained! Happy belated birthday.
Those biscuits do look good Floss, what are the ones with cherries on?
I really like the heart picture on your previous post, beautifully made!
Isabelle x

melissadc76 said...

Everything looks so wonderful! What delicious looking fare. I love your blog, I love the idea of living in France (I'm sure it isn't as romantic as I'm imagining, is it?)

Thanks for stopping by my blog, I'm glad you are doing well on the challenge. About day 8 my laptop cord died, and after searching for a used one, I had to break down and buy new. What else was a girl to do? Other than that, I've done well with the challenge.

Melissa

Lena said...

My diet shall now begin again on Monday... What a burst of creativity!

Michela said...

I'm amazed by the crafty and cooking abilities of both your sons! They're so clever!
Your challenge is becoming every day more interesting!
Have a fantastic weekend!
P.S.Thank you so much for your lovely comment on my last post!

Mami said...

What s preivious time on birthday!!Good for you!. I got a lots of inspirations from your family. And happy birthday to Ben from me,Jaan.
Omedeto!!(Japanese)

And thank you for your comment:)

VintageVicki said...

Lovely pics of scrummy looking food. Just think of the creations if ever our boys should meet :)

juanitatortilla said...

Now that's one wholesome family fun. Happy Birthday to Ben! Those pizzas look simply delicious. I bet they were. Saved a piece for me? I guess not. Maybe next time (but no pepperoni for me, please, thanks) ha! Great idea on a layered carrot cake with extra icing. That's the way cakes should be :)

Lululiz said...

Oh nooo, food! Its 9am and I am so wanting pizza now, lol, is that wrong? Your boys are great, cooking and crafting like pros.

Catherine said...

Looks like a great time was had by all! Beautiful food! Feeling very peckish!

Sarah said...

What excellent gifts boys!! Well done. I'm sure Dad will love those for quite some time. Now that pizza looks seriously delicious. Our girls have varying choices too. Poor No.2 has a very limited choice with her food intolorances so I really wonder how much enjoyment she gets out of hers. Now those ginger biscuits look like a recipe we should have. I would like to give No. 2 a recipe book for Christmas and perhaps some good recipes in it. Maybe when you have time you could email it to me. Thanks and have a wonderful day today.

Itch2stitch.com said...

Floss! Thanks for visiting my blog and leaving your lovely comment! What a brilliant birthday, all those beautiful gifts and that really yummy looking food too! It loks like you all had a fab time! suzie. x

claire said...

love the idea of the decorated jar :0
lovely post - sounds and looks like a good birthday.
Any chance of directing me to the ginger biscuit recipe...I'll trade you for a homemade hobnob one lol!!!!

The Curious Cat said...

Wow -what a wonderful birthday! Happy 42nd Ben! Those pizzas look splendid - well done on those kids! Hmmm...and the presents too! And yellow raspberries? Never come across those before - how unusual! And that salad sounds delicious as well! What a lovely family effort! Ben must have been really pleased with it all! xxx

Manka said...

Wow! So many yummy things!! The cake looks fantastic, I've never tasted a carrot cake yet.We have so many carrots in our garden I should try to make one once...
Happy birthday to Ben !
Your sons are so clever at cooking and everything!
That "patchwork " jar is so lovely!
Floss, have a nice weekend you all!

Elizabethd said...

Am now very hungry! It sounds as though all went well and a happy Birthday was had.
Book 2 is on its way!

Jackie said...

Floss ~ It all looks very yummy indeed! I saw that recipe for heaven and earth in CL and have filed it away for another day, I will try to remember to get sharper tasting apples though! I love the piano books ~ the music from Pirates is fantastic and the CD is on my husbands wish list. Hope you have a very lovely weekend :O)

Lucy Pursglove-Jones said...

OK now I am very hungry, Floss! The pizzas look delicious. Have a wonderful weekend. Xx

Serenata said...

A very happy belated birthday to Ben! Lovely presents the boys made and an excellent choice of music - I have the clarinet version of Lord of the Rings.

Now you have tempted us with your ginger biscuits - they look rather perfect! Quick to make and 60 at a time - just right.

Florence and Mary said...

Pizza AND carrot cake – two of my favourites!

Have a fantastic weekend

Victoria xx

Melanie said...

I love melting moments, I follow the Be-Ro recipe for them and they are so delicious. xxx