Wednesday, 30 April 2014

Risotto Verde







Oven-baked Risotto Verde
adapted from Rachel Allen's Favourite Food At Home

2 tbsp olive oil
1 cup peas (petits pois)
1 bag ready-washed spinach
3 cups vegetable stock
1/2 cup unsweetened apple juice
1 onion, finely chopped
2 garlic, finely chopped
1 cup arborio rice
8 stalks asparagus, cut stalks into small-ish pieces (set aside the asparagus heads from the chopped stalks)
salt and black pepper





Preheat the oven to 180C

Wilt spinach in microwave for 1 minute on High.
Finely chop spinach and set aside.

In a deep saucepan, heat olive oil, add the onion and garlic and season with salt and pepper.
Cover with a lid and sweat over a gentle heat until soft but not coloured.
Add the risotto rice and stir it around in the saucepan for a minute, then add the stock and the apple juice.
Stir and bring it up to the boil, cover with the lid and place in the preheated oven for 15-20 minutes or until the rice is just cooked and all the liquid has been absorbed.
Stir in the spinach, asparagus stalks and peas and set aside with the lid on.

Bring another saucepan of water to the boil, add a good pinch of salt and add the asparagus heads.
Boil for 2-3 minutes or until it is just tender, then drain.

Serve the risotto  with the asparagus and grated parmigiano on top








Sunday, 27 April 2014

Cafe Amore


A dear friend and fellow blogger, Mary Moh, finally realised her lifelong dream of owning a cafe when she opens Cafe Amore last Wednesday.

I was honoured to be given the task as the main decorator in her very first cafe.... and this was the result!
I'm well chuffed!!


























Some behind the scene help...









Mary showing the art of making teh tarik







Mary Moh's delicious chicken puff







The motley crew of friends and supporters




Good luck, Mary!
We wish you all the best in your new and exciting venture!!! xoxo




Tuesday, 22 April 2014

Spring Table




Table-setting for a simple luncheon

I'm keeping the table plain by using a row of potted primula auricula as the centerpiece


























Monday, 21 April 2014

Castle Trail



Tolquhon Castle



The front of the castle.
Preston's Tower (the auld tour) is to the left of the gatehouse







Inner Court




















Preston's Tower
The oldest part of the castle, built around 1420





















East Range
Bakehouse, Kitchen and Pit-prison







The main house

















West Range






Pleasance
a park or pleasure ground beside the castle












Bee-boles
twelve square recesses in the pleasance wall originally housing bee-hives (skeps)