You may (or may not) know that I am officially retired. And, supposedly, that should mean I have lots of time to do all those things I didn’t have time to do when I was working.
Friends who retired before me warned me that I would be as busy, if not more so, when I retired as when I had been working. And they were right! Mind you – it’s probably a good place to be. At least I can get up when I want in the morning and not have to rush off somewhere. But I do seem to be getting myself involved in a lot of things.
I am now on the Board of Directors for a local wildlife rescue and rehabilitation centre and on the Board for a local retirement village as well. I’m rebuilding the website for the wildlife rescue centre as well as doing this blog, and doing the social media for the rescue centre and for the holiday cottage my partner and I run.
Then there’s the boat my partner and I are fixing up, the holiday cottage itself that needs to be looked after, and the garden that always seems to be calling out for more love and attention. And the list goes on!
So, really, I kind of have an excuse for running late with this blog. But I do apologise nonetheless. I really should get onto it earlier. In defence, I did have to rethink one of my recipes for this month. I had the bright idea to try my hand at Danish Pastries. But they were a complete disaster. I can’t even say they tasted better than they looked. Even the chickens were suspicious of them!
So then I turned my hand to sponge cake instead. Back in my wheat-eating days I could turn out a mean sponge. So I thought, “What can go wrong?”. Well, as it turns out, pretty much everything. The first result may have been spongey. But more like the sort you wash your dishes with, not the sort you eat.
So I went back to the drawing board and tried a different recipe. And this one totally came up trumps. Super soft, light and delicious. Afternoon tea today and tomorrow is sponge cake with home-made strawberry jam and whipped cream. Mmm-mmm!
Just to show you that I can wreck a recipe with the best of them, here’s a picture of my two attempts at sponge cake. I wonder if you can guess which is the successful one???
For my other recipe this month, I’m sharing my Penne Puttanesca recipe. It’s a version of the traditional Pasta Puttanesca. But, when I first made it I didn’t have any spaghetti – just penne pasta. So I swapped spaghetti for penne and dropped the anchovies because I’m not a huge fan in pasta.
I’ve never bothered to go back and make it with spaghetti. It’s a really fast, easy dish to knock up when you’re in a hurry or can’t be bothered to do a full-on meal. Add some salad or steamed veggies and there’s dinner.
My recipe uses cherry tomatoes, but you could substitute a can of tinned tomatoes if you can’t get access to fresh ones.
And that’s your lot for this month. Take care and eat well.
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