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Food, general thoughts, food…


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Creamy Chicken Pasta

This was a wonderful simple dish. Creamy and wholesome it didn’t have an overwhelming bite of flavour, rather a subtle, delicate flavour that you just can’t get enough of.
The addition of mushrooms would take it to another whole level, there is always next time!

Creamy Chicken Pasta

Serves: 4

500 g chicken breast, diced
250 g penne rigate pasta
30 g butter
1 teaspoons crushed garlic
¼ cup Parmesan cheese
1 tablespoon cornflour, mixed with enough milk to make a thick paste
300 mL cream
Seasoned pepper
Chives, chopped
Parsley

Boil pasta in lots of salted water, until just tender.
While pasta is cooking, melt butter in large saucepan and add garlic and chives.
Add chicken and stir to combine. Put lid on pan for 4 minutes.
Remove lid and stir chicken until just cooked.
Add cream and combined cornflour/milk mix.
Stir continuously until sauce thickens. If too thick add a little milk.
Add Parmesan cheese and seasoned pepper, stir.
When cooked, stir in parsley.
Drain pasta, add to chicken mix and stir until evenly coated, serve.


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Cake and light bulbs

Yesterday I made a cake. It was my turn on morning tea.
This was a caramel cake with caramel icing, need I say more?
It was light and airy (whipped egg whites) and while the cake was relatively subtle the icing was a blast of sugary fudgy hyperactivity.

Needless to say there was not a lot left after morning tea as everyone scarfed at least 2 pieces.

I have a couple of extra recipes to add without pictures because I have been slack on the photographing lately.

On a personal note, number one hurdle has been achieved. Our house has sold and finally settled after a long and drawn out session of fixing this and that little thing for the new owner. This has done wonders for my stress levels. It has also pointed out to me that I am too forgiving and accepting when it comes to fighting for my rights as an individual.
In the next few weeks the settlement will go through on our new property, before that is the final inspection. I know that I will wander through the home, ignore things like burnt out light bulbs and figure anything I see that is a tiny issue, I can fix myself later. Other people are not like this, they check everything, complain about everything, and insist they are entitled to everything. I know they are only protecting their best interests but I just cannot bring myself to be like that.

I am not concerned with the oil stain on the driveway, it is a driveway, they get oil on them, and it doesn’t come off. I don’t care that there are 3 blown bulbs in the house, I can replace them whenever, it won’t break the bank. I understand it will cost me in the end, maybe up to $4.95 per bulb if it is a particularly fancy light fitting. Still, I just cannot make myself sweat the small stuff, and I can’t bring myself to pester someone else about it even if I do notice it.

Who knows how many hundreds of dollars it will set me back in light bulbs in my lifetime? I really couldn’t care less.

Caramel Cake

CAKE:
125g Butter
1/2 Cup Brown Sugar
1 1/2 Cups Self Raising Flour
2 Eggs
1 Tablespoon Golden Syrup
1/2 Cup Milk
Pinch of Salt

CARAMEL ICING:
1 cup brown sugar, firmly packed
60g butter
3/4 cup icing sugar
2 tablespoons milk

Beat the butter and Brown Sugar together with an electric mixer until
light and smooth. Separate the eggs and add the yolks to the butter
mixture. Stir in the Golden Syrup and add the sifted flour
alternately with the milk. Whip the egg whites with the salt until stiff
and then fold in. Pour into a round ring tin and bake 1/2-3/4 hour in a
moderate oven 180oC until cooked. (It took ½ hr in my oven but who
knows what temperature my oven is at??)

When cool, ice with caramel icing made by mixing brown sugar,
icing sugar and butter in a bowl, thin with milk if necessary.


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Moving day approaches…

I haven’t written a lot lately because on top of studying, working and being almost constantly ill this past couple of months I have been keeping a secret as well. Anyone who writes will tell you that trying not to write about a subject that looms large in your life makes waxing lyrical about other things even more difficult, or maybe that’s just me.

The secret, while not of any earth shattering importance to anyone else has been a big financial decision for my husband and I, and we didn’t want to let the cat out of the bag until everything was settled. We have decided to purchase a house.

It is a nice house, in a nice neighbourhood, not far from where we currently live. You can imagine though, with 4 kids between us, it has been a real struggle to keep it all a secret. There is still a month before we can move in but as the house is slowly becoming a barren wasteland of empty cupboards and the spare room is filling up with packed boxes, the secret is about to come out.

I am sure the kids will be disappointed to leave our comfortable rental with the perks of its own swimming pool but the time has come to step into a more stable financial future (without a pool) for all of us.

Some things I have noticed thus far on our journey to become home owners once again:

  1. Banks are much more motivated to suck up to potential new customers than they are to work to retain your business.
  2. Cats love boxes, rooms full of boxes are even better.
  3. Children have no decorum and taking them house hunting is like taking a bunch of loud and self-impressed critics to your gynaecological appointment. Highly embarrassing and to be avoided at all costs.
  4. You suddenly realise that being a hermit has some real disadvantages, like having no one to ask for help on moving day.
  5. You realise that 9 out of 10 of your possessions can be packed in a box for over a month and you won’t miss them, after giving it serious thought you also realise that you cannot possibly part with said items, just because…
  6. Books are heavier than lead blocks. Boxes of books are heavier than compact cars.
  7. It doesn’t matter what you plan for or what steps you take to get ready, all the work has to be done in 2 days (not before and not after) and that will probably kill you.
  8. Rental agents are the spawn of Satan. This employment sector is exclusively for sadists with a superiority complex.
  9. Real estate agents were mosquitos in a former life. They are more persistent and live off of your life blood.
  10. If you moved every 12 months and just threw out whatever boxes were not unpacked from last year’s move, you’d have half as much stuff to move this time…and back to point 5…

I am sure more stuff will come up as our moving date gets closer and I sincerely doubt I will write any of it down… I still have to work and study and somehow avoid coughing up a lung in the meantime (btw, stress really can affect your health!) while I pack and make inane and pointless plans on how moving day will be structured.

Wish me luck!