Saturday, 16 March 2013

Olive and sun dried tomato Ciabatta

Ciabatta literally means Slipper bread, I will admit to using a bread mix for this recipe, but will make it all from scratch soon.
500gm of Ciabatta bread mix into the bread maker with 300ml of water and a table spoon of olive oil.

You will need to check for the setting on your machine, but you want the machine to make the dough and prove it. Remove it from the machine and knock the dough back, stretch the dough out and place either on a tray or in a dish, like this;
Then push olives and sun dried tomato into the dough.

Then bake at 200c about 30 mins, your looking for a brown crust, like this;
Don't cut this bread tear it and dip in extra virgin olive oil. 

Rosies Nutella and Orange cake

6 large eggs
1 pinch of salt
125 g soft unsalted butter
400 g Nutella
1 tablespoon rum
100 g ground hazelnut
100 g dark chocolate (melted)
2 Large Oranges (the zest)
 Oven 180ºC/gas mark 4

Preheat the oven to 180ºC/gas mark 4. In a large bowl, whisk the egg whites and salt until stiff but not dry.
 In a separate bowl, beat the butter and Nutella together, and then add the rum, egg yolks, orange zest and ground hazelnuts.

Mix in the cooled, melted chocolate, before gently folding in the beaten egg a third at a time.

Pour into a cake tin

and cook for 40 minutes or until the cake begins to come away at the sides, then let cool on a rack.

Tuesday, 12 March 2013

Food photo's

Because its been a while since I posted I have lots of food photographsto show, so here they are.

From the front, clockwise, egg with Mayo, smoked salmon with kiwi and caviar, in the glass, ham avocado cream cheese and cucumber, and finally, fig with brie and smoked ham, the sauce is balsamic vinegar

Coquilles Saint-Jacques and fresh salmon

Salmon baked with lemon and bay leaf

Maltezer cake, I will put the recipe for this on my food blog.


I eat meat and I understand that in order for me to eat meat an animal has to die, but it still upsets me, but I would rather have an animal live here, free range, well fed then die here than buy meat from a shop where I know the animal gets the minimum quality of life and its death has more to do with profit than food quality.
I8n an ideal world I would love to be able to produce all my food needs here at Half Acre, we are trying to do a little more each year and I'm educating myself  about home steading and self sufficiency, while I know we will never reach the goal completely we try to get a little closer each year. 

Christmas Day

I must write this every year, each year the family take it in turns to host the Christmas lunch, this year was Dans turn, as usual we provided the turkey, our job for the day was the starters, Dan host and main course, Mike pudding.
Fresh oysters,

Our starter, salmon, prawns, crab, caviar, 4 small starters on one plate.

A visit from Santa for Kenzo.

This is our contribution to the lunch, the starters, Fois Gras, small apero's and Christmas crackers.

Christmas Eve

Random Kenzo Photo.

Monday, 11 March 2013

Christmas Party at Jillys

Just looking at the picture makes me laugh, trying to work out the total years between us all

Jilly and Keith invited us, Ray and Lorraine for a Christmas dinner, about a week before Christmas.

My dispute with my neighbour

I started to write about the problems I have with our neighbour Olaf, but it was just a long story that really wasn't really worth going over again, but involved Olaf breaking the fence between our lands and Paul putting up a new one.
  Last April I caught Olaf cutting the new fence, I put my hand on the fence and he hit me across the hand with a pair of wire cutters. I thought he had broken it and had to go to hospital I was in so much pain.
 I reported him to the police and then he started a period of intimidation in an effort to stop me taking him to court,  He made threats, usually throat cutting actions or just staring at me, hes a pervert, likes to film and photograph me. I have an I pad and have an app for taking 380 degree photographs, Paul was in the garden taking a pic of the garden,standing by the oak tree in the middle, Olaf didnt realise Paul was there and started to film me. As Paul says his face when he realised Paul was there "priceless".
If were eating or drinking in the garden he will do this, but since he was caught we havent seen him do it again.
In August  his brother in law walked up to our fence, towards the dogs and put his hand through the fence, then said a dog bit him, a lie, he said to the police in October, three months after the incident that he put his hand over the fence to shake Pauls hand, this is a 1.2m fence, how high can a Jack Russel jump?  He then went and sat down and had dinner and drinks, if he had been bitten he should have done something then, but didnt do nothing till October. He and Olaf said they wouldnt press charges as long as I dropped the assault charge against Olaf, I said no. The case finally  went to a pre tribunal, where they try the case without the cost and time of a proper court, it can only work if an agreement can be reached which it was, he admitted he had hit me said he was sorry and agreed to pay compensation, as far as I was concerned that was the end of it, however because of his brother in laws actions who knows.

Packing up smoking

Paul's packed up, we was out shopping just before Christmas and saw an electronic cigarette, it cost just under a tenner and a pack of refills about €8, he tried it and found he preferred them to real cigarettes, just after Christmas he bought himself a proper kit, and buys liquids on line, by shopping around he has found some great deals, he says if you smoke you really should try it.

So here's Paul's tips with links.

The E cigarette
 Buy from E Cig Factory
Everything you need to get started (without liquid) €29.99
Worth buying from the same site are these tanks.
Theres different ways of using the liquids, either in a cartomiser (which come with the kit) basically the liquid is soaked up in a slim tube with a gauze inside or a tank such as these above.

E Liquids

Hes buying his liquids at E Cigarette web
Usually sold in 10ml bottles, though you can buy different sizes, a bottle is equivalent to about 10 packs of cigarettes, cost €2.95, liquids come in various strengths of nicotine, including 0 mg, and loads of different flavours, Paul likes Caramel

Hes going to try this site soon, buying in America, prices start from 75cents for 10ml, but then you add more for flavour, strength, etc, Pauls caramel would cost €1.40 from here and even with postage seems a good deal.