Pineapples, as a decorating motif, are uniquely kitsch and classic all in one. I was looking through a 2003 Vogue Living recently and found this spread. Look at those lovely pineapples and palm trees, delightful, and timeless.
This is a little timber pineapple bowl I picked up recently. I decided to paint it white because it's specifically for lemons and limes, and I like the contrast. Shame about the less than spectacular fruit in it.
Speaking of timber bowls, I have a new found appreciation for them after seeing a segment on the Martha Stewart show, where some men turned beautiful wood into spectular bowls. I've indulged this new whimsy a couple of times recently.
.....or draped in woollies. I don't think she's much suited to the security business, being so emotionally needy and all. The chilly nights are putting us all on edge, with both canine and feline choosing to spend the night in - at the same time. While the needy dog would just love to play with the cat, Teddy looks at the dog with utter repugnance on his haughty little face. I swear you could cut the air with a knife when those two are around each other.
This crisp Winter weather is turning out some spectacular sunsets. This is one from during the week. Old timber houses on hills, such as ours for example, are notoriously 'un-warm' in Winter, in fact, we actually go outside for some relief from the frigid conditions inside. Every whisp of icy wind works its way under doors and through the thousand cracks in our walls.
The girls have got themselves a daily habit of hot chocolate, usually spiced up with some vanilla and cinnamon. We make it with real chocolate on the bottom, topped with hot milk, the vanilla, a couple of marshmallows tossed in and a sprinkle of cinnamon. No complaints.
If you're around Paddington at all while it's cold, try a hot chocolate at Monty's, which is near the Paddington Antiques Centre, you'll either love it or hate it. I was frightened, and I don't scare easily when it comes to calories.
I have been eating vegan style lately - please, no snoring during this paragraph. That means no animal products, so no meat obviously, no dairy, eggs, seafood, etc. Hardcore vegans don't even eat honey (because of the involvement with bees) or marshmallows (gelatine is made from cows' bones) - but I don't think I'll take things that far. Anyway, I'm not going to rabbit on about my eating regime because that's very boring, but safe to say, surprisingly veganism is conducive to cold weather.
Armed with my Charmaine Solomon, I've been whipping up vegetable curries and dahl like a woman possessed.
Dahl is almost the perfect food. It's delicious, quick to make, healthy, cheap, low fat, high fibre, filling and freeze-able. You can add loads of sides like chutney, yogurt, flat bread, fresh herbs and pickled vegetables.
To make dahl, just heat a few tablespoons of oil (vegetable, olive or ghee) in a pot and sautee two diced onions, toss in some spices (turmeric, garam masala, ground cumin or coriander) and crushed garlic and stir some more. Put 375g red lentils (one bag) into the pot with about four cups of vegetable stock, you can add more if required later. Stir, turn down the heat, put the lid on and cook for about 20-25 minutes until the lentils are mushy. That's it.
It should look something along the lines of this.. tonight I served mine with fried eggplant and fresh spinach sandwiched between two pieces of toasted lebanese bread.
Have a look at these darlings. I spotted them in an op shop during the week. All I could see from a distance was a splodge of pretty blue on a shelf, and I flew over vampire style and snatched them up. I don't think I needed to pounce so, they weren't really on anyone else's radar, but aren't they lovely. Absolute gorgeousness for only two and a half clams!
Stay warm people!