Archives for the month of: July, 2013

61eHU+ZuTCL._SL1425_This post is a little over due. I normally try and post my Album of the Month post in the middle of the month, not on the last day! This month I haven’t really listened to just one album again and again. I’ve mainly been listening to the radio in the car as I’ve been running errands. This week and next I am helping out a family friend whose Au Pair left her in the lurch, so I am busy thinking up ideas of what to do to keep her daughter entertained and what to make her for tea! This is my lame excuse for not being organised and neglecting my blog a bit lately, I vow to try and be better and upload some more posts soon. But back to the album, this album isn’t a new release but it makes me feel summery, with all the acoustical guitars and tambourines, so was fitting to all the lovely weather that we had in July (which sadly now appears to be replaced with showers) and hopefully the sun will be back in August.

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On Sunday it was the 30th annual duck race, a race in which hundreds of plastic yellow ducks are tossed into the local loch and they have to race from one side to another. It isn’t the most exciting race of all time, but it was on route during our bike ride so we stopped off, grabbed some Subways and watched the race, cheering on our duck. Unfortunately due to the hot weather the water level in the loch had dropped causing it to be a very slow race, this meant that a scuba diver had to get involved along with a dingy to scoot the ducks along a bit. Neither of our ducks won the race (though it wasn’t a very fair race due to several ducks being flung forward) and so we cycled on to complete our bike ride giving me a good chance to test out my new handlebars, you can catch a sneak peak of them in the photo below and soon I will upload plenty more of them I’m sure.

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OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA For my 20th birthday my boyfriend surprised me with this lovely bicycle. I had wanted one for a while and he knew exactly the sort I wanted, an old style town or road bike. This one he found at a local store that refurbish second-hand bikes is a beauty. The saddle wasn’t part of the original bike and was the first small change made, which my boyfriend initiated, I never saw the original saddle, this one was already fitted when he gave it to me, (it’s from Halfords and is part of their Real range). Whilst I love my bike I have been meaning to change the handlebars for some time. I am planning on switching the current drop down handlebars to ones which curve back, allowing me to sit upright when I cycle. The handlebars are part of my 21st birthday present from my boyfriend and after lots of research and hunting we settled on a set of Belleville handlebars, which we saw first here on the Lovely Bicycle! blog. Along with allowing me to ride upright, the handlebars are perfectly suited for me to attach my wicker basket to the front, which will come in handy for the picnics we are planning on. I can’t wait to fit them, they were dispatched earlier this week and due for delivery today, so fingers crossed I will be able to have them fitted in time for this weekend!

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20130716-140246.jpgMy mum first made this dessert over the Easter holidays, since then I have wanted to make it again and seeing as my sister wasn’t able to try any at Easter it seemed like a nice way to spend the evening together. We have altered the recipe slightly from the original one from Waitrose, we couldn’t manage to add the vanilla extract without the chocolate separating so this time we didn’t include it. Waitrose also suggest using burnt sugar fudge but we opted for vanilla dairy fudge, though I am looking forward to trying different variations on this pudding. It is perfect for summer as it doesn’t require any baking and is a nice cold dessert topped with more fresh fruit and extra cream!

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The recipe as given on the Waitrose card is here though a few things to note;

ONE. I have already mentioned the trouble we had when adding the vanilla extract to the chocolate, I’m not sure if this was just our extract or not, but I was thinking it might work adding it to the cream but I don’t feel that it lost anything not having the additional vanilla, expecially as we used vanilla fudge.

TWO. Be sure to let the chocolate cool! My sister and I didn’t leave it to cool long enough… The cream went runny again and all in all we had to start that section of the making process again. We couldn’t help it, we were too excited! But yes, be sure to wait to let the chocolate cool and then everything will be fine.

Our ideas for different variations on the pudding include using dark chocolate instead of milk, different variations of fudge such as rum & raisin, I particularly want to make it again after a trip to the fudge shop in Cambridge, to see what types of fudge I can find.