Foraged Blackberry Tart and a Visit to Chatsworth

IMG_5134_15_08_10 (1s)I don’t know how it happened, but autumn snuck up on me this year. I had a wonderful summer with lots of projects at work and at home, and two fantastic sunny holidays, but now suddenly we’re in the middle of October and I’m not sure where September went! I feel like this happens every year, where the months seem to speed up once August is done. The fall is over in a flash and we hurtle towards Christmas without coming up for air. Continue reading

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Roman Cardamom Biscuits

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Apologies for the delay in posts. Like most jobs, I suppose, the art gallery world has distinct seasons that are marked by the important art auctions and art fairs in each city. For London Old Master paintings dealers, the busiest season is July, when we have the Masterpiece Fair (and several others), Old Masters auctions, and various themed weeks in a row. We hold our annual exhibition during this time, so needless to say, I’ve been flat out. Continue reading

Cardamom Buns and the WI Walks

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As some of you may know, I joined the Islington chapter of the Women’s Institute back in the Fall. The WI is a women’s charitable organisation that is now celebrating its 100th year. Originally founded during the First World War to support rural women and assist the war effort, the WI has evolved over the years into a well-known cultural institution. In particular, in recent years it has become more popular in urban areas and with younger women who have the same desire to form communities, learn new skills, contribute to charity, and advocate for positive change that the original founding members had. Continue reading

Butterscotch Birthday Cake

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One of my kitchen idols (please tell me I’m not alone in having ‘kitchen idols’) is Nigella Lawson. Or perhaps I should say that her television and cookbook persona is my idol, as tabloid stories and a prominent court case last year suggest that her real life, like so many other celebrities, is vastly different from the one we see onscreen. But that doesn’t make me like her any less as a cook. Continue reading

Jam Donuts and the Great British Bake Off

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While there are many British tv and radio programs that I will probably never fully appreciate (Peep Show, The Archers) because the cultural gap is too wide, others have endeared themselves to me and become a vital part of my daily routine. These range from listening to the Shipping Forecast on the radio late on weekend nights, to watching QI and wishing Stephen Fry was my overly-intellectual uncle who would drop by at Thanksgiving and regale us with fascinating factoids. Some things are just so charmingly British, you can’t help but like them, no matter your frame of reference. Continue reading