It is hard to contemplate (A) that it is exactly one week till Christmas and (B) that Outrageous Fortune has really finished- it just doesn’t feel like a Tuesday without it. Tim and I are getting up super early tomorrow to go Christmas shopping, so hopefully there is nice weather for it – there were massive wintry rainfalls today which was a bit worrisome.
Above: I always thought that rice paper rolls were a bit like haircuts – best done by professionals. But the recipe in Nigella’s Forever Summer showed me that they were in fact, incredibly do-able. A little fiddly, yes, but nevertheless a simple, impressive, and healthy nibble. We even made them while camping last year, if that is any indication of their non-threateningness (should such a word exist.) I made very simple rolls on Sunday night – just grated carrot, sliced avocado and mint, no noodles or anything. I think they were in fact the nicest ones I have ever made. Once you get into a rhythm of dunking the rice paper, laying the filling on their softened surfaces, and rolling them up, there’s not much to it at all.
Above: The real Canadian cake! Alicia’s friend sent her a box of Betty Crocker cake mix, complete with a TUB OF ICING and we made it after dinner. Although I am generally vehemently opposed to cakes made from boxes, I was intrigued to say the least. You might not be able to see it in the photo but everything on the packaging is charmingly translated into French as well as English. Anyway, we mixed this up and baked it while watching the Simpsons movie on DVD. How do I put this – the cake was appallingly fabulous. It had this spookily puffy, moist texture, like something not found in nature, and the icing tasted like butter. It also had little clumps of e-numbers, I mean sprinkles, clustered throughout. It tasted pretty amazing, but left me rolling around groaning afterwards, filled with too much sugar.
Above: Tonight I kept it fairly simple. Penne pasta, with avocado and roasted beetroot, capsicum, and courgette. I drizzled over a little of the basil oil that Mum and Dad got me when they went to Australia earlier this year, and it was the perfect foil for the mix of flavours on the plate. The beetroot inevitably stained the pasta, but I thought the combo looked rather festive.