So. Not saying anything but just saying. I got long-listed for the V by very Irish blog awards. Eek. Pretty happy about that. Even if I nominated myself but in honesty I could have been here ages waiting for other people to like me. Also to get on the long list all you have to do is a) have a blog, b) live in Ireland and c) have updated it in the last three months. Regardless of the questionably attainable criteria I’m fairly delighted.
Here’s the logo thing they sent me that I’m allowed use.
Secondly this week I’m making a reading thing for my first born’s new playschool (I will most definitely post some photos when I’m done – love a bit of crafting). Proper playschool. My baby is going to be looked after from 9 – 1 Monday to Friday by someone who isn’t me. I’m torn. Half of me cannot wait to only have second born with me so I can give him some one on one time. The other part of me is slightly freaking out that I’m handing over responsibility for my baby.
Lastly. My husband and I went to Paris last weekend. I haven’t been for a year. I had entirely forgotten just how deadly it is. I even bothered my arse to research a cool restaurant to eat in. It’s in the former boutique of Jean Paul Gautier and it really couldn’t be any prettier. Super high ceiling with mirrors and bare stonework, cane chairs, deep blue velvet couch seating. The food wasn’t knock your socks off amazing but it was surprisingly reasonably priced and tasty enough. Apart from that dinner we had two more lovely lunches and more pastries than is advisable.
As a result of all that messing and a stint at the gym today -yeah, I work out. Same old – this week’s post is a little lazy. It’s for something warming to go with the perfect rice pudding from ages ago now that we’re trudging reluctantly towards autumn.
So make this rice pudding substituting the orange zest for a cinnamon stick at the start and then do the bits below. It makes enough to accompany about 10 portions of rice pudding. I might mention it’s caramelised apples and apple stew.
Caster sugar 150g
Pink lady apples 3
Cooking apples 3 medium
Put the sugar in a nice even layer in a large frying pan or wide based pot, something that you have a lid for. Put it on a medium heat but keep a constant eye on it as you prepare the pink ladies.
To do that core the apples. I cut mine in half first. It was easier.
Then cut the apples into nice slices about 5mm thick – keep the skins on. You should end up with ‘C’ shaped pieces.
The caramel should be starting to brown a bit. DO NOT TOUCH IT OR STIR IT.
Once the sugar has gone a pale to medium brown throughout, carefully place the apple slices into it. Don’t overcrowd the pan. I did three batches using the same initial sugar. As in you don’t add more sugar.
If the caramel starts smelling bitter or starts looking a bit dark take the pan off the heat for a bit.
Using a knife and fork or whatever’s comfortable flip the slices so each side caramelises nicely. I did mine way in advance and laid them out on a baking tray lined with baking parchment. Then, when I was almost ready to serve I popped them in a hot oven to warm through.
These apples are wonderfully caramelly flavoured but are still soft.
Once you’ve worked your way through all the slices or until you run out of patience take the pan off the heat and sort out your cooking apples.
Peel them a slice them into little rough pieces of about 5cm.
Toss them into the caramel that’s left in the pan after cooking your pink ladies. Add a dash of water and pop on a lid. Put the pan back on a medium heat. Stir every now and then until it’s all perfectly smushy. Taste it and add more sugar if it’s too tart for you.
Serve a bowl of cinnamon rice pudding with a dollop of the stew and a few slices of the caramel apples. Yum. Sorry I didn’t have any photos of the finished thing. I forgot.