Chapter 1 of my Book - Read it Now!!!

Good morning! I'm not going to say much only here it is,  a taster of my novel as it stands at the moment. If you enjoy it please leave me a comment. I've been having heart attacks all morning Read more

To The Mountain

Going to the mountain, the Sliabh an Iarainn mountain that overlooks Ballinamore is, for my Dad, going home, as he was born and raised there. It's also where I spent many happy childhood days at my grandparents house. Last week Read more

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Dear readers, I'm so excited about our plans for the garden but I've been caught short on time so I'm going to break this into two posts. In this one I'll just tell you what we're doing, the practicalities, Read more

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Dear readers, it's evening. I'm writing outside to the sound of birds and...birds, and that's it. All around me the trees have turned shadowy black, the grass is gone cold but the air is still sweet and there's heat Read more

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Dear readers, I'd love to stay awhile and chat but I have about twenty minutes and so much news and excitement I'm just going to give you a quick rundown for now. Here we go, the news since my last Read more

Feed a Family of Five, One Week, Fifty Euro.

I have a passion for food and I'm lucky, we've always had a great relationship. I use it to to care for and nourish, to spoil and make well, to show love and friendship, to make sigh and Read more

To The Mountain

Going to the mountain, the Sliabh an Iarainn mountain that overlooks Ballinamore is, for my Dad, going home, as he was born and raised there. It’s also where I spent many happy childhood days at my grandparents house.

Last week we went up for a spin just the two of us and even though he has Parkinson’s I struggled to keep up with him. This is definitely his happy place and I love to listen to him talk of all the people used to live here, their work, their houses, even their children, all gone now, not a trace of them. Only the forestry and the mountain remain. Isn’t it strange.

Here’s a few photos I took on the day. I’ve paired them with quotes by John Muir

 

“The mountains are calling and I must go.”

the mountain

“The clearest way into the Universe is through a forest wilderness.”

John Muir

photo 4 (90)

“Going to the mountains is going home.”

John Muir

walkway

goat

 “We are now in the mountains and they are in us, kindling enthusiasm, making every nerve quiver, filling every pore and cell of us.”

John Muir

view

 “Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. Nature’s peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees. The winds will blow their own freshness into you, and the storms their energy, while cares will drop away from you like the leaves of Autumn.”
John Muir, The Mountains of California

rock

photo 4 (91)

photo 5 (61)

“The sun shines not on us but in us.”

dad and me

 

sky

 “This grand show is eternal. It is always sunrise somewhere; the dew is never dried all at once; a shower is forever falling; vapor is ever rising. Eternal sunrise, eternal dawn and gloaming, on sea and continents and islands, each in its turn, as the round earth rolls.”
John Muir

hazy

Posted on by Jane in FAMILY, I WAS JUST THINKING 10 Comments

Easy Moroccan Fish Stew (plus a road trip, new gates & more painting)

Hello everyone, if like me your’re in Ireland, can you believe this September we’re having? It’s so beautiful, much more so than summer.

From misty mornings, ‘Mammy! There’s clouds on the grass!’ to warm golden days and cool crisp nights of fairy fog and silver moons, long may it last…

Here’s a few things we’ve been up to.

We’ve been painting again…

a aa g

art girl

art girl 1

Cooking, we’re always cooking. Here’s that recipe I promised at the weekend, a fragrant feast for the senses, brim full of beautiful flavours and textures and the perfect dish for when your’re fed up or busy but still need to get dinner on the table and still want something cheery and lovely.

Moroccan Fish Stew

You will need…

  • Any fish fillets (I particularly love wild salmon fillets for this, I get mine from Lidl, defrost first and remember, if it’s not wild, it’s no good)
  • 1 onion sliced
  • 1 garlic clove crushed
  • 2 tsps of ginger, freshly grated or from a tube (I always have a tube of ginger in the fridge)
  • 1 tsp cumin
  • 2 tsp turmeric
  • 1 tsp cinnamon
  • pinch of cayenne pepper
  • 1 tin of tomatoes
  • 4 cups or about 750 veg stock
  • 2 tsp honey
  • 1 tin of chickpeas
  • S & P
  • Flaked almonds
  • Fresh coriander

cocktail

 

Method

1. Heat some olive oil over a medium low heat, add the onion and cook stirring often until translucent, about 5 minutes.

2. Add the garlic, ginger, cumin, turmeric, and cinnamon and cook for oh 2 minutes or so until fragrant.

3. Add the cayenne, tomatoes, honey, salt and stock and cook with lots of stirring for about 10 minutes.

4. Add the fish fillets and cook for 10/15 minutes, until the fish is tender.

5. Season to taste and serve with the almonds and coriander which I urge you to get especially if you don’t have them as they add so much. Ideally give the almonds a light toasting first on a dry pan.

To go with this I made a simple ‘Pomegranate Prosecco Cocktail’. Just put a little of the juice in a champagne bowl or flute and top up with prosecco or sparkling wine. It’s a bit on the sweet side for me but still lovely.

Enjoy :)

Hold everything now for a second to admire our gates…They’re iron, hand made and beautiful.

photo 4 (88)

Gates have been on the wish list forever but never in all that time did I think we’d get ones as amazing as these. We were very lucky.

I put a call out on fb and lo and behold a former colleague, lighting engineer Sean Mulroy just happened to have old gates he wanted to sell, the right size and it turns out the right price as well. I’d love to say I was a cool customer but… I’d be lying.

Sean: Well…what do you think?

Me (throwing myself at and hugging the gates): Oh I LOVE them so much!!!

The deal struck there followed a fun and inspiring evening with Sean and Anne at their most fascinating, history filled home, Anne’s homeplace.

Think hedgehogs, cool cats, polytunnel of grapes, a vineyard if you will…in Longford! Beautifully designed gardens and home, a legacy of Anne’s creative and talented parents, her Dad made the gates we bought along with several other things on the property.

The house too was a delight, a cottage in the old style completely reconfigured inside to make the coolest, cosiest, the most characterful home you can imagine. As I said to Sean, it would have been worth making the trip just to see the place.

Next up the gates need some tlc before painting and you know I’d always planned to have red but now I’m not so sure and think maybe black should be the colour. What do you think? 

photo 5 (59)

That’s all for now guys. I’m off to the mountain with my Dad this morning and really looking forward to it. Have a great day out there, I’ll chat to you later…

 

Posted on by Jane in In My Kitchen, My Recipes, We Can Do It - Tips for Creative Living 10 Comments
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