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Tuesday, June 26, 2012


Oh my, the packing, it’s a nightmare, boxes are everywhere and everywhere is a mess. For about 10 minutes I contemplated letting the packers do EVERYTHING, getting a cleaner in and just kicking back! Then along comes my infinite wisdom, and I decide that whilst, yes indeedy, this will be the easy option, this end, it also meant that I would have to throw away the rubbish and things I don’t want, at the other end, and who wants to unpack rubbish, right?

So here I am stressed, confused, and really muddled!

I also feel guilty that I haven’t blogged in ages. I can’t wait to get this all out of the way so that I can get back to normality, cooking, baking and writing. I am still around and haven't quit blogging, just slightly overwhelmed with everything that's going on!

Monday, June 11, 2012

Cedar infused BBQ smoked salmon

Life is rather busy at the moment, and my mind hasn’t really been in the right place to be writing, I want to, but whenever I put pen to paper or type. Despite my best intentions I end up grumbling about one thing or another. If the truth be known, I think I am feeling a little stressed and I certainly feel as though I have no control over my life at the moment, which doesn’t help, I am a control freak! I am also REALLY grumpy at the moment and have little to no patience for anyone or anything for that matter, and you can forget any tact for customers. I get that certain things are annoying and frustrating, like mail taking ages to get through, that however is not my fault, I don’t get in my car and deliver your mail personally……. It’s not possible, every customer that has come in, I have politely explained the issues, I have also politely explained what’s being done to resolve said issues, and I have empathised! Well I am done with polite and I am done with empathy, you’d think that I either didn’t send mail or that for some reason I didn’t have any mail issues. I shall take this opportunity to point out, my mail takes just as long and I am just as frustrated, however I don’t have anyone to shout at! (See my point I end up moaning about something)

Moving on, all last week I wanted to try out this wood block thing I have, you soak it in water for at least an hour, and then you can place it on your BBQ and smoke either, fish, chicken or pork. I felt a little dubious about chicken and pork, but I was absolutely dying to smoke this really beautiful piece of salmon I bought. So Wednesday before I went to work, I pulled out the salmon and placed it in the fridge, and put my wooden plank in the sink with water and placed my rather large vodka bottle on top. I got home from work and discovered my salmon wasn’t salmon at all, but some kind of delicate white fish, so out of the sink the plank came and I made a fish and vegetable soup, a bit like chowder with out the potatoes. Thursday we ordered pizza, so Friday comes along and I am really looking forward to smoked salmon, husband soaked the plank in water all day long again….. Only I forgot to take the fish out, so we had some pork steak things that I had in the fridge still (I have conceded and started to eat a little pork) So out of the water the plank comes, but I did remember to take the salmon out.

Saturday the plank goes back in the water and I lightly buttered the salmon, seasoned it with a pinch of rosemary, salt and pepper, and a little squeezed lemon juice. Then I placed it on the plank of wood which had been soaked in water, yet again, and my husband put it on the BBQ. The smell coming from the smoking cedar was lovely, but not as nice as the smoky cedar infused salmon. I would definitely recommend cooking your fish this way, effortless with about 20 minutes cooking time.  

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Cookie Dough Cheesecake

I love cheesecake, it’s super yummy and I personally love it with a biscuit base. German cheesecake is boring, wafer type base and a heavy dense cheesecakey bit usually plain but sometimes lemon flavoured. Chocolate, caramel or mocha, for example are unheard of and you can forget chocolate chip cookie dough!!!!!

Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Cheesecake

1¾ cup crushed chocolate chip cookies
¼ cup sugar
1/3  cup melted butter


3 8-oz cream cheese, softened
1 cup sugar
3 egg slightly beaten
1 cup sour cream
½ tsp vanilla extract


¼ cup butter, softened
¼ cup sugar
¼ cup packed brown sugar
1 tbsp water
1 tsp vanilla extract
½ cup all-purpose flour
1½ cups miniature semisweet chocolate chips

1. In a small bowl, mix together the cookie crumbs and sugar, then stir in the butter. Press onto the bottom and 1"/2.5cm up the sides of a greased 9" spring pan.

2. In a large mixing bowl, beat the cream cheese and sugar until smooth. Slowly add the eggs, beating on a low speed, until just combined, then add the sour cream and vanilla. Beat until just blended, then pour over crust and set aside. In another large mixing bowl, cream the butter and sugars until light and fluffy. Then add the water and vanilla. Gradually stir in the flour. Next stir in 1 cup of the chocolate chips and drop the dough by teaspoonfuls over the filling, making sure to carefully push dough below the surface. Place pan on a baking sheet with a little water. (water-bath, which should help it to stop splitting.)

3. Bake at 350°F/180°C for 40-45 minutes or until the centre is almost set. Cool the pan on a wire rack for 10 minutes, then carefully run a knife around the edge of the pan so that it loosens, cool for an hour longer. Refrigerate over night. Remove sides, sprinkle with remaining chocolate chips.

I cut this up into slices, and froze them, as it is too much for just my husband and I. I kept it in the freezer for about a month to six weeks and it was fine!!!!!