Well, here we are at the end of another year! I don't know how it happened. This year has just flown by with amazing speed! It's been a wonderful year though . . . with lots of good cooking and happy times shared with loved ones, friends and YOU!
Food shared with friends is the best food ever and I have really enjoyed sharing my culinary repasts with each of you over the past twelve months. I thought it would be a fun exercise today to go back over some of the most popular recipes posted in 2011, and so . . . without further adieu I bring you the deliciousness that was 2011!!
January . . .
One of my favourite posts in the month of January was the one where I did a proper English High Tea for the Toddster . . . just to break the monotony of a boring month! Oh we did have a very tasty repast with Finger Sandwiches, Jam Tarts, little Cake Fancies, Florentines and a glorious Victorian Sponge. It was great fun and something we both really enjoyed. I may do it again this year. It sure pepped up what is usually a pretty dull month!!
February . . .
Aside from the usual Valentines treats in February, I treated us to a delicious Lamb Stew with Feather Dumplings. We're both big stew nuts in this house, and this lamb stew was most delicious with it's rich gravy, tender lamb and those feather dumplings which are to die for! You can never go wrong with a delicious stew. It's my husband's favourite dish . . . next to a hearty meat pie that is!
March . . .
March brought with it the tease of spring on the horizon and with it some sunnier and brighter days. My favourite recipe that I made that month, hands down had to be the Apple and Blackberry Crumble Pavlova! Oh my but it was scrumdiddlyumptious and oh so pretty! Apple and Blackberries together, plus Crumble has to be one of my favourite combinations and to have them all together in a delicious Pavlova, well that was pure genius, if I don't say so myself!
April . . .
April brought with it some very mild temperatures and a fabulous Royal Wedding. I don't know who wasn't glued to the telly on the day that Prince William and Kate got married! It was a great day of celebration the world over and I think they are just the sweetest couple ever . . . and the sweetest recipe that month had to be The World's Best Gingerbread Cake with a Spiced Lemon Sauce. In fact I do believe that it is one of the most popular recipes on my site, getting the most hits on average. And to tell the truth, it is indeed very scrummy!! I am not in the habit of calling something the World's Best unless I actually think it is the world's best!!
May . . .
Spring had truly arrived and we were in the midst of busily planting the garden out and enjoying the warmer sunnier days. I do believe spring is one of my favourite seasons and we celebrated it deliciously with these scrummy Cranberry, Pecan and White Chocolate Flapjacks. Flapjacks are not something I had ever run across before moving over to the UK, but I have to say that I have totally embraced them with all of my heart. They are indeed such a wonderful treat, and these Cranberry, Pecan and White chocolate ones are the best!
June . . .
The warm days of June brought with it more light foods, salads and the like. We were enjoying harvesting young beans and peas from the garden. I created this deliciously delightful Summer Pea, New Potato and Pesto Tart which was one of my absolute favourites, because not only was it different, but it was beautiful to behold and oh so delicious as well!
July . . .
July brought a delightful trip down to Ipswich and Jimmy's Farm along with my friend Julie. What a fabulous couple of days we had together, touring the farm, meeting Jimmy, taking a lovely butcher class and eating some fab food. I was ever so impressed with his animal husbandry and farm and restaurant. It was just a wonderful experience altogether, and of course we all were able to bring home some fabulous meat. The Toddster is a real pork chop afficionado and he absolutely delighted in these wonderful Grilled Chops with a Hoisin Marinade and Glaze that I made with some of that lovely pork I brought back from the farm.
August . . .
We really didn't have much of a summer weather wise really. It was cold and wet and gloomy. I think we actually had our summer back in April . . . but shhhh . . . I'm not complaining. If it wasn't for the bad weather we'd never be able to truly appreciate the good! One of the favourite things I cooked in August had to be this Apple and Blackberry In and Out dessert that I got from Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall's mom's cookery book, The Great Granny Cookbook. It's one of my favourite cookbooks, and for good reason . . . it's filled with a lot of fantastically tasty recipes! This was the perfect dessert in which to make good use of the early season apples and those blackberries which ripened early due to having had such an early spring!
September . . .
We were away to Cumbria on our holidays with Mitzie in September . . . a holiday which just happened to co-incide with Katrina the hurricanes visit to our beautiful Sceptred Isle. It was a holiday filled to overflowing with rain, wind, rain, wind and ever more rain and wind. We still managed to enjoy ourselves anyways, even if we did arrive back home here a few days earlier than planned. (There is only so much you can occupy yourself with in a cottage in the middle of nowhere when you have an antsy cocker spaniel with you and you have left your warm coat and boots back home!) In any case we did enjoy some fab food, which is always a plus. Something that I did cook that we really enjoyed back home though was this delicious Gratin of Chard, created with some fabulous Rainbow Swiss Chard I received in my bi-weekly Vegetable box at the end of the month. My but it was some good!
October . . .
October brought us lots of deliciousness with Blue Cheese and Cheddar Stovies and the like. My favourite recipe of the month though had to be the Apple Pie Roll Ups with Custard! It was so easy and soooooo delicious! I always welcome the cooler months and the heartier recipes that come with them, don't you? I like salads too . . . but I am a glutton for autumn and winter food!
Oh please, I must show you two . . . as these were real winners as well . . .
Baked Hot Dogs Cooked one week for some hungry missionaries who really enjoyed!!
November . . .
November was full of delicious things as well, not the least of which was this fabulous Chocolate Cola Cake. The Toddster is not a real fan of chocolate cakes, but I tortured him anways because I just adore Chocolate Cake and I had some cola that I needed to road test. Oh my but this has to be the creme de la creme of chocolate cakes. SOOOOO fabulous!
It wasn't all about cake and chocolate though . . .
This Pan Roasted Butternut Squash Lasagne also went down really well . . . ahem . . . rich, delicious and very, very addictive!
Which brings us to
December . . .
There was plenty of deliciousness in December too, with all of the holiday foods and treats, but I think the Rumpled Pizza Buns deserve an honorable mention . . . coz . . . one, I love Pizza . . . two, they were easy to make . . . and three, most important of all . . . THEY WERE DELICIOUS!
So that was 2011 . . . 372 recipes . . . each one delicious in it's own right. I do hope that you enjoyed the journey through the year right along with me. Here's to 2012 and even more deliciousness!!
Happy New Year one and all!
Over in The Cottage today, the Perfect Lemon Tart!