Monthly Archives: December 2017

As 2017 draws to an end…A recap of last year…A preview of what’s to come in 2018?

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I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas and are looking forward to what 2018 brings you.

First and foremost I want to thank all of my loyal followers for without you my blog would go nowhere… Some who have followed me since day one and others I have met as my blogging journey continues… wonderful friends who have inspired me to do better next year….. There are some wonderful blogs out there and each and every one of you in your way inspires me… For that I thank you ❤

So no long list of New Year resolutions for me (I don’t) generally do resolutions in print… maybe in my head or verbally to friends and family but in print… No!

So my  New Years resolution this year is to work smarter, schedule posts and allocate time to write and stick to it…

It takes time to build a following and if you are very lucky you will go viral as for the rest  of us it’s hard work and dedication… true…I have been blogging for 3 whole years now and have seen a steady increase in followers and views over the years especially in the last 6 months but it is a hard slog ..no easy route just hard work and of course writing posts which people want to read and want to come back for more…..

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My core readers come from the USA they all seem to like this whimsical, English lady and they are not even closely followed by the UK…You guys are awesome …so thank you ❤

My biggest source of views on social media comes from FB and Flipboard with Twitter/Pinterest pretty close in 3rd and 4th place.

Overall my highest views come through WP reader…

August and October were my highest views topping over 3K…..which for me reflect all the hard work I have done since last June and my sincere thanks go out to each and every one of you who have enabled me to reach those views…Thank you x

My best post being ” Beat the Blues with Food” and I truly do believe that food should be your medicine albeit sometimes alongside prescribed medication.

I always cook from scratch and that will never change…It is cheaper, easier and no nasties and I think that overall I have been surprised how easy it is to make some food items which in the past I have bought …Driven by the fact that where I now live I don’t have access to much of which I previously purchased from stores…

I also have a little more time to experiment and have I had some disasters along the way…Oh yes!

We also now grow much of our own including Turkeys and very soon I hope to have lots of little turkey babies as the mums are sitting on their eggs and have been for a few weeks now…Exciting times and I have seen lots of new fruits and vegetables spring up over the last year as well.

All of which will provide lots of ideas for my posts in the new year…I do hope you enjoy them…

Overall a good year for me but next year will see me spend time out ( I will) schedule more posts to enable me to finish my “Cookbook”..Come on…who doesn’t write a cookbook?

It will incorporate recipes I have discovered and been gifted since living here and recipes passed down through our family over the years…Coupled with my move to Thailand this has seen my outlook and recipe file expand greatly over the last 7 years…

I have also started a new blog called Orienthailiving  so please if you support me here it would be lovely to have your support over there… It covers travel, recipes and also it has associate links but this coming year I will be selling goods which I have locally sourced so if you love my Thai recipes I will be providing some of the pots and pans which we use here…

My idea is/was to keep my baby..my first blog completely separate…What do you think.?..should I merge them at some point this year????

Maybe it would be a good idea .. it would definitely make life easier for me…

I have also been invited to do a Food Column by Sally @ Smorgasbord Health which I am very excited about and will be sharing recipes from around the world including my tried and tested ones which have been passed down through  the family for generations and my chatter because you all know I can’t just write a recipe and leave it there…haha

My monthly slot over on The Recipe Hunter which is a wonderful source of truly tried and tested recipes…will continue with my next one scheduled for the 18th January 2018.

Last but not least my Cookbook or maybe 2 and then to complete my first stand-alone novel…I have short stories in two Anthologies…so thought it was high time I sat down and wrote a novel which is an extension of one of my already published short stories.

That concludes my recap of last year and my plans for 2018…

Thank you again to all my loyal followers you are awesome and I hope you have the best 2018…

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I wish you all a Happy and Healthy New Year… Cheers!

 

 

 

 

 

 

Achieve your publishing goals for 2018 – win a year’s mentoring and development from Triskele Books

An exciting opportunity… Will you take up the challenge????

Nail Your Novel

competition for writers - win a year's mentoring from manuscript to publicationHave you got a manuscript that might be ready by July 2018? You might be interested in this competition from the writing/publishing collective Triskele Books. And I’m honoured to announce that I’m the judge in the final!

If you’ve been around this blog a bit, you’ll know that Triskele is a publishing house owned and run by authors. The members provide all the support and editorial finessing that occur in a publishing house (many other posts about them here).

Anyone can enter, whether it’s your first book or whether you’ve published many times before. Triskele are looking for a standout manuscript they can help along and the winner can tailor their input to their needs – whether it’s polishing or developmental work or help with the nitty-gritty of publishing. Last year’s winner, Sophie Wellstood, was so excited after working with Triskele’s feedback that she pitched to a literary…

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Help Me Raise £250 For The Dogs Trust By Leaving Me A Link To Your Blog

Come on Guys and gals lets have one last push to help the lovely Hugh to reach his target for a very worthy cause….The bonus for you is you get to leave your link for your blog, promote your book so come on…Let’s Do It!

Hugh's Views & News

The Christmas tree is up, but something is missing. There are no gifts under it, and I need your help to put that right.

#charity #appeal #christmastree #christmas

For this year’s Christmas charity appeal, I’m asking you to help me raise up to £365 for The Dogs Trust.

The Dogs Trust, formerly known as the National Canine Defence League, is an animal welfare charity and humane society in the United Kingdom which specialises in the well-being of dogs. Click here to go to their website.

Want to get involved? Here’s what you need to do.

  1. In the comments section of this post, leave the name of your blog and a link to it. This can be a link to your ‘about me’ page, a favourite blog post you’ve published, or the home page of your blog.
  2. If you’re an author, you’re also welcome to leave me a link to any books you have published. So, for…

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Merry Christmas

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Our Christmasses now are very much low key compared to the past but that is how I like it…

No great celebrations just a lovely time with family and friends.

I hope you all enjoy your Christmas however you celebrate it and if you don’t then I wish you a Happy and Healthy New Year…

I am looking forward to 2018 and whatever it has in store for me… I hope to complete a book or two and am looking forward to new ventures.

I wish you all peace and joy and hope that whatever your hearts desires or plans for  2018  take shape and work out for you…

I will be back after Christmas..hopefully, refreshed and ready to write.

My New Years wishes are simple I would love to see an end to a lot of the troubles in the world and hope that all children have a safe place to stay away from trouble and danger and a full tummy every night… Not too much to ask…

Is it?????

Much love and Hugs Carol xxx

 

 

Homemade Creme Fraiche

An easy to make recipe made from scratch 🙂

Kitchen & Cooking

Milk products, such as cream, yogurt, butter milk, clotted cream, soured cream and creme fraiche, have a myriad of uses in sweet and savoury dishes. Though commercially available, the latter three are easily made at home.

Here I’m going to tell you how to make creme fraiche easily at home. Creme fraiche is a partially soured, tangy cream which has the added bonus of not separating during cooking. In the following creme fraiche recipe along with the addition of double cream you can add sour cream or plain yogurt to make the creme fraiche tastier and creamier. You can use creme fraiche as flavouring for soups, sauces and savoury dishes. It is also delicious with fruits and sweet dishes. Following is the easy homemade creme fraiche recipe.

Ingredients:

  • 500ml butter milk
  • 250 ml double cream

Method:

  • Mix 500ml butter milk and double cream in a bowl.
  • Put the bowl over…

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Santa Claus or ???

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Today I am going to take you on a little trip around the world just to give you a flavour of the foods served and how some of the customs vary from what we know..all very interesting, some delicious foods and the different names our beloved Father Christmas is called…

Santa Claus is someone who will remain in the hearts of children forever. He is the make-believe person ( or was he?) who brings toys and other gifts to children at Christmas.

Santa Claus also has some other names: Saint Nicholas, St. Nick, Kris Kringle, Pelznickel.

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Two of his names — Santa Claus and Saint Nicholas — both come from the Dutch who settled in New York long ago.

The Dutch believed Saint Nikolaas gave gifts to children. They honoured this kindly saint with a yearly festival on December 6th. The English-speaking people who lived nearby greatly enjoyed Dutch festivals. And they brought the saint and the custom of giving gifts into their own celebration at Christmas time.

England, of course,  know him as Father Christmas… Turkey, roast potatoes, pigs in blankets, stuffing, cranberry sauce, Brussel sprouts, mince pies, Christmas pudding and trifle being favourite foods at Christmas.

In Brazil, he is called Papai Noel… or Bom Velhinho (Good Old Man).

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The Christmas meal is also served on the evening of the 24th rather than the 25th and consists of a Chester( chicken)  Salted cod balls, no roasties but cold potato salad and instead of gravy farofa, a mix of fried cassava flour and chopped bits of crispy bacon. Cabbage is replaced by kale heavily flavoured with salt and garlic.

A custom in Brazil which I am sure that many would love to have that same custom where they live is that it is common in Brazil to get a ’13th salary’ at the end of the year – i.e. in December you get twice the normal amount of pay for that month!

The idea is to help boost the economy around Christmas. This has been going on for decades and most people don’t even question that other countries might not do it!

Favourite Christmas foods in Brazil include pork, turkey, pork, ham, salads and fresh and dried fruits. Everything is served with rice cooked with raisins and a good spoon of “farofa” (seasoned manioc flour.) Popular Christmas desserts include tropical and ice cream.

Hawaii the jolly, white-bearded man is called  Kanakaloka he, however, does not wear the traditional red suit we all know and love but flowery Hawaiian clothing…

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And on the Christmas menu here it is a traditional lu’au, complete with a pig roasted in an underground pit, chicken long rice, lomilomi salmon accompanied by the traditional Hawaiian music and Santa arrives in a red canoe…

How cool is that???

In Hungary, the  Winter grandfather( Mikulas) comes on the 25th and only to good children and there is no jolly Mrs Christmas but a scary assistant called “Krampusz”…

Christmas fare in Hungary is Fish soup, stuffed cabbage, fried fish and rice, other meats(Pork, Chicken) an elaborate fruit topped Christmas cake, gingerbread cookies, Bejgli with walnut or poppy seeds( which is the traditional Hungarian Christmas cake)

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India Baba delivers presents from a horse and cart and of course, the menus are spicy with spicy dumplings and curries, Biryani, poda, mathri and lots of other yummy sweet dishes.

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Lastly, in Italy, he is called  Babbo Natale… Doesn’t it just roll off the tongue???

There is no Christmas like an Italian Christmas…Christmas Eve sees the feast of the seven fishes swordfish, tuna, salmon, octopus salad, smelts, calamari, spaghetti with clam sauce and the famous Italian classic—salted cod, known as baccalaFollowed by the sweet treats galore biscotti, pandoro, torrone (nougat candy) and almost always a candied loaf of panettone…

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The Christmas day lunch lasts for hours..those Italians can certainly eat…

I think I will stop there… Because after Christmas there is Boxing day..phew that is some eating fest…

I hope you enjoyed this little trip around the world…

What are your Christmas traditions????

Merry Christmas xx

 

 

 

 

 

Carol’s Fried Fish with Peppercorns in Black Bean Sauce

I love this dish especially as it is freezing cold here…..Cardigan time….I just want to ask….I can’t remember WHO published a recipe for Pickled Watermelon rinds????? I made it and my Thai family LOVED IT.! Please own up I want to thank you 🙂

EsmeSalon

Fried Fish with Peppercorns in Black Bean SauceIt was another freezing cold morning and I fancied something warming for brunch (the men had porridge) and then wished they had had this…haha…

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