Trendy Oatcakes

Has anyone noticed that every now and again the foodies pick on a traditional staple and try to turn it trendy?

At the local framers markets this weekend they were selling oatcakes – a staple that every Scottish wife would have made every day as a matter of course.  These were no ordinary oatcakes though – they were “Cracked Pepper” oatcakes and “Sunflower and Pumpkin Seed” oatcakes and “Parmesan” oatcakes.

But at £2.95 for 8 oatcakes they are firmly in the “luxury food” category as far as I am concerned.

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Crumbly Mince Pies

 HELLO!!! HELLO!!! We have internet again – Woop!!!!

Took the toddler off to see a Christmas Show yesterday and everything was working fine – by the time we got home at tea-time, nada, nothing.  No internet and no phone either.  So we watched  a movie and chilled out instead.

Today DS1 was in the mood for baking- and appeared in the kitchen with a jar of mincemeat and a star cutter pleading to make the mince pies from last year.

It’s not Christmas without Mince pies – but amongst my friends they are a subject of much debate …………….. ranging from M&S only to variations on a theme for hand baked.

For my money – these are my son’s favourites.  He looks forward to making and baking these every year and they never fail.

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Clootie Dumpling

Today I have taken a break from all things Academic / Writing and Computery.  Instead I took myself off for a good long walk in the drizzle and came home to do some real traditional “Slow Cooking”.

In fact I spent the afternoon being kept warm by the simmering water and spicy fragrance of a real Scottish Classic.

Now here is one that will puzzle my American friends

It’s a boiled dried fruit pudding – a pudding that is boiled in a cloth (called a cloot in Scots parlance).

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A Sugary Treat



Christmas in my childhood home always meant Mum cooking up a batch (or three) of this Scottish confectionery.

Its kind of like toffee (except it’s not sticky and chewy) and kind of like fudge (but it’s not chewy and soft), instead it is a sweet, buttery and crisp ……….. and very rich. I have even been served this at the end of a meal with great coffee at a local 5 star restaurant.

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St Clement’s Marmalade

I’m after a sweeter marmalade – one spiced with the winter spices of cinnamon and clove to use as a filling for some sweet bread rolls on Christmas morning. A kids version of the sharp marmalade I love for breakfast.

I had a few clementines left in the fruit bowl from last week – and a new bag ready to replace them, so oranges and lemons it is.

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Staring the Mortgage in the Eye

So there is £126000 of mortgage to clear – and in 21 years and 6 month. So by my reckoning that’s £488 per month ON TOP of my interest component.


My total income is currently a smidge over £800 per month – so spending 3/4 of my income on mortgage interest / repayment is probably  NOT the most sensible plan.

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Honey Biscuits

Being on my MFinthree adventure of course means being frugal, but it has also meant being more creative in looking at how to create a great quality life using what you have to hand. Real, honest to goodness “Make do and Mending”.

I got a couple of small pieces of cheese at the Farmers Market today – but all I have to go with them is some pretty ordinary “crackerbread”, which is not really doing it for me to be honest!

What I really wanted was a quality packet of digestive biscuits – but in the spirit of “Shopping at Home” I decided that sweet wholemeal biscuits are just wholemeal biscuits so why not make some instead.




………… and these exceeded all my expectations.

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Make new friends, but keep the old …

“…one is Silver and the other Gold.” 
Girl Scouts U.S.A. – campfire song

Whew – what a day !!!!  What an absolutely freaking brilliant “fandabbydosy” kind of a day

I make no secret of the fact that that since I developed an “online presence” I have made some totally fantastic virtual friends. In fact I have gone on to meet several of you in person and some of you have even been invited into my scruffy but cosy home.

But today was an absolute  revelation. I touched base again with an old friend, a friend that I first made some 10 years ago when worked on another business together. He is now working a whole country away but he still gifted me some of his valuable time and expertise today. In fact his input today has catapulted the possibility of the new mind mapping business forward by several months.

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Why do they make it so darn complicated?

Chicken pox count now stands at 25 spots and counting – well the toddler is doing the counting and very pleased he is with himself too

This Mummy is just very pleased that she is stocked up on Piritron, Calpol and Calamine lotion.  Sheesh!!! the things they never tell you when you have a baby, but really we should all have shares in Calpol!!!

The rest of the day has been spent on the Internet researching my “new business” ………………………………… mmmm!!! What can I say about Internet marketers???

Well there are thousands of them out there, hyping their product, touting their “magic bullet”, dazzling you with promises of riches beyond compare if you just buy X or subscribe to Y or follow plan Z. And it is all so darn complicated!!!!

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Toffee Apples

Tomorrow is “Bonfire Night” here in Scotland and me and he mini-ones will be wrapped up in Hats and Gloves and Duffel coats and Wellie Boots (our other national costume BTW) to go and watch a local display.

There will inevitably be a whole raft of snack vans selling variations of “fried animal inna bun” – which although smell glorious never really taste as lovely.

So this Mum is coming prepared.  Last weekend I made a Sticky Gingerbread and today I am going to make half a dozen toffee apples for us to munch as we squeal with excitement at all the crashes, bangs and whizzes.



Jury is out on whether a Toffee Apple constitutes one of your “Five a Day” – but hey! its not as if these are an everyday food are they – a little bit of what you fancy and all ………………

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