Out With The Old

This isn’t a post about resolutions! Maybe about setting intentions, we’ll see.

Yesterday was a funny day, the last of the festive “break” before everyone returns to work.

I use the term break very loosely as for most it is far from that!  Hawking round relatives doing the duty visits, seemingly constantly in the kitchen, the never ending clutter sweep of the house, the list is endless, thankless and if you are lucky helpless.  If you are unlucky you have the helpful helper, that guest, visitor, friend, relative who insists on helping.  More realistically getting in the way!  Putting cups and plates in the wrong cupboard, turning your cutlery draw into chaos, insisting on washing up when you’d rather fill the dishwasher but instead, because they have already filled the sink with soapy suds, you have to get out the tea towel and spend the next 15 minutes drying and making small talk over the pots.  The dishwasher would have dealt with it all.

This year for me there is no work, no job to return to and as much as I used to hate that back to school feeling, the pit of the stomach dread, I have felt the void.  So maybe then, this year more than any is the year to make some changes, some conscious changes rather than the life changing dramatic ones brought over the last couple of years, the loss of a job, the loss of a father, late and surprising motherhood.  Positive, conscious changes that I am in control of, I am accountable for.  Nothing that needs hours of cutting and pasting for a vision or dream board, no drastic clear out that requires ordering a skip and ransacking the house.  Just little thoughts on how my priorities could change to make each day something to go to bed on with a happy reflection.  Weed out those irritating things I do, or more to the point don’t do that make me want to sack myself, like still being sat in pyjamas at 3pm.  The new mum excuse must have expired by now and although some days there is nothing wrong with just getting through, most days I probably could have made a better job of it.  Saying “No” a little bit more rather than spreading myself so thin I end up exhausted and resentful.

This is not going to be a “smug new mummy” blog on how I got my life sorted!  I do not think having one, or even two, babies suddenly means I can preach to anyone, or suddenly makes what I have to say interesting.  I am not the first woman to have a baby, my baby is not the only one in the world.  She might be my everything but that certainly doesn’t make her everyone’s everything.  There are no prizes for being the slummiest mummy nor the super mum.  Again balance, somehow finding the balance between still being in my PJ’s surrounded by two days of kitchen crap at 3pm and having the immaculate house, immaculate hair and make up, my body is a temple diet and fitness regime, picture perfect “I’ve got this” life.  I haven’t got this, I’ve never felt more out of control in my life, but at the same time felt like maybe some of that control is now, maybe within my grasp.

So here goes to 2018 and taking a bit of that control.  I’m 40 FFS, it’s time I took some control of my own life!

In the spirit of a clean sweep I offer a recipe to do away with the last of the festive food, poached and smoked salmon.

IMG_0009In between Christmas we had the step sons, wives and girlfriends over and in the spirit of making life easier for myself I ordered a side of salmon from Booths (I love Booths for Christmas food ordering) the salmon came dressed with smoked salmon, prawns and a dill mayonnaise.  It was lovely but huge and along with the ham etc. etc. also on offer there were leftovers.  A quick and easy tea was in order.  Years ago I saw a recipe for Jansson’s Temptation and was intrigued, a quick google showed it to be not quite what I thought, I am sure the version I saw had salmon in.  This is assembly, on pot cooking at it’s best.  Comfort Food.

  • I estimated there was enough salmon, smoked and poached, left for two generous portions.
  • Peeled and chopped a couple of potatoes each into matchsticks about 1-2 inches long.
  • Mix the salmon with the potatoes a tub of creme fraiche, seasoning (go easy on the salt depending on how much smoked salmon is in the mix) some chopped fresh dill would be nice as would some chopped capers.
  • A little milk if the mixture is too thick.
  • Gruyère cheese would be my choice to sprinkle on the top, I didn’t have any so a sprinkling of parmesan cheese made do.
  • Cover with foil and bake at 180 fan, or the equivalent, for 30 mins.
  • Remove the foil and sprinkle with breadcrumbs if you have any and bake for a further 10 mins or so to brown and crisp up the top.
  • A handful of salad leaves is all I served this with.

A very tasty what I suppose could be called supper dish.

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