People in the attic!

The loft day 2:

Woke up this morning to find the builders are already in the roof!
Can’t believe how fast this is happening, in just 1 day there is a massive gaping hole in the front roof of the house and the back roof is gone! Already a skip is full and the rear chimney is gone,
As I was leaving for work a crane arrived to lift the new floor and the steel girders which support the new structure! The plumbers were already in fixing the new combi and the tea was flowing fast and furious – all coupled with the usual madness of getting the kids ready for school…

oh and its raining!

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Wanstead Robbery!

Not all that wierd – but made my day – 2 geezers and and one girl – all about i’d say 16 def no older robbed a security van outside Nat West on the High Street on Thursday – within 30 secs 3 unmarked cars appeared and 5 jam sandwiches.

I was off work doing some stuff – with my daugher Ezara – she asked what was happening… i simply said that they were very naughty and had stolen some money – she said why would they do that… mmm that took some explaining.

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The loft

8 or so years ago, we (thats ‘Beally’ my best mate and Old Pete his ‘young’ assistant of 70+) created a space in our 120 year old 4 bed house so i could have ‘a den’, and a ‘at home office’ whatever – a space to put all my geezer stuff – you know the score. Well that was before 3 kids later! – we now have decided to move into the space and make it our bedroom leaving the kids, 3 the rooms ‘downstairs’ and one for my den.

We finally managed to clear the space, ready for the loft conversion due to start tomorrow – i dont know if you have actually measured your physical fitness lately but you should try moving over 1000 books and their shelves down 2 flights of stairs, and then stacking them in crates, plus 000’s of cd’s and vinyls all of which Mandy (wife) thinks no-one has ever heard of (see ‘unpeeled’ and ‘club hemipshere’ links to see what she means) – so why are we keeping them? the dining room is full – the cellar is full – all slots behind beds, microwaves, sheds, and hat stands are full – we’ve even sadly had to had to put my scalextric in Joes room- so thats really not mine any more! boo!

here are some pix of the space before the builder blokes get in…

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A tasty litttle number!

Thanks to Emma and Richie Rich for this one…
Tiramisu Torte (serves 6-8)

Cake Base
Butter for Greasing
100g Self-raising flour
100g Light Muscovado Sugar
100ml Ground Nut/Vegetable Oil
2 Medium Eggs (separated)
2 Tbsp Espresso or Very Strong Black Coffee
2 Tbsp Milk

Mousse Topping
300g Dark Chocolate (min. 50% cocoa solids)
4 Medium Eggs (separated)
30g Golden Caster Sugar
250g Mascarpone
2 Tbsp Kahlua or Very Strong Black Coffee

Cake Base

  • 1) Get ready a 20cm Cake Tin, at least 4cm deep with a removable base. Butter the tin, and pre-heat oven to 190c/375f / gas 5
  • 2) Sift the flour and sugar into a medium size bowl. Add the oil, egg yolk, espresso and milk. Beat with a wooden spoon until smooth.
  • 3) In another bowl using an electric whisk, whisk the egg white until stiff.
  • 4) Fold in the flour mixture in 2 stages.
  • 5) Put mixture into Cake Tin and then tap sharply on the work surface to allow any bubbles to rise. Now bake in the oven. The recipe states for 10-12 minutes, but I used double the cake base quantities, as I felt that this offered a better balance, and I cannot remember now how long the baking had to be increased for!! Basically you want it to be golden in colour, and for the cake to be shrinking from the sides of the tin. I think I baked for 15 mins, but check at 12, and then decide how much longer is required!
  • 6) Now leave to cool

Mousse

  • 1) Break the chocolate into pieces and place in a bowl over a pan of simmering water and melt gently. Then set aside for the chocolate to cool to room temperature.
  • 2) In a large bowl whisk the egg whites until they are stiff.
  • 3) In another bowl whisk the egg yolks and sugar until very pale and moussey!
  • 4) Add the mascarpone to the melted chocolate and blend, and then fold in the egg yolk mixture. Then fold in the egg whites in 2 goes.
  • 5) Stir in the Kahlua or Coffee, and then smooth the mousse topping over the cake base and cover and chill for several hours OR overnight.

Delia smith yorkies – my kids love em!

These are the best – follow this exactly and you cannot go wrong

3 oz (75 g) plain flour
1 egg
3 fl oz (75 ml) milk
2 fl oz (55 ml) water
2 tablespoons beef dripping
salt and freshly milled black pepper

Make up the batter by sifting the flour into a bowl and making a well in the centre. Break the egg into it and beat, gradually incorporating the flour, and then beat in the milk, 2 fl oz (50 ml) water and seasoning (an electric hand whisk will do this in seconds). There is no need to leave the batter to stand, so make it when you’re ready to cook the pudding.

About 15 minutes before the beef is due to come out of the oven, increase the heat to gas mark 7, 425°F (220°C), add the dripping to the roasting tin and place that on a baking sheet on a free shelf. After 15 minutes remove the meat, then place the tin over direct heat while you pour the batter into the sizzling hot fat. Return the tin to the baking sheet on the highest shelf (or, if you have roast potatoes on that one, the second highest). The pudding will take 25-30 minutes to rise and become crisp and golden. Serve as soon as possible: if it has to wait around too long it loses its crunchiness