January Friend

january

January was a terrible introduction to 2016. It’s been miserable, boring, and dull, the weather has been icy cold, and we’ve had snow all over the UK. We suddenly and unexpectedly lost two of the immortals of music and screen, Bowie and Alan Rickman, in the space of a week. The stars look very different today.

It just seemed to get worse, and now we heard that broadcaster and national treasure Terry Wogan has died, too. Seriously, has been any good news at all in January?

I started back at uni after Christmas and this semester is going to be stressful, I can tell. So much work, so many exams, so many essays, so many words to write! Once this semester is over, though, I think that’s it for school for me.

But before we really got into starting the new semester, I went on a school trip to London, which I enjoyed more than I thought I would. We visited newsrooms like The Telegraph, Sky News and ITN (I was there when the Rickman news broke and I think the entire newsroom heard me yell ‘WHAT?!’).

How are your resolutions going? My New Year’s resolution to improve my diet and drink nothing but water all month lasted until half past ten in the morning on New Year’s Day when I sat in bed with a cup of tea and the Christmas chocolate, but I remain undeterred, as I promised myself in my New Year’s Day post. I have, however, cut myself down to just two cups of tea a day and anything else I drink is water (despite my Dry Gin-uary jokes, so hilarious, I know), so small steps! (But seriously the only-water deal has been horrendous. I have not enjoyed it.)

Elsewhere on the blog this month, the majority of my recipes have been curiously sugar-free. I’m not sure if this was intentional but it’s been nice to try some new things. We started the month with a recipe for cheeseboard scones, and I finally finished off the last of our mammoth Christmas cheeseboard. Next, I wrote a 2000 word epic on the history of food, which I seriously enjoyed writing so I hope you found it interesting (if you managed to plough through the whole thing, congrats to you. You deserve a medal). Then there was a new take on an old-fashioned recipe with my almond milk and barley porridge. This was a lot of fun to try, I’ve never really cooked with grains and pulses before so I enjoyed experimenting with this, and it tasted pretty good! It was the first dairy-free, gluten-free, vegan recipe I think I’ve ever done.

Then we had Burns Night, a traditional Scottish celebration, and the Cranachan and shortbread recipe was the perfect dessert to follow the haggis for a Burns Night supper. I then did a bit of research to produce a piece on cuts of meat, which is something I’ve always been interested in but never quite understood! If anyone else was feeling the same, I hope this cleared things up a bit. It definitely helped me. The next recipe of the blog was for Steak and Ale Pie, the first savoury meal I’ve ever uploaded on my blog! I like cooking savoury, but never record the recipes. I think I’ll try to keep some notes more often to upload these recipes too.

In other news, Winberry Crumble is now on Facebook! Please come and say hello, it’s new and lonely over there. Leave me some links in the comments and I’ll be sure to give your page a ‘like’! (It’s like, not follow, on Facebook, I have discovered). And whilst I’m on the subject of self-promotion, I’ve also been updating my Instagram account a bit more this month, if you haven’t checked it out be sure to do so ;). And lastly, there’s Twitter and Pinterest too. That’s it for blog-whoring, I promise!

So what’s coming up in February? Next month is shaping up nicely so far. Most of the recipes are written- get me for being organised- and I’ve actually started planning March and April. Now that’s forward planning! I’ve already got some fun ideas already for April (it’s recipes ALLLLL month hopefully!) and because I’m terrible at leaving things to the last minute I want to get it all planned out as soon as possible. So make sure you follow Winberry Crumble to keep up to date!

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