Tuesday 8 March 2011

Pancake Day

I have been baking from this little Bero booklet since childhood. To describe it as 'dog-eared' is no over statement! I'm going to have to copy the pages on my scanner before they disintegrate completely.  A friend took pity and bought me a new edition but it isn't the same. (Sorry Judith!)
Today is the day before Lent, Pancake Day, when people traditionally use up their fat, sugar and eggs before the start of the fasting season.

We always squeeze plenty of lemon onto the cooked pancakes.

It has been a long winter for my citrus trees under glass. They have suffered some die back and fruit drop and are now covered in black mould. Nevertheless they are preparing to come into flower and I anticipate the wonderful perfume with pleasure.
The fruit from my 'Meyer' lemon is small but very tasty.

Himself exhibiting such casual style, such natural skill.....

Oops, one for the dog!

Oh, the excitement, the concentration, the terrible facial expression! At least all mine ended up back in the frying pan

and then onto the plate.
Flippin' scrumptious!

And things are looking good inside the rhubarb forcer!

Cold, dry weather. We had  a good bonfire with all the debris from the fruit tree prunings.
far too frosty for any planting out but one or two brave daffodils are in flower.
There are plenty of things that need attention in the garden, today Himself replaced some rotten sections of wood on a garden seat.

Lots of pots in the greenhouse just waiting for the frosts to end before they can be put outside.

The hellebores are flowering despite the cold

but it is far more pleasant to be indoors.

In the evening my neighbours Kim and Andy took me to a talk on the conservation of British owls. The speaker, Ian McGuire of Wild Owl, was accompanied throughout by this beautiful barn owl, chirruping softly to him. Lack of suitable habitat to support field voles and similar prey is the reason why these wonderful creatures are so much at risk in the wild.


  1. What a wonderful post! I love that you literally flip your pancakes. I cheat and use a spatula, lol...

    I became so obsessed with watching an owl box on line during the summer, I have been gifted several books on owls. They are delightfully wonderful creatures.

  2. The old Shrove Tuesday note to the late-home husband: "Gone out - supper's on the ceiling".

  3. Love the picture of you flipping your pancake!!
    I never would have thought to squeeze a lemon over mine, I usually stick to drowning mine in syrup or apple jelly.

    Do you observe lent by giving something up?

  4. Oh you two look like you are having such fun flipping those pancakes!

    I adore owls and as a city dweller rarely see them...

    I am interested in your rhubarb forcer...I never knew such a thing existed!

  5. You kids are a riot. Love the flippin' photos! And the pancake looks awesome. More like a crepe. I'd have some nutella on that in a second. I'm so envious of your Meyer lemons!

  6. Great photos...your happiness is beautifully captured!
    And I just love crepes...yum!

  7. Dear All, Thank you for your warm comments. Yes, we enjoyed ourselves, and the dog was happy as well, thanks to abandoned flipping from Himself!
    I am going to give up being rude to Tom for Lent, L, but it's going to be hard!
    Dear Hostess, if you take a look at my June '10 posting, 'Veg Garden' you will find my favourite rhubarb recipe. Forcing the fruit by excluding light makes the fruit deliciously thin, pale pink and succulent.
    Nutella, Steve - I daren't buy the stuff, I wouldn't be able to resist eating it straight from the jar with a spoon!

  8. We used to have the exact same two-bum cream Aga. Your rhubarb is well ahead of ours here in S W France.

  9. hello dearest rosemary,

    i have never heard of anyone squeezing lemons on pancakes. do you then add syrup? i shall give it a try. meyer lemons are our favorites here in southern california. i use them quite a bit in the kitchen. and it looks like you guys were really having fun in those pictures.

  10. Hope you don't mind but I found your blog on Brit In Tennessee and I find it delightful. I made pancakes for my grandson and after attempting to flip them onto the waiting plates we all ended up having a very exciting Saturday morning food fight. His parents would have been appalled, but then they have both grown up.

  11. Hi Rosemary this is why I love you - you do it ALL so well - janet x

  12. It should be a crime to eat pancakes with anything other than fresh lemon!
    Love the hellebores - isn't it good that everything is beginning to grow again - magic.
    Our neighbouring farmer reared two barn owls in his owl box last year but we have not seen them since the snow in December and fear that they may have died of starvation.

  13. When we sold our previous house the owners didn't want the Aga, Cro, can you believe it, so we brought it with us. I think it dates from the 1950's.
    Dear Janet, yes, lemon with sugar is the English combination on pancakes, although I like agave syrup instead of sugar.
    Welcome Doc. Isn't that the joy of being a grandparent, appalling your children and delighting your grandchildren?
    ALL what JH - pootling about?
    Sadly, Weaver, that was what I was learning about last night. The problem for barn owls is not a lack of nesting sites but an ever decreasing habitat of long grass areas in which their prey can flourish. Starvation is the real problem.

  14. Found you via Lilacs blogspot, and had to come and have a look... unusual names for blogs always intrigue me!
    Nice photos, especially the ones in previous post as I know Cambridge very well.
    But the pancake... lovely, it looked so perfect I shall have to make some for lunch tomorrow methinks!

  15. I love pancakes! And your garden is just divine! Enjoy the wonderful weekend, Kellie xx

  16. Hello Maggie, I've been for a peep at your blog and was interested to see how many of your childhood favourite books were mine also. You don't mention 'The Chalet Girls' series about a boarding school in Switzerland which I devoured before moving on to the 'Jalna' series!

    Dear Kellie, My garden is not divine at the moment, bare twigs, brown earth, but sunshine today so spring IS coming! Your weekend plans sound lovely and I hope it was delightful.