Down The Hatch Recipes #1 – Lamb Harira Soup.

This soupl looks so amazing I simply had to re-blog it.

Southsea Food Social

Allow me to welcome you to episode #1 of the Down The Hatch recipe series. With the winter months truly upon us and the new batch of Strong Island enamel mugs now released, we shall be unveiling a weekly range of winter busting recipes to warm the cockles of your heart. Kicking off this mug friendly series is a simple and spicy North African soup which is guaranteed to keep the cold at bay: Lamb Harira soup. Ya salam!

3 tbsp olive oil, plus extra to drizzle
Cubed lamb on or off the bone
1 leek, washed and finely sliced
4 fat celery sticks, chopped into small pieces
3 large carrots, chopped into small pieces
Coriander, stalks finely chopped, leaves reserved to serve
1 tbsp cumin seed
2 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp ground coriander
2 tsp ground cinnamon
2 tsp ground turmeric
2 tbsp harissa
2 x 400g cans…

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Insert Images Four Ways (Now with 100% More Getty!)

Simply for future reference

The Daily Post

We talk a lot about photography and working with images. Today, let’s take a break from honing the photographer’s craft to review  your choices for getting images into posts and pages.

Lots of you are familiar with uploading images to your Media Manager, but there are several other options: you can add images that live on another site, embed images from sites like Instagram (and starting today, Getty Images), or use shortcodes to embed a variety of media. Here’s the rundown:

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The Food Of Lebanon 2

Sorry I haven’t posted anything for so long, that’s the topic for another entry.  But I’ve still been cooking regularly and here’s what I made for C & me last night. Another great dish from Salma Hage’s The Lebanese Kitchen, published by the wonderful Phaidon, it’s Koftas With Tomatoe Sauce And Potatoes. 

It seems that all countries have their own version of meatballs but these Koftas made with lamb, onions, garlic, parsley and mint (amongst other items) had a particularly middle eastern flavour.  The recipe called for seven spice season but I used some Ras El Hanout instead which is Moroccan but pretty similar, I imagine.   And here it is…straight out of the oven and on the plate. I still score low on presentation but it tasted great, especially when I had the leftovers for lunch today!

Filthy Lucre

Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure nineteen nineteen six, result happiness. Annual income twenty pounds, annual expenditure twenty pounds ought and six, result misery.

It’s an oft repeated quote by Mr Micawber from the oft read book David Copperfield which I finally got round to completing last year. I find it very apt because no matter how hard I try I repeatedly find myself in resultant misery due to month on month over expenditure. I sat down with my Moleskine (an extravagant purchase?) last night and listed all my regular monthly outgoings.

Here’s the list:

YMCA Junior Football Club Subscription – £16.00
TV License – £12.12
Home Insurance – £37.74
Son’s School Bus Pass – £44.50
Mortgage – £109.08
Sky TV/Phone/Broadband – £111.02
Loan – £179.38
Bank Charges – £6.00
Life Policy – £35.40
Water – £37.07
Electricity – £40.00
Gas – £82.00
Spotify Premium – £9.99
Mobile Phone Subscription – £34.00
Contents Insurance – £15.76
Gas Service Charge – £20.11
Car Lease – £151.99
Council Tax – £136.00

Total = £1078.16

This total represents 65% of my monthly income although in May I make my final mortgage payment so that’s a reduction in outgoings of £109.08. My wife pays for all the food that comes into the house for our family of 4 (as well as my gym subscription). I’ve looked at this list and wondered where I can make savings. Perhaps looking for new insurance providers, cancelling my landline phone or even reducing my Sky package – but I would miss the football (why do I have to pay for so much crap from Sky before I get what I really want – the football or soccer for the benefit of my American readers?)
The rest goes on an allowance for my son, petrol amd mostly other miscellaneous spends which I don’t really plan for but tend to be made on impulse. The loan is going to last for approximately another 5 years after I finally decided to consolidate my credit card debts which I’d had for years but never managed to get on top of until recently.

The question is, how can I improve the quality of my life and the quality of my family life by adjusting my spending and outgoing? I’m not looking for specific answers, in fact I’m probably doing and writing this as a means of self-help to, like my debsts, consolidate my thoughts and find the solutions myself. I like travelling, near, far and wide, eating great food (which we largely do at home) and drinking great wine. I can see the Moleskine becoming a receptical for a flurry of ideas after this as the answer lises in lists, planning and not being lazy. The first list is what lies above, the second one will be the plan for the next adventure!