Be merry!

That's it! Just one day to go and the little Christmas star will shine :). The time to slow down a bit and spend some good time together. I will be on and off in the next couple days, tidying and updating the blog with some new albums and pictures. Feel free to come and look around.
I would like to thank you for the regular visits and comments here. It gives me a lot of pleasure and sparkles in my heart.
I just think you are magic :)
Have a peaceful time. All the best x




After another busy day starting with a successful market :) and more cards to press, let's go back to some memories and New York pictures... the last ones. A place of rememberance. Powerful. Two pools are the "prints" of where were the Twin Towers. Beautiful monument. Incredible sensation. Still unbelievable.



A new recipe.

Exhausted! Finally sitting down... pfff. A busy day, finishing more orders this morning, then sourcing some nice paper in town, and back to prepare stuff for the country market tomorrow.

I also experienced a new recipe today. Last week, at the reception I worked for, a lady asked me if I could bake for her and her family a Chocolate Yule Log... but a Vegan version... wow, I want to try that, so here we go! I baked my first vegan cake and I am quite impressed with what we can do without milk, eggs and butter. I was a bit worried to do the sponge biscuit without eggs, but the combination of soda bicarbonate and vinegar worked perfectly! amazing! you just have to be quick and run to put everything in the oven :) I am quite pleased nobody sees me when I am cooking and running at the same time...

For the Sponge:

  • 1 1/2 cups plain flour
  • 1 cup caster sugar
  • 1/3 cup cocoa powder
  • 1 tsp bicarbonate of soda
  • 1/2 cup vegetable oil
  • 1/2 cup soy milk
  • 1/2 cup orange juice
  • 1 tsp vanilla extract and 1 tsp almond extract
  • 2 tbsp vinegar
  1. Preheat the oven to 180C and line a large baking tray with greaseproof paper.
  2. Sift the dry ingredients into a mixing bowl.
  3. Mix together the wet ingredients, except the vinegar and mix into the dry.
  4. Stir in the vinegar, pour into the tray and put into the oven as quickly as possible.
  5. Bake for 25 minutes.
  6. As soon as the cake comes out of the oven, use the parchment paper to roll the sponge up. Set it to one side until it has cooled down completely. Don't stress over any cracks.
For the Frosting:

  • 1/4 cup shortening (known as cookeen or trex in the UK)
  • 1/4 cup soy butter
  • 1/2 cup cocoa powder, sifted
  • 2 1/2 cups icing sugar
  • 1 1/2 tsp vanilla extract
  • 3 tbsp soy milk.
  1. Mix it all together until you have a thick and creamy frosting. Set aside until the cake is ready.
For the chocolate topping:

  • 1/2 cup soy milk
  • 8 ounces dark chocolate
  • 4 tbsp maple syrup
  1. Heat the soy milk in a pan until its nearly boiling.
  2. Take off the heat, add the chocolate and maple syrup and stir until dissolved.
  3. Set aside until cool and really thick.
To assemble the rest of the cake:

  • When cool, unroll the cake carefully and evenly slap the icing all over it.
  • Roll the cake off the parchment and onto a plate before covering with the chocolate topping. If there's any cracks you can just fill them all with icing.
  • Cover with decorations if you're feeling fancy and serve!


Around the house, today.

Getting up early with B. Answering emails, almost... Going food shopping before it's getting too busy. Still missing some stuff. Having lunch, pasta with lemon and parsley. Making cards and sending off more orders. Trying/planning a few ideas for next year ;) Baking bread again, because it was too good. Going to do the ironing now . I liked my day ... only the last bit, not really...

And  if you're wondering which advert that song in yesterday's post was for, then I tell you it's Xmas! Here is the answer, with the making of the advert on top of that - well, just the icing on the cake :)


Le goût du pain retrouvé.

After a sunny saturday, I decided yesterday to try to solve one of the major problem in the UK: Bread! There are a lot of good things about Great Britain, but when they talk about bread... well they don't know what is good bread at all, an authentic one like we have in South-West France, with a nice yeast smell and a proper crust.
So, because I do not want to end up only with square slices or the best alternative I found so far, the Polish Bread "Chleb", I am recently experimenting on baking bread! And tadaaaa, that was yesterday's result: a French baguette! I could leave it a bit longer to bake, but I am quite pleased :) and my freshly made bread became the main part of our meal last night with a lot of relish, pickles and cheeses on the table, a vegetable soup, a glass of wine! enjoy and chill while listening to this beautiful song... Have a nice week everybody.



The Art Gallery.

Today I was at the town's Art Gallery, Nucleus. I joined it a couple weeks ago as a volunteer. I do Fridays with a great girl, a genius jewellery maker.
The Nucleus Art Center is a non profit organisation, a platform for the local artists and crafters to bring out their creations. The gallery shop is staffed exclusively by volunteers and most of them are artists. The exhibition is changing every 3 months, and who knows, perhaps I will have some paintings ready for the next one...

Here are some pieces of Siân Bostwick's art... so delicate, I absolutely love it...

and  I think these pretty butterflies would go perfectly with that song... un bijou


The country market today.

This morning was the country market at the town hall. It's small, quick but so busy and popular. I am still impressed!! I would love to post pictures about it but I am not sure the people there would be really confortable to have that new girl making photographs of their "ordinary life" (which make it even more fascinating, it's what is all about - I know).
Well, so instead I can let you know what I brought there today in my basket: Irish Soda Bread, Treacle Tart, Big and Baby Xmas Cakes, Rich fruit cakes, Banana and Chocolate muffins, Poppy seeds and Lemon cake, and finally Crunchy Peanut Butter muffins.
And yes, you are lucky today, I'm giving you the recipe just after the pictures. I love Peanut butter recently, I did know it without to really know it... a new addiction :) Did you know it's rich in protein? 
...and the pretty good thing, I came back with an empty basket, only B. won't be happy ;)


Crunchy Peanut Butter Muffins

12 Muffins
280gr  flour
1 tbsp baking powder
1/8 tsp salt
115g soft dark brown sugar
2 medium eggs
175ml  milk
6 tbsp sunflower oil
175gr crunchy peanut butter

50g chopped unsalted peanuts
3 tbsp brown sugar

Make the topping first. It’s really simple. Chop your peanuts if all you have is whole peanuts. (Chopping peanuts is fun!) Then, in a small bowl, mix the peanuts and brown sugar together. Set aside and start preheating your oven to 200°C

For the muffins, mix together the dry ingredients in a bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk together the wet ingredients. Make a well in the middle of the dry ingredients and pour the wet ingredients into the well. Mix, but don’t overmix. If you overmix, the texture of the muffins will be off. So, just mix until the dry ingredients are wet. It will all clump together a bit in the bowl. This isn’t really a wet muffin batter, so don’t be too concerned if your mixture isn’t fully mixed and you feel like you might be overmixing. You probably aren’t.

Spoon the batter into a greased or lined muffin tin. Sprinkle with the topping and pop into the oven for 20 minutes.



Back to the Top of the Rock.

The last soda bread is finally out from the oven, all ready for the country market tomorrow... Busy today baking, I'll let you know then ;)
A few minutes now to go back to another great time, at the top of the Rock: The Rockefeller center and beautiful views, the Empire State from that angle too, the fog, reflections, the top and the bottom, the people and what they see... I could spend days there...



Letterpress: in process.

This afternoon, I'm working with my letterpress this afternoon. My one is called Adana, a bit 'vintage' and a lot smaller than the one below, but still doing some pretty things. :)

Letterpress from Naomie Ross on Vimeo.



A nice lady I met at the country market on the Thursdays, asked me if I could help her with the organisation of a reception and a part of the food. The brunch was today and it went perfectly to plan :)
I think the guests had a good time and enjoyed the food diversity from the different caterers.
Here are a few pictures of what I made, all needed to be vegetarian and vegan.
On my menu: "Le Pastis du Lot" apple speciality from South-West France, a Pissaladière ( a success! :) which is a red onion and black olive pie with olive oil, home-made Irish soda bread in slices with brie/crandberry and soft cheese/red pepper topping, stilton/crème fraîche profiteroles and spinach & nutmeg muffins (but I used a madeleine tin for an interesting shape, picture 2)


I really enjoyed the day too. I like organising parties and meals. Tired but happy :)


Back to the sun.

Today, I was just freezing all day, plus I have a cold as a best friend these days... I live on tea and lemon with a huge scarf and big cardigans, soft and fluffy to go through. Well, that it! It's winter, what should I expect really? ;)
Lets get some sun from NYC, where last month we were still enjoying its warmth on our skin ...
I almost feel it...

Have a great weekend all of you and thank you again for the week shared together :)





Birthday Calendar

How good are you about remembering birthdays and special dates?
Well, for us here it's always a bit of a guessing game... too many to remember! so for years now B. is telling me that we should have a birthday calendar which would be handy every year!
So, here we go, I made one inspired by my painting practice and my recent research on colours.
I also thought that it could be useful for you too, so feel free to have a look here :)




Paysage d'encre


Morning everybody! I would like to thank you all for the time you took to leave comments recently on my blog. Every time, I see someone stopped there and shared a bit with me, I still feel surprised and so grateful to see people around interested about what's happen in my little world. As you probably noticed, I rarely come back to you, most of the time is because I would like to write something else than an only  little "thank you", and then I think to much, the time is going and I feel that I missed the opportunity. So believe me, every comment is a pleasure for me. Sincerely, merci.

and up there a little piece of what I was working on yesterday.


Back in Victorian times.

This weekend, Victorian characters came back for a walk around the streets to celebrate Dickens and the start of the Christmas festival in town. I was busy with our little counrty market, but I managed to get a bit of the atmosphere through the impressive crowd and some Mulled wine - of couse! The joy of Xmas is definitely starting here... with perhaps a bit of snow, the town could be a Xmas dreamland ;)