Friday, August 21, 2015

Eating Around the World - United Kingdom

Well, hey again! It's been a long time! Last week brought the start of a new school year, and it seemed like a good time to try to fit regular blogging back into my schedule. This year we're starting "real" school since Annie is now in kindergarten, and we have lots of fun plans. If all goes well, I'd like to start sharing the highlights here again... but I know better than to promise, since real life tends to get crazy as the semester goes on.

Of course, the biggest change around here since I last wrote is that we had a new baby! We're so thankful to God for our little Eliza Marigold, born this June. She's a sweetheart, and is a pretty content baby as long as her stomach is full of milk.

But anyway, back to school. This year, besides the basics of reading, writing, and math, we're focusing on world geography. I want to give the girls a foundation for understanding where they are in the world, and an introduction to how other people live all around the globe. To do this, we're reading lots of books from the library, both fiction and non-fiction, learning about maps, doing art projects, and cooking food! On Friday nights we often have a nicer dinner to celebrate the end of the school week, so this year Friday dinners are going to be themed around the country we've been learning about all week.

After spending our first week doing an overview of the world and how to read maps, we dived into learning about individual countries this week with the United Kingdom. And for our dinner this week, we made Cornish Pasties from the official Cornish Pasty Association recipe. I tried to stick to the recipe as closely as possible, but I did have to make a few modifications.

I used two sticks of butter in the pastry crust instead of a combination of butter and lard. I was kind of worried that the crust would be tough since it gets kneaded until elastic and was very different than American pie crust, but it was delicious! Not flaky, but not at all tough, and perfect for a hand-pie. For the filling, I didn't have any rutabagas (they're called "swede" in the recipe - apparently that's the British name, short for "Swedish turnip"), so I used cabbage instead. It isn't really a close substitute of course, but it's what I had and it tasted good.

For dessert we had Eton Mess, which is just strawberries & cream with meringues folded in. Simple, light, and delicious on a late summer evening!

Truth be told, it is kind of a girly dessert and Collin wasn't exactly raving about it. Fortunately, we have lots of girls who appreciate a good girly dessert.

In the upcoming weeks, I'm hoping to share more of the recipes we try from around the world, as well as some of the projects we make. I have one collaborative art project I'm super excited about that I'm hoping to share in a few weeks, so stay tuned for more on that!

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