Thursday, April 24, 2008

So I'm moving to New York cos I got issues with my sleep

Weeks before I came over here, I was having problems sleeping; I suppose caused in part by my excitment, partly by the overwhelming anticipation and partly by dread of the unknown (I am a big fat old scaredy-cat). But even after I arrived here and found that everything was fine (as the rational part of my brain knew it would be), I still haven't got back into a regular sleeping pattern. Every morning at around 5.00am, ping! Awake. Basically, right now I am being propped up by the towering Berocca stash I was careful to bring over with me. That and the general buzz of the city, which your nerves are plugged into every waking moment. I do love this place.

The first thing I am aware of when I wake up is the low hum of Manhattan and the distant din of the traffic, dulled by my earplugs. Occassionally I am woken by the sound of sirens and garbage truck horns (man, those garbage men love to lean on those babies), but I am high enough up not to be too disturbed by the street noise.

And the last thing I see at night are the lights of the city twinkling through the fine blinds. In a bid to make my room a little bit more of a sanctuary, a lavender candle burns next to two pretty glass ornaments bought at the Falling Water gift shop.

I just discovered the "secret" roof terrace too, which offers a brilliant 360 degree view of the city (if you walk all the way around), and an arresting close-up view of the top of the Empire State.

I feel like I'm living in a waking dream. Maybe that's why I'm not sleeping so well.

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

This is jam hot

Just another day in my newly adopted home of Manhattan, a hint of Spring in the air despite the chill. Fresh cherry blossoms burst from their buds on the branches. The sun is warm when you are in it, but step into the shadow of a skyscraper and the temperature plummets.

I walk home from the office down 5th avenue and notice a bit of a hubbub down one of the cross streets. A whole lot of film paraphernalia lines one side of the street - boom mikes, light boxes, lots of people milling around looking busy. On the other side of the street is a mob holding assorted cameras aloft. At the front, the pros with their big black SLR's; at the back, the rabble holding mobile phones and compacts. New York City cops barking "How many times do I have to tell you guys to turn off ya flashes!"

At the focus of everyone's attention are Julia Roberts and Clive Owen, filming a scene from some movie (at a guess, some kind of espionage thriller, or possibly a neurotic rom com). She is tiny in a little black skirt and jacket - I know people always say that but I thought she was supposed to be tall! She ain't. She is wearing stilettos with heels so fine, I can't imagine how they bear her weight. Thinner than pencils. Then again, she probably weighs about as much as my laptop. Clive looks hot as always in a smart grey suit.

Just another day in the big bad city. Sorry to rub it in, but New York is turning out to be great.

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Scrumptious ginger cake with cream cheese icing (drool)

250gm self raising flour
2 tsp ground ginger
1/2 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp bicarb
pinch salt
200gm golden syrup
4 lumps of ginger in syrup
3tbs ginger syrup
125gm butter
2 heaped tbs sultanas
125gm dark muscovado
2 large eggs
240ml milk

From my favourite cookbook ever, Nigel Slater's Kitchen Diaries. Food porn, made tasteful.

Melt the golden syrup, butter, and ginger syrup together over a gentle heat. Dice the ginger pieces finely and add to the saucepan with sultanas and sugar. Let it bubble for a minute but keep stirring to stop the sultanas sticking. Remove from heat and add to flour, ground ginger, bi carb, cinnamon and salt. Beat the eggs with the milk and add to mixture. You should have a nice, runny mixture at this point. Ginger fiends may want to add more ginger (I already upped the quantities).

Pour into a lined cake tin and cook at 180 for about 45 minutes ('til a skewer comes out clean).

For the cream cheese icing, I just bought some soft cheese and mixed it with golden (unrefined) icing sugar. That stuff tastes a million times better than the refined, super-white stuff, and it goes a lovely caramel colour.

"The best cake you've ever made"
Kamini C, a.k.a. the bitch
Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...