One more week and it’s N-Day… Nursery Day. Seb’s off to school, of sorts anyway.
To be honest, I’m not too worried about the prospect either. He’s such a social little chap that I know he’s just itching to be around other kids all day. I’ll hand him over and I doubt he’ll even give me a backward glance. He’ll be looking to see who’s there, where the toys are and more importantly where the cupboards are that he can empty repeatedly all day.
He’ll only be there two days a week and then my parents have very generously offered to look after him a day a week as well. I started writing a ‘Day in the life of Seb’ to try and give some helpful guidance on how he operates on a day-to-day basis but it’s quite difficult to give a lot of insight beyond the basics of sleep times and meal times. You forget about all the things you just do instinctively now because you’ve learnt through endless trial and error what works for them. Trying to impart this knowledge without sounding like an obsessed mum is quite challenging! Also musn’t forget that mum and dad have of course brought up 4 kids already so a little human is a piece of cake.
I’ve been trying to get myself organised as I know I’ll be a whole lot busier once I’m back at work and those things I used to be able to get done in the day will be a long gone fond memory.
We’ve got the christening finally booked in with the local church in Barnes, which means a menu to plan. We’re hoping for sunny weather so that we might be able to get the bbq out and enjoy drinks in the sunshine.
But before that, there is a first birthday to organise. Now of course, Seb clearly has no idea and the whole occasion will just fly straight over his head, but I can’t miss the opportunity to bake a birthday cake for him. I’ve got a few ideas that hopefully I’ll be able to share with you in a few weeks time, although I’m not sure I’ve got the artistic and creative flare to really pull them off. I’ll have a go though!
I can’t say Seb is fussed by cake anyway, give him a bowl of banana ice-cream and he’s a happy man. I’ll have to get the ice cream maker out and have some ice-cream to go with the cake too, now I think about it.
But before all of that, it’s such a gorgeous sunny day in London after a miserable few days that I had to bake some gorgeous pine nut, lemon poppy-seed biscuits that I’d had my eye on since Will bought me the new cookbook by Katie Quinn Davies called ‘What Katie Ate…at the weekend’. I’m not entirely sure if the book was really for me or for Will, or for me to cook food from it for Will. Either way, I’m happy because the book is like a piece of art with amazing photos and endlessly enticing recipes to try.
These little biscuits looked simple enough to make and all the more inviting sandwiched together with light fluffy lemony cream cheese. I say simple enough, however, Seb woke during the production of said biscuits and with him round my feet emptying the cupboard under the sink, I was a little distracted and totally forgot to add the flour!
So a second batch was made over the weekend.
These are buttery lemony light biscuits that are far too easy to devour in minutes. The pistachios give a gentle crunch and the poppy seeds add another layer of texture to biscuits that have the quality of buttery shortbread biscuits..
The dapples of green nut and sprinkles of black poppy seeds against the creamy dough makes them all the more inviting and somehow the lemon makes them feel like a summers biscuit that can be enjoyed with a cup of tea / coffee in the sunshine.
In fact, that’s what I’m going to do right now.
Pistachio, lemon and poppy seed biscuits
Recipe adapted from ‘What Katie Ate…At the weekend’
Makes about 24 biscuits
225g self-raising flour
¼ tsp ground ginger
3 egg whites
165g caster sugar
110g butter melted and cooled
zest of 1 lemon
75g crushed pistachios
1 tbsp poppy seeds
Preheat the oven to 180 degrees and line two baking trays with greaseproof paper.
Sift the flour and ginger into a bowl and combine together.
Beat your egg whites until they become white and frothy. Once they reach this consistency continue to beat whilst adding a tablespoon of sugar at a time. Continue to whisk until you have firm peaks.
Fold in your melted butter, lemon zest, crushed pistachios and poppy seeds using a metal spoon. Be gentle with the eggs as you want to keep as much air as possible so that the biscuits are nice and light.
Then add a third of your flour to the bowl and fold through and repeat twice more with the remaining flour until it is all properly combined.
Using a teaspoon spoon ping-pong size balls of the the mixture onto the baking tray leaving about 5cm between each ball to allow room for them to spread.
Gently press the tops of each dot with your finger or the back of a spoon so that you have a smooth surface.
Scatter over some extra poppy seeds onto the top of each ball..
Back them in the oven for 12-15 minutes at which point they should look lovely and golden.
Remove from the oven and leave to cool for 10 minutes before moving them to a wire rack to cool completely.
The biscuits will keep for 7 days stored in an airtight container.