Thursday, December 31, 2009
Tuesday, December 29, 2009
Saturday, December 26, 2009
I have wonderful memories of Christmas celebrations at my farm. I can still get the smell of "surkål" (cabbage a la norvegienne) and roasted pork ribs..., not to talk about all the preparations on a farm before Christmas, which I'm going to tell you now.
Each part of the country, each tiny village, each farm, have had - still have - its own traditional dishes during Christmas; different dishes from meat (pork, lamb, reindeer) and fish (cod, halibut). Turkey has become quite popular too, but I still believe that is more a New Year's Eve dish.
The first preparation began already in spring, when we bought three piglets to be fattened and slaughtered for Christmas. When I was a kid, I became very friends with the pigs, but I knew they were food, so that was never a problem. At the end of November the pigs were slaughtered. For a kid that was always an exciting time. Dad was never able to kill animals - not even a mouse - we always had 2-3 men helping, one of them was my grandfather. It was not only the meat from the pigs that were used; we made brawn, hashed lungs, salted and boiled pig's trotters, black (blood) pudding, sausages etc. What I remember the most are the boiled pig heads (!) and the mess in the kitchen! But that was part of the preparations! :)
I have already talked about Christmas cookies in previous posts. We always used to make at least seven different cookies. I believe the most traditional cookies from the area I grew up, are krumkaker (coneshaped, wafer-like sweet biscuits made in a special iron; krumkakejern). Goro is another kind of wafer baked in a patterned, rectangular iron. Then we have smultringer (doughnuts), fattigmann (fried cruller), pepperkaker (gingerbread cookies), sandkaker (cup-shaped shortbread biscuits), serina (small tea cakes) etc. Another goodie is Delfia Cake, which is made of coconut fat (oil) and chocolate - veeery heavy!
Another important task to do, was to hang out sheaf of oats for the birds to feed. We grew oats and barley, and always saved a couple of sheafs for the birds at Christmas; one on the bridge to the barn and another in an oak tree next to the house.
I love Christmas - have always done. I have begun to love Christmases in the tropics too - but it had been nicer if it hadn't been that hot! :) It is all about adaption to another culture, and make the best out of it.
DH doesn't say much, but I know he's getting used to and loves my traditions too, especially since there is not much celebrations or gatherings in within the family. He doesn't eat pork, but likes to taste the other items. :) We had a wonderful Christmas this year too - just the two of us. :)
~ CHRISTMAS 2009 ~
I've not been to Norway during Christmas - and there's no snow in Mauritius!! Photos are taken by Johnny at Christmas Eve and Christmas Day 2009. His mom lives next to my ex-farm.
I have not seen anything about copy right on the Christmas cards I've added. If there is, please let me know!
Sorry the links (recipes) are in Norwegian only, but if you'd like any of the recipes, I'll gladly translate! :)
Friday, December 25, 2009
Thursday, December 24, 2009
I don't think "fyrstekake" is another "must" for Christmas, but I made it because I just love it! :) The name of the cake can be translated to "the prince's cake" - but actually it is a macaroon cake.
The last days I've been busy with the last preparations for Christmas. I was going to take some photos of the trees etc, but I realized the batteries have to be reloaded first. For me, Christmas is today - Dec 24th - but since it is tomorrow for DH - we celebrate both days. More about that in my next post. :)
Wednesday, December 23, 2009
Tuesday, December 22, 2009
Saturday, December 19, 2009
Wednesday, December 16, 2009
Birre-Liten was bored some days ago... It was raining and he didn't want to go out. What is better than to view town from a dry and comfy place?! :)
As you can see; I've made ginger nuts, or perhaps they are called ginger cookies or gingerbread? I made one batch last Saturday, which turned out so yummy that I decided to make another batch a few days later! :) I have yet to decorate the gingerbread pigs, hearts, men & women, and I hope I'll do it before we eat them all!!! :)
Another "must" when it comes to Christmas cookies in Norway, is "smultringer", which I have translated to "Norwegian Christmas doughnuts". Believe me; this was the first time in my entire life I've made "smultringer"! Perhaps this is a myth, but I have never heard anyone who succeeds in making "smultringer" the first time; the dough becomes too "liquid" and more flour has to be added. I have several recipes, but I picked the wrong one!!!! When the dough is done, it has to stay in the fridge the night over. I was near to give up when I discovered the dough was too liquid to be rolled! I had to add twice as much flour as I already had, and even then I had to add more so it was possible rolling it! Phew!!! I believe there's a printing mistake in the recipe...
Monday, November 30, 2009
Sunday, November 29, 2009
As you can see of the photos, I have used three colors (fabric) only; light, dark and one accent color. As I see it - there are no "rules" when it comes to using fabric/colors. I have seen many other quilts using this block, but instead of three colors only, there have been used several light and dark fabrics and of course the accent fabric.
Months ago I bought the "leaves" fabrics, which I really love. When I bought it, I bought only a fat quarter of the dark pink one, which didn't last to more than four blocks. Fortunate the web shop where I bought it has more in stock - even on sale :)) - so I purchased more, which I won't get until after Christmas - I believe. It doesn't really matter, I have more than enough to do these days and I don't know if I have much time for sewing at all.
Monday, November 23, 2009
Friday, November 20, 2009
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Do you remember this post - where I got obsessed by 9na's "Jule-sy-mysterium"? I made quite some blocks that is not going to be potholders - perhaps a lap quilt... I wanted to make some potholders too, and here is one pair made of some coffee fabrics and Moda Marbles steal blue. I like the color combination - perhaps I'll make some place mats too, but not right now. :)
Saturday, October 31, 2009
Here are two place mats. They measure 16" x 19" (41 x 49cm). The size is a bit odd for a place mat, but it ended up that size due to the pattern I created. :)
Another tablecloth - measuring 15.5" x 21" (39 x 53cm)
A small table mat. It measures 15,5" x 15,5" (40 x 40 cm)
Don't believe I'm the new Karen Blixen - a Danish woman who settled in Kenya to grow coffee... I guess you all know the film "Out of Africa" (Meryl Streep / Robert Redford). My forever favorite film - don't know how many times I've seen it! :) We have the trees in our garden, because as coming from Norway - I find coffee trees very exotic! :)
Coffee is grown in small scale in the Chamarel area, because the trees flowers during the risky cyclone season. The trees are grown in sheltered places by the ridges of the hillsides. There are three types of coffee growing here; Arabica, Liberica (smaller version of Arabica) and Robusta. Coffee is not endemic to the island, it was imported from Brazil, via Madagascar and Thailand. The coffee beans are roasted, ground and packed by hand in a small factory at the tiny village Case Noyale.