Flo, Theo and Soo-Poo the snowmanWell, what a day. A rather grey start improved inordinately by the white stuff coming out of the sky. We crunched and creaked and skated our way to Flo’s school with both kids looking at their own pawprints and shoving snow in my pockets. All fairly calm especially as I managed not to bark hysterically at Flo and Theo with a lot of help from Chris, who is unbelievably calm about things like lost gloves, stray schoolbags and errant toddlers. He even has a knack of winkling out of Florence what happened at school the previous day to make her have a tizz about going in this morning. The trio of girls in Flo’s class have a sort of semi-systematic on-off friendship, and then there are the boys to consider too.
Anyhow, after school, the whole family skipped and hopped and kicked their way to the park to build a snowman (carrot nose, milk bottle top eyes, no hat) called Soo-Poo, throw snowballs and make snow angels. Even the passing binmen found it amusing.
Today for tea we had everyone’s favourite, rice and dhal. I had my favourite Creamed Spiced Spinach from The Best of Lord Krisha’s Cuisine, Theo tried it but Flo is mostly averse to such greenery, except lettuce. For the dhal, I love the pressure cooker. Rinse a cup of red lentils, put them in the pressure cooker with plenty of water, chopped fresh ginger root, one or two whole chillies, a pinch of turmeric, a bay leaf and a knob of butter. Put on the lid, heat and bring up to pressure, allow to cook for 10 minutes, take off the heat and let the pressure decrease without hindrance. When this is done, remove the lid, stir vigourously and ascertain if you need to reduce the mixture or moisten it somewhat. Add salt to taste. Meanwhile, fry some cumin seeds in a dollop of sunflower oil until lightly brown and put into the dhal – it should smell great and give off a resounding sizzle as it hits the dhal. The sizzle doesn’t help the taste necessarily but sounds like something exciting is happening. I did mean to put some fresh coriander in this but it is still languishing leafily in the salad drawer of the fridge – no one has complained so I am keeping schtum.
Before tea, we trekked back to the park through the slush to see how Soo-Poo the snowman was fairing. All seemed good, carrot still in place but now eyes, mouth etc of coal, a snow hat and a decidedly greater girth. Metamorphosis? Nope, Soo-Poo had been reduced to a grubby pile after a good kicking (we are not such a classy neighbourhood). Fortunately, Flo and Theo didn’t notice this at all and bought wholeheartedly into the idea that some one else had added to their previous efforts: today I don’t wish to show them the wreck of their creation.
Picture of kids with Soo-Poo the snowman to follow.