A Perfect Weekend

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The title sums it up exactly: this has been a perfect weekend.

It began¬†after I arrived home after finishing an hour late at work and then getting stuck in traffic on the drive back, to find the boy waiting for me with a selection of cheese, crackers, chutneys and bottle of wine. He then pulled out two new cookbooks for me too! I’m a very lucky girl ūüôā

He's a keeper!!

He’s a keeper!!

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We didn’t have any room for the cheese and biscuits after our dinner of leftover coq au vin but they made a perfect brunch on Saturday (along with some toasted buttered crumpets), and lunch on Sunday with some still left for me to nibble on during the week! I can definitely recommend the Pinot Grigio Rose (that interestingly looked more like white wine!) – it had a nice¬†delicate taste and was very drinkable, and I’m afraid I can comment no further as I know nothing about wine!

On Saturday we were at a bit of a loss about how to spend the day. I’d suggested wandering around St Albans so we had a look on the info website and I spotted an advert for their annual fireworks display that happened to be that night. As fireworks are my favourite thing in the world this pretty much made the decision for us!

So we hopped on a train to St Albans and had a wander around the market and some of my favourite shops I persuaded the boy to let me go in! I managed to find some pretty new dresses and a blouse for work which is handy¬†as I’m always on the lookout for new work clothes.

A bit later on we headed to the restaurant that we’d picked online before we’d left. I’m not a big fan of choosing restaurants online but as the firework display was happening we expected it to be pretty busy in St Albans! We chose a restaurant called Tudors Restaurant in The White Hart Hotel – I’ll do a proper review of it in a separate post so for now all I’ll say is that it filled our bellies well!

By the time we’d finished eating it was perfect timing to head to the grounds of the cathedral for the fireworks display. I’d been lured into a false sense of security with the weather when leaving home as it was so warm and sunny. However by the time the sun went down it was much less so and I started to get a bit chilly! But as soon as the fireworks started I forgot about being cold and just admired them – I was grinning ear to ear, they really make me so happy!

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On Sunday after a lovely much-needed lie-in we scoured my many cookery books and decided what to cook. After much deliberation we chose chicken with chestnut and garlic stuffing from my Gordon Ramsay’s Ultimate Cookery Course book. The only (minor) issue with choosing this recipe was that it required a deboned chicken. Neither the boy nor I had ever even considered deboning a chicken before. However after watching a few youtube videos, we figured we should give it a go. It turned out to be quite fiddly but not impossible, although I nearly did lose a finger in the process! In fact it was more difficult trying to roll and tie the joint without losing all of the stuffing out of the ends. It probably didn’t help that we just had run-of-the-mill string as my local tesco doesn’t sell butcher’s string!

Not the neatest of debonings but once it was stuffed and rolled, no one could tell!

Not the neatest of debonings but once it was stuffed and rolled, no one could tell!

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A bit of stuffing, rolling, rustic tying, drizzle of olive oil and some seasoning and it’s oven-ready!

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The finished article.

We had the chicken with the parsley dressing that’s also in the recipe plus some rosemary and garlic roast potatoes, Yorkshire puddings, pigs in blankets and brussel sprouts with smoky bacon. If I made this again I think I’d leave out the parsley dressing and have gravy instead – it was definitely missing some luscious thick gravy to soak into everything.

If anyone wants the recipe it’s available online here:¬†http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/food-and-drink/features/chicken-with-garlic-and-chestnut-stuffing-8198444.html

I have a LOT of leftovers, some of which have been packed up for lunch tomorrow to make all of my colleagues jealous. I’ve also got a good amount of stock that I made from the bones, which will sit nicely in the freezer until I decide what to do with it.

It’s gone 11pm and I should probably be heading off to sleep now. Tomorrow is going to be a longgg stressful¬†day. On Friday we discharged over 1/3 of our relatively large ward, which is always a recipe for disaster as we’ll spend Monday getting to know all of the new patients. And as if that wasn’t enough tomorrow evening we’re having our crazy landlord come round for an inspection. Unfortunately our hoover decided to give up the ghost during our last minute power clean this evening so the house will be far from perfect but I’m sure even if it was pristine the landlord would find something wrong with it.

The only positive spin I can put on it is that, after tomorrow, I’ll only have to work Tuesday and then I have two whole days of annual leave! I booked them off specially as it’s November the 5th so I can travel to stay with the boy and his family and see some more fireworks!!

Farewell for now,

TFD x