The level is dropping a bit, so we must have been married a long time (she says, taking off shoes and socks to help with the sums). Thirteen years this year.
There isn't a traditional UK gift for the 13th wedding anniversary, but the US suggests lace (traditional) or textiles or furs (modern). Hmm. I think I'll stick to the single malt, thanks.
Glengoyne is an unpeated malt. We enjoyed a heady day visiting the distillery sticking our heads into vats of fermenting gorgeousness followed by a tasting. Brian was driving so I (apparently) had everything he was given in addition to my own. I suspect I wore a fixed silly grin for the rest of that day. Strangely my memories are slightly hazy.
Anyway we bought this bottle in the shop at the distillery. I don't remember how much it was but it was a bit of a stretch for two journalists' wages. When we've finished it we'll have to go back and get another one.
It worried me slightly as a breakmaker. I don't think I have ever baked a loaf using an entirely different kind of flour own its own.
Daniel Stevens reassures in the recipe's intro that you just have to knead it a bit longer - an extra five minutes - and prove it in baskets or make smaller loaves.
I don't have proving baskets, but worked out that a similar container could be a colander lined with a linen tea cloth, sprinkled liberally with rye flour, so that's what I used.
The result was two round flattish loaves. I assumed they'd be heavy, leaden bricks but the crumb itself is surprisingly light. They have a nice flavour too, like a good wholesome wholemeal. My sternest critics tested it and gave it the verdict of (a somewhat surprised) "yum!" so my fears were unfounded.
I have also been playing with my new DSLR and continuing my annual obsession with taking pictures of the fennel seedheads. This is a single floret. I love the way the individual drops of rain each contain a reflection, upside down, of the rest of the fennel plant, the blue sky and the dark hedge behind. This was cropped and a little bit enhanced using Photoshop Elements which I have for a 30 day trial and am loving. Geek? Moi?