After the endurance test of the long, dark winter months April blows in like a breath of fresh air. The spring bulbs are all in bloom now and the garden is a riot of yellow daffs and multi coloured tulips and anemones. You just can’t help but smile when you see them, nodding their heads in the gentle breeze.
On the home front it’s all change this month, and a hefty dose of serious spring cleaning – literally blowing away the cobwebs. Delia’s Winter Collection returns to its spot on the bookcase, to be replaced on the kitchen counter with the Summer Collection! Later this month I’ll be retiring the flannel bedding for the season and replacing them with the thin cotton Summer bedding. That first night really is a case of ‘brace yourself’ as you climb into bed, but we’ll soon appreciate their silky coolness.
|Baked Chicken and Rice|
April is usually the start of the cricket season, which literally takes over our lives until the end of Our week starts with the selection meeting, then the teams have to be put out, then the daily chasing of players and adjusting the teams as players drop out, the last minute organising of lifts and finally, on Saturday morning the holding of breath waiting to see if the game is going ahead. The dreaded call “the game’s off” can throw a whole day’s plans into disarray. It was on one such Saturday last year that I concocted what turned out to be a seriously tasty one-pot dish out of what I had in the fridge and some cooked chicken that was languishing in the freezer! Holly rather enjoys our Sunday afternoon visits to the cricket club, she’s even grasped the fact that the rope boundary mustn’t be crossed and the red leather balls really aren’t for her!
September (or even October!).
|One pan stuffed leg of Lamb|
More often than not, Easter falls in April, usually on or around my Dad’s birthday. In other years we used to have such happy family get-togethers celebrating both events. Now that Dad’s gone we don’t have the heart for it any more, the Easter gatherings are a thing of the past. One of my Dad’s favourite Easter meals was the baked stuffed leg of lamb that I used to make. Meat and vegetables all cook together in the roasting tin which makes for very easy entertaining.
Weather permitting, we might be lucky enough to have the first barbecue of the season. I seem to remember more sunny and warm Aprils than wet and cold ones – but nothing’s guaranteed! Last year, the day the barbecue was delivered it snowed – very, very briefly, but nonetheless, it snowed!
|Tuna Pasta Salad|
A kind April can usually find me abandoning stout footwear for sandals and spending most afternoons, if not early evenings too, pottering outside and drifting out with cups of tea. A very kind April will see me all but move outside permanently! Early indications aren’t good for this year, it’s still very cold!
In the kitchen there are some serious changes as I finally retire the winter comfort dishes and start This tuna pasta salad is a nice early salad, served with the pasta still slightly warm it isn’t too much of a shock to the system!bringing salads into the rotation.