And that, ladies and gentlemen, is without consulting a cookery book whatsoever! I think I will have lots of pleasure of that Ikea Tajin 😀

I wonder if the girls would like to give it a try when they’re back. Oki approved of the lamb very much, she had a little bowl full for dinner too 🙂 Of course there’s still enough left for tomorrow…

As there is nothing on tv tonight – as usual – I went to rent a movie: The Golden Compass. I read all three books. I wonder if the film will do it justice.


Rooz or Rambo? GI Jane?

Originally uploaded by Reinhilde.

My very first venture on YouTube – this little hamster is just too big for her own good 😀 Maybe we should check her food…

Youngest’s hamster, Rooz, should be renamed Rambo (or should that be GI Jane, as it’s a girl?). We bought her a new cage as she kept rattling and gnawing the bars of the old one which made a hell of a noise at night – but it looks like she just doesn’t like being cooped up and defies gravity while hanging on the top of her cage now! First video – we will try another one with a bit of better lighting during another performance…


Originally uploaded by Reinhilde.

I saw fresh grated coconut at the market – and I suddenly felt the urge to make coco batates (well, that’s what my ex-mother-in-law calls them, she’s Mauritian). It took me quite some time to track down some sweet potatoes – had to go all the way to the health shop to find them, it’s not something you find in the supermarket here…

As I only saw my exMIL make this once or twice more than a decade ago, I had to re-invent the recipe on the fly.

Luckily I have a cookery book all about potatoes – so I found out I could roast them in the oven (200 degrees Celsius for 40 minutes), let them cool and then peel them. Mashed them. Then melted some margerine and added flour, baking powder, a pinch of salt and a slosh of milk. Added that to the mashed sweet potatoes. Mixed it with a wooden spoon (one with a hole in, works better). Then came the tricky bit – added flour until it ‘felt’ right. I have the big disadvantage of having very hot hands, so I had to rinse them often with cold water to keep them cold so the dough wouldn’t stick all the time…

It was still rather sticky, so I opted for a glass lid, dusted it with flour, dusted my hands too, took a bit of dough and flattened it in a rough circle, about half a cm thick (that’s one fifth of an inch I think). On top of that I put a soonful of grated coconut and half a spoon cane sugar, folded it, pinched it closed and ‘crimped’ it with a fork. Then fried it in very hot fat (190 degrees celsius) for a few minutes.

Got the girls to do the taste test. No good. Too dry, too floury, not crispy enough 😦

I had golden syrup standing by, but wasn’t sure it was needed at first, so now I added a coffeespoon of golden syrup to the coconut and cane sugar. Folded, pinched, crimped, fried – still no good, coconut was still too dry 😦

Brainwave! Mixed a few spoonfuls of coconut, cane sugar and golden syrup and made balls of them that I put on the dough. Folding, pinching and crimping was much easier then too. Fried it.

Verdict of the jury? A bit large and the dough a bit thick, but for taste 10/10!


The only problem – I still have enough dough left for at least another 20 coco batates. Maybe I’ll just freeze it in 2 portions and get it out another time…

Rest of the pics in the set of course 🙂

Passing through the Aquarium in the Zoo of Antwerpen, we saw a beautiful starfish – and look, it’s the spitting image of Patrick 🙂

Combination of two pics – so I can blog it – just for the sake of it – nothing terribly interesting happens during the weekends here 😉

1. Mum, look! It’s Patrick!, 2. patrick_PS


Originally uploaded by Reinhilde.

This is the pic I use as an avatar for most of my virtual identities – minus the lolcatisation for the moment. What do you think? Should I use the lolcats one or should I stay plain?

Am I a softie actually?

Impressive, no?

Originally uploaded by Reinhilde.

It’s been a while since I blogposted a Flickr-pic too, so how about some home made carrot cake?

Impressive, no?

Store-bought marzipan (didn’t have time to make my own) but the girls added the food colouring to get proper carrots.

Oh yeah, it isn’t the ‘proper’ carrot cake icing with cream cheese and orange rind – girls aren’t keen on that, so we opted for ordinary icing.

A classmate of the girls phoned them yesterday – a boy in their class, cycling home from school at noon with two friends, crossed a train track but he didn’t make it – a high speed train got him…
He was only 12.
The whole evening the phone went – parents of friends, friends themselves, they talked about it on MSN, we talked about it and tried to get our heads around it. The one they felt most for was one of the boys who saw it happen. He’s a classmate too and they were best friends since kindergarten.
I feel for his family so much… I can’t get it out of my head…
newspaper article

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