Sunday, 7 April 2013

(Late) Foodie Penpals Reveal: March 2013

I hope the Foodie Penpals community can forgive me for doing my March reveal a bit late; on the official reveal day last month, I was traipsing about the desert in California, with no access to the Internet. Now, however, I am back in the UK, mostly unpacked, and ready to divulge the treats that awaited me upon my return.

My penpal this month was Lesley, who put together a tremendous package full of new and interesting things for me to try. Having perused my website and read about my interest in baking, Lesley decided to include baking items of both an edible and useful nature:

On the left is a "healthy" crepe mix made from buckwheat rather than standard white flour. On the right is a set of "jumbo" baking cups for cupcakes and muffins. As I told Lesley, the cupcake wrappers made me laugh because they are considered standard size where I come from in the US; the wrappers I encounter here in the UK drive me crazy because they are all so small! Now I will be able to bake a batch of normal-sized treats next time I'm in the mood to indulge my sweet tooth.

Lesley also provided me with a selection of things to snack on right away, should
I want to dive in without any preparation required. She sent a bag of hot wasabi "crisps," to use the British phrase, a package of the rich and delectable syrup waffles that are all the rage in European cafes, and a bag of dried mango. Whenever I have the urge to eat candy, I try to distract myself with dried fruit instead, so the mango is very much appreciated--especially since it is my favorite form of non-candy sweet treat.

Two of the healthier items in my parcel were a small pack of organic seeds and a bag of gourmet popping corn. I have never popped my own corn (outside of a microwave, that is), so I am looking forward to giving that a try; hopefully I won't overcook it, because there are few scents as bad as burned popcorn--a smell that will always remind me of my college days, since my hallmates were seemingly incapable of preventing popcorn disasters.

The last two edible components of the package were a box of tea by pukka, one of my (and seemingly Lesley's) favorite brands, and a little bag of dried rose petals. I have never cooked with rose petals before, though I have used rose water. If we ever get spring and summer down here in Cornwall, I will have to cook up an elegant fruity dessert worthy of rose petal decorations, then eat it in the sunshine on my balcony.

Lesley also sent a handwritten note explaining all the items in the box, as well as a recipe for me to try out--perhaps for one of the upcoming Game of Thrones evenings my husband and I will be hosting at our place? Some cake would add a welcome bit of sweetness to ease the tension associated with watching that very stressful show!

Thanks again to Lesley for her thoughtful and bounteous parcel. Stay tuned to find out what April's package contains!

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