welshwitterings3-7Steam is rising from a 1940’s enamel preserving pan and there is a citrus zing in the air, yes, I am making another batch of marmalade. There is less than two weeks to’ The World’s Original Marmalade Awards’, 2014 entry deadline and the batch that is currently bubbling away on the stove is my special entry with bergamot lemons and quince.  If the finished taste is as good as the current smell then the judges are in for a treat.  Although I am hoping for a placement in this year’s competition I know full well that this will be a big undertaking with the competition attracting thousands of entries and good quality ones at that the battle for a placement will be tough. welshwitterings3-1So as I watch my marmalade in the making I am repeatedly telling myself that it is the taking part that counts, but let’s be honest everyone entering the competition is really hoping to win.

welshwitterings3-2My four year old is also immersed in marmalade preparations this year, not only has she given my marmalade a ‘’lucky stir’’, she is also entering her marmalade cat picture into the art section of the competition.  I’m not allowed to share a picture of her cat with you yet, as apparently it is not quite finished. Just what we need another perfectionist in the family!

welshwitterings3-6All my outdoor plans have been scuppered this week as the rain has continued to pour and it has been bitterly cold. Apart from dutiful trudges around the field with Bramble the dog and Dewdrop the pony, there have only been two opportunities to get up to the local woodland walk with the children.  Sunday mornings for me are a great opportunity to get the girls out for a nice walk, this Sundays walk was spurred on by the promise of a mug of hot chocolate and gingerbread when we returned home. Both girls delighted in the presence of muddy puddles to jump in and Hattie was delighted by the presence of lots of different types of fungi.

welshwitterings3-4My youngest daughter turns two this week and the usual reflection of ‘where have the years gone’ has accompanied this prospective life event. Indeed  as I listened to the radio ‘Do-Re-Mi’ from ‘The Sound of Music’ came on and as I sang along to the lyrics of ‘Do a deer a female deer’, I remembered appearing on stage with Chase Operatic Society singing this song when I was seventeen, I also remembered my dress strap malfunctioning during this performance as if it were yesterday, but then it hit me that this was eighteen years ago although I am not sure that my rendition of the songs from ‘The Sound of Music ‘, have improved in this time.

welshwitterings3-5So this week will be filled with labelling and carefully packaging my marmalade entries and making preparations for Libby’s Birthday party, which includes the making of a novelty Birthday cake. Rabbit jelly mould and cake tins are at the ready and I am sure that much sugar fuelled fun will be had on the day.

Well the setting point on my marmalade is beginning to be reached, so until next time I shall bid you a fond farewell from Wales.

Da bo ti  (good bye)

About Seren Charrington-Hollins

ABOUT SEREN-CHARRINGTON-HOLLINS Describing my work through just one job title is difficult; because my professional life sees me wear a few hats: Food Historian, period cook, broadcaster, writer and consultant. I have a great passion for social and food history and in addition to researching food history and trends I have also acted as a consultant on domestic life and changes throughout history for a number of International Companies. In addition to being regularly aired on radio stations; I have made a number of television appearances on everything from Sky News through to ITV’s Country House Sunday, Holiday of a Lifetime with Len Goodman , BBC4’s Castle’s Under Siege, BBC South Ration Book Britain; Pubs that Built Britain with Hairy Bikers and BBC 2’s Inside the Factory. Amongst other publications my work has been featured in Period Living Magazine, Telegraph, Daily Telegraph, Daily Mail and Great British Food Magazine and I write regularly for a variety of print and online publications. I am very fortunate to be able to undertake work that is also my passion and never tire of researching; recreating historical recipes and researching changing domestic patterns. Feel free to visit my blog, www.serenitykitchen.com