lady_of_clunn: (Christmas)
I wish you all happy holidays!

I don't think I will be back until Boxing Day, so I hope you'll have a wonderful time!
lady_of_clunn: (Christmas)
I wish you all happy holidays!

I don't think I will be back until Boxing Day, so I hope you'll have a wonderful time!
lady_of_clunn: (Christmas)
Since I haven't done a lot of Christmassy things in the last three or four years, I am going a bit into overdrive.

I decided to make Christmas Plum Jam.

My trusty cookbook calls for 'a freshly polished copper cauldron'.

o_O

I am afraid there was a distinct lack of detentions lately and I did not have such a cauldron handy.

I tried a stainless steel cooking pot. I have no idea whether to stir clockwise or counterclockwise, so I think I am messing up even more.

It is bubbling something fierce, though...

Damn, if this is not detrimental to the magical properties of gingerbread spice!
lady_of_clunn: (Christmas)
Since I haven't done a lot of Christmassy things in the last three or four years, I am going a bit into overdrive.

I decided to make Christmas Plum Jam.

My trusty cookbook calls for 'a freshly polished copper cauldron'.

o_O

I am afraid there was a distinct lack of detentions lately and I did not have such a cauldron handy.

I tried a stainless steel cooking pot. I have no idea whether to stir clockwise or counterclockwise, so I think I am messing up even more.

It is bubbling something fierce, though...

Damn, if this is not detrimental to the magical properties of gingerbread spice!
lady_of_clunn: (Default)
My
biscuit recipes
have posted over at [livejournal.com profile] bakebakebake!

Snagged from [livejournal.com profile] delphipsmith:

1. Egg Nog or Hot Chocolate? Hot Chocolate since I still haven't found out what egg nog is. I could google it, I suppose...

2. Does Santa wrap presents or just sit them under the tree? I wouldn't know. Father Christmas wraps his presents.

3. Colored lights on tree/house or white? White, candle-style lights on both the inside and outside tree and colourful fairy lights in the tiny round gable window. Although... I have to check. The fairy lights are nearly as old as I and spare coloured bulbs seem to be rare. I think the fairy lights might have morphed to white lights by now.

4. Do you hang mistletoe? Rarely.

5. When do you put your decorations up? General decorations go up between the weekend before first Advent and the Saturday before first Advent. The Christmas tree itself goes up in the morning of Christmas Eve.

6. What is your favorite holiday dish? Stollen. And 'Baumstamm' marzipan = a chocolate-covered marzipan log with a noisette filling.

7. Favorite Holiday memory as a child? Finally being allowed to help decorate the tree.

8. When and how did you learn the truth about Santa? What do you mean?

9. Do you open a gift on Christmas Eve? We open all our gifts on Christmas Eve. As is proper over here. *nods*

10. How do you decorate your Christmas tree? Candle-style lights, glass baubles, glass bells, wooden ornaments (Erzgebirge style:
Wooden ornaments
) such as angels, nutcrackers, little toys, our very old leonic wire stars, gilded nuts. Tinsel only every other year.

11. Snow! Love it or Dread it? LOVE IT!! Unfortunately, a white Christmas is rather unlikely in Berlin.

12. Can you ice skate? Not really. I don't fall every few steps but I am far from doing pirouettes.

13. Do you remember your favorite gift? A huge Playmobil robber baron castle!

14. What’s the most important thing about the Holidays for you? My family.

15. What is your favorite Holiday Dessert? Baked apples. Mmmhhh.

16. What is your favorite holiday tradition? Decorating the tree with the radio playing Christmas songs in the background. Christmas markets and Mutzenmandeln. Watching 'Three Hazelnuts for Cinderella' at least ten times between first Advent and New Year (have already seen it twice this year :)) Watching the children unwrap their presents. Cooking swede and potato stew with the turkey leftovers on Boxing Day. I guess it's just the magic of it all, the predictability of the season that comes with old traditions, wherever we might be :)

17. What tops your tree? Either a traditional tree topper similar to this one:
Baumspitze
or a silver-plated star.

18. Which do you prefer giving or receiving? Giving:) Although I wouldn't mind if somebody would pick up on the broad hints I've been dropping regarding that necklace we saw at the pumpkin market.

19. Candy Canes? Exotic.

20. Favorite Christmas show? As in film? 'Three Hazelnuts for Cinderella', 'Good King Wenzeslas' and 'The Muppets Christmas Carol'.

21. Saddest Christmas Song? Little Drummer boy. *bawls*

22. What is your favorite Christmas song? 'Morgen Kinder, wird's was geben' because it's so happy, 'Silent Night' just before the gift-unwrapping-madness starts and 'Gloria in exelsis deo'.

23. Christmas morning: up at the crack of dawn, or sleep in? Sleep in. We celebrate on Christmas Eve, so Christmas morning is for sleeping in before getting the turkey ready and the red cabbage and the potato dumplings and the apples :)

24. Do you send actual paper Christmas cards? Only to people who live far away. When living abroad I send cards to all my friends and family in Germany but not this year - I'll see all of them at some point :)

25. Strangest place you've ever spent Christmas (Eve or Day, your choice)? The Autobahn. My parents thought it would be a good idea to start our skiing holiday on Christmas Eve because the highways are empty on that day. We arrived rather late in Austria, decorated the little tree that the forester had delivered and 'celebrated' Christmas at around ten o'clock. Might sound romantic but was just tiring and rushed.
lady_of_clunn: (Default)
My
biscuit recipes
have posted over at [livejournal.com profile] bakebakebake!

Snagged from [livejournal.com profile] delphipsmith:

1. Egg Nog or Hot Chocolate? Hot Chocolate since I still haven't found out what egg nog is. I could google it, I suppose...

2. Does Santa wrap presents or just sit them under the tree? I wouldn't know. Father Christmas wraps his presents.

3. Colored lights on tree/house or white? White, candle-style lights on both the inside and outside tree and colourful fairy lights in the tiny round gable window. Although... I have to check. The fairy lights are nearly as old as I and spare coloured bulbs seem to be rare. I think the fairy lights might have morphed to white lights by now.

4. Do you hang mistletoe? Rarely.

5. When do you put your decorations up? General decorations go up between the weekend before first Advent and the Saturday before first Advent. The Christmas tree itself goes up in the morning of Christmas Eve.

6. What is your favorite holiday dish? Stollen. And 'Baumstamm' marzipan = a chocolate-covered marzipan log with a noisette filling.

7. Favorite Holiday memory as a child? Finally being allowed to help decorate the tree.

8. When and how did you learn the truth about Santa? What do you mean?

9. Do you open a gift on Christmas Eve? We open all our gifts on Christmas Eve. As is proper over here. *nods*

10. How do you decorate your Christmas tree? Candle-style lights, glass baubles, glass bells, wooden ornaments (Erzgebirge style:
Wooden ornaments
) such as angels, nutcrackers, little toys, our very old leonic wire stars, gilded nuts. Tinsel only every other year.

11. Snow! Love it or Dread it? LOVE IT!! Unfortunately, a white Christmas is rather unlikely in Berlin.

12. Can you ice skate? Not really. I don't fall every few steps but I am far from doing pirouettes.

13. Do you remember your favorite gift? A huge Playmobil robber baron castle!

14. What’s the most important thing about the Holidays for you? My family.

15. What is your favorite Holiday Dessert? Baked apples. Mmmhhh.

16. What is your favorite holiday tradition? Decorating the tree with the radio playing Christmas songs in the background. Christmas markets and Mutzenmandeln. Watching 'Three Hazelnuts for Cinderella' at least ten times between first Advent and New Year (have already seen it twice this year :)) Watching the children unwrap their presents. Cooking swede and potato stew with the turkey leftovers on Boxing Day. I guess it's just the magic of it all, the predictability of the season that comes with old traditions, wherever we might be :)

17. What tops your tree? Either a traditional tree topper similar to this one:
Baumspitze
or a silver-plated star.

18. Which do you prefer giving or receiving? Giving:) Although I wouldn't mind if somebody would pick up on the broad hints I've been dropping regarding that necklace we saw at the pumpkin market.

19. Candy Canes? Exotic.

20. Favorite Christmas show? As in film? 'Three Hazelnuts for Cinderella', 'Good King Wenzeslas' and 'The Muppets Christmas Carol'.

21. Saddest Christmas Song? Little Drummer boy. *bawls*

22. What is your favorite Christmas song? 'Morgen Kinder, wird's was geben' because it's so happy, 'Silent Night' just before the gift-unwrapping-madness starts and 'Gloria in exelsis deo'.

23. Christmas morning: up at the crack of dawn, or sleep in? Sleep in. We celebrate on Christmas Eve, so Christmas morning is for sleeping in before getting the turkey ready and the red cabbage and the potato dumplings and the apples :)

24. Do you send actual paper Christmas cards? Only to people who live far away. When living abroad I send cards to all my friends and family in Germany but not this year - I'll see all of them at some point :)

25. Strangest place you've ever spent Christmas (Eve or Day, your choice)? The Autobahn. My parents thought it would be a good idea to start our skiing holiday on Christmas Eve because the highways are empty on that day. We arrived rather late in Austria, decorated the little tree that the forester had delivered and 'celebrated' Christmas at around ten o'clock. Might sound romantic but was just tiring and rushed.
lady_of_clunn: (Christmas)
While many of you good people were enjoying turkey and cranberry sauce, [livejournal.com profile] tuawahine, [livejournal.com profile] missingkeys and I officially started the Christmas season.

While many Christmas markets in Berlin were already open since Monday, I usually don't go until very close to Christmas.

It was lovely. I feel all festive now.

We met up at Brandenburg Gate, which I hadn't bother seeing for the better part of a decade and I actually took my first photo of it feeling rather silly and like a tourist in my own city.



And the seasonal version :)



Christmas Market at the Gendarmenmarkt:





I hardly ever drink alcohol but one (!!) mug of mulled wine is tradition at the market. Well, after being pregnant and then breast feeding/extracting milk, I guess my tolerance is about that of a twelve-year-old. I wasn't feeling drunk at all but this morning I had the first hangover in over ten years. I hardly got Tani ready for school and out of the door before I had to reacquaint myself with the porcelain bowl. Feeling much better now but I think I shall pass the Feuerzangenbowle this year :(
lady_of_clunn: (Christmas)
While many of you good people were enjoying turkey and cranberry sauce, [livejournal.com profile] tuawahine, [livejournal.com profile] missingkeys and I officially started the Christmas season.

While many Christmas markets in Berlin were already open since Monday, I usually don't go until very close to Christmas.

It was lovely. I feel all festive now.

We met up at Brandenburg Gate, which I hadn't bother seeing for the better part of a decade and I actually took my first photo of it feeling rather silly and like a tourist in my own city.



And the seasonal version :)



Christmas Market at the Gendarmenmarkt:





I hardly ever drink alcohol but one (!!) mug of mulled wine is tradition at the market. Well, after being pregnant and then breast feeding/extracting milk, I guess my tolerance is about that of a twelve-year-old. I wasn't feeling drunk at all but this morning I had the first hangover in over ten years. I hardly got Tani ready for school and out of the door before I had to reacquaint myself with the porcelain bowl. Feeling much better now but I think I shall pass the Feuerzangenbowle this year :(
lady_of_clunn: (Christmas)
The weekend was cake-and-baby-juggling weekend.

My aunt and cousin were celebrating their birthdays together and asked me to bake a Gentlemen's Gateaux. I cheated. I can't get the cake base right, let alone cutting it into three layers. So I bought a cake base and instead of baking the cake, I built it.

image heavy cake ramblings and a recipe )
lady_of_clunn: (Christmas)
The weekend was cake-and-baby-juggling weekend.

My aunt and cousin were celebrating their birthdays together and asked me to bake a Gentlemen's Gateaux. I cheated. I can't get the cake base right, let alone cutting it into three layers. So I bought a cake base and instead of baking the cake, I built it.

image heavy cake ramblings and a recipe )
lady_of_clunn: (Christmas)
 
lady_of_clunn: (Christmas)
 
lady_of_clunn: (Default)
I am nearly off, just a few short hours left to do all the last minute things one needs to do before going on holiday... I wish you all a wonderful Christmas - see you shortly before the New Year!
lady_of_clunn: (Default)
I am nearly off, just a few short hours left to do all the last minute things one needs to do before going on holiday... I wish you all a wonderful Christmas - see you shortly before the New Year!
lady_of_clunn: (Schnee)
Today I met with a colleague of mine for Christmas baking.

We are actually a week late, since I like to start a week before the first Advent Sunday, but hey, we're only human.

She picked Tania and I up from the Market Square. So far so good.

Then there were road works and the highway was closed in the direction we needed to go.

That meant lots of country roads which meant lots of turns and a much longer journey than planned.

Tania proceeded to throw up all over herself and her seat approximately 30 seconds before we arrived at my colleague's house.

*sigh*

Not the best start.

But then we got some serious work done:

We made Hazelnut Macaroons and the traditional Plätzchen (cookies cut out of rolled out dough with cookie cutters) and Marzipantaler, which were an estetic catastrophe, because English Marzipan seems to be softer than German Marzipan and it melted all over the cookie sheet.

Because of the late start we didn't get to the black and white cookies, but she will bring me the dough and I'll do another baking session with Tani on Monday or Tuesday.

I also have to bake my Stollen.

And then I'm done! Just one more evening baking and I am all set for Advent!!

Tomorrow I will decorate the flat and set up my advent wreath.

My home smells of Christmas.

*content sigh*
lady_of_clunn: (Schnee)
Today I met with a colleague of mine for Christmas baking.

We are actually a week late, since I like to start a week before the first Advent Sunday, but hey, we're only human.

She picked Tania and I up from the Market Square. So far so good.

Then there were road works and the highway was closed in the direction we needed to go.

That meant lots of country roads which meant lots of turns and a much longer journey than planned.

Tania proceeded to throw up all over herself and her seat approximately 30 seconds before we arrived at my colleague's house.

*sigh*

Not the best start.

But then we got some serious work done:

We made Hazelnut Macaroons and the traditional Plätzchen (cookies cut out of rolled out dough with cookie cutters) and Marzipantaler, which were an estetic catastrophe, because English Marzipan seems to be softer than German Marzipan and it melted all over the cookie sheet.

Because of the late start we didn't get to the black and white cookies, but she will bring me the dough and I'll do another baking session with Tani on Monday or Tuesday.

I also have to bake my Stollen.

And then I'm done! Just one more evening baking and I am all set for Advent!!

Tomorrow I will decorate the flat and set up my advent wreath.

My home smells of Christmas.

*content sigh*
lady_of_clunn: (Snape in bed)
I snagged this from [livejournal.com profile] dari_67 and [livejournal.com profile] softobsidian74 :



1. Wrapping paper or gift bags? Wrapping paper. Mostly simple brown packing paper that I decorate myself with gold or silver writing, painted-on ornaments or fancy ribbon.

2. Real tree or artificial? Real!! Christmas and the smell of pine in the house go together!

3. When do you put up the tree? First thing we do on the morning of Christmas Eve.

4. When do you take the tree down? Depends. Either on Three-King-Day (January 6) or 2nd of February, the official end of Christmas (Candlemas).

5. Do you like eggnog? No idea, never tried and it does not sound THAT appealing!

6. Favorite gift received as a child? My huge Playmobil Castle!

7. Hardest person to buy for? The new boyfriend of friends of mine who also attend our Christmas get-togethers and thus are entitled to gift-receiving. There's ALWAYS one of those.

8. Easiest person to buy for? My father. Doesn't want anything, goes ecstatic over practical gifts like ties, socks or after shave. I swear. And uses them.

9. Do you have a nativity scene? Yes.

10. Mail or e-mail Christmas cards? Mail! :)

11. Worst Christmas gift you ever received? A book. Now, now, don't hurt me. It was an extremely dry and uneventful story and the person who gave it to me thought I would be interested, because I used to live in Switzerland and the family in the book lived in Switzerland for a while as well.

12. Favorite Christmas movie? "A Muppets Christmas Carol" and "Good King Wenzeslas" Watching all the "Sissy" movies for the 36th time is not really a favourite, but a total must!

13. When do you start shopping? Whenever I see something "perfect" I buy it. Trouble is, I tend to forget the Christmas presents, which I safely hid away in July and have to buy again. But I do sometimes find the presents in time for the next birthday. Or next Christmas.

14. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present? No. I do recycle nice ribbon.

15. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? Baked apples with marzipan filling and vanilla sauce.

16. Lights on the tree? Candle-style non-blink variety. Still in the container, too expensive here, so it's fairy lights. Non-blink mode!!

17. Favorite Christmas song? Depends on my mood. "Little Drummer Boy" makes me cry without fail, "Morgen Kinder wird's was geben" lifts the spirit, and "Stille Nacht, Heilige Nacht" (Silent Night) is an absolute must to sing on Christmas Eve.

18. Travel at Christmas or stay home? Home, but we used to go to Austria a lot over Christmas when I was a child, which I consider my second home.

20. Angel on the tree top or a star? Angel?!? No, either a star (had to fight my mother for putting up such unheard-of, modern additions to Christmas ornaments) or one of our traditional antique tree toppers, which look a bit like a tower of an especially elaborate Russian convent.

21. Open the presents Christmas Eve or morning? Christmas Eve. I think Christmas Day and Boxing Day are just holidays in Germany so you can sleep in and visit relatives - the real thing happens on Christmas Eve.

22. Most annoying thing about this time of the year? The who-can-cover-their-house-in-the-most-horrible-decoration contest. Hurts. The. Eyes.

23. Favorite ornament theme or color? Colourful. We use ornaments which were added by different generations over more than the last hundred years, I like colourfull baubles and traditional wooden ornaments, together with candle-style lights and real lead tinsel. I know it's a pain to get off the tree and leaving it on is horrid for the environment, but it is the only tinsel that pulls of the look without looking overly flashy or gaudy. So I re-use the same tinsel that has been used in my family for about 50 years and take off every single tiny strand of it when taking down the tree.

24. Favorite for Christmas dinner? Big bird (turkey, goose or duck), red cabbage, potatoes or potatoe dumplings, apples, almonds and carrots stuffed into the turkey, red wine gravy.

25. What do you want for Christmas this year? That my mum gets well after her surgery yesterday.

26. If you include in your Christmas celebration a religious service, do your prefer Christmas Eve or Christmas morning services?  My family is not religious, but my mum and I used to go to midnight mass in Austria and get totally high on the huge amount of incense burnt during the service.

And for Soft:







lady_of_clunn: (Snape in bed)
I snagged this from [livejournal.com profile] dari_67 and [livejournal.com profile] softobsidian74 :



1. Wrapping paper or gift bags? Wrapping paper. Mostly simple brown packing paper that I decorate myself with gold or silver writing, painted-on ornaments or fancy ribbon.

2. Real tree or artificial? Real!! Christmas and the smell of pine in the house go together!

3. When do you put up the tree? First thing we do on the morning of Christmas Eve.

4. When do you take the tree down? Depends. Either on Three-King-Day (January 6) or 2nd of February, the official end of Christmas (Candlemas).

5. Do you like eggnog? No idea, never tried and it does not sound THAT appealing!

6. Favorite gift received as a child? My huge Playmobil Castle!

7. Hardest person to buy for? The new boyfriend of friends of mine who also attend our Christmas get-togethers and thus are entitled to gift-receiving. There's ALWAYS one of those.

8. Easiest person to buy for? My father. Doesn't want anything, goes ecstatic over practical gifts like ties, socks or after shave. I swear. And uses them.

9. Do you have a nativity scene? Yes.

10. Mail or e-mail Christmas cards? Mail! :)

11. Worst Christmas gift you ever received? A book. Now, now, don't hurt me. It was an extremely dry and uneventful story and the person who gave it to me thought I would be interested, because I used to live in Switzerland and the family in the book lived in Switzerland for a while as well.

12. Favorite Christmas movie? "A Muppets Christmas Carol" and "Good King Wenzeslas" Watching all the "Sissy" movies for the 36th time is not really a favourite, but a total must!

13. When do you start shopping? Whenever I see something "perfect" I buy it. Trouble is, I tend to forget the Christmas presents, which I safely hid away in July and have to buy again. But I do sometimes find the presents in time for the next birthday. Or next Christmas.

14. Have you ever recycled a Christmas present? No. I do recycle nice ribbon.

15. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? Baked apples with marzipan filling and vanilla sauce.

16. Lights on the tree? Candle-style non-blink variety. Still in the container, too expensive here, so it's fairy lights. Non-blink mode!!

17. Favorite Christmas song? Depends on my mood. "Little Drummer Boy" makes me cry without fail, "Morgen Kinder wird's was geben" lifts the spirit, and "Stille Nacht, Heilige Nacht" (Silent Night) is an absolute must to sing on Christmas Eve.

18. Travel at Christmas or stay home? Home, but we used to go to Austria a lot over Christmas when I was a child, which I consider my second home.

20. Angel on the tree top or a star? Angel?!? No, either a star (had to fight my mother for putting up such unheard-of, modern additions to Christmas ornaments) or one of our traditional antique tree toppers, which look a bit like a tower of an especially elaborate Russian convent.

21. Open the presents Christmas Eve or morning? Christmas Eve. I think Christmas Day and Boxing Day are just holidays in Germany so you can sleep in and visit relatives - the real thing happens on Christmas Eve.

22. Most annoying thing about this time of the year? The who-can-cover-their-house-in-the-most-horrible-decoration contest. Hurts. The. Eyes.

23. Favorite ornament theme or color? Colourful. We use ornaments which were added by different generations over more than the last hundred years, I like colourfull baubles and traditional wooden ornaments, together with candle-style lights and real lead tinsel. I know it's a pain to get off the tree and leaving it on is horrid for the environment, but it is the only tinsel that pulls of the look without looking overly flashy or gaudy. So I re-use the same tinsel that has been used in my family for about 50 years and take off every single tiny strand of it when taking down the tree.

24. Favorite for Christmas dinner? Big bird (turkey, goose or duck), red cabbage, potatoes or potatoe dumplings, apples, almonds and carrots stuffed into the turkey, red wine gravy.

25. What do you want for Christmas this year? That my mum gets well after her surgery yesterday.

26. If you include in your Christmas celebration a religious service, do your prefer Christmas Eve or Christmas morning services?  My family is not religious, but my mum and I used to go to midnight mass in Austria and get totally high on the huge amount of incense burnt during the service.

And for Soft:







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