Green with envy
Make your friends green with envy by knocking up these delicious Shamrock Macaroons with Baileys Chocolate Ganache for St Patrick’s Day this Saturday.
These beautiful slippers made from folded skunk leaves are designed by artist Nicole Dextras, who uses live plant material to create wearable items.
Tape it up.
Use it to wrap presents, stick notes up on your wall or simply to gaze at. Made from Washi (rice paper), this treasure box of 6 Japanese “classic prints” tape from Culture Label looks great when wrapping gifts in plain brown paper.
(Photo credit: Mark’s Europe)
The perfect cuppa
1. Always use freshly drawn water. Previously boiled water will have become deoxygenated and will spoil your tea. If possible, filter the water to remove the chlorine and other additives that can affect the taste. Softened water will produce a better tea.
2. Boil the kettle and pour some water into the tea pot. Swirl it around and throw it away. Warming the pot helps the brewing process by ensuring the heat goes into the tea, not a cold pot.
3. Add teaspoons full of loose tea to the pot. The traditional quantity is one per person and one for the pot.
4. Add freshly boiled water to the pot and allow to brew for 3 or 4 minutes. Check the pack for brewing times as this varies between blends. Unless the water is at boiling point when it makes contact with the tea, the tea will never properly brew. Place a tea cosy on the pot to keep the tea warm.
5. When to add milk is a bit of a contentious issue. You can either pour it into your cup first, then add the hot tea, or add it to the tea last. Scientists believe it’s better for the milk proteins if it’s added to the cup first.
6. Use a tea strainer over the cup to catch the leaves as you pour.
7. If sugar is needed, make sure it is white sugar, not brown.
Image by Helen Musselwhite