I love special occasions. Reasons to celebrate, take a step out of the normal routine of life and just sit back and enjoy yourself 🙂
Today was my dad’s birthday. Growing up, I can fondly remember all of the wonderful parties my parents threw for me. A disco when I was 13, “themed” home-made birthday cakes to match something that I was doing at that point in my life. I had dinosaur shaped cakes as a kid, elaborately decorated with fondant-dinosaurs. A paint palette shaped cake when I was 18. And my dad once spent several hours with icing pens, drawing me a pointillist-style version of Gustav Klimt’s “The Kiss”.
(To skip straight to the recipe, Click Here! )
How amazing is that?
So I’ve developed a love of going all-out when it comes to celebrations.
Yesterday, seeing as though it was a Sunday, I thought it would be a nice idea to have an early celebration. My partner Lee and his daughter were visiting my parents with me, and I knew that they would be missing his actual birthday, so we threw a birthday-brunch for everyone 🙂 It was such fun.
Later in the afternoon, I threw a Pimms O’clock to carry on the celebration!
I love Pimms. It’s such a summery drink. And just perfect when you want an occasion to feel a little special
(Also, if you serve it with a spoon, it’s a great way to get some of your 5-a-day 😉 Just saying..)
It’s so easy too. Chop up whatever fruit you happen to have to hand, throw it into a jug with some ice. Add in your Pimms, and top up with lemonade. So easy, and yes so rewarding!
My mother likes hers with a few sprigs of mint. But since I’m not a fan of mint, I thought basil would work nicely!
So that everyone could customise their own drinks, I served the pitcher of Pimms with a bowl each of muddled-mint, and muddled-basil with strawberries.
Typically, when we went to sit outside to bask in the sun, the sun decided to go into hiding, and a brisk wind came out to play! But we still sat there, on the decking, looking out over the rolling hills and watching the dogs playing and chasing each other, sipping our Pimms.
Because it doesn’t matter what the weather is like or how much money you spend on a special occasion, what lavish party you throw, or how many people you invite.
All that really matters is that you’re spending time with the people you love. Taking a few moments out of your busy day to do something nice for them, that let’s them know that “Yes, I care. I stopped, and took the time to spend with you”.
Whether you’re making a cake, a special meal, or a pitcher of Pimms 😉
What really counts, is spending time 🙂
For my dad’s birthday meal today, I went all-out Indian.
Home-made Jalfrezzi, Coconut curry, Vegetable Biryanni, Channa Dahl, Rice, Garlic Potatoes, salad, chopped onion and tomato salad, and Naan bread, and a few selection packs of Bahjis, Samosas and Poppadoms.
I made the ultimate food-blogger mistake of forgetting to photograph any of this, but as my mind was preoccupied with my fathers birthday, I won’t beat myself up too much 😉
The entire thing took 2 hours from start to serving, and seeing as though I made enough to serve about 20! I think that’s a pretty good time. I’ll have to write down the Naan bread recipe for you all, as it’s really so easy, and so lovely! (Not to mention, it’s so hard to buy vegan naan’s! So making them at home is wonderful)
My father rather likes Gnomes, so the evening was ended with a mushroom-shaped cake, topped with little gnome biscuits..
Coconut-cream vanilla cake.
It has been a rather lovely day all round 🙂
And now it’s time to go watch a film with my family, and perhaps indulge in another glass of Pimms… ;P
Don’t mind if I do 😉
Good night! <3
By July 1, 2013Published:
I love special occasions. Reasons to celebrate, take a step out of the normal routine of life and just sit back and enjoy yourself …
- 1/2 Apple Diced
- 1 Lime Thinly Sliced
- 1 Lemon Thinly Sliced
- 1 Orange Sliced
- 8-10 strawberries Quatered or sliced
- 1/2 Cup Pimms
- 1 handful Fresh Mint
- 1 handful Fresh Basil (optional)
- 1 tsp Sugar (optional)
- Find a nice, large jug. Finely slice or dice your fruit in whatever way you like. Layer the fruit into your jug, and add a handful of ice. You'll probably end up with some juice on your chopping board - Don't waste this! Pour it into the jug too!
- Add in your 1/2 cup of Pimms. You can choose to let the fruit soak for a bit at this point for extra flavour, but it's optional 🙂 When you're ready, top it up with lemonade, and serve!
- Some may want to drink it as it is! But if you want to try it with basil or mint, it's so easy. Roughly tear your basil or mint into a small bowl, and sprinkle over a pinch of sugar. Using a blunt object (I used the back of a knife. A pestle and mortar would be ideal ) and give it a good bash, until the herbs have begun to break down. I recommend smashing up a strawberry with the basil. It adds such a lovely flavour!
- To serve, simply add a small teaspoon of the herbs into the bottom of your glass, add the Pimms-mixture, and give it a good stir! Then enjoy 🙂
- Skill Level: Easy