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I spent much of this weekend eating. When I wasn’t eating, I was looking forward to my next meal.

The reason for all this was my beloved Mother-in-Law. It was her birthday this weekend (a special one) so off we trotted to Norfolk, along with a double layered coffee cake slathered in coffee buttercream. I can’t show you a picture of it, because I forgot to take one. I was too excited that it hadn’t risen wonkily, even though when I put it in I was all distracted by the back door man planing away.  That’s not a euphanism, it was getting terribly sticky.  The door, not the cake.

And lo, the cake was edible and scrumptious.

Previously, my life has been short on cake. No more shall this continue. I will overcome! I will bake! I will become Martha Stewart (and that reminds me, I need to find a felt cushion pattern. Don’t let me forget).

So we had a wonderful Saturday in Norfolk, and all thoroughly enjoyed ourselves, and had a bracing walk on the seafront to earn cake, and a sneaky macaroon, and then, Sunday arrived.

Oh, it was a goodie. Birthday day itself, and off we went to Norwich, where we wandered about in the winter sunshine, ambled down Elm Hill, pottered around Cathedral Close, resisted the shops, and slowly worked our way towards Jamie’s.

I want this picture, by the way. It was on the stairs, and only added to our enjoyment of the whole experience.  I love that Delia is smoking a sneaky faaaaaag and Jamie is looking revolted at the giant ooze of mustard coming his way. It’s rather fun.

Delia & Jamie

And then we enjoyed a positive cornucopia of delights, served with a smile. If I won the lottery, I’d want to have a month learning to cook with Jamie. Honestly, I’ve loved him since the day he first bounced onto our screens, and can’t think of anything more fun than a few days absorbing his attitude to food.

See? This is mackerel and ricotta bruschetta, topped with beet salad.Smoked mackerel bruschetta

And I was uber good, and even shared one of my smoked mozzarella & porcini arancini balls.

Risotto balls

Because I’m nosy (you’d never have guessed) we were really rather intrigued when the next door table were given two tins of tomatoes. And then turned green with envy a few minutes later when a wooden ‘plank’ arrived and was balanced on the top of the tins – rammed with cured meats, pickles, antipasti and cheeses. It looked divine.

And the main courses were even better, if such a thing were possible. The birthday girl had the special, belly pork stuffed with pistachios, sun dried tomatoes, herbs and various other goodies.


Le Pomme had rabbit ragu. And I had the fresh pasta with porcini and pancetta, in a mascarpone sauce. I thought I’d died and gone to heaven.

Porcini & Pancetta Pasta

To prove I hadn’t, we all had ice cream and sorbet for dessert.

Ice cream & sorbet

Then we rolled home. I could eat everything on the menu there, frankly. And it’s not often I say that. I was even too full for an afternoon slice of birthday cake, so we brought ours home with us and had it with a cuppa on our return.

Weekend heaven.