A Very British Tradition
As much as we enjoy getting out and about, there’s something ever so pleasurable about spending a little quality time in the comfort of our own homes. Be it a quiet Sunday afternoon ahead of a busy week, or a rainy winter evening when you just can’t face leaving the house, sometimes it’s nice to close the door to the outside world, cosy up indoors and enjoy a little ‘me time’. Here are a few of our favourite and quintessentially British pastimes for such occasions…
Nothing beats the aroma of freshly made bread, except maybe tucking into a just-baked loaf with lashings of butter. It might seem daunting if you’ve never made bread before, but there are so many great machines to give you a helping hand, and so many great recipes to choose from that you’ll soon be able to bake with your eyes closed. One of our favourites is Paul Hollywood’s Soda Bread – with a little practice you won’t even need to consult the recipe!
Another enjoyable pastime for the weekend is making jams and chutneys. From chilli jam to eat with strong blue cheese to thick cut marmalade to eat on crusty toast, it’s both relaxing and rewarding. Treat yourself to a proper preserving pan and lots of lovely Kilner jars and labels. As well as enjoying these treats yourself, they also make gorgeous gifts for friends and family. An easy recipe to get started with is Nigella’s Chilli Jam. With only four ingredients this really is a great way to begin your preserving journey. We promise you’ll never look back!
Everyone’s talking about slow cooking – the one-pot solution that creates truly tasty results. On weekday mornings simply pop your ingredients in and set the slow cooker for while you’re out for a mouth-watering meal to come home to. At the weekend, slow cooking is an ideal way to do a Sunday dinner. The slow cooking process makes meat tender and juicy, and of course the aromas will fill the house and make tummies rumble in anticipation of what’s to come. We really like this Heston Blumenthal Slow Cooker, which also makes fluffy rice and stir-free risotto.
Start a collection
One of the things we British do best is collect. As children we were encouraged to collect stamps and coins, displaying them with pride, but there are really no limits as to what makes a great collection. Teapots can make a really unusual and quirky collection and China tea sets are also very popular with collectors. There’s definitely a thrill when you find that one missing piece at a car boot sale or vintage fair. Collections like this will add a unique charm and a personal touch when displayed in your home.
We hope we’ve inspired you with our favourite British hobbies and that they’ll make your quality time at home all the more special. Now after all that baking, preserving, cooking and collecting, make sure you find time to sit back, put your feet up and relax on your sofa. You’ve earned it.