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Weekend Links

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It is very grey here in London today so I thought I would brighten the mood by posting an old photo from a past post on hidden London mewses. I just love these camellias with the sunshine popping through! And it makes me feel warmer just looking at it.

I also wanted to introduce a new thing that I hope to start doing at the end of every week and that is just a little round up of what I’ve been up to/have planned for the weekend/cool things I came across this week. So here it goes…

  • It looks like there is still space available for this Saturday’s doughnut master class being held at Bread Ahead Bakery & School (earlier this week I posted about the class I took there). I would definitely want to attend if I had more notice but maybe some of you more flexible folk could go along!
  • We are still settling into our new place and slowly gathering furniture for a few rooms- this is the most space we have ever had and want to thoughtfully acquire things. One place we’ve had luck is at Lassco down by the Maltby Street Market (I’ve got a post planned for this in the future- the St John’s doughnuts are to die for!) so hopefully I can make a stop by this weekend.
  • My younger brother sent me this link of 25 simple green side dishes. There are some great suggestions/recipes in there and I’ve already added some to my roster!
  • I’ve been reading this book and having such a good time learning all sorts of facts and interesting tidbits about London!
  • One thing I love about exploring a new neighborhood is finding new places to eat. We ate here last weekend with some friends and absolutely loved it. Can’t wait to find some other gems in the area.

That’s all for now! I hope you all have a lovely weekend and happy first day of Spring!

Clyde

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Its been quiet over here since the new year and I had not really planned on that but we’ve had lots of exciting changes happening in the Murphy household as of late. To name a few… we moved house and have been settling into our new place and neighbourhood. We are expecting a baby at the end of May! And, just in case we didn’t have enough change going on, we also added another furry member to the family. Everyone, I would like for you to meet Clyde! He is an old english bulldog and has been such a fun addition- he’s even made our almost 13-year-old lab, Bonnie, more puppy-like. These photos are from the first few weeks we had him when he was only about 8 to 10 weeks old. Now he is a little over 4 months and has grown a ton (I’ll be sure to post some more recent photographs of him soon)!

 

I’ve got lots I want to share on here about fun things to do and see in London, more Londoner profiles, stories from around the home and of course stories of our recent travels. Until then, I hope you enjoy these puppy photos and see you back here again soon!

 

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A Look Back

Here’s a visual look back at the stories I’ve shared with you so far this year. I know Four by Three hasn’t been going for an entire year yet but I’ve been shooting for it for much longer than that. Anyway, thanks you much for letting me share these things with you and here’s to even more to come in 2015!

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Thanksgiving

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Ever since we moved to London almost three years ago, we’ve made a point to celebrate Thanksgiving with friends since it’s a bit too far to travel all of the way back to Tennessee for only a few days.The longer we are here I find that more and more stores are stocking those typical American items that are key around this time of year (Crisco, Graham crakers, canned pumpkin for pumpkin pie, cornbread mix, etc) and make the day feel almost like home. This year we had the biggest group we’ve ever had (21 people!) and I think it turned out to be our best gathering yet. I’ll admit it was a bit like a game of Tetris setting up the tables and chairs to fit in our place.

This year’s spread included Turkey, mac n cheese (always a crowd favorite), mashed potatoes, twice baked potato casserole, sweet potato casserole, southern style green beans, roasted veggies (carrots, parsnips and brussel sprouts), cranberry sauce, rolls, apple pie, berry pie, pumpkin cheesecake and fudge cookies. Whew! I wish I had gotten a few shots of my friend Kate’s pies before we dug into them- they looked straight out of a magazine spread from Martha Stewart and tasted even better.

This is definitely one of my favorite holidays and it has been so fun to be able to share it with friends even though we do miss our families dearly. I’m pretty sad it has already come and gone this year, but that just means I’ll need to start planning for next year’s! Below are a few shots I grabbed of the table set up before guests arrived and some polaroids throughout the evening. Enjoy!

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Homemade Pie

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The weather this summer has been amazing in London and because of the beautiful weather, the fruit has been especially good too. My friend Kate makes a delicious pie with a secret family recipe for the crust. So of course I asked her to make one for the blog and she happily obliged! We decided to make one berry pie (using blueberries, blackberries and raspberries) and another where we added in some peaches to the mix. Below is the recipe as well as a few photos of the process. They were both so, so tasty and I am already looking forward to the apple pie she is making for our Thanksgiving celebration.

Pie Filling Ingredients:

7 cups berries/fruit (if mixing in blackberries, use less blackberries than other berries due to tartness)
1 cup sugar
1-1/2 to 2 t lemon juice
4 t instant tapioca
1/2 t cinnamon
2 T butter (optional)

Method:

  • Make pie dough (since I didn’t want to reveal the secret family recipe, Kate suggests the Joy of Cooking pie crust recipe) and put dough in refrigerator to chill while you make the filling
  • Mix sugar, instant tapioca and cinnamon together
  • Put washed berries (or whatever fruit you choose) in a bowl, sprinkle with lemon juice, mix in sugar mixture and let sit for 15 minutes
  • Take dough out of fridge and divide in half
  • Roll out first half and put in pie plate and fill with berries
  • Cut up two tbsp of butter and sprinkle on top (optional)
  • Roll out second half and place on top of filled pie
  • Pinch edges to make crust
  • Sprinkle sugar on top if you like
  • Cut slits into the top of the pie
  • Cover edges of pie with pie cover or aluminum foil to prevent burning
  • Bake for 1/2 hr. take off cover/foil
  • Bake another 20-30 mins until crust looks light brown and juice starts coming through vents

 

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