Hi there, my name is Jean and welcome to my world.
Here is a somewhat recent picture of my family. It is a very squiggly bunch and we only tend to get a picture like this once a year. Will post a new one soon.
Why blog? Easy, I don’t get out much these days. Between having young kids, challenging weather, schedules and meals to maintain, it is either blog or talk to cats – and I am allergic to cats. That said, I am having a great adventure in this breathtaking world and I just have to share it with someone.
Over the years I have worked in catering, as a personal chef and in new menu development for retail cafes (i.e. museums…which I looooved) but my formal training is in History and Architectural Conservation. If I had a wish for this blog it would be to finally organise the cookbooks I have had kicking around in my head for over eight years. Now that my kids aren’t quite as little, I wish to retrieve a few creative sensibilities from the dusty shelf of sleep deprivation and try to complete a sentence or two of thoughtful observation.
In addition to cooking & history I will hunt out some of the fabulous Artists & Artisans based in Scotland. Some of them even reside in my backyard.
Family & Lifestyle will document my efforts to live, raise kids and work in a different country. You would be amazed at how the simplest tasks can become huge and often hysterical challenges when you are sleep deprived and culturally out of sync.
I intend to spend the most time in the Food & Festivals section as this is the most misunderstood and spectacularly bizarre arena of this country. Whenever one picks up an article or book on Scottish cuisine it is often so traditional as to not be very accessible to the modern foodie (sheep’s head soup – really?), or it is so heavily weighted to haggis and shortbread that it is really just a tourist pamphlet. Scots eat the same as everyone else from haute cuisine and ethnic restaurants to home cooking and the occasional junk food splurge. Hopefully, this can add a bit more dimension to the picture.
I will also be posting recipes that experiment with ingredients readily available to me now. The natural larder of Scotland is an amazing array of fish, shellfish, game, veg, berries & herbs. Many of these dishes (or experiments) will be inspired by the cultural events that I attend, or just a quick and easy solution for bringing family and friends together.
The areas of Health & Wellness have been of growing interest for the past few years. It started as I became a mother and wanted to make the best choices for my family, and grew as those kids displayed serious leaning toward eczema, skin & food allergies – the joys. Watch this space for helpful hints, fun facts and kooky concepts like my adventures in barefoot running!
History & Travel will be about moving from point A to point B in Scotland. Seriously, you can’t swing a cat around here without hitting an area of great cultural and historical significance. It is beautiful though….
Lastly, there is Jeantopia, the place where anything and everything is possible. Buckle up and enjoy the ride!