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This super simple tray-roast breakfast is what we had this morning, it's super flavourful and you can literally just prep a few items, turn the oven on, set a timer and wait for breakfast to be ready! This is the perfect meal for a day of get up and go (like when on vacation) or when hosting house guests, lots of filling food to fill hungry tummies with minimal prep and cleanup!


Ingredients

from The Weekend Cookbook


Pack of breakfast sausages

8 portobello mushrooms (I used the large grilling heads to I only used 3)

12 medium vine tomatoes

2 large sprigs of thyme

1 tbsp balsamic vinegar

2 tbsp olive oil


Optional Sides


8 eggs any style (or more depending on the crowd)

Several slices of toast


Preheat the oven to 400. Place the sausages on a large sheet pan lined with parchment paper and roast for 15 minutes (larger sausages may require an additional 10 minutes). Turn the sausages and add the mushrooms and tomatoes to the same pan. Tuck the thyme under the veggies and drizzle them with olive oil and balsamic.


Return the pan to the oven and roast for about 15-20 more minutes until everything is golden and done. Meanwhile cook the eggs and prepare the toast. Serve the sausage and veggies on the sheet pan and let everyone help themselves!


With spring in full swing now I thought I would share some gardening book selections with you, maybe you want to use them for this spring's plantings or perhaps you will want to read up on them this spring and summer to gather ideas for next spring. I've been doing a lot of dreaming about gardens and yard schemes in my mind lately for our country house and I'm sure that there are many others out there doing the same. Whether it be for a new home or a current home or just dreaming about a "some day" project, if you enjoy beautiful flowers, sprawling trees, meandering paths, growing your own bounty, and hedges spilling over with leafy beauties, you'll likely love these books too. Our big dream/plan is to over time (years) slowly layer in outdoor spaces, planting a large fenced in garden space, having an orchard of many fruits and edging the entire land with rows of greenery. I'm looking forward to gaining some inspiration and information on what to plant but also how to create and nurture a seasonally beautiful and functional space. One that feels natural, not too sculpted or pruned.

I'm going to start off the list with this brand new book set to come out in September about Bunny Mellon's gardens. I'm incredibly excited about this book, I have pre-ordered mine along with the next book listed below and I'm looking forward to settling in with them soon! Bunny is a legendary style icon of her era and beyond, her earthy, natural approach to gardening is one I adore. I'm currenty reading the book "Bunny Mellon, The Life of an American Style Legend" (a Christmas gift form my parents) and I am now hooked, it's a great book and if you are interested in learning more about Bunny's life and her work I highly recommend it.

I'm anticipating the arrival of this book in the mail soon, another amazing one I can imagine of all of Bunny's gorgeous garden masterpieces.

I own this book and it is an AMAZING resource if you are looking to plant and grow your own vegetable garden.

Also own this one, an amazing resource if you wish to grow herbs-we plan to grow lots once we move to the country, we love to cook with them and found drying our fresh ones that we grew last year at the end of the summer a great way to enjoy them throughout the year.

Who doesn't love a great English garden, let's be honest, England is home to some incredibly stunning plots filled with lush plants, trees and flowers.

While we have never been to the Cotswolds, I have pored over the many picturesque photos of many Instagram and blog accounts and it looks just dreamy, I'm sure this book is of equal merit when it comes to gardens of the area.

This one is on my whish list.

Here is the snippet from Amazon-I love it, it sounds like it's full of great tips.


"Brandywine Cottage is David Culp's beloved two-acre Pennsylvania garden where he mastered the design technique of layering—interplanting many different species in the same area so that as one plant passes its peak, another takes over. The result is a nonstop parade of color that begins with a tapestry of heirloom daffodils and hellebores in spring and ends with a jewel-like blend of Asian wildflowers at the onset of winter.


The Layered Garden shows you how to recreate Culp's majestic display. It starts with a basic lesson in layering—how to choose the correct plants by understanding how they grow and change throughout the seasons, how to design a layered garden, and how to maintain it. To illustrate how layering works, Culp takes you on a personal tour through each part of his celebrated garden: the woodland garden, the perennial border, the kitchen garden, the shrubbery, and the walled garden. The book culminates with a chapter dedicated to signature plants for all four seasons."


And another one on my wish list as well. The same author as the book listed above, this book breaks down the gardening seasons at Brandywine Cottage and provides insight and tips on grounds keeping (as well as glimpses of what looks like phenomenal property Brandywine Cottage which David owns). Brandywine Cottage has been featured in magazines including numerous times in Martha Stewart Living.





I've never made homemade lemon curd prior, actually, I don't' think that I have ever even had it period before making this batch. It's one of those things I had often times looked at on grocery store shelves, picked up and nearly bought but never actually did. So when I came across this recipe I knew it was something that I needed to try, lemon is such a complementary flavour, especially this time of year and this curd requires no stove to make-all of the cooking is done in the microwave, yes the microwave!


The curd is super versatile and can be enjoyed drizzled on top of vanilla ice cream, smothered on a slice of toast, mixed in a drink of choice or as we did here, made into a mousse (just to name a few ideas), it’s basically the perfect spring or summer add-on or add-in. The options for it's use really are endless.


Homemade Lemon Curd

From Barefeet in The Kitchen


Ingredients


1/2 cup butter

1 1/4 cups sugar

3 eggs

1 egg yolk

1 cup fresh lemon juice

zest from 3 large lemons (about 1/4 cup fresh lemon zest)



Melt butter in a small dish in the microwave. Whisk the sugar and eggs together in a medium size glass bowl. Add lemon juice and zest, whisk again. Slowly add the butter and whisk once more until smooth.


Microwave at 50% power for 1 minute (I just used full power). Remove from the microwave and stir. Microwave an additional minute at full power and stir again. Repeat the process, microwaving an additional 2-3 minutes, stirring after each minute. When the mixture is thick enough to coat a spoon, remove from the microwave and pour through a fine strainer to remove any flecks of zest (I opted to leave the zest in as I like the texture and added flavour).


The curd will thicken in consistency as it cools. Pour into a dish or jar with a lid and store in the refrigerator for up to 3 weeks.


*To make lemon mousse, I whipped 1 cup of heavy cream with 1/4 tsp vanilla in the bowl of an electric mixer until stiff peaks formed. Then I folded the whipped cream into 1 cup of lemon curd that was freshly cooled but still slightly runny (I made the mousse right after making the curd). If you make the mouse with curd that has been chilled already, you may need to microwave it just a bit to loosen it up a little in order to incorporate it with the whipped cream. Be sure that the curd is not “warm” was though as it will melt the whip cream and cause it to deflate. This makes about 4 medium sized servings. I then garnished each serving with fresh blueberries and mint in an arrangement to look like little berry sprigs and zested more fresh lemon over everything.




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