We’re moving most of our possessions out of our apartment into storage tomorrow (we hand over the keys next friday) so life round here has become pretty hectic.
Whilst this isn’t the first place Dan and I have lived in together, that was a creaky 400 year old flat above a hairdressers, with wonky floors and windows that didn’t fully shut. I consider our current place our first real home.
It was our kismet apartment. I found it wistfully searching local properties one bored lunch hour, wishing we could move out of our cold, creepy flat in the wrong part of town. I emailed the details over to Dan, which I was in the habit of doing. It was sent with the usual longing message, expressing how much I wanted to live just about anywhere else, and how I wished our circumstances were different so we could move (Dan had recently graduated and was still searching for a job).
That day was different. Within minutes of emailing, I received a text back saying we should book an appointment to view it. Dan had just got off the phone accepting a job offer, which I don’t think either of us realised would turn out to be his dream career. We couldn’t wait to close the student chapter (Dan’s seven year stint at university meant that he graduated a few years after me) and start the next stage of our lives.
We fell in love with the place as soon as we walked in, and both literally sprinted to the agents to make sure we beat the couple viewing it next. It was (well still is) bright white like a blank canvas, with so much light, and I could not wait to start decorating it.
Now it’s three years later, Dan’s not-a-graduate-training position – the be all and end all of most graduates – turned into his perfect job, and I took a friends advice and focussed my photography on food. It’s not been completely without flaws, I guess few places are. But it was ours, and I loved it. Maybe this is tinted with the haziness of retrospect but I think this may have been my favourite chapter yet.
We didn’t really celebrate pancake day properly (even though it is by far my favourite spring occasion) at the old flat as there was only about 30 minutes between me coming home from my job and Dan going off to his. Celebrating it will always be tied to this place.
I’m not sure if we will be making pancakes on Shrove Tuesday this year, so I whipped up a couple of batches a couple of weeks ago to make sure I got my fix. Savoury pancakes growing up were always filled with Country French Chicken Tonight. I was planning on working on a recipe for that, but whilst out shopping I couldn’t pass the gorgeous, and currently in season leeks.
Fried in butter until soft and sweet, they taste delicious next to salty cheese. The crunch of the roast potatoes adds a surprisingly welcomed texture compared with the other soft fillings, and makes the dish a little more substantial on these chilly nights. You don’t want to add much oil when cooking them as this dish can quickly turn greasy from the melted cheese and buttery leaks.
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Leek, Rosemary Roasted Potatoes and Gorgonzola Pancakes
1 batch of pancakes this makes 6-8 depending on the size of your pan
1 knob of butter
200g new potatoes chopped into 2cm by 2cm (approx) chunks
1 tbsp olive oil
1 tbsp dried rosemary
Preheat the oven to 200C, put the potatoes on a baking tray with the oil and herbs and give a good shake to cover the potatoes evenly.
Bake in the oven for 20-30 minutes until golden brown and soft all the way through.
Finely slice the leeks and then give a good wash in a sieve, as this makes sure that any gritty dirt that is sandwiched between the layers is cleaned away.
Gently fry in butter for 2 minutes until soft and sweet.
Assemble the toppings on the pancake and then tear the cheese over the top.
Roll and serve.