It’s been a long hard winter. I broke my ankle three days after my birthday in January which made an isolated and difficult lockdown that bit harder. I had to wear an airboot day and night, even in bed. After eight weeks it came off but I’d forgotten how to walk, which sounds mad doesn’t it?
Two weeks later, I can walk up and down stairs again, but I had to think, to retrain my mind, to purposely say to myself even out loud ‘heel then toe’ as I had got into the habit of limping and compensating.
During this period I had my first jab, the Oxford Astrazeneca one. I felt rather ill for a week afterwards, aches, pains, headaches. It felt like the worst most prolonged hangover. My arm grew red and swollen which lasted for three weeks. I’m not sure if I felt so bad because I’d already had Covid without knowing it, or because my immune system is working incredibly well. Hopefully I will have my second vaccine in a couple of weeks.
This last week, just before Easter, lockdown is starting to ease. On Monday I went for my first walk in months through Regents Park. The sun was out. People were having outdoor picnics everywhere. We are allowed to meet in groups of six, but some groups were larger. Italy and France have gone back into lockdown while we in the UK are easing up. From April 12th we can go to pubs and restaurants outdoors.
But my daughter and her boyfriend have moved upstairs, their first home, and I’ve been making them lunch every day, often salads, while the builders make it habitable. Actually it’s beautiful and they’ve used a mix of bargains from Facebook Marketplace and new purchases. I liked making them lunch every day, I felt useful again. I really need more work. Living on my own with very little work is increasingly difficult for my mental health, never mind everything else. As a self-employed person I’ve had little support from the government.
Here is a cheery Easter recipe. Spring is here. The daffodils I naturalised in my lawn last November have all sprung up, swaying like tiny yellow windmills. It can only get better.
Mini filled Easter eggs
- 300 g good quality chocolate dark
For the fillings:
- 300 g good quality chocolate for filling: milk, white, or flavoured
- 50 g coconut oil
- 3 tbsp pistachio cream
- 3 tbsp salted caramel
- First polish your moulds with a lint-free cloth. This helps give a shine to the chocolate.
- Melt a small quantity of the chocolate you will be using for the shells in a microwave, 30 seconds only.
- Brush the shell chocolate into the moulds. Try not to go over the edges (wipe these) so you get a crisp line. Put in the fridge for 5 minutes or so.
- Melt the chocolate you will be using for the filling in a microwave. Or use pistachio cream, salted caramel or add chopped nuts. If you wish, you end up with lots of little bowls of different flavours.
- Add a teaspoon of coconut oil to each bowl of the chocolate filling (but not the pistachio cream or salted caramel)
- Remove the moulds from the fridge and using a teaspoon fill the mini egg moulds with the flavours. Fill to the top but no further. Put in the fridge. Let chill for half an hour.
- Remove from the fridge and pop the egg halves out from the moulds.
- Using a heated baking tray turned upside down, carefully press the bottom of each half of the chocolate eggs then stick the two halves together.