Yesterday morning was miserable. It was wet and stormy, I hadn’t slept well and I woke up with a nasty sore throat. I was lying in bed, feeling sorry for myself (I had to cook dinner for nine last night) when the Boyfriend said “there’s a parcel here for you!” A parcel in the post is never something to be sniffed at, especially when I had a suspicion that it was sent from America by my Mail Blogging partner, Deborah. Before I knew it, I was out of bed and tearing open the wrapping to receive a veritable avalanche of goodies! And that was only the start. When I checked the proper post (as opposed to the parcel post) later I found a card telling me that there was another parcel to be collected at the post office. This morning, the third – and final – parcel was delivered, along with a lecture from the postman as the bottle of porter (yes, porter! Alaskan Smoked Porter, actually) it contained fell out as he took it out of his sack. He was not impressed – apparently the New Zealand post office take a dim view of bottles of alcohol falling out of parcels. Thankfully it survived, although I don’t think I’ll be opening it for a while. Mr Postman said it had survived a lot and it should be put on display.
Thank you SO much Deborah – your parcels made me almost forget about the sore throat and cooking dinner was much easier when I could bribe myself with a few of the luscious Lemon Caramels made by the Little Flower Candy Co. I think they’ll be accompanying the Boyfriend and myself to the cinema this evening.
When I’m at home during the afternoon I have a little coffee ritual – temping work is slow at the moment. I make a cafetiere (a present from the Boyfriend’s step-grandmother) of coffee, lay out the milk jug and sugar bowl (presents from my visiting mother and aunt) and sit in an old-fashioned low armchair (given to us by the Boyfriend’s parents) with a pile of cookbooks and some sweet bites – the perfect time to do some taste tests on Deborah’s package.My first choice were the beautifully packaged Valerie Chocolates. This quintet of two almond and two almond fleur de sel toffees, enrobed in dark chocolate, won my heart immediately. Both the almond fleur de sel toffees disappeared promptly – the combination of sweet and salt, crunch and softness being exactly what I adore. That set a trend, as I opened the Peanut Butter Filled Pretzels – another salty, crunchy bite sized treat – and accompanied those with little nibbles from the bar of Five Star Fruit & Nut Chocolate. Did I mention that the fruit and nuts are praline, pecans and cherries? So good that I had to have even more chocolate and so I rounded my decadent coffee afternoon off with some pieces of the richly intense Chocovic Guaranda Chocolate.And that’s just for starters. There’s a bar of Scharffen Berger mocha chocolate to try tomorrow, some Altoids Apple Sours (something to clear the palate after those Lemon Caramels at the cinema, perhaps?), a raw food cocoa mole LaraBar, some maple organic granules, a pack of Pica Limon sachets (Deborah recommends them sprinkled over corn on the cob, mango or an apple with a squeeze of lime juice) and even a bag of Purple Corn Flour Mix which I’m going to have fun using. All that, plus reading material too – a recipe for Old Fashioned Oatmeal Cookies, a little Whole Foods Market cookbook and a copy of the Food Arts magazine.Thanks again to Deborah for all the trouble that she went to – it truly was an amazing series of packages to receive! – and to Samantha for hosting this round of Blogging by Mail (and for letting a late entrant get involved!).