Christmas 2021:Midwinter fire

I’d hoped to spend the evening at a village gathering, round a fire pit, drinking gluwein and singing Christmas carols but it didn’t work out. So I made my own fire to celebrate the solstice and the return of light in the form of a quick batch of delicious chilli jam.
A kilo of preserving sugar, the better part of a couple of bottles of cider vinegar, a dozen red chillies and a couple of pointy red peppers deseeded and chopped finely put on a rolling boil for 10 minutes and poured into sterilised jars when cool, setting and the scarlet flecks are evenly distributed and suspended in the jam.

So easy and uber delicious.

Creativity rules in the #Christmaskitchen

Chilli jam for Christmas hampers
Chilli jam for Christmas hampers

Those of you who hang around here a lot will know how I bemoan the lack of creativity afforded to teachers. Where league tables, exam performance, measurable improvements and accountability rule, a creative approach to education is out of the window. And yet the very skills and characteristics that are developed when children are allowed to be creative in their learning, solve problems, design and make and work together to complete a project are the very skills which employers want.

Personally, unless I have spent some time outdoors every day and have made something – or at least made progress in a creative project then I’m slightly out of kilter.

The run-up to Christmas is the perfect time for a little of the creative spirit and so I will be tweeting and facebooking my #Christmaskitchen exploits. Nothing is difficult and all can be achieved with and by children with differing amounts of support. Make gifts; fill up your store cupboard with seasonal treats; experiment; have fun.

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