It seems ages ago now, but New Year's Eve passed in a cheerful and relaxing way in our house. We cooked up a lovely stew from mushroom and pearl barley (thanks to Nigel Slater's Kitchen Diaries vol.2!), eaten with a little crusty roll I baked in a hurry (and therefore wasn't perfect, but hey!), and a bottle of the perennial favourite wine of our household, Chateauneuf-du-Pape.
I baked a quick apple cake, which went from nought to oven in less than 15 minutes thanks to the wonders of the Magimix, and Mark delved into the Nigellissima book and came out with 'Tiramisini' - a sort of rudimentary tiramisu and utterly delicious.
We watched On Her Majesty's Secret Service and then Jools Holland, and danced along to perennial favourite band of our household, Dexy's Midnight Runners.
Back at work, I was scoffing my leftover mushroom stew with some colleagues, who had salads from our little office cafe. One commented that it had been some time since she had seen a salad and I had to agree. And all of a sudden I was craving fresh, simple food.
I came home that night and tossed quinoa, spinach, beetroot and grated carrot in a bowl with a bit of lemon juice, honey, olive oil and grated manchego. We ate it with great big tuna steaks, just slightly seared so they were deep red and rich in the middle. A healthier start to 2013.