Today is my last day of slobbing as tomorrow there will be 2 witnesses. I am definitely going to have to clean up my act as I have become embarrassingly lazy. Which is all well and good when it is just me but as you can see from the image below appearances have always mattered to me and I don’t want to set a bad example to my son.
So, this morning was set aside to clean the house leaving me the afternoon for my last bit of slobbing. I have to admit it I am one proud Roma. Anthea Turner has nothing on me (A sort of British Martha Stewart) My house is now immaculate you could eat off my floors – which I did this morning when I dropped my toast fortunately buttered side up, on the floor. Certainly, could not have done that before. The floors only got washed every 2 weeks when the cleaner arrived. Talking of cleaners, I don’t think I will be needing one anymore. I can do this. I have become a ‘can do’ person. I can deal with the mice that Mo brings in, I can deal with bumble bees, I can sort out locks and I even helped a poor little spider – note the emphasis here is on little – get out of the bath.
It might be difficult though to fire the cleaner. Despite being the world’s worst cleaner, she is a lovely loyal woman, a Kosovan refugee who spent 2 years in a camp before being allowed into the UK. She has been burgled in her small council flat 3 times and last year her husband had a major heart attack. How can I possibly fire someone who has been through all that? No, the cleaner has to stay.
When I was little my mother used to have a cleaning lady once a week called Elizabeth. A little old lady with a grey bun. Funny how these images stay with you. Mum used to say, “come on kids hurry up we need to clean up before Elizabeth arrives.” We could never understand why you would need to clean before a cleaner came. But I did exactly the same and my children were also bewildered by this. I guess you have to have a cleaner to understand.
It’s nearing the end of Passover and for many Jews from all levels of observance the Matza Brie debate continues. The Yiddish translation for Brie is fried which aptly describes the dish. It is a kind of Jewish equivalent to breakfast cereal a Hebraic French toast. It originated among central European Jews and is matzo fried with eggs into a kind of frittata or scramble, depending on how you cook the dish. Everyone has his or her own favourite recipe. It can be served savoury, with herbs, onions, smoked salmon or other inclusions; or sweet, topped with jam or syrup or cinnamon.
The big question is “to soak or not to soak.” (I can hear many of you saying what is she talking about) For centuries people have debated on the best way to make this staple Passover dish. My father would soak it in water then mix it with egg. My mother’s beady eyes watching him intently just in case he forgot to take out the white bits attached to the yolk. (She wrongly believed they were the umbilical cord and thus not kosher they were however called chalaza and the function was to hold the yolk in place.) My father invariably would not take them out if mum wasn’t watching. And who would blame him as they are little devils to extricate. It was a case of crack the eggs and immediately start whisking before mum arrived on the scene. “Did you take out the whites,” she would say accusingly, “Of course answered my father.” “Where are they,” she would ask,” and he would reply that they had been put down the sink. We all knew he was telling little porkies. Dad was a great porky teller. And I had been at the end of these porkies many a time. “Yes,” he would say “I have got rid of that great big spider in your bedroom.” Only to see it a few hours later crawling up my wall.
Yes, I have digressed again. My grandmother would soak the matza in milk and then mix it with egg. I sprinkle it with water — so it is not too soggy, dip it in egg then fry it in butter and sprinkle on top a mixture of cinnamon and sugar. It is delicious and incredibly moorish. Please do send me in your own Matza Brie recipes.
I am only thinking about this because when Toby gets home tomorrow it will probably be the first thing he asks for. So, I am ready for them. There are bluebells from the garden in their room, easter eggs on their pillows and clean ironed sheets on their bed – have I mentioned what a good ironer I am? — and I have ordered an organic chicken so I can make a roast dinner.
I am practically perfect in every way.
“Let’s be careful out there”