It's taken a long time, but Paul is finally getting the knack of culturally-ordained gift-giving occasions. He's always been amazing at random "I saw this and thought you'd like it" gift-giving, but hasn't been a fan of "Thou shalt spend money TODAY" gift-giving.
And I can largely see his point. What is romantic and loving for us isn't red roses and chocolates on February 14. I don't appreciate my mother more on the second Sunday in May. We had to get married so we'd have an anniversary to remember, but we don't commemorate it with gifts.
But not always getting presents for my birthday or Christmas has been irksome. My philosophical approval of sticking it to the man and choosing our own moments for presents sort of runs out on the 12th of September.
This Christmas, however, he came up trumps. He came home, laden with parcels, and scurried up to the spare room, from which I was then barred.
I got a lovely bottle of perfume from Urchin. And from Paul I got an Imperia pasta maker, and a drying rack. Amazing. He didn't even realise that I had that very pasta maker in my Amazon wishlist. It was just his genius.
Sadly, we then had to wait 3 whole days before we could get some 00 flour to play with it! But that time was valuably spent in discussing what our first pasta experiment should be.
We agreed that the best possible use for our very first batch of homemade pasta, would be a pasta pomodoro. Not just any pasta pomodoro of course, but made with the cherry tomato and basil sauce that we made from our home-grown tomatoes and herbs, and bottled in the summer.
And the icing on the cake? Topping it with grated home-made cheddar, from my July Forging Fromage challenge. Home-made pasta (gorgeously silky, delectable and SO easy!). Home-grown and made sauce (perfect balance of acid and sweet, lovely herbal flavour from the basil). Home-made cheese (who would have thought you could make a proper grating cheese at home?!). This may be the proudest moment of my foody life so far.
I think it is safe to say that there will be a LOT of pasta posts this year!