Monday 30 November 2020

Advent At Home #1 - Hope

 It feels very strange this year - normally I make sure all my 'home' preparations are done before Dec 1st - cake made and iced, cards written, ready to post, decorations up by the beginning of Advent, and presents sorted and wrapped. Because Bob is Pastor of a lively, busy church, our Advent is always full of Carol Services, Christmas Productions, the local Tree Festival and other Community events, and various festive meals and church social events to organise and/or attend. And the great preChristmas Open House - every year since 1986.

But this events, excepted online [and much of it prerecorded] no post-Christmas family get together at Cornerstones - the girls, their blokes, my bro and family [and this year, two grandchildren]... Everything feels pared back, slower, quieter. For many people there is sadness because of all they cannot do, for the loved ones they cannot meet and hug. There is anxiety about the days ahead - are things going to get worse not better? How long must we go on like this? Will it be a 'proper' Christmas? 

Tinsel, turkey, mistletoe kisses, family trips to the panto, even Christingles and school nativity plays... lovely though these things are, Christmas will still be Christmas even if they don't happen this year. I believe the message of the angels wasn't an ephemeral Ho Ho Ho! but an everlasting Hope Hope Hope! 

Sunday 29 November 2020

The Advent[ure] Begins

Sunday worship from United Church Ferndown available from 7.30am here.

Look out for the Advent thoughts too [see sidebar links]

Saturday 28 November 2020

Oojamaflip Or Kitchamajig?

George's Triangle is all done, and Hermes is delivering it to Manchester. Thank you to the nice chap in Halfords who gave me a strong cardboard bicycle box for packing. I was able to tuck some of the other family Christmas gifts in the spaces. 

But now Bob is short of a project. Like me, he appreciates having something to work on, as a relaxation. He mended and repainted the handle on one of his hammers. "Oooh! can you do something about this, it is looking rather tired". I said, handing him one of my kitchen utensils. 

It was a wedding present - so that makes well over 40 years old. It was a gift from Helen. She was a young teenager in my Sunday Bible Study Group. Her elder sister was one of my bridesmaids, and our links with the family went right back to the mid 1960s. The family gave us a lovely Le Creuset Casserole [still in use] but Helen insisted on buying us her own gift from her pocket money. They had one of these in their kitchen, and she felt it would be a Very Useful Gadget, and so it has been. Bob has indeed refurbished the item.

"Thank you, the oojamaflip looks much better now." I said when he presented me with it. "What did you call it?" he said "Ooojamaflip - I'm sure that's what Helen always called theirs" I said.

But then I began to doubt myself, so I went and checked it up. I was wrong - it is a Kitchamajig. This was the actual name under which it was marketed in the USA and you can read all about the company hereThe earlier models even had the name and suggested uses engraved on the front - 

  1. mashing potatoes
  2. straining food
  3. beating eggs
  4. serving food

In this country, the Kitchamajig was produced as part of the Prestige Skyline range - and from the 1950s-1970s, almost every couple received some sort of Prestige Utensil among their wedding gifts. If you look on Etsy and eBay, you will find that people are trying to sell them at ridiculous prices. 

I may be decluttering, but this is is a cleverly designed item - and it meets William Morris' rule. This one is staying!

Do you have one of these?  Is there another 'retro' bit of kitchen kit you use regularly?

Friday 27 November 2020

Time And Motion

Two of my friends made the decision at the start of the first lockdown in March that they would try to come out of it "fitter not fatter". They've been very disciplined about taking daily walks, and told me on Wednesday that they'd just both clocked up 1000 miles. I've been humming that Proclaimers song ever since! I'm really impressed. 

I know that 10,000 steps a day equates to around 5 miles. Very occasionally I do 20,000, but mostly, if I don't actually go out for a walk, my usual daily step count is nearer 7000. But for the last fortnight I cannot give you any data. My Fitbit has gone wrong. 

It won't charge, it won't synch with my phone. I contacted the helpline on 15th November. The chap said it was probably the charger able, and he would send a new one. I left the Fitbit on the shelf, and strapped on my old Swatch. I like to have time on my hands. 

On 25th November a package arrived. No cable, just a new strap - for a different model. 

I picked up the Fitbit and went to contact them again. At which point I noticed that it said I'd walked 114 steps on Saturday, 164 on Sunday, and 67 on Monday! Ridiculous, the gadget had not been on my wrist, but stationary.  The guy apologised about the strap, told me to keep it [?] and said he would "expedite a new charging cable to me". Only when I had they, would they be able to discuss the charging/synching problems, he said

On 26th November a package arrived. No cable, just a new strap - for a different model. 

If I do this every day for a fortnight, can I then ring them and say "Please exchange these 14 new and unopened straps for a Fitbit" do you think?

Please let me know if you want a Large Gemini Strap [or 2] in Charcoal Grey

Meanwhile, I'm quite enjoying having an old style analogue wristwatch again. It has a second hand, and it ticks!

Thursday 26 November 2020

Getting Christmas All Stitched Up

Whilst the sewing stuff was taking over the dining room last week for a bear and a dress, I did a few Christmassy items as well. 

The embroidery machine produced a  bib for my new niece, and a couple of facecloths for Christmas gifts [this is an old picture- I wrapped up this month's work before I took a picture!]

Then I decided we needed some festive facemasks. I used the black mask [Bob bought it from Wilko in the summer] as a template, and made four masks from Christmassy fabric in the stash. The inside is heavy t-shirt cotton - I find that more comfortable next to my skin than the patchwork cottons.

My memory bears always have a backpack with a label inside naming the deceased, and the recipient. At Bob's suggestion, I used the cute llama print which never got used in the bear itself to line the bag. 

This meant my box of embroidery threads, and the box of Aida scraps was out. I decided to make a 2020 decoration for the tree. I did front, with the year - then on the back, a note of George's date of birth, and the fact that I'd spent the summer teaching Rosie. Then I decided Liz and Steph ought to have one each for their trees. I've already made a First Christmas decoration for George.

These are really quite small, about 5cm in diameter. I did the two x-stitch designs and sewed then onto their circles. The red circle is felt, with a green bias binding edge. The green Christmas fabric is pulled tight over a card disc. Finally I oversewed the two sides together, tucking  little bit of wadding behind the felt to give some depth.

Finally a quick reminder that Kirstie is back on Channel 4. She's already done a quick&easy crafts programme.

Her new series start on Monday 30th and is every weekday for two weeks. This year it was filmed in October under covid19 restrictions, in a large, cold marquee, in Devon. I know this because my good friend Alison is one of the demonstrators! Alison said the production team found heaters and hot water bottles to keep people warm in the tent!

Alison's a professional in parchment and papercraft [check out her website]and I'm confident she'll produce something brilliant. It will be good to see what other experts Kirstie has - I'm glad she produces a variety of crafters [even if 95% of the time, she seems to leave them to finish her item for her!]
Two boxes of spare decorations and another full of used-once gift bags went to CAP this week, as my friend is preparing gift hampers. I shall try and put some decorations up over the coming weekend. 


Wednesday 25 November 2020

Cutting The Mustard

 Allegedly, the mustard crops in East Anglia grew 6 feet high, and had to be scythed. If the blades were not sharp enough, then they wouldn't cut the mustard. I'm not sure if this is really the origin of the phrase. Now it means to succeed, to come up to expectations.

I bought a dress pattern in April 2017 with some birthday money. I bought the mustard fabric in August 2018 on Norwich Market. I finally 'cut the mustard'  this summer, when I was 'in exile' in Norfolk.  And I sewed up the dress and finished it on Thursday 19th November 2020.

I am rather pleased with the finished result, it really does come up to expectations. And I love the pockets. Tilly&the Buttons patterns are well written, easy to follow and the website has lots of hints and tips.

Tuesday 24 November 2020

Just Because You Can...

 ...It Doesn't Mean you SHOULD

I mean, those pancakes would probably have tasted just as good without the banana skins, as would Nigella's Curry. Putting the skins in the foodwaste bin or on the compost heap means they are still used up.

Bob had some cheese for his birthday. He carefully peeled off the wax coating, and enjoyed the cheese with crackers. But he said it was a shame nothing could be done with the wax. We discussed using it for waxwraps. It it obviously food-safe quality. Perhaps if I grated it, I could iron it onto a cotton square. It didn't want to grate. I left it 
in the freezer overnight, then put the hardened pieces in the processor. The ramekin of granules sat on the side in the kitchen for a week. Then I noticed a couple had escaped and stained my teatowel. I wasn't sure a waxwrap which might leave red stains on food was a good idea. Some research suggested that this is paraffin wax, which may take centuries to degrade and should not go into the compost heap or food waste bin. I threw the stuff away in the regular bin. [Babybel red coating is edible, apparently. Ugh!]
The "I can, but should I?" question came up again when one of my pastry cutters broke. A new one would not be expensive, and I can afford it - but is it needed? I have dozens of cutters of different shapes and sizes, and I don't think my cooking will suffer from the loss of this one. No, it won't be replaced.
Zero Waste is a good thing to aim for - but if you can only stop something going straight to food waste by adding a lot of other ingredients perhaps you should reconsider
Having a variety of household gadgets may appear a good idea, and many items can be bought very cheaply - but that doesn't mean you should fill your drawers with bits of kits only used once in a blue moon. 
By the way, have you watched BakeOff? [no spoilers ahead] We haven't been following it very closely, but last Wednesday decided to watch Tuesday's semifinal on CatchUp. This was rather spoiled because in the advert break, there was a trailer for next week's final - showing the three finalists - so we knew who was going to get knocked out, even before we saw the Showstopper Round.
I was a little annoyed that some contestants made cube cakes in silicon moulds - which they then totally  destroyed by cutting them up in order to release the cakes. What an appalling waste!
I will not say much more about the semi finals, I don't want to give anything away. Some fans were clearly annoyed by the choice of departing contestant in the semifinals. "This is the biggest scandal in this country for sixty years!" [have they not heard of Profumo, or Tony Blair's Dodgy Dossier?] "I am never watching GBBO again"...and previously, when poor Peter mentioned he didn't like cheese, some people felt that was enough for someone to be disqualfied altogether. It's just a TV programme, folks!


Monday 23 November 2020

A Different Sort Of Advent Pause

For the last eleven years, I've done a "Pause In Advent" series- the idea originally came from Floss in France. The instructions have always said something like 

"The idea is that every weekend during Advent [starting this year on November 29th] you post a thought/ reflection/ whatever about the true meaning of the season. It need not be specifically Christian - just share something to make us pause and step back from the tinsel and trappings, and the crass commercialism which often obscures the real Christmas. If you are interested in taking part, please leave a comment on my blog, and I shall add you to the list on the right"

But this year everyone's Christmas preparations are 'up in the air'- we aren't dashing round the shops, meeting friends for coffee, squeezing into a space at the back of the hall to watch the kid's Nativity Play, making 3 dozen sausage rolls for the Annual Party. So maybe we're already going a little slower. "Pause" seems somehow inappropriate - some folk are almost at the state of paralysis, scared to do anything in case they catch covid19. 

But even if we are at home [whether shielding, furloughed, WFH, or just avoiding going out] or still out at work [maybe on the 'front line' nursing, caring, teaching, providing essential goods and services etc] I thought it would still be good to do something during Advent. Here's my header for this. 

If you'd like to join in, please leave a comment, and I will add you to the sidebar. 

And to cheer you along, here's a lovely new Christmas song from the brilliant Rend Collective in Northern Ireland

Sunday 22 November 2020

The Promises Of God

The playlist for this morning's service from UCF is here - available from 7.30am. Do join us if you can.

This week, we had a lot of rain, but church members in different parts of the area spotted the most beautiful double rainbow and shared their pictures. [Thank you Angela J and Dani] 

Do you know this old hymn? It seems appropriate as many struggle with all that we are going through right now.

God has not promised skies always blue,
Flower-strewn pathways all our lives through;
God has not promised sun without rain,
Joy without sorrow, peace without pain.

But God has promised strength for the day,
Rest for the labour, light for the way,
Grace for the trials, help from above,
Unfailing sympathy, undying love.

The rainbow is a sign of God's promise that he will always be with us, whatever we are going through

Saturday 21 November 2020

The King Who Had A Sticky End

Yesterday, Sue in Suffolk reminded us that it was St Edmund's Day. Last November we actually visited the Cathedral in Bury St Edmunds, and I added my Lego brick to the model  Since then, I have occasionally looked at the Cathedral's Facebook Page. They have been updating the page very diligently this year - with lots of links to services and reflections, as well as activities and competitions for children and families. Sure enough, there was a post with a recipe for St Edmunds Suffolk Buns [and even a YouTube demonstration]

The buns are rather like upmarket scones. I didn't have any rice flour, but after a bit of research I discovered that you can make your own if you put regular rice into a blender. My Kenwood did a great job. When I sifted the rice and plain flours together, everything went through the sieve, so I guess I got the texture right.

The caraway seeds added an interesting flavour [trivial fact - technically these little brown things are the fruits of the caraway, not the seeds] and the drizzled honey makes the top sweet and sticky - people say it represents St Edmund's sticky end. I think that idea came later. Bob ate his split with quince jelly and said he felt extremely medieval! 


  • 500g plain flour
  • 150g rice flour
  • 2 tsp baking powder
  • 200g softened butter
  • 100g caster sugar 
  • 20g caraway seeds
  • 2 tbsp runny honey 2 beaten eggs
  • 1 tbsp milk
  • 40g currants


  • Preheat oven to 200°C (fan oven 180°C )/ Mark 6.
  • Lightly butter a baking sheet. 
  • Sift the flours together with the baking powder. Rub in butter to make fine breadcrumbs. Stir in sugar, caraway seeds and currants, then eggs, honey and enough milk to make a smooth but dry dough.
  • As the dough is brought together, be sure to mix it thoroughly with your fingers before turning out onto a lightly floured surface. Roll dough out to 2.5cms (1 inch) thickness and cut out 5cm (2inch) rounds. Space out on baking sheet.
  • Bake for 15-20 minutes until lightly golden and risen. Cool on a rack and drizzle with honey whilst still warm.

Caraway is grown all over the place - Northern Europe [not the Med] Western Asia and some parts of Africa. It features in many different cuisines, in both sweet and savoury dishes - goulash, sauerkraut, curries, cakes, breads and biscuits. In England, it was mentioned in the 14th century cookbook "Form of Cury" and the Tudors loved caraway. It fell out of favour, but when the Queen married German Prince Albert, the Victorians went mad for the stuff. Seed cakes became really popular. 

I think I may make these again - they were very easy [I halved the quantities above, and made 12 buns] and will make a change from plain scones for Sunday tea. They'd be great just buttered. If I do make more, I think I'd add a splash more milk, they were a little bit too crumbly. But still delicious. 

Thank you Sue for this idea.

Friday 20 November 2020

A Close Shave

I don't usually promote specific products, unless I think they are very good. And I would never accept payment from a company in exchange for promoting something. But here's an item I read about in September, and treated myself to in October - and now feel it's worth mentioning. It's as girl thing - so blokes out there may wish to go and watch Big Clive on YouTube instead.

I've got a new razor. For fifty years I have tried various methods of removing unwanted hair - depilatory creams which dissolve, rotating epilators which grab the hairs and rip them out, razors with 1/2/3/4/5 blades which shave and cut....[I am a coward, I have never had waxing, and too mean to pay for laser treatment] Honestly the best results for my legs and armpits have been achieved with a low tech razor. BUT I resent paying the "pink tax" - women's razors always cost more. For a long time, I've kept a cheap pack of plastic disposable razors in the bathroom cabinet. But that goes against all my attempts at being green.

Sali Hughes, in the Guardian, lauded the Estrid Razor. A Swedish design, it is vegan [what?!? You can't mean a razor made of carrots and not bacon?] It is vegan  because the lubrication strip is aloe vera and other plant based lubricants like cocoa butter and shea butter. The handle is steel - and ergonomically designed to feel good in your hand, with a rubber underside. And it's recyclable.

The starter kit includes a handle, two blade cartridges and a suction cup to mount the razor on the wall. At £7.95 it is half the price of other similar products. And there is the option of subscribing to get replacement cartridges [you choose the frequency] You can choose from a selection of five cool colours, I opted for peach. 

I am really pleased with my new razor, it certainly does the job efficiently and painlessly. You can read more about the Estrid here 
It was created by women to meet a perceived need. But there's more to it than that. From every purchase from the company - starter kits, replacement cartridges and their other products a donation goes to one of three women's charities. Estrid support Kvinna till Kvinna, Terre Des Femmes and the Fawcett Society   - all groups which work to educate, emancipate and empower women, as well as fight FGM and other cruel practices. 

This ticks so many boxes for me. So I thought I'd mention might want to put it on your Christmas list

Thursday 19 November 2020

Baby Steps

 Have you heard of the Pikler Triangle? I looked it up and found this...

The Pikler Triangle may look like a simple climbing frame, but it is so much more. It allows for natural gross motor development, freedom of movement, and learning one’s own boundaries. It was actually developed by Dr Emmi Pikler in Hungary in the first half of the 20th century.[and later also adopted by the Montessori schools]

Fundamentally: if a babe cannot climb, she just will not climb. We are born with a logic that is designed to protect us and when we test the boundaries of our abilities we learn from the experience. We try to walk and we fall, but we practice so we find stability, improve our control, our balance.

The Pikler Triangle allows children to learn their own boundaries in their own time and in a way that keeps parental safety concerns to a minimum. As the triangle is only a metre from the ground, and as babies and toddlers will only get that high when they are ready. The triangle doesn’t need to be adjusted as your child grows because it is the foundation on which they reach developmental milestones, at their own pace.

Babies as young as 6-8 months can pull to stand using the rungs and children as old as 4 and 5 can climb to the topmost point, continuing to learn new skills and develop in a creative way that also fosters a sense of imagination. What starts as a climbing frame can become a castle, a helicopter, a treehouse, a teepee. Parents witness how their mood determines how far they will push themselves each day, and each month they’ll try something new.

It all sounds very good, and Gaz and Steph thought George might appreciate one  - so many play facilities are currently shut up right now, and he is becoming increasingly mobile. So Bob has been building one, on his days off, he disappears into the garage and works very hard on the project. He's now at the stage of sanding and polishing and finishing off.

The slide lifts off, and the triangle folds flat, so it does not take up too much room when not in use. The memory bear I have been working on this week has been trying it out. We have yet to get the 'climbing rocks' [the slide can fit in two ways - one will be smooth, the other will have handholds] 
The frame and slide are made of oak, the climbing dowels are eucalyptus. It is not a cheap project - but they are very expensive to buy readymade. Find out more here if you want to build one [although the instructions need a bit of 'tweaking' Bob says] We only have one problem to solve now - how on earth do we get this Christmas Present for our grandson up to Manchester?

Wednesday 18 November 2020

Rule Britannia!

I have read a number of books & stories by Daphne Du Maurier [Frenchman's Creek, Jamaica Inn, The Birds, The House on The Strand, My Cousin Rachel - and of course, Rebecca] but this one completely passed me by until now. I discovered it - a Virage Modern Classic reprint - when I visited Cornwall in October. Like so many of her other books, this one is set in Cornwall.

This is her last book, published in 1972. It feels alarmingly prescient. The blurb on the back says "Emma wakes up one morning to an apocalyptic world. The cosy existence she shares with her grandmother, a famous retired actress, has been shattered: there's no post, no telephone, no radio - and an American warship sits in the harbour"

In 1987, Richard Kelly published a biography of Du Maurier, and described this book thus “In the future world of this novel England’s participation in the Common Market has failed.  Prices have risen nearly fifty percent, and a general election reveals the country to be divided about what course of action to take.  The coalition government, pressured by American financiers, prepares to accept as a solution a union of the two countries named USUK (United States United Kingdom).  The acronym, when pronounced - “You Suck” - reveals du Maurier’s bitter satirical tone in this novel.”

And in July 2016, in a letter published in The Times, Mr Robert Stiby said:

“Sir, in 1972, well before the first EU referendum, Daphne du Maurier wrote a remarkably prescient novel, Rule Britannia.  It was her last novel, set some time in the future when the UK has voted to leave Europe after a referendum.  Great uncertainty follows, a general election is called and a coalition government formed.  With high unemployment, rising prices, social unrest and a breakdown in European relations, a state of emergency is declared.  This is followed by a “friendly” armed invasion of an impoverished and beleaguered country by the all-powerful United States.  A new country is formed, USUK, with the Queen and the US president as joint heads of state.  Chaos ensues.

Perhaps the best thing we can all do at the moment is go out and buy a copy of Rule Britannia and read it while drinking a nice cup of tea or a glass of wine...”

At one point in the novel, the Prime Minister bemoans the political and financial repercussions of the leave vote, saying it "brought great economic difficulties, as I feared would be the case and as I warned you at the time" [didn't David Cameron actually say that nearly 50 years after DDM wrote it?] In another chapter, the local MP speaks of a newly created ministry of Leisure, which will bring in revenue from all the enthusiastic American tourists - who will come to Cornwall because "they have heard of the associations with Tristan and Isolde, and King Arthur too...pageants, displays, locals dressed up in costumes of the times...the whole of the west coast from Wales to Cornwall can be developed into a vast leisure-land, the good Welsh folk dressed in tall hats and cloaks, serving potato-cakes to tourists from the States..."

And now we have Lanhydrock, Poldark Mine, the Lost Gardens of Heligan, Charlestown Shipwreck Treasure Museum...not to mention the Eden Project. So much of what DDM predicted. I don't think I need to say any more! It is so clever, and I read it very quickly, because I wanted to find out what happened next. 

What I do not understand, is why nobody has made a film of this yet? the film rights are still available. A bright unknown fresh from RADA can play Emma - and her 80 year old redoubtable Gran needs to be someone like Maggie Smith or Phyllida Law -but at 85 & 88 respectively, I fear the role would be too physically demanding for these OAPs. Charlotte Rampling is only 74, and she's still going strong. We've just enjoyed her performance in DNA [Walter presents, All4 - a subtitled Danish police drama]


Tuesday 17 November 2020

Friends And Family

I'm  busy working on another memory bear. This time not shirts, but some fabric from a grandmother's dresses and her quilting stash. With each bear I make, I learn something new. One of these fabrics is a lot thinner- so I have put very lightweight iron on interfacing on the back to stop it going out of shape.  This has proved very successful. And after a few earlier errors in cutting out, I now lay out all my labelled pattern pieces before I begin - and have stamped the TOP of each with a smiley, to ensure I don't pin to the wrong side of the fabric.

George never made it onto the screen on Friday - I think he might have been on the little local slot in the Northwest - but certainly not the nationwide Children In Need show.
He's getting quite mobile now

Rosie is getting very good using the camera on her Mum's phone. She took a selfie, then edited it to black and white. You can see the concentration on her face. The wind has blown her curls every which way. And she took a great picture of her Mum too, as they went out for a walk on a blustery day. 

Like many of you, I continue to be grateful that we can keep in touch easily and frequently with loved ones via phones and the internet. Yesterday was my brother's birthday and we were able to chat last night. I remember being a student, and taking a huge stack of 2p coins into the call box at the end of the road, to ring Mum and Dad on a Sunday morning after church. At least today's young people can have almost instant contact with family if they need it. 

Hoping your family are well too, wherever they are...

Monday 16 November 2020

Lining Up

 Lining is a word with many meanings

- there's lining up when we queue to get somewhere- and right now we are all socially distanced'

- and covered with lines - there were many wrinkles lining her forehead

- the inner layer of a garment - the jacket has a contrast lining. Many companies [Boden, Ted Baker etc] make a point of adding a fancy lining - but usually nobody sees it except the wearer. 

- marking the roads - here are men doing some white lining last Friday - just round the corner from my house. - 

- and then of course, there is the silver lining which is behind every cloud. This concept is supposed to have originated in Milton's poem Comus, which he wrote in 1634.

These past few days, we've had so much rain - the clouds have been grey and leaden. Lockdown Gloom has descended. Some of my good friends in Leicester couldn't celebrate their Diwali Festival of Light in the usual way. 

I decided I should ring everyone in our Church Directory, to check they were all OK in this second Lockdown [a mammoth task - I'm only about 50% through] I was so encouraged- people were bright and positive, thankful for supportive friends, concerned for others less fortunate than themselves. It was a really uplifting experience to speak to these dear people. So many of them talked about the good things which have come out of these bad times, the silver linings they have discovered in this Covidian Wilderness. Serenity, courage and wisdom - these are the characteristics which help us to find the silver linings. 

Sunday 15 November 2020

Living Water

For this morning's service from United Ferndown, click this Link to the playlist any time after 7.30am. Our service will particularly feature the work of the charity Myra's Wells.

Our guest preacher is the charity's founder, Eddie Martin. Find out more about the life saving work being done in Burkina Faso

Saturday 14 November 2020

Peel Appeal

Nigella's new series began last Monday. She made a rather controversial "Banana Skin" Curry. Whilst I applaud her attempt at ZeroWaste, it did remind me of Hugh F-W's Slug Casserole. Laborious preparation, and lots of added ingredients- and at the end he did admit it was probably just as good without the slugs.[from from BBC]

But then I wondered if other chefs had used peels in recipes. I discovered Max La Manna, a young New York chef who specialises in zerowaste, vegetarian and vegan recipes. He puts banana skins in pancakes.

This makes sense to me - use the whole item in one dish [none of this setting aside the peel to use later, as a 'teaser', which is what Nigella did] My version - I peeled a banana, sliced it and sprinkled with lemon juice to prevent browning. Then chopped the skin into 2cm squares. I put 1 cup of milk in the liquidiser, added the peel, and blitzed till it was all blended.  I added 1 cup S.R. flour, 1 tsp sugar, and ½tsp baking powder. Blitzed again to make a batter. Then I cooked small pancakes [using my half cup measure to pour liquid into pan] Ta da!

Eight pancakes for two of us. I served them with the banana coins, a dollop of homemade yogurt and a drizzle of pomegranate syrup [I'm trying to use it up - honey, or other syrup would be just as good]
They tasted fine altho Bob said "not as 'spongy' as regular American style pancakes." Perhaps I should use more BP?

Warning- before cooking, the batter is an interesting purply grey colour [like blueberry yogurt]

Pancakes are an increasingly popular breakfast dish - and many of them use the whole banana in place of an egg [as does MLM] My version makes just enough for 2 of us, and you do get the two different textures with the sliced fruit on top. MLM adds cinnamon to his batter, I may try that sometime. You could go vegan and swap the milk for a plant-based version. A fresh, free range egg costs me around 17p from the farm - so I am saving that if I use the peel instead. 

I have an absurd fondness for writing on banana skins with a ballpoint pen [go on, try it sometime, it feels very satisfying] Bob said I must be sure not to write on any peel I plan to cook with!
What do you do with banana peel? do you just put it in the compost/food waste, or do you have a good recipe?