Break out the Breville, it's time for a Toastie by John Naylor

Do you like toasted sandwiches? Apparently they're making a comeback in restaurants and cafes. I'd like to contend they never left. Whenever we were unwell our mum would make us toasted sandwiches for lunch/dinner full of either creamed corn or Heinz tinned spaghetti. When I left home back in the 90's my grandma gave me her toasted sandwich maker which looked like this one:

It made perfectly toasted sandwiches with lava like molten insides if you weren't careful and you had to be careful not to let the bread packet or butter tub touch any exposed metal or you'd experience the acrid smell or burning plastic and a rather sorry looking bread bag. Did you know that April 12 is Grilled Cheese Sandwich day? What's your favourite toastie?

I love old photographs that feature people in every day situations. These photographs by Bill Rauhauser of working people in Detroit are just wonderful. See more here

Why is preserving so popular? June Taylor on Jam Making and Avoiding Waste by Dana Velden

Scones and jam made by me

I don't think preserving has ever been unpopular. It's been central in every food culture from kim chi to gravalax and it's more perhaps that some people in the twenties and thirties are realising that their working parents were more inclined to buy a jar than spent time standing over a pot and are keen to learn to make their own. All the merrier I say!

Recipe ownership & copyright infringement – be respectful, but informed by Amanda McInery

I read this post with interest about the sticky issues of recipe ownership and copyright infringement when it comes to blogging. She (and other bloggers) have found themselves in a touch of contention with Dan Leppard and his agent for creating recipes which are derived from his books or credited to his work. I know in my experience that there are some recipes that can't be owned per se because they've been passed down through so many hands. Like strawberry jam. I"m only aware of two different stove top versions and they don't differ whatever book you read. But if you choose to add other ingredients, whether spices or liquers etc, then they become that of their creator in my humble opinion.

This differs from buying or downloading a free copy or a Jamie Oliver book. Sure, he has plenty of money, but less books bought mean less people employed all the way down the line. It's very hard to make a profit in publishing cookbooks if you aren't one of the big names. But I also think bloggers need to be a bit smarter. If you run a blog full of recipes then publish a book with the same recipes (and usually additions) and gain publicity and a good reputation, well no wonder people are passing around your original blog recipes! That said however, your original creations and building of your audience may what enabled you to get a book deal in the first place. What are your thoughts?