thirteenfridays: March 2020

With the current difficulties surrounding us all with the anti Covid19 virus measures we created a simpe thirteenfridays meal for complicated times!

A 13 ingredient soup (Onion; Garlic; Carrot; Celery; Swede; Potato; Lentils; Tomato puree; Vegetable stock; Olive oil; Butter; Pepper; Pumpkin seeds) with 13 chunks of Bara Menyn sourdough bread, salad and 13 tomatoes on the vine.

Our thirteenfridays comrades, Kirsty and Sam, were isolated in their own home but made a batch of 13 ingredient brownies. We hooked up on FaceTime to enjoy our respective dishes together but apart, Absent but not Forgotten…

13 ingredient chocolate brownies with 13 fruits (Unsalted butter; Dark chocolate; Plain flour; Cocoa; Large egg; Golden caster sugar; Brown sugar; Self raising flour; Baking powder; Salt; Icing sugar; Honey; Egg white)

thirteenfridays: Lussinatt Smörgåsbord


Thirteenfridays: Lussinatt Smörgåsbord
Friday 13 December 2019



As we discovered when we began the thirteenfridays project in 2013, December 13 is
Lussinatt and we’ve been inspired to celebrate the festival again this year by creating a Scandinavian Smörgåsbord of 13 dishes.


This week we were joined by a guest, musician Sianed Jones, and we shared a range of dishes served buffet-style:

Beetroot & onion salad; Soused herring; Smoked salmon with mustard and dill sauce; Cucumber salad; Poached Salmon with dill; 13 Swedish style non-meatballs; Rye crispbread; Pickles; 13 slices of dark rye bread; Seaweed pearls; Lingonberry jelly; Jansson’s temptation; Herring & beet salad.


The table included 13 candles and we accompanied the meal with a 13 ingredient Glögg (a warm spiced wine with fruit and nuts) made with – Red wine; cloves; star anise; cinnamon; orange; lemon; prunes; raisins; bay leaf; cardamon; almonds; figs; currants


Following our savoury 13 smörgåsbord we nibbled 13 Swedish ‘fika’, sweet treats with coffee to finish.


thirteenfridays: Afon

Absent but not Forgotten were very pleased to be invited to create a work for the opening event at the Afon microfestival in Abercych on September Friday 13th.

Continuing our ritual of making and sharing food to celebrate the date we baked a couple of batches of the 13 ingredient black pepper cookie cakes that we had made for our thirteenfridays picnic by the river Teifi in June 2018.  These were offered to Afon visitors along with a postcard celebrating our outing to the river and listing the 13 ingredients.  (recipe below)


13 Ingredient Black pepper cookie cakes
(makes about 40-50 small cookie cakes)

6oz Butter
8oz Sugar
1 beaten egg
3oz SR wheat flour
3oz Gluten Free or almond flour
3oz Cocoa powder
1/4 tsp Salt
1 1/2 Vanilla Essence
1/2 tsp Almond Essence
3/4 tsp Black pepper
3/4 tsp Cinnamon
1/4 tsp Clove
1/2 tsp Cardamon

Cream butter, spices and sugar together until smooth, beat in the egg & essences then seive in the dry ingredients and mix into a stiff dough.  (I add the cocoa first and get that mixed in before adding the flour so that you can ensure you get all the chocolate in case it gets too dry to take all the flour. You can add a little water, milk, coffee, brandy to help get the flour mixed in).

The dough should be stiff and relatively dry so you can roll into 1″ diameter balls and flatten into greased bun tins or baking sheet.  I like to use mini muffin tin, this makes nice bitesize cookie cakes, they are quite rich.

Bake at 190 for 12 min.

The cookie cakes were very well received by visitors who also got to watch the short video from the river presented alongside the dark chocolatey offerings.

Something strange in the neighbourhood

Oriel Blodau Bach

8 October // Hydref – 16 November // Tachwedd 2018

Something Strange in The Neighbourhood

Absent But Not Forgotten is an ongoing, experimental art project formed in 2010 by west Wales artists, Kathryn Campbell Dodd and Jacob Whittaker.  

“Our work explores and alludes to ideas of the paranormal, ghost hunting and the propensity to search for supernatural explanations to unexpected and unexplained phenomena. We are also interested in the associations, clichés and influences of TV and films on these issues.

As we head into the Halloween season, this new work for Oriel Blodau Bach proposes a series of seemingly simple questions to viewers to provoke thoughts about concepts of death, the afterlife and the nature of ghosts and our belief (or not) in them.  

Through a series of posters the viewer is asked to consider the idea of ‘ghosts’, and how they exist in their personal belief systems.”

You are invited to tweet your responses and tag @ABNF13

Oriel Blodau Bach 

Vinyl is Alive!

Following on from our 13 picnics polaroid exhibition in Bara Menyn Bakehouse, Cardigan, we have installed a new work for the season…


With a particular interest in the visual aesthetics of the horror genre, this changing selection of records combines rock and pop, classic soundtracks, spoken word and sound effects to explore the diverse and evocative imagery in celebration of the Halloween season.


thirteenfridays: Friday 13th July 2018

Our 13 week picnic marathon started on Friday 13 April, we’ll be visiting a haunted location every Friday until Friday 13 July 2018.  Each week we set off armed with sound recording equipment, digital cameras and an original Polaroid camera – to take an unfakeable and unique Polaroid image at each location.

Invite 013

Our final event for the project brought together a group of friends to enjoy a feast of 13 in the garden.  We decided that trying to get exactly 13 guests to commit and actually all turn up was a stress we could avoid so decided not to try and invited more.  Slowly over the week before the event, our guests dropped out, one decided to bring another, our numbers were uncertain but no problem.  By mid afternoon on the day we did of course end up with 13 of us!


04aWe had a fantastic feast of 13 with a range of our favourite dishes from the picnics as well as a few more for the day and a couple of contributions from our guests.

Our collection of Polaroid photographs from the picnics went on to be exhibited in Bara Menyn, Bakehouse in Cardigan.


thirteenfridays: Pembrey






Our 13 week picnic marathon started on Friday 13 April, we’ll be visiting a haunted location every Friday until Friday 13 July 2018.  Each week we set off armed with sound recording equipment, digital cameras and an original Polaroid camera – to take an unfakeable and unique Polaroid image at each location.

This week was our 13th picnic out and about and we headed to Pembrey where there are reports of a number of different ghostly phenomena including ghost ships seen off the coast and ghosts of the “hatchet men” seen in the nearby woods .  These were the wreckers who enticed ships onto the rocks, murdered the crews and robbed their cargoes.  There are more stories of WWII soldiers, cursed airmen, cavaliers and even a poltergeist who grabs your ankles and piles up your camping equipment!

The popular TV show “Most Haunted” visited the area some years ago, highlighting these and many other stories spending the night investigating the beach, the woods and the disused military bunkers.

We took this photograph of the woods which shows a luminous green flare!

Finding shade in the picnic area near Cefn Sidan beach our picnic fest this week included special birthday treats for Kathryn, a bottle of champagne with strawberry liqueur and extra strawberry cakes!
We had a 13 ingredient salmon and asparagus pie (Egg, Flour, Butter, Cream Cheese, Chives, Parsley, Lemon Zest, Capers, Salmon, Asparagus, Spinach, Salt, Black Pepper); 13 ingredient tabouleh (Bulgar wheat, Vegetable Stock, Cucumber, Tomatoes, Red Onion, Flat Leaf Parsley, Mint, Red wine Vinegar, Olive Oil, Lemon Juice, Soy Sauce,Salt, Pepper); 13 ingredient fennel and courgette salad (Bulb Fennel, Courgette, Red onion, Lemon Juice, Olive Oil, Za’atar – Sumac, Thyme, Oregano, Nutmeg, Cumin, Black Pepper, Sesame seeds, Salt)  02
Our desserts were a four tiered 13 ingredient birthday cake from Kirsten (Butter, sugar, Flour, Baking powder, Margarine, Eggs, Milk, Cream, Vanilla, Strawberry, Blueberry, Raspberry, Chocolate buttons) and 13 Strawberry and thyme mini cupcakes with Fragoli wild strawberry icing.




thirteenfridays: St Dogmael’s

Our 13 week picnic marathon started on Friday 13 April, we’ll be visiting a haunted location every Friday until Friday 13 July 2018.  Each week we set off armed with sound recording equipment, digital cameras and an original Polaroid camera – to take an unfakeable and unique Polaroid image at each location.  This week we headed off in search on the trail of a historic haunting at St Dogmael’s Abbey in Pembrokeshire.

According to author Brian John in his ‘Pembrokeshire Ghost Stories‘ book after the Abbey fell, an inscribed stone was used as a bridge over a small brook in the abbey grounds.  ‘While it was very handy during the day, it had a fearsome reputation at night.  Many people saw a mysterious ghostly figure (referred to simply as “the white lady”) gliding over it at the witching hour of midnight.’.It was this reputation, it is suggested, that prevented the stone being lifted and broken up to be used as building material in the following years when the abbey ruins became a convenient source of stone for local buildings.  Laid facing down the inscriptions on the ‘Sagranus Stone’, as it is called, are very well preserved and the stone can be seen in the nearby parish church of St Thomas.  Read more about the stone here.

Photo By Llywelyn2000 [CC BY-SA 4.0 (, from Wikimedia Commons

After wandering the abbey ruins (and not seeing any white ladies) and being unable to identify the brook’s location, we decided the most appropriate picnic site was in the old abbey church crypt.  The now exposed crypt was once underneath the floor of the presbytery, with a small stairway leading down into the space; the remains of the arches and columns are still visible around the edges. Somebody had been there before us and made symbolic markings on the floor…it reflected the original layout illustrated on the information board in the abbey…a midsummer ritual perhaps; all a bit Dennis Wheatley…

0100As we laid out our picnic feast in the late evening, the sky above us filled with swirling mass of corvids, we held our breath momentarily as they whirled around worried that they might take a fancy to the feast below.

Thankfully they settled in the trees beyond the abbey and we went on to enjoy our picnic of – 13 ingredient four cheese quiche (Flour, Butter, Eggs, Cheddar, Feta, Parmesan, Mozzarella Cheese, Salt, Pepper, Black Olives, Sundried Tomatoes, Tomatoes, Red Pepper); 13 Ingredient broccoli salad (Broccoli, Halloumi, Garlic, Spring Onions, Lentils, Walnuts, Sunflower Seeds, Pumpkin Seeds, Chia Seeds, Olive Oil, Black Pepper, Lettuce, Rocket); 0213 Ingredient grilled pineapple with marscapone (Pineapple, Butter, Soft Brown Sugar, Muscovado Sugar, Lemon Juice, Piri Piri Sauce, Black Pepper, Marscapone, Creme Fraiche, Vanilla Essence, Icing Sugar, Raspberries, Mint Leaves);  13 Pecan Nut Cookies.03


thirteenfridays: Newtown



Our 13 week picnic marathon started on Friday 13 April, we’ll be visiting a haunted location every Friday until Friday 13 July 2018.  Each week we set off armed with sound recording equipment, digital cameras and an original Polaroid camera – to take an unfakeable and unique Polaroid image at each location.

For our 11th week we decided to revisit Newtown in Powys where we had spent some time back in 2013 making work for the Be Our Guest exhibition at Oriel Davies. As well as making a piece for the exhibition called Who is this who is coming? we interviewed a number of people who had experienced uncanny and ghostly phenomena at the gallery as well as in Newtown at large.

We were delighted to make the acquaintance of Rory Evans at that time who very generously shared a great many ghost stories about the region with us. We spent the day visiting some of the locations Rory had spoken about hoping to get a glimpse of the many spectral residents of the town.

We started with gallery itself where lots of spooky occurrences have been reported from books flying off shelves to mysterious telephone calls. Rory thought the culprit may be Sarah Briscoe, a descendant of the Pryce family of Newtown who donated the clock tower (known as ‘Sarah’) to the town and died in 1901.

B06014D0-9E71-4777-83A9-CF51E73A7362We then headed into town to have a look at the haunted pubs that Rory mentioned, The Sportsman, The Victoria Vaults, The Buck and The Black Boy.

Next we drove to The Vastre, a road heading out of town towards the village of Kerry. Rory had told us some particularly unsettling stories, firstly a woman dressed in Victorian attire has been seen, apparently extremely tall she seems actually to be hovering above the ground. Also the tale of a motorist who encountered a terrifying medusa like red-headed woman appearing in the back of his car after the temperature dropped to below freezing on a warm summer’s day.

We also visited the area of Bryn Bank hill fort where Rory had told us Charles I had been taken during his visit to the town during the civil war.

We’d hoped to drop in to see Maesmawr Hall, now a hotel in Caersws on the way home. We’d previous heard tales from both Rory and our friend Rhowan about ghostly goings-on at the location, but the hotel was bustling with a Prom event happening that day, so we decided to save our visit for another day.

0102We picnicked in the dappled shade of the trees on the bank of the river Severn near the Oriel Davies gallery.  We had 13 smoky spiced mini bean burgers with 13 ingredients (Kidney Beans, Onion, Garlic, Carrot, Tomato puree, Chipotle smoked chili, Cumin, Oats, Soy Sauce, Pepper, Oil, Lime Juice, Salt); a 13 ingredient rice salad (Rice, Red Pepper, Green Pepper, Pickled Jalapeno; Garlic, Coriander; Sweetcorn, Cumin seed, Lime Juice; Tomatoes, Olive Oil, Salt, 13 slices of Avocado) a 13 ingredient sweet potato salad(Sweet Potato, Onion, Garlic, Tomatoes, Coriander, Chilli, Salt, Black Pepper, Spring Onion, Caraway Seeds, Black Onion Seeds, Mustard Seeds); 13 arancini with 13 ingredients (Eggs, Parmesan, Parsley, Black Pepper, Oregano, Salt, Sundried Tomatoes, Olives, Mozerella, Stock, Rice, Breadcrumbs)

Our desserts this week were a 13 ingredient apricot and raspberry tart (Flour, Butter, Eggs, Caster Sugar, Ground Almonds Almond Essence, Apricots, Raspberries, Apricot Jam, Salt, Water, Flaked Almonds, Icing Sugar) and 13 aztec chocolate mini cupcakes with 13 ingredients (SR Flour, Egg, Granulated Sugar, Butter, Cocoa powder, Chili powder, Milk, Kahlua, Icing Sugar, Cinnamon, Salt, Water, Vanilla Essence).