I try to always make one big "soup of the week" for meal planning throughout Winter and Autumn. This week it was my favourite irish pub soup, which contains an array of hearty root vegetables, which nourishes the body through a cold spell. It also brings back wonderful memories of Ireland, sitting down at a little round table with a bowl of hearty soup and thick cut brown bread to the side.
That’s one of the beautiful benefits of a Valencia. Ripe fruit does not drop. Rough skins turn smooth and they can just wait on the tree for you. An ideal gardener’s fruit, no rush, it has the power to be patient.
Let’s say living in a house full of boys has its challenges too in the odour department. Since I grew up having allergies to all sorts of things I've definitely learned over the years to deodorise the house in a very natural way, and there are so many different ways you can do that!
When I had captured my prized Bramley's in my arms I raced back to the country kitchen only to find I really wanted to make an apple and pistachio tea cake, and could not find any inspiration in all the regular places. So I made up a very simple recipe and it worked so well that I am sharing it here.
While its immensely tempting to rest every single bed under a thick layer of mulch, cardboard or black plastic and head north to the sunnier states for winter, I try to rest one bed and plant lovely greens to enjoy for winter suppers.
While I have grown potato onions and spring onions widely at times, the Negi onion is the one that remains outside my kitchen door and never dies off. Happily this year, they self-propagated (perhaps from the east winds swirling around the place), so now I have three pots outside the kitchen door.
Is there nothing a potato can't do? Just like eggs, they are a chameleon of the kitchen, one minute you're digging into homemade crunchy chips, the next you are enjoying leftover mash in an apple tart made with potato pastry. The wonder of it all.
These days, with many people staying close to home, we found that there are not many rescue dogs available for adoption. Some that we looked at did have very severe problems, they wouldn’t be suited to going home with a family that had children. Never having had a puppy ever before, we were resigned to the fact that we’d know when the right little personality came along. We knew it could be a few years.
This christmas we aimed to keep it simple, using what we already had, and making the most of nature and what was growing in our garden. Making gifts became important and catching up with people was extra special.
While both muesli and granola are a mix of grains, seeds, nuts and dried fruits, the main difference is that granola is sweetened with honey or maple syrup and is baked. Muesli is not baked.
They each are regarded as a healthy breakfast.