As I said last time, my eldest daughter was getting married, and I’m pleased to say the day went very well. We’re still waiting for the official photos but here are a couple to keep you interested.
|Giving my Baby away|
|The other Women in my Life|
|The new Mrs W|
The wedding featured some wonderful food, which I will be attempting to re-create, depending on the results I will share soon.
We seem to be at that time of year when nature offers up all the goodies at once, and it’s a bit of a struggle keeping up with laying in supplies to see us through winter, whilst still keeping on doing the (boring) things that need to be done, and finding the time to blog about it all. So since the wedding, I have made Elderberry wine, pickled onions and beetroot, and started converting blackberries to cordial.
After the success of my chicken and wedges, (and by the way thanks for all the compliments, I hope you enjoyed it as much as we do) I have a couple of other things to try.
Regular readers will know that I’m always on the lookout for cheap ways to eat well, with the object of zero waste, and using my potato peelings is just one way of getting the maximum out of everything that we have.
Last time I made the Homity pie, this time I thought I would try Corned Beef Hash, as I was using the Potatoes for mashed topping on a Cottage Pie.
So fry 4 large chopped onions with crushed garlic to taste, when softened and starting to brown reserve half for the pie and add the potato peelings, cut into small pieces, to the rest in the pan.
Fry until the potatoes are starting to go soft, then stir in one tin of corn beef cut into cubes (Tip: put the tin, unopened in the fridge overnight, the meat is easier to cube)
Fry this, stirring all the time, until the onions, beef and peelings are well mixed, then strain into an ovenproof dish and top with grated cheese. Bake at 200 degrees for about 25-30 minutes until bubbling.
Meanwhile add minced beef to the reserved onions and put in the same frying pan to brown the meat (saves washing up). Strain into a casserole, top with the mash and either put it in the fridge till tomorrow or freeze. That’s two days dinners in about 30 minutes.
My beetroot this year have not been good, neither have my carrots, so I had to buy some beets for pickling, I found a 25lb bag for £9.50, after cooking and peeling I got 18lb of pickles, enough to last me through the winter, at a cost, including vinegar of about £0.70 per lb. (roughly half shop price)
I also pickled onions, salting them first to keep them crisp.
In the middle of all this Jason next door brought me a bag of mixed fish, Pollock and wrasse, which have now been gutted and frozen.
After all that I was in need of a Cream Tea, a local delicacy, if you’ve never tried one, you really ought to: - http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cream_tea this one is from Fermoys Garden Centre, quite close to my house.
I digress: Blackberry Cordial.
At this time of the year, the blackberries are starting to get a little soft and overripe, so a good use for them is in a cordial, basically just a sugar syrup with fruit flavouring, I use roughly the same method for all my cordials and that is,
An amount of fruit,
1.5 times that amount of water,
Sugar equal to the water.
So last time that was 700g fruit, 1050g water and 1050g white sugar.
Boil up the fruit and the water and simmer to reduce. As the level falls add the sugar, in three or four stages and stir well each time. When the mixture has reduced to about a litre and all the sugar has been used, take off the heat and strain using a jelly bag.
Bottle the liquid and freeze for winter use, keeps in the fridge for about a fortnight.
This is very good for sore throats as well as making a delicious drink when diluted.
After you have strained the juice out the pulp makes a good addition to plain yogurt, or rippled into ice-cream.
There are no photos as I’m sure you can all visualise blackberries in a saucepan, or a bottle of red liquid!
But the sunrise was very nice as I was picking them.
My tomatoes are very reluctantly turning red, I’ve hung banana skins in the greenhouse to increase the ethylene and try to give them a helping hand, and at least none of my neighbours have turned yet. And we now have cucumbers as well, and runner beans.