Monday, 9 April 2012


Re-use, Re-cycle, Waste not want not: whatever you want to call it. I’ve turned into the man for the job. This week I’ve made 12 litres of wine for the winter, and got double use out of some of the ingredients, I’ve done enough Roast Pork for 6 meals in the freezer, and re-used a mirror to create a garden feature. Intrigued? Read on.

First, an update on the garden, I have BLOSSOM on my fruit trees, and flowers on my Strawberries; I hope that means a good harvest.

Also the Sweet Peas that Yvonne planted last year have survived and thrived, we found this rather nice wigwam in Topsham.

Also we have some Stargazer llillies ready to go out, and some bedding that is progressing nicely

Whilst we are on the subject of the garden, when I decorated last year, I kept the old mirror, as I thought of using it in the garden to make a feature. Well this weekend we gathered up some driftwood and hung it all together. Now the dog barks at it!

 Yvonne has been very creative, painting a piece of slate to hang in the garden somewhere,

Very Good
And I have rebuilt the tree house

Being Easter and another excuse to eat well, I decided to do a slow roast pork joint that I had brought half price and frozen ages ago. As I have said before, you get a better flavour from large joints? And plenty for the freezer, to use as parts of other things or for when you can’t be bothered to cook much.
Anyhow this baby was 2.3kg of meat, so I reckon it needed about 5 hours.

First of all I scored the skin and rubbed in Sea salt, then roasted at 220 degrees for 30 minutes to crisp the crackling. Whilst the oven was on, it seemed a shame not to make a loaf, so I tried an old favourite, White bread made with milk, lard and honey ( if you want the recipe drop me a comment) It came out well.

So after 30 minutes, put a little water in the pan with the meat and cover it well with foil. Turn the oven down to 170 degrees and put the meat back in for two and a half hours.

Meanwhile it was time to put my rhubarb wine into ferment, I had mashed up the rhubarb with boiling water and sugar the day before and it had been soaking overnight.

Now I strained it into a plastic bottle, adding a teaspoon of yeast. Fitting an airlock, it was placed in my fermenting room (airing cupboard) with the rest of the brews.


Rhubarb, Dandelion and Elderflower

I now have Elderflower, Dandelion and Rhubarb fermenting, next winter will not be a thirsty time!

Acting on the waste not want not principle, I took the rhubarb pulp and froze half.

To the rest I added some of last years raspberries from the freezer, and made a crumble topping. No need for extra sugar as the rhubarb was sweetened from the wine making process.

At the end of the 2.5 hours, take the meat out and baste from the pan.

 Recover and return, along with your potatoes. Ah yes the potatoes.

As you know I blanch my potato peelings and use them in pies, casseroles, fry-ups etc. Now I am going to share my gravy secret: after you have boiled your potatoes added some chopped stock veg to the water and re-boil for 20 minutes, adding a little more water if required. I used carrots, swede, turnip onion and celery (Actually a frozen mixture I got cheap) After it is really soft blend it all together, add it to the meat juices in the pan and thicken for a delicious gravy.

After another hour in the oven, the potatoes are cooked and the meat is now falling apart, Place it on a separate dish to rest while you make the gravy, then pull it apart into chunks (no sliced portions here)

Crackling YUM!

I opened a bottle of apples (still going strong) and made a sauce for the pork, which we enjoyed, with enough left over for 6 meals into bags and frozen. Then it was time for the crumble, with home made custard.

Tomorrow will be day with small portions.

Following the disappointment of the Bread Course at Magdelan being cancelled, I have booked an Artisan Bread course at Manna from Devon so we will have to see how that goes, it’s 3 days and hopefully will answer a lot of my questions about sourdough, and give me a lot of ideas for the future.

The blackberries at Sharkham, so viciously cut down in January, are starting to sprout back; maybe they will produce some good fruit this year after all. I must admit I do get very impatient with the seasons, and always think that things aren’t happening quickly enough, I must learn patience and I must learn it NOW.

No comments:

Post a Comment