I have a post ready for today but at the last minute, when I was hunting through the images that we have accumulated over the past week I decided that I might tell the story of the week that was in pictures. They say that a change is as good as a holiday and with Steve’s guest post last week you have had a fortnight off ;). Are you ready to wander through Serendipity Farm? Here we go…
Having never made homemade thick syrup before I had no idea how to go about making some but never one to back down from a challenge I forged ahead…without a recipe…and without most of the ingredients that you would be inclined to use to make a heavy syrup. It consists of raw sugar and floral green tea reduced. I had a vague recollection about having to test a drop on a saucer of cold water but wasn’t entirely sure what consistency it had to reach. I realised that it wasn’t going to be a thick syrup and had jumped straight to green tea toffee but to be honest, It’s amazing it managed to get to this stage but after pouring it onto a teflex sheet to set hard…it didn’t. I ended up with a bendy semi-set toffee…what to do?
Refusing to give up on my vague recollections as fact, I remembered how you can turn semi-set toffee into “taffy” by pulling it. I buttered up my hands and got stuck in to pulling it. Despite liberally buttering my hands this stuff stuck. It didn’t turn to taffy, it didn’t do anything aside from stick to anything that it touched. It is languishing in the fridge in a bowl thinking about it’s actions. I figure we will melt it over homemade ice-cream…and in the words of Jason Nesmith of Galaxy Quest fame “never give in, never surrender!”
You see before you another selection of half-assed food preservation. The yellow jars are lemon curd/butter. The dark jars are citrus marmalade that was also made with raw sugar and the lighter jars are 6 jars of date and apple paste. I didn’t want to waste some apples that were a bit floury, a huge stash of lemons and Steve just wanted marmalade so what’s a girl to do? These 10 jars of preserves are 8 more than I have made in my 50 years prior to this. This preserving lark is eminently satisfactory
What happens when your husband is thinking about something else while he is putting the kettle on to boil
Time for tea…
Homemade Asian stuffed buns (for Steve) and the top level of the steamer holds a rich chocolate steamed sponge that he had with homemade custard for dessert
The buns and stir fried veggie accompaniment but I forgot to take any pictures of the dessert
“A real sunbeam!”
It pays to keep your eyes open when you are perambulating around your local neighbourhood. Steve and I found this beauty floating just over the road from our driveway…how convenient! A pity I had to wade out in the freezing cold water to get it but them’s the breaks and this baby has been earmarked for water storage inside our new veggie garden
Decanting the results of a week of Kombucha fermentation mixed with a litre of juice into bottles for secondary fermentation. I am mixing glasses of delicious Kombucha and non-dairy kefir and the results are delicious. Even Steve is drinking the Kombucha because it is really tasty and eminently customisable. My next batch is going to be fermented with some fresh ginger and apple juice.
Another tea. That pile of riced red potatoes covers a good old fashioned shepard’s pie with some grated cheese on top. Steve proclaimed it “delicious”
One of multitudes of babies hatching out all over the place
I have been throwing harvested perennial seeds all over the place in the side garden and finally some of them are starting to grow… those osteospermum daisies days are numbered though!
We still haven’t finished cutting up the tree that fell into the side garden thanks to the incessant rain but the sun is finally starting to win out and even though the side garden is full of tree, it’s looking quite pretty at the moment
More tree and more garden
Still more tree but the other end of the garden
At least you can see we have at least been TRYING to cut up that tree
Cutting foraged steel poles to be sunk into the ground and concreted in to stabilise the netting over the top of our huge fully enclosed veggie garden
Holes are needed to string wire through to prevent mass invasion from above by possums
Another tree that fell needed to be cut so that we could get our wheelbarrows full of concrete through to the veggie garden
You can see how damp the weather has been by looking at that sky. We were racing against the clock to hammer the poles in and then concrete them in before the rains came
In the foreground you can see the roots of the tree that fell down and the proximity to the new veggie garden along with the exposed old veggie gardens that have been completely predated by chooks since we uncovered them
But not before I harvested all of the spinach!
Jerusalem artichokes that I found growing on the side of the road and rehomed on Serendipity Farm and a wild lettuce that just decided to keep them company
Steve was gifted an old empty beer keg not so long ago and aside from vague (and vain) aspirations of turning it into a still (HA!) he had to rethink his gifted keg and thought that he might make it into a rustic coffee table. After realising that we don’t need a coffee table he rethought again (all of that thinking ) and came up with turning it into a stool for his music room. Here you see the remnants of the old leather jacket that I used to cover a stool a few months ago being used again to cover a section of plywood that Steve cut into a circle. The old pillow gave us the padding material and with some rudimentary tools we turned this pile of “stuff” into this
A padded leather covered keg topper for a musicians derrière
“Can I have it?”
Sorry…No, but you CAN pretend you are D.J. Earl…will that make it better?
He’s all soul
Lastly, here’s a nice composite picture that Steve made using some new software that he recently got called “Snapseed”. It’s much easier to use than Photoshop and great fun to boot. The flower is in the side garden and if you look VERY carefully on the left hand side you can STILL see that tree ;). All in all a good way to say “seeyalateralligator” for today and wish you all a great week ahead…