Monday, November 26, 2012

So, what have I been doing in Adelaide?

 

imageI came over for my mother’s 90th birthday…..

We ate plenty of orange cake, in the garden…image

and I caught up with the rellies….

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Then I headed to the markets to find my favourite things….

 

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Hugh’s business Hughsli’ and his Showgrounds Farmers’ Market stall make me a very proud mother…..image

 

 

 

 

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…..Maggie took me on a visit to Glandore Community Garden where they are bringing together food gardening, seed saving, bee keeping, worms, flowers and a whole lot of fun…. The other end of this tiled frog is a pizza oven! Love it!

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 imageLunch at Maggie and Bob’s…. from the garden and from Hughsli and other stalls….

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and below….. Hughsli production is full time and full of energy in his ever expanding kitchen house!

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How to be a gardener

A nice, friendly beautiful introduction to gardening. Get a coffee, sit down and enjoy….

Monday, November 12, 2012

A platypus in my creek

Yes, its true but sadly no photos.

Lenny and I were in the garden when we heard a little plop as something disturbed the water in the creek near where we were gardening. He said “What was that?” and I replied “A platypus”….. why I said that I don’t know as it sounded more like something small, like a frog and who on earth ever has a platypus in their garden! We both laughed.

Then he called out from further up the creek “Hey Kate, you won’t believe it but it IS a platypus!” And sure enough, there he was, swimming happily this way and that, right next to the driveway, under the foot bridge, totally unaware we were standing only a little above him on that bridge.

Platypuses are very shy and its hard to get a good look at them like this but we stood there in silence for quite some time, watching in amazement. Then suddenly he was gone.

Probably the most exciting thing that has happened since I came to Tasmania!

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Alcoholic fruit drinks I make

I went to a Church of England Girls Grammar School …. most of which I loved, but the day I left I decided I’d had enough Christianity for several life times and believed not a word of it. In fact, from that moment on I believed in no gods at all.

However, from time to time, hymns or bits of the bible, especially the old school chapter, come into my head, to be thrust at anyone who is nearby.

And so it was a few moments ago, as I surveyed my dwindling supplies of cassis and raspberry ratafia, and my happily brewing limoncello, that I burst forth with “….these 3 (referring, in the original piece, to faith, hope and charity!) and the greatest of these is….”

Which exactly is the greatest of cassis, raspberry ratafia and limoncello is a question which remains unanswered through millennia, I suspect. I make all of them with local fruit at different times of the year.

Cassis is one I love to drink on cold winters nights, by the fire. Mine is thicker than usual, with the black currants whizzed up in a neighbour’s Vitamix and unable to be strained completely but which I have become rather partial to. Another neighbour suggested brewing in brandy, which I did and it is much richer than when done with vodka.

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Raspberry ratafia I made with less sugar, as the recipe suggested adding more sugar later, to taste, when the brewing was finished. I decided not to add any more as the aroma and pungency of the raspberries was very special…. one reason being that I let them stew in vodka for 6 months, instead of one! This is a pre-dinner drink which I usually sip slowly whilst getting dinner…. and the raspberries were delicious with ice cream!

 

 

image Limoncello is definitely a drink for a hot summer’s night. Being made of lemon peel, it lends itself nicely into being made in winter, to drink in summer. We used to always have it at the shack, sitting outside watching the sunset, after a blisteringly hot day. Poured over ice it is perfect…. I am still waiting for such a day, here in southern Tasmania and am having to adjust my opinion of when is a good time to drink limoncello as there is still some of last year’s left, while this year’s is brewing!

Some people mix them with various things like mineral water, white wine etc but I sip them all neat, in shot glasses or tiny, crystal, stem glasses. I think that they lose some of their alcohol when left to brew, even if the lid is good, which is fine by me; I just want the flavour.

You can find my recipes here.

Enjoy!

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Evening light

It has been a warm and humid day, with the sky mostly black with rain-laden clouds, periodically dumping their load before shooting off across the sky again. Suddenly, just before sunset, brilliant sunshine burst out, leaving odd patches of heavy cloud lying across the hills and mist drifting down the valleys, while my garden was bathed in a sunlight bath.

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The sun shone only for a few minutes though…..

 

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Just long enough to grab my camera….

 

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Friday, November 2, 2012

Pam Warhurst on TED…. she started by just doing it

 

Cygnet is small. I thought it would be easier. Its not. But friend Carol and I are determined. The Cygnet Library garden is in our sights. How can it be this hard just to do something so worthwhile? But, we will succeed and bring Cygnet and Todmorden together.