Wednesday, 28 September 2011

Yummy beetroot recipe

I have a lot of everso small beetroots this year and it's quite hard finding different ways to serve them. But I found this really yummy recipe in NK's STIL magazine, baby beets in balsam, sage & olive oil:

5 baby beets per person, 1 small onion, a handful of thyme (I used oregano),
1 bay leaf, a few peppercorns, 2 tbspns salt. 2 tbspns extra virgin olive oil,
3 tbspns mature balsam, 10-15 sage leaves, 1 tspn dark syrup, salt & pepper.

Bring the water to the boil, then add the beets, onion, thyme, bay,
peppercorns & salt. Boil for 15 mins. Pour off the water and leave
to cool for 5 mins. Rub the skin off the beets and leave in room temp.

Sauté the beets in olive oil and sage. Add the balsam and reduce.
Allow the beets to absorb all of the liquid. Finish with the syrup,
and add salt & pepper to taste.

Served with some beef I had roasted the day before.


Tuesday, 26 July 2011

Weird tomatoes

This year I sowed quite a few different varieties and I'm so glad I did, but I never expected such weird and wonderfulness! o.O

The pen is there to give you an idea of the size. They are
ridiculously heavy too, note the string to support them...
These are the size of beefsteak tomatoes, but I was
expecting relatively medium sized pear-shaped things, the
packet said Lemon Bay...

Lemon Bay up close, not exactly pear-shaped...
These were supposed to be yellow/orange and
they're already turning red...
The Snow Whites are turning yellow...
This lot are upside down...
...and have twins...
...and triplets!!
As you can see, we've already started eating them,
but this lot are growing in all manner of shapes
and sizes, from heart-shaped to pear-shaped to almost oblong...
And we're not exactly going to get rich from these
outdoor Money Makers...
He he he.

Thanks for reading and feel free to leave a comment. It makes my day =)

Wednesday, 13 July 2011

Habanero Chocolate & Hot Paper Lantern

We've been harvesting chillies for a while now, but we recently tested the Habanero Chocolate and the Hot Paper Lantern for the first time. And Oh. My. God. Hot hot hot hot hot! :O

Because they are approx. 425,000 and 350,000 Scovilles respectively, we decided to play it safe and scrape out all the insidey bits and then bake them in the oven with a little olive oil.

We (my husband because he does all the chilli chopping) then finely chopped them up and sprinkled them on a fresh tuna Asian sallad. Luckily I sprinkled mine AROUND the plate, rather than over the tuna... The Habanero was just too hot for me, but the Hot Paper Lantern was fabulous! :D

Friday, 8 July 2011

Tomato update

These (nameless yellow/orange cherry sort) are just mad!!
I have a few twins/triplets growing on this plant too, will
to get a few decent photos and post them.
These (Trijbuline) are just plain weird!!

These are Lemon Bay (full size) tomatoes and they're
doing soooo well!! :) 

Wednesday, 29 June 2011

Wow! I must remember to plant more peonies...

... because these Sara Bernhardts are just AMAZING! :)

Spent two hours this morning, just collecting flowers and arranging them indoors. What a luxury to have stuff like this growing right outside your door!!

Tuesday, 14 June 2011

Quick greenhouse update

As is always the case at this time of year, I don't really have time for long blog entries. So here's a few quick snapshots from the greenhouse...

The wonderful yellow cherry tom plant has millions of flowers
on each bunch... bunch? is that the right word?

This year's first tomato harvest is not far off now!!

The fabulously colourful hot paper lantern chilli really
brightens the place up!

Friday, 27 May 2011

First two tomatoes!

Went down to the greenhouse full of anticipation this morning. Yesterday one of the tomato flowers had started wilting... yay...

And when I got there, there were not one, but TWO wilted flowers. :D However, they were still attached :( Booo!

So, unable to wait... he he he... I gently tugged them off, only to reveal... two TINY TINY TINY cherry tomato babies. Here's a pickie of one of them and a few pics of the rest of the greenhouse.

Ok, so it's not exactly HUGE, but still...
May I proudly present... this year's first tomato!!

This one, which just said yellow cherry tomatoes on the packet,
has an incredible number of buds on each bunch.
Adorable bell flowers... and they're reaaally hairy too...

Greenhouse pickie. Toms on the left, chillies on the right.

Sunday, 22 May 2011

Lots growing in the kitchen garden

Finally!! Lots of activity in the kitchen garden:

Spinach, which we've already started eating in salads.

Lots of early carrots, guarded by lots of red onions.

Red onions and garlic.

Teeny tiny turnips.

The remaining radishes - we've already eaten lots of thinnings.

Early potatoes - left over supermarket potatoes.

Baby lettuce - the lettuces haven't done at all well this year :(

Woohoo! We ate these last night wrapped in Parma ham :)

Parsley & rocket.

Broccoli. I've also sown two rows of radishes in the middle
and mixed lettuces & stir fry veg round the edge of the bed.

Tuesday, 3 May 2011

Pretty flowers

I've been really busy, both at work and in the garden so I haven't had time to transfer photos over to the computer until now. Here are a few pickies of this year's GORGEOUSNESS to date.

Super Parrot tulips

Super Parrot tulips

Mount Tacoma tulips

Our new breakfast spot, kindly donated by the in-laws

The magnolia was glorious this year - until last night's
cold spell (SNOW!!) put an end to that :(

Carpets of wood anemones

Lily of the valley

Lily of the valley behind the gazebo

Thursday, 21 April 2011

Lettuces, visitors, chillies and nice neat rows of veg

Been out to take a few photos of the stuff that's growing at the moment. Found lots of rocket and mixed salad leaves, and the carrots and stir fry veg I sowed the other week have turned up in nice neat rows. I do like nice neat rows :)

Mixed salad leaves - spicy & spicy oriental.

Lots of rocket (we like rocket), and other mixed salad leaves.
Check out the cheeky pak choi on the left.

Neat rows :)
Beetroot, Radishes, Stir fry veg, spinach, turnips & carrots.
Behind that are a mix of different onions (spring, red, garlic, leek & chives).

It wasn't until I was right up close, taking these pickies, that I saw this little fella...!!! Grrrrr.

Apart from all this activity outdoors, there's plenty going on in the greenhouse now. With Easter this weekend, the pressure was on to get the house looking purdy. So all (well almost all of) the chilies, and the cucumbers, have now moved down to the greenhouse. I upped the temp on the fan heater just to be on the safe side from 5oC to 12oC. And they seem fine with that, so far...

Lots of funny looking little square Purple Tiger chillies.

Aji Colorado.

The Serrano is almost buckling under the
weight of all the chillies!

Hot Paper Lantern.
And here's a few pickies of the plants still indoors. I didn't want to risk losing all the plants, so I kept four behind as a back-up.
The Thai chillies should be ready to eat soon :)

Short, stout Spanish peppers.

Really pointy Ring of Fire chillies.
Turned into quite a long blog post, sorry about that. But I don't always have time to blog - it takes a while. So I've saved up a bunch of stuff this time. Will try to blog more often with shorter entries.

Thanks for reading and Happy Easter!