Archive for August, 2011


Blackcurrant Schnapps that is.  One made very simply with just 50% blackcurrants and 50% cooking vodka, and the other with 1/3 fruit, 1/3 sugar, and 1/3 vodka.  I’m really hoping that these work out, as they’re so simple to prepare…… won’t know for another few months though unfortunately!

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Since the spring, we’ve tried to eat at least one thing we’ve grown ourselves with every meal. However, lots of the veg are coming into season now, and we’ve managed a few meals now that have been almost entirely home grown.

We had one of them on Sunday – Coq au Vin, featuring a load of veggies from the garden and polytunnel, and once I’d managed to actually catch him, the meat from an (unfortunately for him) male Welsummer chicken who we hatched in February.

OK, so we cheated a little and used shop bought wine, onions and mushrooms as well as the home grown stuff, but it’s still not a bad start – we’re not deluded enough to think we could ever be truly self sufficient. And yes, I know you would expect me to say this, but it was absolutely delicious too.

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Home Made Ribena!!

The blackcurrants were really good this year, so I was struggling to think of something good to do with them all. No time for jam or wine, but a quick search of the interweb gave some interesting ideas, including this recipe for homemade blackcurrant cordial, which is simplicity itself.


Basically you just simmer blackcurrants and sugar together for a few minutes, then add a chopped up lemon, and simmer for a bit longer, before straining, and pouring into re-used wine bottles, and chilling in the fridge.

The colour is amazing, and when diluted with water (about 25%:75%), it really does taste just like a supermarket ‘Hi-juice’ squash……. Only so, so much better!  🙂

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Loving the summer!



A friend described our style as “Shabby Chic” the other day. To be honest, I was a little bit offended to begin with, but then I went for a wander round the yard, and I started to see what she meant!! 🙂


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