Wednesday, July 29, 2009

The Black Tomato

We've waited ages for one to become ripe, and even then we kept it in the sunny conservatory for a day or two to see if it would turn any blacker - and so it did. Our first Black from Tula tomato was duly taste tested today by the supreme master of tomato tasters - James.
Tomatoes are his thing. Tomatoes or chocolate? Tomatoes every time - really! But this tomato looked like it was made of chocolate, so what would the verdict be?

Chocolate - no - I mean tomato heaven. This is a boy who knows what he likes- a gourmet in the making. The small crescent I did manage to sample had me concurring with James's assessment of a delicious balance between sweetness and acidity

As you can see!

Monday, July 27, 2009

Fast food!

A basket of fresh produce straight from the plot. Tatties, carrots, purple top turnips, garlic, shallots, cabbage and blackcurrants. Two hours later we were sitting down to a truly delicious meal.
I'm lovin' it ;)

Saturday, July 18, 2009

Blackcurrant harvesting

Fairly heavy showers this week, but I dashed out between them today to start picking the blackcurrants. I have 4 bushes which have all cropped well this year. I felt a little under pressure to get out there, as every time I stepped out the back door, a sizeable flock of small birds flew off from the direction of the fruit patch, and I wanted a share in the bounty. I needn't have worried, though, as there were plenty still - and quite a lot not ready yet - another 2 weeks maybe.
Lots to harvest today - big clusters of shining black fruits dangling like jewelled earrings were just asking to be plucked . I find the easiest method is to don an old apron, which has a very large pocket in the front - place a litre jar into the pocket and I have two hands free for picking. I only managed to fill one jar today before some really heavy and persistent rain, so I will try again tomorrow.
I haven't decided what to do with them yet. I always make jam, of course, and I was going to try some jelly, but using maybe juicing the currants raw, rather than cooking them first. Also - Claire has a lovely recipe on her blog for a sorbet that I must do. Other than that, the family will find various crumbles, clafoutis, pies, and such delicacies gracing the desert menu for a few weeks.

Monday, July 6, 2009

Very fruity!

Things are getting a bit fruity now on the plot and in the greenhouse. Here are a few shots of some of the burgeoning delights in store for us. Blueberries and strawberries in pots above and below.

Apples, plums and blackcurrants.

Er... Ok I know it looks a bit like a wee alien family, but it is what remains of my Autumn Bliss raspberries after those hens got to them. I can't complain really - they have been banned from the rest of the garden. I plan to put in some more canes round the main plot for next year.

Maybe not strictly fruit, but my sweetcorn fantasy might actually happen!

First of the tomatoes (Sungold). It has already been eaten by a small fair haired boy - he said he enjoyed it!

Cucumber, pumpkin and black tomatoes swelling nicely in the heat of the greenhouse. All looking good :)

Thursday, July 2, 2009

Growing and eating!

A quick tour of the current state of the plot.

Potatoes, sweetcorn and carrots.

Shooting spinach! Cabbages, purple podded peas and broad beans.

Red brussel sprouts for Christmas dinner, chard, kale and the faint green haze of the leek bed. The pile of stones, recycled from my parents' old fireplace, is destined to become part of a long planned herb spiral

Brassicas to the left of them, legumes to the right!

Courgettes - a bit worried about them - despite the special attention they are getting.

Freckles! My favourite lettuce. Just the name makes me smile:)

Tender baby broad beans to eat straight out of their furry pod.

James and the Giant ... er... Lettuce? Fabulous Reine de Glace always does well.

Finally - I couldn't resist showing this shot. Our sparrow family love the red hot pokers, which grow under the fruit trees.

Wednesday, July 1, 2009


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