Wednesday, 15 August 2007

More garden pics

Latest pics from the garden:
Coriander in the greenhouse, Jerry's garden gate in bloom, red cabbage in the making

Romanesco broccoli (lime green in colour), italian pointy cabbage. Both of these are in home made copper rings to try and keep the slugs from treating them like dinner!

More new girls

We traded an unwanted garden vac for 4 new pullets (good deal!) - 2 silver dorkings, and 2 wellsomer crosses. So hopefully we'll be getting a few more eggs soon.

In fact one of the dorkings has started laying - she's our first white egg laying chicken!

Monday, 13 August 2007

Bacon and Ham

This is what my bacon looked like after 5 days in the salt/sugar cure. One thing I did learn is that it needs soaking before cooking - otherwise all you taste is salt!! But after a few hours soaking it's lovely. Next time I'm going to try smoking some - but need to build a smoker...Jerry, get on with that will you?!!

My cider cured ham is also out of its brine bath too - and looking lovely! Now it's hanging in muslin under the verandah for 24-48 hours to air dry a bit. The dogs can smell it but can't reach it - torture!!

Monday, 6 August 2007

today's harvest

tonight's dinner will feature my first ever home grown cauliflower, and 3 colour purple carrots (a heritage variety)

Sunday, 5 August 2007

Mmmmmmmmmmmm pork

This post isn't for vegetarians! I got hold of some very tasty heritage breed pork (from a Berkshire pig) from a local supplier , and have embarked on my first ham curing and bacon making experiment.
For the ham I'm curing it in a mix of apple juice/cider/salt/sugar/juniper berries/pepper/bay leaf from a recipe by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall (River Cottage). It's a lovely looking leg ham, so I hope it will tast good. It has 6-7 days in this cider brine .

L: leg in cider brine, and R: weighed down with a bag of rice!

I also bought half a pork belly, a hock and 2 trotters, and I'm salt curing them (mix of salt, brown sugar, pepper and juniper berries (again a River Cottage recipe). The belly will make what I hope will be super tasty streaky bacon, and the hock and trotters will go in lovely winter stews / casseroles to give depth of flavour (and some meat). And all I have to do is drain off the liquid each day for 5 days and rub in new salt mix. Too easy!

And tonight for dinner it's pork ribs!!! Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm lovely.
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