Monday, 12 September 2011

Autumn? Already?

Firstly I must apologise for a prolonged absence from the blogosphere. Those who follow my baking blog will know that I have been kept busy with moving house and, ahem, being on holiday for three months. I was in America for two of those months and it certainly lit a fire in my belly for continuing to try to be an ethical consumer. I have been many times before but never with the same interests as I have now. The US is definitely the land of plenty and it is shocking how much goes to waste. Everywhere in the cities there are bins overflowing with plastic bottles. Many houses do no recycling at all. Everything is served in and with plastic. The supermarkets are so large and plentiful that it made me feel sick to think of 50% if it going to waste there and then, and another 25% in people's homes.

So you can imagine that I was not pleased to return to England and find  a few of my poor plants had not survived my absence. Sal and Ed had tried to keep them going but not all had made it. Still, it is my first shot. We have managed to successfully grow so much lettuce that we did not know what to do about it. Our chillis are going strong and about to yield us some fruit I believe. We still have tomatoes -both cooking and cherry- growing and have been eating them throughout the summer. Although my garlic perished before it reached full size, I ate the bulb and it was delicious.

Next season I am looking forward to trying more different kinds of seeds. Certainly growing lettuce saves a lot of money and is very easy, so I will be doing that again. I would also like to grow some spring onions and, if we have the space, try some root vegetables. Growing your own food brings an enormous sense of satisfaction. Not only do you help support life, you then get to eat it. It's a winner. I bought my greenhouse from Wilkinsons. It was around £30 and it's brilliant.

This weekend Sal and I were at her parent's farm in East Yorkshire. Her stepdad has given us two huge bags of vegetables, including beetroot, swede, turnip and leek. I will be making a lot of autumny food this week with these wonderful veg and will let you know some recipes in my next post. Autumn is a wonderful time for veg and I am very excited to have the likes of squash, leek and swede back in full swing. Remember there are tonnes of berries out there too right now so get picking. I have picked some sloes and will be making gin later today. I already have damson gin and raspberry vodka on the go. They'll be delicious by December. For recipes, check my baking blog at

See you soon, green beans.