Saturday, 25 June 2011

Gooseberry wine recipe

Heading for the bucket later this afternoon :)

Friday, 24 June 2011

Playing gooseberry

Managed to avoid the rain for long enough to get the first bush stripped this afternoon - 6 lbs 6 oz from just one bush, 4 more to do, some red. I'll bottle a lot of them for winter I think, that's my favourite method of preserving, and doesn't use any energy in the storage ofcourse. Mind you, there'll be enough to ahve some find their way into teh brewing bucket I should think!

Another welcome visitor

This popped up in the orchard, but until it flowered I couldn't positively ID it. When it did, I recognised it as a verbascum, so did a search - God bless Google Images :lol:

It's verbascum blattaria L.f. erubescens, native to North America - so, begs the question - how did it end up in my orchard in Dorset? Answers on a postcard................. :lol:

Scarlet tiger moth

Spoted these spectacular moths in the garden this morning; scarlet tiger moths, stunning colouration on them. They are a day flying moth, and the caterpillers feed on comfrey - I have a big stand behind the wooden greenhouse, so there's another beneficial use for comfrey in the garden!

Tuesday, 21 June 2011

Lavender and chocolate marble cake

New recipe this one, very successful, so pleased with it. It's a new take on the rather retro (now) marble cake we used to have a lot of as children - I remember pink and yellow and  chocolate I think! lol

6oz butter, softened
6 oz lavender sugar
3 eggs
6 oz self-raising flour
2 heaped tbsp good cocoa

Cream butter and sugar, add beaten eggs and mix thoroughly. Add flour and beat well until smooth and a soft dropping consistency - a little milk may be required, depending on size of eggs. Divide mixture into two, and add the cocoa to one half, mix well. Place dollops of each colour aternately in a prepared loaf tin. When it's all in, take a pointed knife and draw through and around mixture in tin to just mix the colours into each other a bit -  not too much, or it will be speckled rather than marbled. Bake in a hottish oven until well risen and firm to the touch, turn out and cool on a wire rack.

Solstice blessing for a special friend

May your life be blessed with joy and song

Your bad days short, your good days long;

May flowers bloom around your feet,

Your path be long, your journey sweet.

May love and laughter fill your day,

And friendships true along the way;

Sun and rainbows from above,

Live for now and know you're loved.

Monday, 20 June 2011

Sol sistere

As the sun spirals its longest dance,

Cleanse us

As nature shows bounty and fertility

Bless us

Let all things live with loving intent

And to fulfill their truest destiny

Wiccan blessing for Summer