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Saturday, January 31, 2015

Lately

I have said before that Australia Day is fairly low key here and mostly business as usual. However, lamingtons are a must, in some form.  Last year I made Brydie's lamington cake and this year I made JJ's lamington cupcakes.  Thank you blog friends for sharing the lamington love.  


An unruly tangle of rockmelons, cucumbers, tomatoes and zucchinis. 




Slow magazine is full of inspiration.  I am not sure I will ever actually be slow, but reading about it seems like a good place to start.

If you have any interest in bees or honey, Backyard Bees by Doug Purdie is not only visually beautiful but full of valuable information.  Some mouth-watering honey recipes at the end are a bonus.  

I rarely add new blogs to my reading list these days simply because I can barely keep up with my favourites as it is.  But, I have just discovered Olive and Oak.  This blog just has an honest feel about it with gorgeous photography. 


Tomatoes, garlic, basil and olive oil.  All home produced and heading for the oven.


As you can see I have made a few change to my blog page in an attempt to make it cleaner and hopefully easier to read on mobile devices.  Please excuse any glitches you might find while I am fine tuning a few things.  The technical side of my blog knowledge is limited! 

I wonder what you are baking or growing or reading?

I hope you have some sun warm tomatoes on your kitchen bench x

Saturday, January 17, 2015

The relief of rain

One week ago we were struggling with temperatures above 40°C, dust and dry dams.  Fast forward one week and we have now received 60mm of rain.  For now, the temperature has dropped and the dust has been washed off the trees, grass, animals and humans alike.  Our dams are yet to fill but we are grateful for damp soil. 


Although it might not look like it, this water is part of an intermittent creek system that flows through our property once every few years.  This time the flow is slow, but the novelty of having fresh water meandering through the paddock never wears off. 


This sweet little home was blown from a tree during the rain and I found it, freshly sprinkled with tiny rain drops.  


In non-weather related news, I have met another blog friend in real life!  Since my blogging journey began I have only managed to meet a handful of blogging friends face to face.  This week I met Zara who generously gave me one of her handmade, vintage creations.  Over lunch and a coffee we chatted about old buildings, honey, op shops, moving house, bread making, Kitchen Aid attachments, Saltwater sandals and everything in between.  Slowly but surely blogging really does create some amazing connections. 


How is life at your place?

Is it raining? 

Have you met a new friend?

Wishing you a lovely weekend x

Friday, January 9, 2015

Colour in my world

Right now my world is engulfed in shades of red, brown and orange with the occasional sprinkle of green.  The summer sun is dazzling and almost everything is covered in fine red dust. 

Bright work shirts inject colour into our day no matter what farm jobs we are tackling.  I have come to the conclusion that brightly coloured, long sleeved shirts do far more than just protect us from the sun and scrapes and scratches.  They also give us a tiny sparkle and sometimes in the heat and dust any sparkle is welcome. 


A powdery road, shimmering sky and an endless horizon. 


A richly coloured, complacent cow. 


Our sheep are resilient creatures, even their wool cannot escape from being tinged with dust. 


An enormous, freshly cleaned out dam with a tiny girl right at the bottom, just waiting for rain. 


Closer to the house, vibrant colours picked straight from the garden. 


What colours are you seeing in your world today?  I hope they are pretty. 

Wishing you a happy Friday and a lovely weekend ahead.  

Friday, January 2, 2015

In My Kitchen, January 2015

The Christmas table complete with a gingerbread, icing sugar and olive branch forest.  Our Christmas and New Year period involved a steady flow of family and friends visiting, some tasty meals, yabby catching expeditions to the dam, a few late nights and a few cold drinks.  It was fun and low key, just the way it should be.


I am still shelling chickpeas that I grew as a green manure crop last year.  With only one or two peas in each pod some patience is required for this job.   


The festivities and Christmas cooking might be over but farm work rolls on and workers still need to be fed.  After harvesting apricots in December I made a batch of apricot jam using this recipe from Sophie’s blog and book.  With plenty of jam on hand, jam tarts seemed an obvious choice for some New Year’s Day baking.  When tarts need to be transported to the paddock or further afield I have found muffin cases provide extra stability when packed snugly into plastic containers.  Packing food safely and neatly gives me a sense of satisfaction, strange I know!


The first Snake beans for the season are heading for my kitchen.  They are growing in the middle of a tomato and basil jungle which doesn't seem to be worrying them, so far.


Bloggers are some of the kindest people I know.  Just prior to Christmas I was truly touched when our mail plane delivered a parcel all the way from Anne in England.  I know I am not the only blogger who loves enamel ware.  Jane and Brydie, don’t you just love this mug?  The bottle of Slamseys Blackberry Gin is disappearing quickly.  Gin is a lovely tipple, who knew?  Thank you Anne.  


Are you baking or packing or harvesting or enjoying a quiet festive drink?  
I hope you are enjoying January so far.

As always I am linking up Celia and many other busy kitchens from all across the world.