Tuesday, 23 August 2011

Still preserving...... ( and rescuing chickens from the jaws of death! )

I didn't get round to any reading yesterday, when Lovely Hubby arrived home, we sat on the patio drinking coffee and catching up with news.  We storted out the diaries and made as much use of our time in the coming week as we can, our aim is to leave ourselves as free as possible to be able to get up to Scotland to visit our lovely Mum.

Then while LH nipped off the farm to run an errand I decided to use up the  red and green basil plants on my kitchen windowsill they were looking quite sad and past their best. I believe strongly that everything should fulfill it's destiny, and their destiny was Pesto!  So I dug out my yummy recipe and luckily I had all the other ingredients in the store cupboard to be able to whizz up two double batches of this wonderful mixture.  I put it on the Blog once before nip over HERE if you want to use it.

The colours zing out and look wonderful, the Red Basil Pesto started out looking very lavender but settled down to a speckly grey within minutes.  They are nestled securely in the fridge now and will be used over the next couple of weeks in pasta dishes, quiches and well....lots of things.  I made the red one extra garliccy and it smells divine.

When I came to label the Plum Jam the day after making it, I discovered it hadn't set very well, at first I thought I'll just use it as Plum Sauce, but then I bit the bullet and tipped it all back into the jam pan and reboiled it hard.  Now it's back in the jars and although it's still not as firm a set as I would have liked I think it will stay on the toast now.  Reboiling it meant I lost two jars worth through evaporation, a shame but we still have five jars to squirrel away.

Today it's the turn of the tomatoes, because of our extended chat yesterday I forgot to pick any in the polytunnel and when I went in there first thing this morning they were everywhere like wonderful red jewels of every size and shape, I had a HUGE bowl full and thought I'd turn it them all into some jars of sauce while they were so very fresh.  Again using my jam pan so I could do it all in one batch I added lots of garlic, some red onions and lots of other little tasty things from the garden and the cupboards, we'll see how many jars I get when I get the pan out from the bottom oven of the Aga later on today.

Halfway through doing this I had to dash out to defend my girls from horrible Mr Fox and believe me he's a huge brute, he had the cheek to stand looking me straight in the eye, completely miffed that I'd managed to rescue Scrawny Neck from his very jaws!  Now she's also missing all her wing feathers on one side as well as the ones on her neck, not a pretty chicken, but she's MY chicken and by god he's not having her or any of my girls while I'm here to defend them.

Sue xx

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