Saturday, 14 September 2013

Egg & Veg Muffins

Apart from working shifts and not getting breakfast until after 12 some days, I'm also doing a Boot Camp exercise plan at the moment and there are lots of restrictions on food.  Well, not lots, but it makes it hard to grab'n'run.

I've adapted an Egg Muffin recipe I found, and this is what I've come up with.  There are very few measurements because it's based on how much and what veg I've got in!  There was supposed to be some meat of some sort in as well, but I forgot it!

The original recipe was 12 muffins, using 12 eggs, so my logic was 6 eggs = 6 muffins.

Today's recipe was:
6 eggs
1 courgette
1 onion
2 mushrooms
some salt

Mix the eggs up in a bowl with the salt.
Fry up the veges.

Combine the eggs and veg in the bowl and mix again.

Pour into muffin cases and cook for about 30 mins.

I'm going to try them out with a mixture of other veg another day, maybe remember some meat (perhaps a bacon & egg muffin, but gotta be healthier than the mc-version?)
6 eggs = 7 muffins today!

Thursday, 22 August 2013

Rhubarb Custard Pie

This is a friend's family recipe, so big thanks to her for sharing!

Short sweet pastry
2 cups of rhubarb (I used a bit more than 2 cups because of my dish)
2 eggs
2 tablespoons melted butter
1 cup of sugar
2 tablespoons flour

Line a backing dish with 2/3 of pastry.

Chop the rhubarb into 1-2cm pieces and put into pastry lined dish. 

Mix the eggs, melted butter, sugar and flour together and pour over rhubarb. 

Using last 1/3 roll out and lattice cut, put on top. 

(forgot to put the rhubarb in the pic, but I'm sure you know what chopped rhubarb looks like!)

Bake at 400*f (200*C) for 10min then reduce to 350*f (180*C) for 30min or until custard is set (after following the instructions and adding an extra 10 mins cooking, the custard hadn't set, so I put it back up to 200*C for another 15 mins).

ENJOY (definitely the easiest part!)

Wednesday, 21 August 2013

Rhubarb & Lemon Jam

Using the leftover pulp from the Rhubarb Lemonade, I made a couple of jars of jam.  I've got my trusty Edmonds Cookbook which doesn't just give recipes, but tips as well, so I just got a rough idea of what I was supposed to do, and we'll just see how it turns out!

There was roughly 2 cups of pulp, which had already had sugar added, so I flattened out the pulp in the bottom of the pan, just covered it with water and brought it to the boil.

Then I added about 1.5 cups of sugar (technically, the recipes all showed 1:1, but I ran out of sugar and figured there was still some in the pulp).

Boiled until it looked right and put in jars.

Rhubarb Lemonade

Halved the recipe because of the size of my pan!  The full recipe is below, what I did is in itallics as usual!  I got this recipe from

8 cups chopped rhubarb (4 cups)
3 cups sugar (1.5 cups)
3 tablespoons grated lemon peel
1.5 cups lemon juice (3/4 cup)
18 cups water (9 cups)

Combine the rhubarb, sugar, and grated lemon peel into a large saucepan and bring to a boil. 

Reduce heat to medium-low and simmer until the sugar has dissolved and the rhubarb releases its juice and starts to break up, about 10 minutes. 

Remove from heat and stir in the lemon juice. 

Pour the rhubarb mixture through a fine sieve, pressing out as much liquid as possible. 

To serve, mix the rhubarb syrup with 18 cups of water (1 cup of syrup per 3 cups of water) and pour over ice.

I'm pretty sure I'll be using the pulp to make jam afterwards....waste not, want not! 


Tuesday, 20 August 2013

Rhubarb & Pineapple Jelly

What to do with the possibly-last crop of rhubarb?  Preferably something I haven't done before..... internet searches, here we come!

As per usual..... the recipe is below, and what I actually did is in itallics!
I have a very good reason (this time) for halving the recipe - I did have enough rhubarb for the full recipe, but remembered in time that my pot doesn't always hold the full amount, so while I was cutting the rhubarb it became clear that 10 cups didn't have a hope in hell of fitting in!

10 cups of chopped rhubarb (5 cups)
1 can (20 oz) of crushed pineapple (undrained) (my can was 227g)
2 cups of sugar (1 cup)
1 packet (6oz) of strawberry flavoured jell-o (1 packet was 135g jelly)

Place the rhubarb, pineapple, and sugar into a large saucepan. 

Bring to a boil over medium heat; cook and stir until rhubarb is tender, about 20 minutes. 

Remove from heat, and stir in gelatin until completely blended. 

Ladle into glass jars or plastic containers to refrigerate or freeze.

I licked the spoon....I've died and gone to heaven!  These may not have time to set!!!  Self-control is necessary!

Monday, 19 August 2013

Rosehip Syrup

I popped round to a friend's house today because she has Rosehips growing and I'd never seen them before.  There, I admit it, purely nosey!

rosehip berries and flower
We did a swap, rhubarb for rosehip, both very happy (and one of her girls ran round with one stalk of rhubarb as an umbrella, it was so big!).

I had a look at some recipes and decided that I would save some of the seeds and see if I could get some to grow for us, and make Rosehip Syrup with the rest.  The recipe didn't say to take the seeds out and as it's going through a jelly strainer, I didn't see the point in deseeding all of them anyway.

So the recipe, as per usual, has in itallics what actually happened.

1kg Rosehips (550g)
3 litres of boiling water (1.5 litres)
500g soft dark brown sugar (250g soft light brown sugar)

Bring to the boil 2 litres of the water (1 litre).

Put rosehips in a food processor until it's a pulp, then add to the water. WooHoo, from here I followed the instructions!

Bring the water back to the boil, remove from heat and allow to steep for 20 minutes.

Pour all into a scalded jelly bag and allow the juice to drip through. Squeeze the bag to get as much liquid as possible.

Add the pulp back to a saucepan containing 1 litre of water (500 ml) and bring back to the boil. Remove from the heat and steep for another 20 minutes before straining through the jelly bag again.  Not bothering to take these photos..... I'm sure you don't need to see the same pics again (but if you do, just look up a bit!)

Add sugar to the strained rosehip liquid, dissolve, allow to simmer for five minutes, then pour into hot, sterilised bottles.

Makes approximately 2 litres (made 1.4 litres)

Friday, 16 August 2013


Just put in a huge order for next years seeds.  Got some really unusual ones too!  Until they arrive, that is all!

Tuesday, 23 July 2013

Rhubarb jam

Using the pulp leftover from making a half batch of the Rhubarb cordial, I made some jam with a simple recipe (adapted from many out of my favourite cookbook that doesn't have a rhubarb jam recipe).

Equal measures of pulp to sugar - mine was 3 cups of pulp to 3 cups of sugar
orange peel - left in from the cordial to boil as flavour, but will remove when putting in jars
1.5 cups water
1/4 cup lemon juice



Bring to the boil briskly. then boil for 30 mins, or until setting point has been reached.

My favourite setting point test is to put a dollop on a plate and if you can draw a line through it and it doesn't join up again, it's okay.
Another test is the drip test.  When you dip a wooden spoon in, there are two drips hanging on instead of a waterfall effect.



Put in jars.

Rhubarb Cordial

one stalk = 486g!
I can't remember where I got this recipe from (not very helpful, I know!) but thought I'd give it a try because we have got a lot of rhubarb picked already and loads more growing!  There's only so much crumble one can eat!

I made rhubarb jam out of the leftover pulp - waste not, want not!

plus sugar
2kg Rhubarb chopped (one stalk weighed 486g!)
2 large Oranges
6 Star Anise (optional)
1.5 litres cold water
Citric Acid (optional to keep it for a long time, I couldn't find any) 
600g sugar

Boil rhubarb in water with 8 large strips of orange peel and juice of both oranges, leave to go to a pinky green mush.  

My pot wasn't big enough, so I did half at a time, I think I should have done it in 1/3 or 1/4 though.
Also, I think it must be the variety of rhubarb, because mine doesn't usually go pinky-green, so I just boiled it till it was mushy. 





Leave to cool. 

Yup, managed this step just fine!  Mental note:  Even halved, it's a lot of rhubarb, so it takes it's own sweet time to cool! 







Strain juice into another pan. 

I didn't have another pan, so I used my jam strainer & bowl and timed it right so that I went to work while it was dripping & I didn't have a chance to poke around and try and rush it! (I know me!)









Put back on heat and add sugar and citric acid.  

1/2 batch pulp and juice separated
The instructions weren't 100% clear here, but I'm assuming it's just the juice I use and I just realised when I got to this point, that I didn't put in the star anise yet.  After a conflab with myself, I decided that I would use 3 star anise when I boiled up the second half of the batch, and then I'd have two different flavours (also not sure if I like star anise after whiffing the jar).


Put into bottles.  

 No problem! 

Sunday, 28 April 2013

28 Apr 2013 - the other fence!

I've been really slack updating my blog this year, so I'll just admit that I'm doing this today, 24 July 2013 and going to backdate it so it appears when it was actually done.  There, admitted guilt, now forgiven!

This fence goes down the other side and I have to say that I didn't do this bit, my better half did.  I did the "from shed to fence" side, if you want to have a nosey.  We'll have a race and see who's lasts longer!  Nothing like a bit of competition at an allotment!

Our neighbours on that side had given up and torn down their fruit cage contraption, which ripped down most of our shared fence- the grass, weeds and nettles were getting really high, so he had to dig away at the fenceline, rip out what he could see of the old mesh that was lost in all the greenery, before the new fence could be put up.  Also, most of the fence posts had been ruined.  Nothing like a challenge, huh?!

 And here's some after pics:

Tuesday, 23 April 2013

23 Apr 2013 - Three Sisters planting started

As planned, I managed to get to the allotment (after sorting a flat tyre on the bike) and started doing the digging.  I was sure I would manage the 10x10ft bed, but realised that even if I dug up the paths, it still wouldn't be wide enough, so I kept it as a 10x6.

Before and after pics are usually a bit dull, but this was a true makeover AND I stuck to the instructions all the way!!! (you have no idea how difficult that was for me!)  Here's the history and how to set out the bed if you're interested.

The self-control was at epic proportions!
I had to weed the whole area first, which went well until I pulled up the green tarp and found that even being covered up for 12+ months, Mares tail survives!
I then had to be more careful to get the whole root out - which I did on about 90% of it (the vinegar-as-weedkiller will have to do for the rest of it!) 
Then I added in the mushroom compost (3 bags) and dug those in. 
I edged the bed and raked the soil/compost around this time I was getting bored and so close to just putting the corn in where I thought it would keep to the pattern needed....but a coffee break soon put me back on track.
I got out the tape measure and did my 18" squares, then put the corn in a diamond shape 6" apart, on alternating heaps - after hearing this, my partner is getting nervous because this could be the new me, and that's a scary thought!

managed to get complete roots out!

Mares tail - 12 months under a cover!

a few decorations and one of the diamonds - front'n'centre