Tuesday, 22 November 2016

Butternut Squash and Sweet Potato Soup

Another one of those silky smooth autumn soups great to have on a chilly day. I added some carrot to this recipe as I had one lying around plus some chilli flakes for extra warmth. If you don’t like it spicy, leave them out. A swirl of cream on top is also nice. Makes loads so I froze enough for another day.

Squash Soup
Ingredients Method
1 tbsp olive oil
1 large onion, chopped
1 butternut squash, diced
1 sweet potato, diced
1 litre vegetable stock
Pinch of chilli flakes
Salt and Pepper
Melt a knob of butter in a large saucepan.

Add the onions, fry until soft, than add the butternut squash and sweet potato and stir for a minute coating the vegetables in butter.

Add the stock, chilli flakes, salt and pepper, bring to the boil, turn down and simmer for 45 minutes.

Blend the soup and serve with crusty bread.

Sunday, 20 November 2016


I really didn’t think that yeast would go off, but after making a few bricks, I realised it does!! So into the bin the old yeast went and new sachets were purchased. It’s so much more satisfying seeing it rise, than see a disappointing hard lump in the bottom of a mixing bowl doing nothing. What a difference a new sachet makes. Here’s my bread after it’s second prove with and without its greenhouse, then after, fresh out of the oven.

Bread 1 Bread 2

I use this basic recipe http://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/2060/easy-white-bread but for this loaf I swapped 150g of the white bread flour for some wholemeal. Some recipes suggest covering your loaf with a bag or cling film while it’s proving, but I use a shower cap (the type you get in hotel rooms) which are perfect for this. They sit snuggly round the bowl to give the bread it’s own little greenhouse.

Bread 3

Wednesday, 16 November 2016

Not sure it was worth It

From this basket full -


I got these -

Shelled Beans

I’d picked a big basket full of beans hoping to get loads of big fat Shellies (I’ve read that’s what they’re called ), but they were tiny and not sure it was worth the 2 hours work. But at least I’ve got enough to throw into a Minestrone soup. Perhaps I needed to leave the beans a bit longer to get even fatter for plumper bigger beans. I’ve left 1 plant in the garden to let the beans get big, so we’ll see what happens in a few weeks time.

Saturday, 12 November 2016

What we spent in September and October

Again, with visitors most of September and October in the UK, the spending went completely adrift. But with November upon us we need to watch the budget again and with all the freezers full of garden produce we need to eat what we’ve grown this year and last. It’s fruit we seem to have the most of, figs, plums, blackberries, redcurrants, raspberries, rhubarb and apples so to use some of them up, we’ve started making smoothies which make a lovely change for breakfast. We threw in plums, blackberries, squidgy bananas, honey, vanilla sugar, yoghurt and a splash of milk to make this delicious deep purple smoothie.


We also have an abundance of squashes this year which thankfully keep for a long time. They make the most amazing silky soup, I’ll post a recipe soon.

Wednesday, 2 November 2016

Autumn Harvest


We’d left our tomatoes, beans, courgettes, peppers, aubergines and figs to fend for themselves while away, so after a month we really thought we’d come back to nothing but rotting veg. So we were very surprised to find that we still had tomatoes ripening, figs on the tree, juicy plump peppers and courgettes the size of marrows. The beans had gone mad but they're a bit big and rubbery, so I’m going to remove the beans, have a go at cooking with them and save some to plant next year. A bucket of tomatoes have been made into pasta sauce, soup and some frozen. The figs have been slow this year but we’ve got enough to make some fig bars and crumbles. The photo above is just a fraction of what we’ve picked but I have to thank Sue for the basil which came in very handy for the pasta sauce.