Thursday, 30 May 2013

Aqueligias and Hostas

The garden seems to have had such a spurt at the moment, what with a bit of sun and a lot of rain everything seems to have just come at once. The Spring bulbs are STILL flowering, yes I do still have the odd daffodil flowering, The tulips have been great but soon get a bit battered with all this rain and wind, but the good old perennials are now shining through and with the lush green growth everywhere are really standing out.

I only have the odd hosta in a pot, the rest I bake my egg shells (having chickens means we do get through a lot of eggs) I keep a enamel dish in the bottom of the oven and all shells get put into it.Once they have been baked a few times I crush the shells, they then get put around the Hosta's as the leaves are first emerging to stop the slugs and snails

Tuesday, 28 May 2013

Stottie cake and Pease Pudding

My mum has just been up north, unfortunately for my cousins funeral. When I say up north my mum is a Geordie now living in the Midlands.She then has great delight in phoning us when ever she goes up to tell us she is having her Stottie cake and Pease Pudding.Now don't be fooled this is not a sweet dish , it is most definitely savoury,Stottie Cake is in fact a bread and I cannot believe I have never made it as we all really love it-hence the phone call and the tease.
This time when she phoned she spoke to her eldest grandson who gave her a bit of a hard time about the tease, so much so she bought some back with her. This then meant hubby and son had to take a trip across to see her yesterday to pick the treats up (I was working).

So Stotty Cake is made in much the same way as most bread recipes and I have checked out a few recipes on line but this one is the one I will be trying

Strong white flour 9oz
Water                  5oz
Yeast 1 sachet
Sugar  1/2 teaspoon
Salt     1/2 teaspoon
Lard                    1oz

Either use your bread maker as usual or put flour into bowl with sugar,salt ,lard and yeast and make a well in the centre,add water incorporating the flour from the edges until you have a ball of dough,knead for 5-10 minutes, then leave in a bowl covered with a tea-towel or cling film until doubled in size.
Then place onto a floured surface and roll into a disc about 20cm (8in) and about 1cm thick
Place on a greased floured tray
Prick about 10 times with a fork
Prove for 2 minutes
Put into a preheated oven 220 C, Gas 7 and immediately turn down the oven to 160 C, Gas 3
Bake for 20 mins

Now to Pease Pudding, we were so lucky as it is not always cooked with ham but mum did us proud and got us the proper stuff.It is yellow split peas with onions and ham and is the texture of hummus with a mild taste.I love it cold and hubby loves it hot as the nursery rhyme says

Pease pudding hot,
Pease pudding cold
Pease pudding in the pot
Nine days old

It would never last that long in our house,lucky if it lasts the day

                                                                  THANKS MUM x

Wednesday, 22 May 2013

Luscious Leaves

It is not just the flowers showing off at the moment, I don't know if it is because everything has been waiting longer than usual but the leaves in my garden are pretty impressive this year




Those observant will notice that one of the plants is not labelled,I can't remember what it is called so if anyone knows please let me know.

Sunday, 19 May 2013

Escape to Exmoor

Another anniversary so yet again away in the motor-home just the two of us and the dog.I spent the latter part of the week checking the weather forecast and finally decided that Exmoor was going to stay dry.So hubby scored over site books and came up with Burrowhayes Farm just outside  Porlock. We were both off Friday so got here just after lunch time, so after a quick bite to eat we decided to walk into Porlock. It's a pretty little town with views of the sea,after eating ice creams we decided to come back via the woods and were delighted to see four red deer.Neither of us had phone or camera so couldn't take any pictures. Saturday we woke to glorious sunshine and after a late breakfast we went off walking again. Immediately out of the site we were here

We didn't need to go much further up the path when we found this amazing beech tree, it had obviously fallen down years ago and hubby counted eighteen branches growing up which had become trees in themselves

As we carried on up through the woods we went along lovely tracks called Granny's Ride and Flora's Ride. There are stables at the farm and you can go out on hacks, some of the tracks were quite steep but you could still see the horses had been along them. We saw plenty of birds and warblers were singing with the Whitethroats on top of the gorse which smelt of coconut

Amongst all of the lovely greens and yellows unfortunately we did see signs of old fire damage

We spent the whole time hoping to see deer again as we both had cameras this time, it wasn't to be but we did just catch a glimpse of a wild pony on the top of Ley Hill

 lovely views of the sea,these high clouds soon blew away to welcome in a much needed hot day

We got back to a lovely lunch, the dog and I then decided as we had two more days to go and it was getting even hotter  we would spend the afternoon having a well deserved relax while hubby went off running.

Wednesday, 15 May 2013

Tulips galore

We were away over the weekend, which considering the weather we weren't going to get much done in the garden any way. But with all the wind I did keep wondering what damage it was going to do, but then again pleased as I knew we needed the rain. There was no need to worry, we came back to everything intact and the garden had come on in leaps and bounds.

The Tulip is 'Gavota' and the Euphorbia cypar. 'Fens Ruby' as the leaves come out they have a lovely bluish tinge to them but these lovely yellow flowers were really shining.The euphorbia does have a habit of spreading but we just lift some and give it away.

I love Tulip 'Westpoint' I didn't have many but unless the squirrel has been helping himself they seem to be disappearing. We do have a problem with badgers but these are in the back garden where they don't tend to roam.

This is Tulip 'Golden Artist' with a Oreganum vulgare 'Aureum' (golden marjoram) 

This is Tulip 'Queen of Night' which I adore and use in different parts of the garden, here it is with Tulip 'Elegant Lady', the photo doesn't show it very well but it has a lovely creamy yellow colour,edged violet pink.

Here it is with Cerinthe major purpurescens

Tulip ' Black Parrot'

Last for now is 'Lasting Love' I put her in a pot as I was not sure where I was going to put her,now she is out I think she will go near Golden Artist.