Sunday, November 28, 2010

Cold Front

Fierce frost. It's not yet December and they've just salted the road for the third time. The ice was an inch and a half thick on the water butt this afternoon and tonight we fired up the wood stove.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Caper Substitute

The climbing (clambering, sprawling) nasturtiums I sowed in June were a long time getting any ambition to go anywhere. But from sometime in late August until now they have been blooming continuously. I've been adding them to salads and now there is a small jar's worth of seeds to pickle for which I have found the following recipe -

Gather the nasturtium seeds immediately after the blossoms have faded and put them to soak in cold salt water for 2 days, stirring them twice each day. Peel and slice 1 shallot, 1 horse-radish, 2 red peppers, and quarter 1 nutmeg. Place these in a glass jar with white wine or simply vinegar, adding salt, pepper, and a few cloves. Put in the drained nasturtium seeds, then cork and seal.

They Can't Ration These by Vicomte de Mauduit, 1940
("All those possessing a roof in the country together with the necessary sticks of furniture and apparels of clothing will be able, if armed with a copy of this book, to live in comfort, in plenty, and in health even if all banks, all shops, and all markets be closed for indefinite periods.")

Sunday, November 07, 2010

Dug-Up Potatoes

A splendid day today. Above, passing through the Horniman Gardens after retrieving the last of the potato crop from the allotment. Below, my beast of burden, saddled with the Aran Victories, pauses for breath.

Tuesday, November 02, 2010

Vote for Cabbage

Graphics from the Philippines general election via designKULTUR

Monday, November 01, 2010

Bubble & Squeak

Take of Beef, Mutton, or Lamb, or Veal, or any other meat, two Pounds and an half, or any other Quantity; let it lay in Salt, till the saline Particles have lock'd up all the Juices of the Animal, and render'd the Fibres too hard to be digested; then boil it over a Turf or Peat Fire, in a Brass Kettle cover'd with a Copper Lid, till it is much done. Then take Cabbage (that which is most windy, and capable of producing the greatest Report) and boil it in a Bell-Metal Pot till it is done enough, or if you think it proper, till it is done too much. Then slice the beef, and souse that and the Cabbage both in a Frying-Pan together, and let it bubble and squeak over a Charcoal Fire, for half an Hour, three Minutes, and two Seconds. Then eat a Quantum sufficit, or two Pounds and a half, and after it drink sixteen Pints of fat Ale, smoak, sleep, snoar, belch, and forget your Book.
A Lecture In Cookery in The Mid-Wife: or, the old woman's magazine
Christopher Smart, 1753