Posted in cooking, Food, Fruit, gardening, Greenhouse, In the garden, Organic Gardening, Self reliance, Summer, vegetables

A Small but perfect Harvest

I do love growing things, it makes me very happy. Here’s an example of my small but perfect harvest 🙂

Me and Mr O. love broad beans so they are a must. I’ve never grown the yellow beans before and they have done really well.

Delicious cucumber, really sweet,

and my first ripe chilli is being used tonight in dinner!

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Posted in Food, Fruit, gardening, Greenhouse, In the garden, Organic Gardening, Self reliance, Summer, vegetables

News From My Greenhouse

I just realised that I haven’t reported on how things are doing in my green house. Well they are doing grand!

I have two lovely aubergine plants with fruit and more flowers,

four chilli plants doing amazing, full of fruit,

and twelve tomato plants, several different varieties, performing quite well.

I am so enjoying growing. All my plants are being fed with organic seaweed plant food. 🙂

Posted in Food, Fruit, gardening, Greenhouse, In the garden, Organic Gardening, Polytunnel, spring

Tomatos and Chillies

Over the last month, as you know, I’ve been starting to sow my seeds.
I went down to water them today and not only did I have cayenne chillies and aubergines sprouting which I knew about

….I have a Roma tomato

and a birds eye chilli as well!

I just love it when everything starts growing 🙂

Posted in Food, Fruit, gardening, Greenhouse, In the garden, Organic Gardening, plants, spring, vegetables

Tomatos

I have just written a postcard to a lady who has sowed up to 150 varieties of tomatoes in one go. Her enthusiasm was contagious so straight away after writing the card I was out in the garden sowing mine. I definitely didn’t worry how many I sowed! 🙂

I sowed 12 different varieties, a couple saved on kitchen tissue so I won’t know the variety of those until they have fruited. Some of these are the ones I got free from a magazine.


I find, with me, extravagance pays. Last year I didn’t sow many and didn’t do very well. I hope this year is going to be different!

I sowed them in organic vegetable compost that I bought. When I pot them on I will use my own homemade compost. I don’t tend to sow into my own compost because of the weed seeds in it.

Posted in challenges, cooking, Food, Fruit, Hints & Tips, home, Preserving, Self reliance

New Years Marmalade

It’s the time of the year for marmalade, the Seville oranges have been in the shops and thoughts are directed to making a years supply of marmalade. The reason for this sudden desire to slice 6 pounds of oranges is two fold. It tastes better and it’s cheaper!

For several years now I’ve put the oranges in a food processor to chop them, but this year I decided to slice by hand. Oh my word, I was so surprised how pleasant it was to sit and slice the oranges by hand (with a nice serrated steak knife) in the quiet. A very simple life thing to do, and it was easier to extract the pips too!

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Once the sliced oranges have soaked over night they are meant to be simmered to reduce the liquid by a third. When I had heated the the water in the pan and added the sugar I realised I hadn’t done that!!!

I managed to rescue it by taking some liquid out, adding more sugar and a bottle of liquid pectin. Here on my pantry shelf are twenty jars of marmalade. I now feel like Moomin Mama and I have a very happy husband!

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It tastes exceptionally good too 🙂

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Posted in Autumn, challenges, Food, Fruit, gardening, Greenhouse, In the garden, Organic Gardening, Polytunnel, Self reliance, vegetables

Garden Success

How do you see success in your garden? Are you like me expecting that you can achieve what you might  consider great things as well as working and looking after you family and your house?! I continually have to put this success into perspective. There is only so much time you can put into growing things unless you are putting all of your time into being self sufficient (so my husband keeps telling me)!

I’ve just been out to explore the garden that gets attended way less than I’d like, to pick some things for lunch and this is some of what I saw.

I have pumpkins,

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beetroot,

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chillies,

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peppers

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and tomatoes

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and my husband says I should call this success! 🙂

Posted in cooking, Food, Fruit, leftovers, Summer, Uncategorized

Banana Pancakes

Well there’s been a lot happening at Simple Life HQ, so much so it has kept me away from you.

We’ve had some hot weather the last week or so here and though I love bananas I can’t eat them fast enough. When it’s hot you need some recipes using the ones which have become very ripe! I generally google around for ideas and then make something completely different or inspired be what I’ve seen.

So banana pancakes! I just used the basic batter recipe that I use for just about everything 2 oz flour (I like to use gram flour) 2 eggs and as much milk I need to get it to the consistency I want.  (recipe for two people) and then just added half a ripe banana mashed up.

Then I sliced the rest of the banana up and layered them with the pancakes, yogurt and runny honey.

Yum!

Pancakes 1 Pancakes 2
It was delicious.

Using gram flour makes it very light and I use sheep’s yogurt which is very light too and all very good for you 🙂