About Me

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Fifty six year old empty-nester. Wife to one, mum to four and nan to three precious grandies. Living simply is my passion, I enjoy growing food, living healthy and playing with a variety of crafts. I am always up for a bargain and love to op shop for vintage treasures.

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Veggie Garden Update

The good news is that my veggie garden is doing great!

I think it may be because of the cool weather and rain. We are yet to have our normal scorching hot days that we have come to expect at this time of year.  I guess that is still coming...

I have adjusted the shade cloth to hang higher over the veggies.


 It's a jungle under there.

 Pumpkins galore!

 





Capsicum plants in there somewhere.

 Potatoes, beetroot, spring onions.



 Tiny tomatoes.

Carrots.

Kale and sweet potatoes.




Rock melon.

Rock melon climbing

Cucumber.



Straggly looking tomatoes, still producing though.


 It is looking very lush at the moment.
Zucchini plants in the front of photo.


More pumpkins climbing.


The rhubarb is doing so well this year, I am picking more than I can handle.

How is your garden looking this time of year?
And has the weather been different from other years?





Thursday, January 22, 2015

Recipe Post - Old Fashioned Rhubarb Cake

As I am picking plenty of rhubarb from the garden, what better way to use up some by making this cake.  It is so moist and is just lovely for a dessert J


The recipe can be found here at Slow Living Essentials.

I baked the cake the way Christine has described it here, but the old original recipe is pictured on her blog.


Old Fashioned Rhubarb Cake
125g butter, softened
1 cup sugar
1 egg
1 tsp vanilla extract
2 cups plain flour
1 tsp bicarb soda (baking soda)
1 cup buttermilk (I used 1/4 cup natural yoghurt made up to 1 cup with regular milk)
3 cups finely chopped rhubarb

Topping
1/2 cup soft brown sugar
1-2 tbs butter

In a medium mixer bowl, beat the butter and sugar until creamy. Add the egg and vanilla and mix well. Sift over the flour and bicarb in 2-3 batches, alternating with the milk, mixing gently. A couple of tablespoons of milk may be needed if the mixture is a little on the dry side. Stir through the chopped rhubarb and place into a greased springform tin.

To make the topping, melt the butter and add the sugar. Stir well and then crumble it over the top of the cake mixture. Bake for around 40 mins in a moderate oven, until lightly golden and a skewer comes out clean. Best eaten warm with cream!

Enjoy!

Monday, January 19, 2015

Random Post - Around Here

We have had some hot days...
44.9C  (113F)


And some much needed rain...




This is how I dry clothes without a clothes dryer when it is raining and humid!
Hubby needed his uniform for work.


Rainy day sunset.


On my needles...

Some boot toppers for my daughter to take on her overseas trip next month.
 She liked them, and would like another two pair in different shades.



 For those that don't know, these are boot toppers J


From the garden to the kitchen.
Kale, rhubarb, cucumber, grapes, celery.
Zucchini, capsicum, tomatoes.
The kale, celery and cucumber were used in green juices.  I also tried making kale chips.

And zucchini chips.

I stuffed and baked some over sized zucchini, vegetarian style, oh so yum!




Baking

I have been playing around with some bread making using this recipe.  I had run out of dinner rolls so instead of running to the shop to get more, I had a go at making my own.

My first attempt looked more like small lunch rolls, although they were still eaten. The second batch turned out a little too big, they were more like hamburger buns lol!


Bread rolls rising in the warm car...

The finished product
Hamburger buns!

That's okay though, they were soon gobbled up when I made chicken burgers for lunch the next day.

I decided to have another attempt yesterday...

 Here is the dough after forty minutes in the warm car.

I divided the dough in half, then took one half and divided down the middle, formed into rounds and placed in the loaf tin. The other half was formed into dinner rolls.  I did this by rolling dough into a circle and cutting into twelve triangles. I then rolled them from the wide side in. 

I placed them back into the warm car to rise for another forty minutes. Then they were baked for thirty minutes.

 This time they turned out better, so I was happy, and they taste pretty good too.

 I also made some naan bread but I seem to have forgotten to take a photo...

I mixed up a double batch of Cranberry Hootycreek Biscuits and baked half and froze the rest for later.


And...

I am getting back into walking mode.  I definitely need to after all the Christmas food I consumed...just thirty to forty minutes a day, when I can fit it in.

Progress is slow with the shed.  
Hubby says he is going for the record of slowest shed build ever lol!

How was your week?