Thursday, 14 July 2022

Thursday, 14-07-22

 Today's garden happy -  after yesterday's whinge at the tomatoes, something must've struck home because looky-look, I know it's only the vaguest tint but better than nowt, don't you think?

Morning, everyone.  I know yesterday was rather hot but it was, I thought, a nice, more easily bearable hot with plenty of sunshine.  The new fans helped, of course.  I am very glad I got more heavy duty ones than the plastic kind - they certainly throw out a good coolness and are pretty quiet too.
The sun's shining brightly right now and it is delightfully fresh outside.  It's in weather like this that I am most thankful for the shade cast by next door's garden.

I had a delightful time at Lathcoat's yesterday.  There were loads of strawberries with more to come, not so many raspberries but still enough to fill my container, plenty of apricots and also plums although only one row of trees was pickable as the others had been sprayed and won't be open for picking until the 18th - but when they are open, there will be absolutely loads.  The plums and apricots have to finish ripening in the bowl so I will have to check them every day - oh, the hardship!

They don't allow the public to pick apples but the trees are totally laden - I can't wait until they start appearing in the shop (but will have to!)

In the shop they had loads of frozen black cherries so I scooped up a big bagful for Julia's jam and also for cherry gin or vodka.  When we met up Monday afternoon, the others were saying how much they loved my fruit gins (that's usually part of my Christmas present to them) so I'd better make sure I have some ready for this Christmas.  I have damsons in the freezer - my damson gin went down a real treat two Christmasses ago.
(Apologies for the naughty language!)

When I weighed what I had, it was a useful quarter of the recipe I usually use which made working the sugar out very easy (although it's not an exact science) so I used the lot for the jam and will just have to get some more for the cherry gin - now I've thought of it, I really do fancy some, especially over Christmas (sorry again!).
So now I have two bigger pots of delicious black cherry jam for Julia with personalised labels and one mini pot for me - I don't get through a lot of jam nowadays.

I also scooped some mixed Chinese stirfry veg, just enough for two portions for me, and some 'Californian fruit salad' (which is just a nice mixture), both frozen.  I do like their way of doing it - you just scoop what you want into a bag.  Same for dry goods like oats, pasta, etc.  Take what you want and they weigh it at the check out.
I have no idea how prices compare - but it's this whole thing of supporting a thriving local business, not to mention that it is a really nice place to visit.  Down to earth but with a few posh things if you're looking for an edible gift of some kind.  Not cheap but not shocking either and great quality.

Goodness, hasn't this turned into a greedy blog entry!

Today, I'm going to Chris' earlier than usual for our coffee and chat as she's very busy later on.  I then want to go to Morrisons to get some gin (raspberry liqueur today!) and some diet lemonade.  Then, in the afternoon, Julia and Harry are coming to check that Julia can access my back garden.  I have a ramp, she's bringing a ramp, so fingers crossed.  Hopefully, they are staying for a cuppa and some strawberries too.  I might make some shortbread if I feel energetic - amazingly, I have butter available and the 3-2-1 recipe makes it so easy to adapt the amounts.

Then, in the evening, I am popping round to Beth's to make arrangements.  Alex's graduation is coming up and we have invitations.  More about that another time.

And that's about it.  Plenty of time to chill and relax - perfect.  I'm so lucky.
All the best, everyone, and take care in this heat.  Water is our best friend at the moment.  xx


  1. The C word is banned until August so I'll have no more bad language from you young lady :-) I wish you lived a bit closer. I'd take you foraging for greengages, cherry plums and blackberries in a few weeks.

    1. I wish I did too - that would be such fun. xx

  2. I'll forgive you for the C word but just this once!

    I wish there was a Lathcoats equivalent here. One of the farm shops sell the assorted frozen veg and frozen fruit which you scoop as much as you want and pay be weight but there's nowhere close that does PYO . I may be envious!

    Hope the access for your friend worked and strawberries and shortbread was enjoyed by all. xx

    1. Sadly, she wasn't able to come. There will be another time.

      We're very lucky to have Lathcoats, I know. I so appreciate it. xx

  3. Patricia Green14 July 2022 at 16:04

    I came across a recipe of yours some years ago. It was basically a Victoria sponge cake made in the Thermomix. I still use the recipe to this day. Thank you for developing it.

    1. I'd forgotten that. I'm so glad it has been so very useful. xx

  4. This post is making me feel hungry :)
    I bought myself a new fan yesterday, before they're all sold out! Xx

    1. That was wise. They tend to go like - er - hot cakes (!) when it's like this. x

  5. I have just been thinking it is gift making time, and your gins and vodkas sound perfect.

    God bless.

    1. You have to think of these things, don't you. They take make. xx