Tuesday, 14 July 2015

Hay and other stuff including the C word.... in July! (Sorry)

Col spent several hours over the weekend shifting hay bales from the field up the road. I'm glad to say this didn't involve too much physical work as he was using the front forks on the tractor to lift big round bales onto the trailer and delivering them to a stables 4 miles away, where he just rolled them off. The girl who is having all this hay is going to set up a standing order to pay us each month as she can't afford it all at once. I would really have preferred to have sold it to someone who could pay straight away, so I hope this works out OK. She has also bought some small bales from another farmer and Col will be helping her move those too.We have already been paid for all of our small bales from here, so that cheque has gone into the bank.

After delivering the small bales it was obvious that the wooden part of the sides of the old horse box trailer were falling to bits. Now this is the trailer we want to use to take the garden bits and Col's workshop stuff to wherever, whenever, we move. So mending the trailer is  his job for this week.
It's already had new tires and a new floor so should be good as new(ish) once he's finished.

The other thing he did at the weekend was to help out someone who's writing articles for Smallholder Magazine. This bloke knows us through Suffolk Smallholders Society and needed someone with an old tiller rotovator so he could take some photos of the parts and how they go together. Col also borrowed our neighbours Mantis tiller and that's also been photographed to appear too. As a thank you for his help he was given a bottle of red wine which has gone into the wine cellar ( just a wine crate in the cupboard in the utility room!) I don't drink any alcohol at all and Col only likes an occasional beer and wine at Christmas so most of the bottles we are given end up being passed onto someone else and this one will have a muslin bag of mulled wine spices tied to it and will go into one of the Christmas Hampers I'm putting together. Raspberry Vinegar is another thing I'm making and that  got started on Monday. I've already made the lavender sachets,  whiskey marmalade and two lots of jam. Next will be chutneys and mustard. Then chocolate truffles nearer to Christmas. I've been looking for something to put all the things in but baskets - even second-hand - are silly prices.

Discovered this recipe - on a scrappy bit of paper torn from somewhere - when I was sorting out my recipe folder. It didn't have a name, and I've altered it a bit anyway, so it's been christened.................

Chicken wings in a tasty sauce  
This was the amount I used for 4 chicken wings, served up with noodles and stir fry veg (carrots,onion,courgette and pepper - all home grown of course) it's was enough for us.

Make a few slits  in the fleshy part of the chicken wings
In a bowl mix together 4 tbsp tomato ketchup, 3tbsp clear honey, 2tbsp soy sauce, 1tbsp sweet chilli sauce and 1 tbsp balsamic vinegar. Add the wings to the bowl and mix them round , then pop in fridge for at least an hour, give them another mix round if you remember.
Turn the mix into a roasting tin and cook at 170C Fan oven or Gas 5 for 45 minutes, basting once or twice.
Lift out the wings, add just a little boiling water to the remaining sauce, just to thin and loosen all the sticky bits, stir well and mix with the stir fried veg and noodles.

I've added this recipe to the Recipes From My Suffolk Kitchen page.

Today was weeding day. The long front flower bed was a right ol' mess because lots of  the self seeded annuals had died off. Now it's tidy but with several empty spaces. Do I spend to fill it up when we might not be here to see it? The strawberry bed was another place that got sorted, lots of plants have died  due to the dry weather, we have to do so much watering in the poly tunnels that stuff outside often gets left to fend for itself.
I've potted up 5 of  the Walnut seedlings that popped up this year. I've found 7 so far but one is in the middle of the raspberries so I can't get at it and the other is a bit to close to a buried water pipe.
2 seedlings I found several years ago are now trees 6 foot tall on the edge of the campsite.Now what do I do with these babies? I may have to give them to someone to babysit them until we find a new  home.

( Thanks to Dawn at Doing It For Ourselves for reminding me to dig up the walnut seedlings after reading her post yesterday)

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Sue