Tuesday, 4 October 2011

Hey there blog friends.  I've had real problems getting access to my blog for the past couple of months.  I was frozen out of it but today I thought I'd try again. 

Now that blogger has accepted my mobile number I'm hoping I will be able to give little picture updates from time to time. 

I've missed you and visiting your blogs.  Hope you are all doing well xxxJ

Saturday, 21 May 2011

Spring Oak Leaf Wine

Recipe


1 gallon of oak leaves (Spring or Autumn)

4 oranges*

1 lemon*

4lbs sugar

Wine yeast


Wash the leaves in cold water removing all woody stalks, damaged leaves, caterpillars and other hedgerow stow aways (I found several green caterpillars and a black and red caterpillar of the White Ermine Moth). Place the prepared oak leaves into a gallon brewing bucket, cover in boiling water and leave over night.


Strain and separate the leaves from the fluid. The leaves can now be composted.


Add the liquid to a large pan, preferably stainless steel. If like me, you do not have a pan large enough, split the liquid between two pans and ensure that you spread the ingredients equally between the two pots.


Add sugar, juice of lemons and oranges, and thin peel. It is important to make sure that there is no white pith on the peel so I grated the white side of the peel until the pith has been removed and the peel is very thin.


Place some dried wine yeast into a glass with a little water that has been allowed to cool until hand hot from boiling. This activates the yeast.


Bring to the boil and simmer for 20 minutes. When cool pour the liquid through a muslin cloth into a demi John and add the yeast and water. Top up the demi john with cooled boiled water until almost full. Add air lock and bung.


Leave to ferment. When all fermentation has ceased rack off into wine bottles and leave for 6 months. The longer you can leave the wine the better it will taste.


When ready to drink reserve one bottle to enjoy with friends at a solstice celebration. Enjoy!




The same recipe can be found widely over the web and in hedgerow wine books. I used a 1970 copy of the Farmers Weekly Collection.


* When making I did not have any oranges so instead used 3 satsumas and 2 lemons. I'm sure it will still taste great!

Saturday, 23 April 2011

A wee bit more...










Thank you for all that have left comments the past few days. I will answer all very soon. The sun has been out to play and I have a lot of friends and family visiting the island. Happy days :))



Tuesday, 19 April 2011

Inspirational Forests

Stepping into a forest

Stepping into a dream

Reflecting lakes

Textures of moss, lichen and bark

Enchanting birdsong

A breath of life



This months Festival of the Trees is being hosted by Suzi of Spirit Whispers

To enter a post please email your posts weblink to:

suziscribbles [at] yahoo [dot] co [dot] uk

Thursday, 14 April 2011

Alexanders


A couple of posts ago I showed a picture of what I know by the name of wild Welsh Angelica. I posted the same picture onto a foraging homepage asking for more information. I now know that this plant is known as Alexanders or Roman Parsley. Like Angelica, it is not native to the UK, instead it was introduced by the Romans and has naturalised over the years and now grows like a common weed all over Britain. Especially near the coastline.

The entire plant is edible. The young reddish stalks are meant to taste beautiful gently sauted in butter having an asparagus like taste. The older stems can be used in a similar fashion to angelica stalks. The leaves and flowers are edible in salads and the roots can be eaten like parsnips.

I found a recipe for Pickled Alexanders Buds on the Eat Weeds Blogs and have made up a jar. Will let you know how they taste when I open them :)