Recycle, Reuse, Repurpose!

I’m always on the lookout for new bits and pieces for the garden, not necessarily always plants though. I recently picked up an old patio chair that someone no longer had any use for and had thrown away. I think that Gary thought that I had lost the plot!!! The old chair had plastic straps across the seat which weren’t really strong enough for what I wanted, so Gary replaced them with metal strips. Then armed with a spray can of metal undercoat and a pot of very pretty blue paint, I got to work transforming the dull old grey chair into a piece for the garden. I love the final result and can’t wait for the ivy geranium to get growing and mingle in and out of the pretty blue structure. On the same outing I also managed to get a small broken base of a metal table that has been turned upside down and secured in the raspberry patch – it is holding a little pot ready to be planted up – and then there was the rack from an old golf buggy that I have pushed into the ground and placed an old baking dish filled with stones on, and then topped it with a pot of strawberries – What a wonderful treasure hunt…

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Spring has Sprung!

Spring has sprung
The grass has riz
I wonder where the birdies is….

 

I can still hear my late father reciting this little ditty as he walked through the kitchen door, many, many years ago – Oh how I loved his ability to recite poetry, ditties or sing a tune about a topic being discussed…

With the arrival of spring the birdies are back in our garden… The king parrot, such beautiful bird, and if you didn’t know it, you would be looking around for a squeaky swing, which is the sound she makes the entire time she’s here. Continue reading

A Surprising Turn of Events…

Not long after we returned from our lengthy visit to France, I was asked to consider locating a commercial kitchen in order to cook for a local business. We thought about it, discussed the idea, and the search began. We needed a public hall with a commercial kitchen available for hire on a daily basis. It took a little while, but finally we located one just 20 minutes from our home. The next stage in the process was training. I enrolled in an appropriate course and this was done on line. Then there were council applications to be submitted and meetings/inspections held, along with a plethora of other issues to deal with, and then of course the testing of recipes and menu planning …

This week we finished our fifth cook. It has been a crazy and hectic journey, but we are now becoming far more efficient and time savvy. We are very proudly using locally produced ingredients and it is around these ingredients that our recipes are created. At this point, the beef, eggs, cheese, olive oil, and the majority of our veg are produced very close to home – within a 25 kilometer radius, and our milk is also local, but from a little further away. How lucky are we to be able to source such beautiful ingredients so very close to home.

For me, our packaging needed to be environmentally friendly, and with some advice we ended up with a beautiful product, in fact the bases are fully home compostable and the lids can be placed in your recycle bin. On top of this, I think it looks amazing.

So what are we cooking… We are preparing pre-packaged meals in single and family size, such as

Lamb Kofta in a Rich Vegetable Sauce with Handmade Gnocchi,

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Home Sweet Home

I’m back…

After a lengthy holiday in France, we have now returned to our home and the Australian winter!  Short days and frosty mornings which means cold, but sunny days (at the moment) and very cold nights!

Naturally after such a long absence, the garden is calling for our attention, so if the sun is shining we are immediately drawn outside to enjoy the warm rays. But the place to be in the morning is the kitchen, where the sun’s rays shine through the window over the sink, providing a wonderful cosy atmosphere. I was absolutely delighted one morning this week, when I was drawn to a familiar twitter outside our kitchen – I know the voice of a very small and busy bird, the wren – we have always called them fairy wrens, and the male, if you are lucky enough to see one, is superbly dressed in the prettiest of blue.  However, I was enjoying their antics so much, I have no photos to share… In the two years we have been here this is only the second time I have seen them, with the last time just before we departed for our holiday – I await my next sighting.

In the evening, the open fire, glowing beautifully and providing the coziness needed, is the place to be as the dark crawls in, dragging along the chill and dampness with it. Something that is always a treat at this time of year is mulled wineMulled Wine - Feature ImageWith the wonderful aroma of the festive season, this drink always provides warmth and comfort with each sip. Continue reading

The Bard’s Banquet

I write this post from the opposite side of the world – my favourite place to visit – France.

Last year I was asked if I would head up the catering for the banquet at the 2018 Shakespeare Festival in Stratford, Victoria. After talking to Gary about it, and asking my sister, Sonya if she would join me, I agreed. This was a voluntary role, and we would be catering for up to 120 people, including the volunteers and musicians. There would be four courses, but the meat would be managed by someone else. Continue reading

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