Tuesday, March 19, 2013

busy season

 I had almost forgotten just how very busy this season of Autumn can be. Although it is only beginning, the slightly frosty mornings and fresh winds off the mountains are a hint of what is to come. The Summer vegetable garden, although not an especially good one this year, has been harvested, compost added and seeds all ready to go in today. There is a little window of time to get seeds in for the Winter, and this is just as the hot days seem to be behind us, but the heavy frosts are yet to start. We've had a light one already, and I'm afraid this window of time will be a pretty small one this year.

Oregano is hung out to dry, blanched silverbeet packed in the freezer, seeds ready to go and a kindly neighbour's basil and parsley have been turned into pesto. (I think I have greenhouse envy!)

This cooler weather has really made me feel like knitting again. A few little needed projects using wool from the stash has to be a good thing for the conscience. Especially after a holiday.

Yesterday I made Tarragon vinegar (so simple, it is just Tarragon leaves with vinegar added; I used apple cider vinegar, with time it will have a stronger flavour and apparently it is very good for the liver among other things). At the same time I lightly stewed a batch of rhubarb, preserved in honey (recipe here). I have a big pot of more rhubarb ready to go on the stove right now. I quite like the tang of rhubarb, and I think you either love it or you hate it. Unfortunately I am the only one who loves it in this house. But it will be a nice addition to cream for dessert or a dollop on porridge.

Have you found yourself just that little bit busier in the kitchen lately?
Busier in the garden?
Enjoying the change in season wherever you are?


  1. hi tania...looks like you are back in the swing of things. im on a bit of a clean out frenzy the past few days...all of a sudden I feel cluttered....out it goes!!....that is one serious kettle you have there...its a beauty!! xx

  2. It is the season for sure! I've been decluttering. In the kitchen more too. I'm looking forward to the cooler weather too as I enjoy making soups and stews. And I have a heap of work to do in the garden. Just waiting for a bit of rain to come. xo

  3. For the first time I am raising brocolli and cauliflower seeds from diggers. They are up but do not yet have their true leaves. I am also raising two different types of peas and sweet peas. Our mango tree fruited very will this year, it's first crop so we are trying to germinate the seeds and they seem to be coming along well.

  4. Bottled 92 bottle of sauce for pasta last Friday, waiting for Summer veg to finish, I think I will be waiting a long time.. :) and thinking about where I can start squeezing in my Winter seeds and seedlings...Autumn is my favourite time of year.....

  5. As you're at the height of end-of-summer-madness, we're at the beginning of seed-starting-prep-for-summer-madness :-) It's always fun for me to see what's happening on the other side of the world!

    Oh! I'm right there with you in your appreciation of rhubarb! It's one of my favorites :-)

  6. Tania, can I ask you what your top few preserving/gardening/self-suffciency/cooking books are??

    You are endlessly inspiring.

  7. Hi Tania
    Can I ask you what your top fave books on cooking/preserving/self-sufficiency/gardening are?

    You are endlessly inspiring,
    (sorry if this comment shows up twice)

  8. Tarragon vinegar sounds interesting.
    More seed raising happening here. The broad beans and peas are doing well.
    How do you find using the stove top kettle? would you recommend the brand?

  9. Sure have and I love it. Loe cooking sooo much more in the cooler weather and am loving getting mywinter goodies in the garden at the moment. Pulled out the tomatoes on the weekend which felt liberating. Ready to move onto autumn now:) x

  10. wondering what seeds you're putting in?

  11. I wish we could pop some seeds in the veggie patch - it's very dry here, with no decent rain for months! Not long and we'll be buying a load of water for the tank :(
    I love rhubarb too! Especially with stewed apple - delish.

  12. looks like so much loveliness going on even amoungst all the busyness. whilst we are not set up at our little acreage just yet, we are planning some planting come April and at home I can't keep up with the fig supply my tree is producing so I think some jam making will eventuate! xx

  13. So much goodness happening in your home at the moment! Up here Autumn is the beginning of the growing season for us...summer is too hot and wet for plants to grow :-)

  14. Dee and Susan : Thank you for your questions. I hope to answer them soon in future posts.

  15. Zara : I really do love my kettle. I blogged about it here :

  16. The pesto looks great! Currently I don't have a kitchen - well I have a space but we are having one put in at the moment! I cannot wait to get making/baking/pickling again.


Thank you for leaving a comment. If you have any questions please check back later as I will do my best to answer any within the comments section.