Monday, April 28, 2014

Not Enough Time....

Very short blog, also written earlier than normal.  This due to me having to spend time catching up with what needed to be done today - and wasn't.  Most of my day was spent baking cakes, also making B's supper (Fish Risotto).

Unfortunately B will be out most of Tuesday (helping to cut down a tree in Lancaster), but will be able to deliver the cakes and cookery mags to the foodbank on his way there.  As my neighbour is away until the end of the week, am not sure whether I'll be going to the spiritualist meeting in the afternoon (will need to take a taxi there and back), depends how I feel nearer the time.  There is always another day, another week.   Do wish I had my own transport then I can be independent again. But suppose it will always be cheaper to use taxis for occasional local trips than have the cost of buying, running and insuring a car. 

Thanks to Grub-lover for her comment (the only one sent - where are you all?).  Cooking the crumble mix in advance really does help, both in saving time and giving a better effect.  All too often the fruit used is either not cooked enough (sometimes with apples) or over-cooked (rhubarb and soft fruits) when the crumble and filling are baked together.   Cooking both separately means the fruits can be exactly the firmness/texture we want, and once the pre-cooked crumble is placed on top it can be served immediately.  If both are first cooked, then cooled before assembly, best then reheated for a very short time in the microwave (only in the oven if it is on cooking something else).

Is it me or am I just too picky for words?  Was watching a programme on the Food Network where they were showing wedding cakes being made.  They were absolutely stunning.  Amazing, brilliant, superb, and some quite magnificent.  Others very beautiful.  But the only adjective given to all (and heard more than 12 times in less than a minute - for all cakes)  was 'awesome'.  Have to admit that occasionally someone says OMG (fully spoken) followed by 'this is awesome'.  It's funny how some words, some overly used words can really irritate.  Well, irritate me at least.  It must be the Englishness of me for if 'it ain't arf bad' was said about one of my cakes I would know it was really liked, so would please me no end. 

Just a few hints and tips today, mainly for readers who grow things.  Many have been given in this blog before, but it must now be several years ago, and reading these in the newspaper today reminded me they were worth thinking about again, especially as it makes use of what we might normally throw away.  When you come to think of it, there is very little indeed that is 'natural' (not man-made) that can't be recycled by us humans.

Some plants such as roses and sweetpeas need potassium to help them grow better.  So bury banana skins near their roots to give them a boost.

Diluted with water, milk works as a good fertiliser, so don't rinse out the empty plastic milk containers, just fill with water to water your house plants.

Don't throw away the water after boiling eggs as this contains lots of minerals and nutrients that have come from the egg shells.  Always cool before using, and never use salted water when watering plants, although asparagus likes to be watered with salty water (being a plant that grows naturally close to the sea, like samphire).

Keep slugs away from you plants by covering the soil with crushed egg shells, or human hair (your local hairdresser will have loads of hair cuttings swept from the floor and glad to get rid of).  Or use crushed sea shells or nut cases.  Slugs don't like to slither across anything scratchy or hairy.

Another use for egg shells is to fill each half with compost and then sow a seed in each.  Replace the half shells back in their CARDBOARD (not plastic) egg box/tray and when the seedlings appear, plant the whole box in the ground, give a good watering around and the box and shells with eventually disintegrate the shells giving out nutrients and acting as a fertiliser.

That's it for today.  Still an hour to go before midnight, but doubt anyone will read this until tomorrow (Tuesday morning).  If I get all my chores done in time should be back again tomorrow evening, although not sure whether it will be earlier rather than later.  Not that it matters what time, just as long as there is a blog to publish.  TTFN.