10.09.2009
And the fruit ripens...
Never mind mellow fruitfulness, it's mega-busy

We have two gardens here (the pigs take up just less than half of one, the beautiful walled one, with lots of herbs growing in it).  The other, with a massive cedar tree dominating the fantastic view over the valley across the stream, is where we have a few fruit trees and what I like to refer to as my vegetable patch. It's rather neglected and full of weeds, because we don't use anything to kill them off. But nature is gives and takes, as usual:  our French beans and runner beans have been splendid; and our sweetcorn is (after some false starts on the germinating front) podding very nicely indeed. The beetroot was delicious but a mediocre crop (sadly).  And outdoor tomatoes (a first for me) a disaster.  Carrots never even stuttered into life. But Charlie's swedes (yes, he's a dedicated Lancastrian) are doing just fine. Most exciting of all, perhaps, are the apricots - or are they peaches?  The label said apricots but they taste wonderfully peachy and are white-fleshed, juicy and stupendously good. Lightly stewed for breakfast. Heaven.

Plum jam, plum sauce, raspberry jam, have somehow been made.  Not tons of it but, oh, the taste!  Everyone should have a go:  it's very easy if you stick to a few rules. And the rewards are great.  If you don't have trees to hand, find the time, please, if you can, to go to your local market and buy a box of your favourite fruit or veg and get cooking.  Worth every minute.

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