The house has that wonderful vinegary, spicy smell at the moment. We were given a sack of Kent cooking apples by a friend and Val’s moved into preserving mode. She made some apple crumbles, one for us and one for a present to our neighbours who are forever popping in with cakes for a cuppa.
After a scout through the cupboards and the recipe books she came up with a chutney recipe. If it tastes as good as it smells now, it’ll be a winner. You’re never sure until they’ve had a few months to mature. It’s similar to this apple chutney recipe
Her next creations were an apple and ginger jelly and an apple and rosemary jelly. The apple and ginger would have been as this apple jelly recipe but she couldn’t find a cinnamon stick.
We’ve still apples left and they’ll store a while, so I’m looking forward to more seasonal treats like this classic baked stuffed apple recipe.
The leaves are starting to fall, can’t really believe it. Slowly browning on the trees and each day a few more blowing around. Wouldn’t mind so much if we’d had a good summer, but whatever I may wish, autumn is starting.
The drain at the back blocked and the first I knew was water coming in the back door when it was raining. It had overflowed the drain and filled the bit at the back. Took about half an hour of messing about with rods and a grabber to fish them out and with a gurgle the water vanished away.
We’ve quite a few trees around the house and this is just the start, so I bought a leaf blower. Some years ago, I was in Norway and my friend there had a lot of leaves to clear. He reckoned it only took months for the leaves to turn to leafmould as his vacuum not only sucked them up but chopped them as well.
So I went for the Einhell Petrol Powered Garden Vacuum / Leaf Blower from MowDirect. It’s on offer at £129.95 (£70.00 off!) and comes with free delivery, a free patio vacuum accessory and 2 year guarantee. They’re more expensive than electric machines, but electric isn’t practical for here.
It shreds the leaves down to a tenth of the original size so you’re not emptying the bag every five minutes and they’ll rot down a lot faster to turn into leafmould. There’s a shoulder strap as well, so that takes the weight making it easy to control. The engine starts easily and I’ve got to say I’m really happy with it, apart from the effect on my knee of which more later.
I’ll fix up a proper leaf mould bin with some posts and wire but for now I just put them in a rubbish sack. In fact, if you’ve only a small amount of leaves, leaving them in a black sack is fine and they’ll rot down.
Listen to your doctor!
Now the doctor was very clear about not putting weight on the knee until it was all better but it’s driving me mad being stuck inside. Hence a little gentle walking around with the leaf vacuum.
Anyway, I awoke at 3.00am this morning with the pain from the knee. Kept trying to go back to sleep but gave up at 6.00 am and took some painkillers before going back to bed. I was half of a mind to get up as the dawn was lovely but I really don’t function on 3 hours sleep anymore.
I’m not sure I like this getting older lark, but it beats the alternative.