A battle with blackberry thorns, a barbecue, jam tasting and Swedish comfort food

Everywhere I look I see apple trees full fruit and I can’t wait to get picking!

Today I picked more blackberries, they are much harder to pick than apples, and the biggest and juiciest ones are always just that stretch away. It is so easy to forget the thorns, and today, the stinging nettles that are also in-between, like a battle you need a strategy not to get stuck, or stung! I managed to do both, stinging nettles brushed my arm and little thorns dug in to my toes, ouch! The berries were massive, like nature on steroids and so tasty! I have made blackberry jam and set liqueurs. The whole windowsill is full of various liqueurs in progress, promising a warm winter!

Our butcher has a great range of sausages; my favourites are the Italian salami, the Toulouse and the pork chipolatas. We had a barbecue with friends, weather wonderful and I had bought loads of different sausages for us to try. To go with this I made different salads, as the allotment is peaking when it comes to produce so am trying to cook as much veg as possible. I did a beetroot and French bean salad and a watermelon and feta salad. I love barbecues, everything can be served as and when and you just help yourself!

My friend Magda had brought polish kabanoss, yum! And perfect to dip in my hot sauce

We did actually have a starter and I got courgettes from a friend, we don’t have any on the allotment this year so a great treat! I sliced it and served with bacon and home grown tomatoes, more a taster of the season.

We also had a jam tasting session, I had carefully written down a marking system and tasters with bread and/or cheese, however we had by then, had so much food and wine I can’t read my notes! It was hilarious and I remember that it seems the strawberry and blackberry took first place but closely followed by the marrow jam! The marrow jam turned out really nice but strange is that when eaten on its own it has a different flavour that when eaten with cheese or on bread. I have already made more of it and think it is a really nice way to cook marrow.

I also cubed some stilton cheese and poured over a favourite from last year, rosehip liqueur, the salty and rich stilton and the sweet liqueur is a marriage made in heaven!

The evening ended with Sara’s most gorgeous tequila, sipped and still laughing it was just a great evening!

This week past has been manic in almost every sense, not much time for cooking and a true need for comfort food! We picked a perfect savoy cabbage head, got mince from the butcher and did a Swedish comfort food dish, Kålpudding. It was very lean and we ate it with steamed marrow (I know, it is marrow season!), French beans, roasted butternut squash (the first one from the allotment this year and it tastes so much better than any shop bought one), lingonberry jam and pickled cucumber (also from the allotment). Healthy and low in carbs yet still hitting the spot!

One Response to “A battle with blackberry thorns, a barbecue, jam tasting and Swedish comfort food”
  1. Lisa says:

    You have been sooooo busy. The food looks wonderful and some fabulous new experiments as well!

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