I've spent pretty much the whole day baking for the big day today. Mince pies, Christmas swirls and I have just finished bottling the nettle beers which my friend Andrew and I brewed on Monday. Hopefully they will be ready by Christmas, but we will see. I just hope the weather turns a bit colder as I store them outside rather than in a fridge.
I tried out a few new ‘perfect pastry' recipes today. I even resorted to trying some from TV chefs such as Gordon Ramsey, but didn't find them to be very authentic and crumbly just like those usually made by our Grans. So, I decided to experiment, and I think I have finally come up with a very short crust pastry that rolls out without cracking or tearing, but once cooked is sweet and crumbles just as it should! I want to play around with it a bit more yet, but will add this to the site at some point as it will work well a tart case for wild greens such as nettles and sorrel.
I still have lots of breads to bake, like the one here, which I made the other week. But I will probably leave these until Tuesday so they are still fresh for everyone to eat at Christmas lunch.
I was lucky enough to get an allotment this week, so I can now expand my vegetable and salad growing from my garden to a good sized piece of land. The plot I have been given has quite a well established apple tree on. This will be great in the autumn, but probably a pain in the neck at the same time because it does soak up the available water. It will be a great resource for making cider though, so I will forgive it!
Do any of you readers have any wild food or home grown/reared food plans for the Christmas holiday? If so, it would be good to hear from you (comments below), as I know lots are looking at the site!
I promise to expand the site in 2009 so will provide you with some fresh ideas.
Catch you on the trail