Well, it's certainly great to see some sunshine at last. I have been overdoing it in the garden of course, so now ache all over. I have been able to take advantage of some odd bits of time whilst running my pop-up nursing home, but son has returned home now, stitches out and feeling very much better. So, I must return to work proper.
I have been able to be making a few things though - one of my favourites is Lemon Vinegar and with the Lemon Balm growing well I have picked around ten sprigs and put into a large jar with the pared zest of two lemons and 1 litre of white wine vinegar. (You don't have to use the herb if you don't have it.) Leave to soak for two weeks, shaking the jar daily. Strain through muslin or kitchen paper and put into pretty bottles. This is one of the most versatile things to make at the start of (whispers) Summer - try using it with wholegrain mustard and melted butter to make a vinaigrette to pour over hot new potatoes. Great with a barbeque and salad - I could, and do, eat them on their own! If you make a Lemon & Dill Mustard as well you can combine the two together in gorgeous lemony-ess. I also use the vinegar on salmon with some fresh dill before baking in the oven - fantastic.
I can see that the buds are forming on the Elder trees in our garden - like everything else this year they are very late but will be worth waiting for. It will soon be time for making all sorts of cordials and the Elderflower is usually first although this year I have made Rhubarb and Ginger already. The soft fruits will be coming along later so it would be good to get stocked up with citric acid. Many of you who have come to classes at The Old Smithy have told me that you cannot find citric acid anymore so I have packed some to stock in my shop. We have mustard seeds and some herbs and spices as well, so as I publish recipes I'll make sure that anything hard to find is there for you.
You will see also that I am starting Rosie Makes It EasyTM Clubs - you can get together with a small group of friends to learn in your own locality with support from a monthly pack and DVD from yours truly. All the details are on the website - email me if you are interested in the scheme. It is also possible to receive the pack as an individual if you prefer - you may be a shift worker or carer and not be able to join in with a group but still like to learn more of this fascinating subject. Again, email me for details - the scheme is in its infancy and I would prefer direct contact at the moment before we set up on-line registrations.
Lots to get started on then - have fun!
all my recipes can be found on my site for mobile - you can enter the amount of main ingredients and the recipe will be adjusted accordingly - clever Trevor!
lots of seasonal advice on my main web hub