30 August 2009

Autumn's a-comin

We went to the Bellingham Show yesterday, to be entertained by Northumberland wrestling, the building of the Taj Mahal by moonlight (using the medium of straw bales), much horse jumping, lots of sheep, and the world's best industrial tent (my favourite was the octopus made from vegetables, closely followed by the carved walking sticks). All for the bargain price of £5.

It was wild, windy and freezing cold - so cold that we had to be revived by doughnuts and coffee halfway through the afternoon. Autumn's definitely round the corner.

27 August 2009


There's definitely a theme to this month's recipes over at Recipes for Millie: courgettes. So far since coming back from holiday we've eaten

  • ratatouille
  • courgette and goat's cheese pancakes
  • courgette, chickpea and filo pastry pie
  • the smaller ones sliced raw in salads
  • the larger ones diced and thrown into any recipe that requires vaguely Mediterranean veg
It's all a bit of a novelty, really, having so many of the things. The last couple of years we've grown them from seed, and then planted them on the balcony in large pots, where the slugs have promptly eaten them, or the courgettes themselves have turned yellow and dropped off. Turns out what we really needed to do was get a couple of cheap plants from B&Q, chuck them unceremoniously in a flat bit of the allotment with a bit of manure, and leave to their own devices. Maybe ignoring more plants is the way forward?

Anyway, next on the agenda: courgette and cheese loaf, piccalilli, and possibly courgette chutney, if I get round to it. Then it's onto the potato mountain...

18 August 2009

I don't know, I go away for a couple of weeks...

and slugzilla here takes over the front garden. I'm guessing there's been a bit of rain? It's done nothing else since we got back, that's for sure.

Mystifyingly, there's also what appears to be owl dealing going on in my local Sainsbury's car park.

I turned up on Saturday shortly before closing time to find two slightly dodgy looking hire cars parked in the far corner and a few blokes clustered around some cardboard boxes. I know I was parked a couple of rows over, but I swear one of them took out what looked like an owl from a box and stuck it on his gloved fist. The owl flapped its wings for a bit, before hanging upside down. The bloke stuck it upright again. The owl fell down again (obviously not a top quality specimen) and flapped about. Money changed hands. The owl was shoved back in the box, and placed in the back of the car.

At this point I made a swift exit and went home for a large glass of wine. Foolishly I Twittered about my owl dealing experiences. And now, I am being spammed on Twitter by a man who shouts OWL FOR SALE a lot, and followed by a lot of people who like owls.

I think I need to go back to France.