Stockpot Workout

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I have a large stainless steel stockpot that lives in the back corner of the pantry on the floor. It usually gets dragged out a few times a year.

Yesterday was one of those days as I decided to make a large batch of pumpkin and celery soup. This may sound like an odd combination but I find the sharpness of homegrown celery that has been growing for several months provides a nice balance to the sweetness of our pumpkins.

I ended up with 18 serves of soup – 2 for dinner and the rest to go in the freezer.

Today I continued with my bulk food preparation by making jam with the 3kg of Davidson plums which I had picked over the past few weeks and stored in the freezer. I ended up with 3.95kg of jam. Davidson plums are a relatively rare Australian native fruit which grows on a rainforest tree in a fairly narrow distribution in northern NSW and south-east Queensland. Therefore, the jam commands a premium price. I compared 3 different brands online and found that the average price per kilo is about $81 which makes my haul worth over $320!!

I also boiled up the seeds and then strained them to make cordial. A splash in a glass of soda water makes a refreshing drink.

Finally, I raided the freezer again for some cherry tomatoes and made a batch of tomato sauce (ketchup). While nowhere near as valuable as the jam, the sauce is a whole other level beyond the commercially produced tomato sauce. The recipe is here.

While the oven was on to sterilise the jars I decided that I might as well make a batch of cheese scones. Recipe is here.

I think it is time to put the stockpot away for a couple more months.

Digging in the Dirt

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Today we have been out in the garden.  Vegetable gardens dug over and mushroom compost added.  Then it was time to plant out our winter crops.  Broccoli, cauliflower, cabbage, snow peas, strawberries as well as red and brown onions.

Most of them were bought as seedlings but I did have a go at raising some from seed.  The cabbages were from seed as are one lot of broccoli and one of cauliflower.  They are somewhat less advanced than the seedlings so hopefully it will spread the harvesting out over a longer period of time.

Continuing on yesterday’s theme of using up everything, I made some pumpkin and sultana scones with some mashed pumpkin that had been thawed from the freezer and not completely used.  I did not get to make the lemon butter so that will have to wait for another day.

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