So, what has been happening chez Random Distractions recently? Well, like most of the West Country, RAIN! The garden has been a disaster this year as summer simply didn't happen. Many of the shrubs and plants produced an abundance of leaves but no flowers. Last year's bumper crop of apples was not repeated; we had two apples and they fell while I was on holiday! No strawberries or raspberries, no beans, potatoes or tomatoes and my attempt at growing romanesco came to nothing.
The rain has kept us out of the garden and off the beaches. It is hard to believe that we were having such wonderful weather at this time last year. The guest we had then is joining us again next week; I hope she is bringing her waterproofs. This is what Saunton Sands looked like last week when we had a blustery walk between downpours
Grey sky and greyer sea, lots of sweaters and shivering but the intrepid Brits brave it all.
We had more visitors last week. My very dear friend Elspeth and her husband spent a day with us while they were holidaying in the area. We had not seen each other for many years but made up for that in the few hours we had. After lunch the men went for a walk while Elspeth and I shared news of children and grandchildren, lots of photos and sewing projects. Elspeth is a brilliant quilter and taught me some new skills while we were busy reminiscing. Multitasking is easy for women!
With no garden produce to preserve, I haven't made any jam or chutney. My itchy fingers had to do something so I have been trying a few new recipes. First a Hugh Fearnley Whittingstall's St Clement's Squash. This is how mine turned out
We all loved it so much that I have made another batch. I am so glad that I have an electric juicer as ten oranges and ten lemons to be squeezed by hand would be very wearisome.
There was a new (to me) addition to my vegetable box last week:this Riverford recipe which produced two jars of spicy accompaniment for TexMex.