Back on the web

Phew, step one is done: Our house has been transferred to the new owners, we have been homeless for 8 days and we camped in our small tent during that time. Then we moved into our temporary new house and our stuff arrived fromĀ  storage and finally the cats are back from their hotel.

We’re working on step two: Buying a house just accross the border in Germany.

But for now we’re settling in in our rented house. I just made a bit of applesauce from apples from our garden here. The house has a large garden as we measure these things here in the Netherlands and it has an orchard of about 10 very neglected fruit trees. When I saw that I knew we’d want to rent this house! We also harvested some plums.

The apple tree may be a “Transparante Blanche ” orĀ  “Yellow Transparent”. A very early apple which starts to taste ‘mealy’ very quickly. The cable to connect our camera with the pc is still boxed somewhere… pictures to follow after it has been retrieved.


Homegrown meal

  • First early potatoes
  • Oxheart cabbage stir-fried with onions and garlic
  • Quorn pieces marinated in kecap (not homegrown)
  • Strawberries in the (not home-made) yoghurt


Cracking nuts

I like walnuts. I like them a lot. And we are lucky enough to have several walnut trees in the neighbourhood where I can find them in autumn, though there are lots of other people were also interested so it’s a matter of luck if you find any. But by going searching regularly I can usually collect quite a few walnuts. I also ask around for nuts if people have them in excess. If you have one or two large trees, you can easily find you have more walnuts then you can use. Now that people know that I am interested to get them, they will accept gifts of walnuts even if they don’t use them themselves. The nuts get passed on to me, which makes me happy.

But then I find myself facing a bucket of nuts which have to be cracked/shelled. Right…

Using traditional nutcrackers (of the twisting or squeezing kind) I find my hands and arms soon hurting, so I devised my own, high-tech method of cracking walnuts. As it really is too complicated to explain in words, I add a photograph.


The stone is a salvaged piece of marble from a tabletop. Perfect anvil for nut cracking.




  • 235 ml milk
  • 80 g quick cooking oats
  • 1 egg
  • 60 ml vegetable oil
  • 125 g all-purpose flour
  • 50 g white sugar
  • 7 g baking powder
  • 3 g salt


  1. Preheat oven to 425 degrees F (220 degrees C). Grease muffin cups or line with paper muffin liners.
  2. In a small bowl, combine milk and oats; let soak for 15 minutes.
  3. In a separate bowl, beat together egg and oil; stir in oatmeal mixture. In a third bowl, sift together flour, sugar, baking powder and salt. Stir flour mixture into wet ingredients, just until combined. Spoon batter into prepared muffin cups until cups are 2/3 full.
  4. Bake in preheated oven for 20 to 25 minutes, until a toothpick inserted into the center of a muffin comes out clean.

Geplakt uit <>

Conclusie: lekker (zeker met de extra walnoot die ik erin had gedaan) maar erg stevig.

Homegrown food

Salad of homegrown tomato and rocket

Homemade hummus and homegrown sweet pepper

Tomatoes for canning

My tomato plants have been struck by blight and the plants are deteriorating fast. There’s still quite some green fruit there, though, so I’m leaving it on and have been harvesting the (almost) ripe tomatoes that have not been blighted yet. Yesterday I had enough to justify a small canning session. It’s nice to have four more pots of canned tomato in the larder.

Borlotti beans

Ready for a 48 hour period of freezing to kill off any bugs/larvae/eggs, then storage in a tight container at room temperature.



Christmas tree pear

Kerstboompeer (christmas tree pear): The name of this beautiful cooking pear. ’t Was a windfall and we ate it tonight. Taste was all right, but next time I’ll need to cook it a bit longer.



French bean glut

Through a confluence of events I am currently experiencing a glut of French beans in my allotment. I had purchased some seed from the Real Seed Catalogue in the UK. These were Coco Spohie beans, a flat podded French bean. I had very poor germination and I thought it was just bad luck or bad handling of the sewing on my side. But I was contacted by them with the message that they had received reports of poor germination and if I was experiencing this too, I could get a packet of replacement seed. Really good service, that! Anyhow, I had already sown another type of French beans and then I had also put in the entire remainder of the package of Coco Sophie beans, supposing that they would probably not germinate and that it would not be any use keeping the seeds as they were not of good quality for germination. But, lo and behold, this time all the seeds germinate it. Causing me to have quite a few French bean plants. And they have been producing quite well over the last weeks. Of course, we have eaten French bean several times, I have also given away plenty, but I have also been diligently blanching and freezing the harvest. This results in us now having some 20 frozen green bean packages. Just like in the picture, where you can see this morning’s efforts ready to be frozen.


rozijnenbolletjes (raisin rolls)

rozijnenbolletjes (raisin rolls)

« Older entries