We are so lucky to have lovely home produce that I can't help wanting to let you know what is in season. Sadly it can't be asparagus season all year round so we have to get exited about other fruit and vegetables as well. In our case we also have nuts to enjoy.
This page will grow and change as the year goes by and the seasons evolve:
We have a beautiful Walnut tree in the garden. It is home to a woodpecker most years and the squirrels love it.
A few years ago we were offerred someones home produce pickled walnuts at a christmas party which we ate with a beef casserole. They were absolutely gorgeous so we have set about pickling our own. Unfortunately as yet we haven't quite hit on the perfect process.
We missed the picking season the first year. You need to pick the walnuts as soon as the green husks get to any size. In our case this is some time in June. If you push a fork in and can feel a nut inside you are too late! Wait another year.... Not good.... you need to catch them just as they fill but before the nut forms then you pick the whole green "thing" to pickle.
This year we suddenly realised we were going to have to pick and pickel our Walnuts around a two week holiday. So the day before we went whilst we were packing we were picking them, leaving them to soak whilst we were away. My Mum and Dad were left in charge to check on them periodically and when we got back we had to go straight into action sorting them out. All done now!!
Last year we pickled a lot of batches. Some we cooked prior to pickling whilst others we didn't. This didn't seem to make much difference apart from add another time consuming process so we are not cooking from now on.
We added various different items to the pickle eg garlic cloves, chili peppers, herbs with varying flavour added.
Our pickles seem to be very strongly vinegar flavoured. Now we know they will be vinegary but the ones we had that first time didn't seem as vinegary as ours. We bought some shop bought to compare to and to be fair ours are just as good as the shop bought so we're not doing too badly. we just need to balance out the flavours.
This year we've added varying amounts of sugar and tried some different vinegars with different acidity.
We'll let you know what the results are in due course....
If Worcestershire isn't the home of Asparagus (which we think it is) then it must the home of plums. You can't give them away around here as everyone has a tree. Ours are mainly damsons but Mum and Dad who have loads of home produce have trees full of Victoria and Other (I don't know the name variety!) cooking plums. Today she brought us our first small bagful of the season. Plum crumble or Plum sponge this weekend...what shall we have?
In my view sweetcorn is the next best to asparagus. However, I am rather fussy when it comes to sweetcorn. In general, it has to come out of my Dad's garden with only occasional exceptions!
If you have big pieces of corn, or they are a bright orange colour you are not eating sweetcorn at its best. The sweetest sweetcorn is pale yellow with quite fine pieces of corn and is really tender to eat.
I have a really easy cooking method which you may wish to try:
Break the cobs in half and wrap the two halves in greaseproof paper with a knob of butter. Pop in the microwave for about 2 to 3 minutes and they are done to perfection.
What could be easier.....
The easiest way to cook Asparagus!
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Basics of how to cook fresh asparagusstart by looking at How to Cook Asparagus first for some background information on a range of cooking methods.
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