Wednesday, 29 April 2009
The Dandelion and Burdock brew was our first brew, and unfortunately started before we started this blog.
Making the brew was a very similar to the nettle beer documented earlier on in the blog, and from bottling should be ready to drink within 7 days.
Saturday night was the 6th day in the bottle, but was also the day of my good friend Patricks Stag do, and seemed an appropriate time to open a bottle. I think I shoved it under the nose of most people at the party, and honestly, most were unimpressed with the beer. I enjoyed it, but I would wouldn't I?
Anyway a few days further on and the taste has greatly improved. Its still quite bitter, and this is probably to do with the Dandelion roots. I think that next time I shall used slightly less dandelion but as a whole its actually a really nice refreshing drink. We are actually drinking it with a small splash of lemonade, and this takes away the slight bitterness of the drink.
We have about 3 pints of it left, and then it should be time to crack open the Nettle beer. Friday will be the 7th day in the bottle, but again I guess that will get better after about the 10th day.
This week I had planned to sort out some of the much needed work to the house and garden. So far the weather hasn't been too good, but progress is being made.
Our utility area has now been totally stripped down and painted. I shall be laying 3mm MDF boarding on the floor, before fitting a lino type material. I also have a work surface to put up above the washing machine. I hope to also pick up some cheap cupboards, as we dont have that much room in the kitchen.
The garden has had loads cleared out of it, but doesn't actually look that different. I have removed a huge ivy plant that had taken over one part of the garden. This was one hell of a job, but should now be pretty manageable. I would get rid of it, but I think that even David Blaine would have problems.
Phil and myself have also gone fishing twice. Last friday we headed off to Hythe to fish the evening tide. We had a really good evening catching dogfish, pouting and whiting. Nothing was big enough for the pot, but still an enjoyable evening.
I also treated myself to a new rod and reel :) I picked these up yesterday, so today we headed over to Bartons point on the Isle of Sheppey.
It was a pretty quiet day, only catching the smallest plaice that I have ever seen.
Wednesday, 22 April 2009
Tuesday, 21 April 2009
Whilst the liquid was cooling I weighed out the ingredients. I also grated the zest from the 2 lemons, and then juiced them.
The liquid was then sieved into a freshly steralised fermentation bucket. You need to be 100% sure that everything is sterile. Any baddies could stop your yeast from fermenting your brew, and you dont want that.
Measure out your ginger, and add 2 tea spoons
The nettle mulch that was left looks like this, and I ate about 3 mouth fulls of it. It tasted like over boiled spinach. Phillipa declined the offer of some claiming that she had just cleaned her teeth.
After a bit of interest in what veg we grow, and our home brewing activities I have decided to post a regular blog.
Here is a bit obout the current state of our garden.
Mafro and Phillipa
Last year I dug over part of the garden so Phillipa and I could grow a few vegetables. Some we had a great success with, others weren’t so good, but the bug had bitten, and this year we have planned a little more.
Last year we managed to grow a bumper crop of Maris Piper potatoes, and had limited success with carrots as I hadn’t thinned them out enough. They were all weird and wonderful shapes, all twisted together and rather stunted, but we ate them all, and despite their odd appearance they tasted lovely.
This year, the veg patch has been made bigger, and I’m contemplating turning over more of the garden to grow more crops in.
Currently planted are the following.
- Kestrel Potatoes
- Onions (red and white)
- Runner Beans
- Broad Beans
- Dwarf French Beans
- Sugar Snap Peas
We also have the following starting off in pots
- Tomatoes of many variety
- Scallopini squashes
- Sweet Peppers
We also have 10 strawberry plants, a gooseberry bush and an olive tree planted in pots at the end of the garden that are doing rather well, and a rhubarb plant that is looking nice and healthy. (edit, the rhubard plant is nice and healthy, but doesn't look too good as a birs has crapped all over one of the leaves)
Here are some picture of our garden in its current state
This is where the majority of the beans are planted
The empty patch at the front of this shot is where the potatoes are planted. Behind that the first crop of red and white onions that were planted about October last year. Behind them is another crop of white onions that were planted about a month ago. The stems of these are already about 2.5" tall. Then there are carrots, and then some broad beans.
Here are some of the more mature onions
The gooseberry plant (Not much of a bush yet), and the young strawberry plants.
Our olive tree in its second year. Will be a few more before we get any fruits from this one...!
And our Rhubarb, or more aptly named Poobarb plant