Monday, 31 December 2007

Happy New Year from all at Dougies Back Yard

This may well be my last posting for 2007. It's bean an okay year for all those in the backyard. Just to recap, some new friends came to live here and we nearly saw the departure of Rupert, who came down with tick bite just before Xmas. In the last few weeks, we've seen a blue-tongue lizard move into the vegie patch, a baby silver eyed finch grow up and leave the nest (in the elderberry) and our clumping bamboo has got on with extending itself into the sky. I've run out of creative ways with beans, and the cos has gone to seed. The pumpkins are coming on nice and firm. I think they might be 'Queensland Blues', but we'll have to wait and see. The paw paws are still fruiting, and everynow & then Grace finds a strawberry hidden amongst the leaves. Doug has planted a lucky jade tree at the front door to attract prosperity, and the guy at Mitre 10 is still expecting me to purchase red paint for my front door. It has to be the right red. Afterall, enjoy 2008.

Monday, 17 December 2007

The Gingerbread Chronicles

And you thought Gingerbreads were for the kiddies. Doug is building a gingerbread swimming pool, to give it that authentic aussie flavour, and we have a gingerbread BBQ parked beside the 'pool' to complete the picture of Aussie Bush Xmas. Stuff the European styled GG bread house, who really truly wants to eat one of those things? But miniature GG bread steaks grilling over pretend fires made of silver cachous, now that's a really apetising prospect. Thankfully Doug has the perfect recipe, which I will post shortly. Before he engineers the Aussie backyard pool made from GG bread, he is poepling it with a village of Barchester Chronicles style folk, made of you guessed right, ginger. These spicy little people have attitudes and pets such as dolphins and pigs with big currant eyes.

Tomato Relish

Doug has made a batch of tomato relish for the lucky few. It tastes fantastisch. Even Elizabeth Taylor eats it apparently, or at least she once did ... but that's another tale for the fireside, winged-back chair evenings. What I'm really getting around to suggesting is that Doug has way too many tomatoes this time of year, and we here at Dougies Garden are scratching our heads thinking up all the uses for tomatoes. I suggested fake blood, but Doug looked absolutely horrified to think it would be exclusively used by myself & the kids for fancy dress, no, no, no, it had to go further up the food chain, dizzying heights of actual tomato consumption. Henceforth Doug trawled the extensive recipe archives kept in the library, and came up with "Spencer's Relish" tried and tested recipe to the stars (apparently Shirley Bassey had some on toast after the Melbourne Cup back in '64). Yes it's good, oh way good. But the produce doesn't stop there, we've got beans coming out our ears! Beans, beans, beans, it's beans at sacrificial prices. Bean madness! And then how about eating a french bean salad!, But wait! Maybe you could have some steamed beans with that? Did somebody say beans? "Just keep picking 'em" say the wise old people who know. So I use that as my mantra everyday when Doug sends me down into the bean fields to 'do my bit' for the bean effort. Fame and fashion do not last, but if you grow beans you have friends forever. You'd be surprised at the number of people who like beans.

Monday, 3 December 2007

All that glitters is not golden corn

The beans are growing like magic! Okay I know it was only a fairytale, but these beans are vigorous. Doug and I are running out of freezer space. Sascha and Grace are enjoying the wet weather by running through puddles until drenched. The dogs are behaving disgracefully, and the sunflowers are beginning to flower. The tomatoes are really coming on now. We have bunches of tomatoes ready to go. Bottling is being considered carefully. The purple carrots have almost run out, and I'm particularly sad about this. The were delicious, but we have a new crop planted. We have cos lettuce ready to go, and lots of baby pumpkins growing. A mother of zucchinis growing delicately like an elephant in the garden. It now seems the golden corn was left on the stalk too long. It became all rubbery and translucent. Fascinating texture. Lovely to look at, astounding to eat.