Category Archives: Food

A Happy Man Indeed….

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A drive and a wander, the order of the day, on a glorious sunny Sunday afternoon….

Having driven past a couple of weeks back, we took a walk around Arlington Reservoir, about an hour,  (unless you’re in no hurry!)

And on the way home, we took some previously uncharted roads by us, through the countryside.

The Old Oak Inn....

A spur of the moment stop at this old English pub, and I became a very happy man. Blue Moon wheat larger…. and on tap! "Mine’s a pint!"

The Old Oak Inn at Arlington, has been there since 1788, when it was originally an armoury for 4 familes, before being turned into a pub at the turn of the 1900’s, says the landlady. If you’re out and about in the Sussex countryside, search it out.

What better way to end an afternoon, than with a peaceful hour in the beer garden, whilst the sun is out and there’s blue skies all around….

"Mine's a Pint!"...

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BC Tree Fruits…. from the US….

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A B.C. Tree Fruits worker launches hunger strike after being suspended for speaking out against his employer.

That’ll be NAFTA for you. Mind boggling, that we’re surrounded by orchards in this area and it’s better to import them from the US, than support our local growers.

But, of course, I’ve got to “save the planet” by holidaying in the back garden, using the car less, or switching to mercury lightbulbs… maybe it’s just me, but, I’m suspicious….. I’ve got a real strong feeling I’m being fed a load of b*llsh*t

UPDATE….

Let me get this right then, BC Fruits are supposedly dealing with not just BC Fruit, but Washington state also so says this “whistleblower”…..

So, being a farmers market regular and buying my fruit and veg from local growers, I thought I’d do some digging around on the BC Tree Fruits website (www.bctree.com)…..

Because since 1936, we’ve helped to promote not just British Columbia’s amazing apples, but also pears, cherries, apricots, peaches, prune plums and nectarines. And even some stuff that doesn’t grow on trees, like grapes and blueberries. Hence, fruits.

We’re a part of the Okanagan Tree Fruit Cooperative, owned by over 800 local grower families.

No mention as far as I can tell of including apples from Washington, (in the U.S.) in a British Columbia local growers outlet, unless they’re included in those 800 local grower families and a state, from another country can be classed as local of course. I, as always, am happy to be corrected.

Our new tagline lets you know that our produce is nothing short of delectable. It’s also a subtle reminder that we have way more than apples (though we do have a lot of apples). Like pears, peaches, cherries and a whole host of other fruits grown by 800 local families who love what they do and where they do it: the Okanagan.

I see…. “the Okanagan”….. not Washington then. And oh, there’s a map…. http://www.bctree.com/about/our-growers

….. have a guess if Washington is on it…..

I think I’ll be spending a little more time at the Famers Market this week and see if I can find out some more info on what exactly this lot get up to…..

BBC Speechless As Trader Tells The Truth About the Economy….

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I’m fairly certain the “Beeb” weren’t expecting this interview this morning to turn out as it did….

If you haven’t started growing at least some of your food, or paid down your debts, your time may be running out, if this guy is to be believed….

In a scary and painfully frank interview a freaked out BBC interviewer is visibly shaken when market trader Alessio Rastani predicts that the "Market is Toast."

Camping?….

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With a break in the footie schedule, and the weather the right side of pretty good, a camp trip may be in order….

…. especially, now we have the excellent portable BBQ. Or should I put the boat licence to good use and take the old man’s little boat out for a run to the other side of the lake? Decisions, decisions…..

On this particular topic, I recently found myself in conversation with the parents of a students I am tutoring, and their plans for this coming long weekend. They were planning on camping, in their oversized trailer (caravan for my European readers!) at a local site.

There’s nothing to do there, but it’s close enough for us to come home for a shower if we want to, and we have other things to do. But it’ll be nice to get around a campfire for an evening with the kids.

I can’t say I am any the wiser on why they wouldn’t go further, but I think I’m getting a better handle on the Canadian camping mentality.

And they are right. Sitting round a fire as the stars come out, on a clear evening, so that the night sky takes on a bluish tone (which in itself, is something to behold), as opposed to a street lit orange is one of life’s little pleasures. We still remember the night we looked up and saw just how many stars up there you can actually see with the naked eye, when the sky isn’t “polluted” with shopping mall car park illuminations. Breathtaking, you’d be amazed.

So an evening under the stars may very well be in order.

Plus the mutha in lore turns up for her annual visit on Sunday, so we can’t go too far.

Danger! Watermelon Warning!….

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Look out! There’s a new threat in town!….

Exploding watermelons put spotlight on Chinese farming practices
New food scandal as fields of watermelons are destroyed after farmers mistakenly apply growth accelerator
Read Full Article @ http://tinyurl.com/3t2p2kl

Amazing. Please, I’m all ears, please, someone explain to me the health benefits of a water melon, laden with growth hormones and why an organically grown water melon and when I say, organically, I mean "like wot dey yous 2, innit", wouldn’t be a better method of growing ’em, not to mention, a healthier option, especially for children…..

No really…. I’m all ears…. but not growth hormonally developed ones…..

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Coffee….

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Well, I couldn’t find a new coffee machine that was lacking in that other bugbear of mine, BPA, so I went for the traditional percolator. But, on the same shelf….

….. was this bad boy!

Our New Bialetti....Some years ago now, we were treated to a traditional indian curry, by a friend of ours, who regaled us with tales of the acting world and how she was fed up with being typecast, only getting parts as a little Indian woman, then informing us of her next part, playing…. an little Indian woman!

Anyway, I digress, the curry was magnificent, a receipe handed down from her grandmother, as it always seems to be, no forks, all fingers,…. but then she took me into the kitchen to show me her “coffee maker”, a Bialetti.

It was the first time I’d actually had an espresso (I was wet behind the ears, what can I say…..) and was knocked off my feet when I took my first sip.

So, it was with fond memories, I reached for the box…. made in Italy too! No idea why it’s taken me so long to get round to purchasing my own one. She’d give me a right ticking off if I told her.

Now, all we have to do is get the “formula” right and we’ll be away. The good thing too, is this ain’t no ‘lectric dependent gadget, so we can take it on the next camp trip. How very cultured, eh! After a good nights kip, under the stars, getting the first coffee buzz of the day with a campstove espresso. Can’t wait.

On that note, I’ll leave you with the wisdom of a work colleague of the Missus…..

Life is too short for bad coffee and dreadful wine.

Must dash, the 2nd espresso of the afternoon is ready to be poured!

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And Happy Valentines Day….

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Once, I thought Valentines Day was for the special someone in your life, or for unrequited love of, but no, it seems it’s a big deal here in Canada….

Every year, the kids seem to be making cakes and what not, for everyone in the class, the teacher, the principle….. the list seems endless. If she had her way, Miss would have made something for the entire skool.

Valentines Day....

Needless to say, once more, the Missus slaved over the oven for the darlings producing these delights. I managed to sneak one or 2 when she was otherwise distracted with her daughter, arguing as to the amount made.

The one thing I do find a little much, is the Valentine Telegram thing the skools do, where by you pay 50c up to $2 to send some a message, announced, I think, in front of the class. Now, not wanting to be a killjoy, but, if one person, the popular boy or girl, receives all the notes and the lesser, none, how is that helping the kids self esteem, that we all seem obsessed with for the rest of the year? And bullying? You want to stamp it out, you go on and on about it at Parent Teacher meetings and yet, you encourage this . Strange, but, maybe that’s just me….

So, that’s another “celebration” knocked off the list for the year. What’s next? By my reckoning, it’s Easter, although, if I’ve missed one, do let me know…..

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Homemade Rolls….

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Don’t know why we haven’t done this before, but we used the bread machine to get the dough ready and then whacked these bad boys in the oven….

Homemade Rolls....

Tuna salad on some, cheese on the others. Not a bad attempt for a first go, if I do say so myself.

Homemade Rolls....

Homemade Rolls....

Look What We Found!….

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Paid a short visit to the liquor store, or “offie” as our UK brethren will understand, when we came across a familiar sight….

Fullers Beer!....

A beer from London!

We used to live just down the road from the Fullers Brewery, Chiswick, when we were in Richmond Upon Thames.

Many a summer evening was spent as the sun went down, on Richmond Green, with a pint of something or other from the Fullers pub on the green, as we sat on the grass and watched the cricket. Happy days!

Should I say more? Not really. I’m off to sample it and jog some other old memories, whilst the pizza cooks.

Pip, pip!

HomeBrew Lager….

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The resting period is over!…

Homebrew Lager...

The first attempt at our own lager is ready for drinking. A European style lager, with a mild flavour. A success for our first attempt though. We’re enjoying the first bottles tonight!

Next up, the bottling of our Malbec, on Saturday. That’s best after about 6 months apparently, although, I’m not sure how we’re going to last that long with it sitting there….