Friday, 3 February 2012


Friday greetings fellow bloggers.

How cold is it where you are then?  It's been around minus 4 here for most of the day but we've also been blessed with the most beautifully crisp, blue skies and brilliant sunshine.  Thank goodness the chickens are now fully clothed again after their recent moult.  I did feel sorry for them running around looking bedraggled and bare necked.  I should have crocheted them some little chicken scarves shouldn't I?!  Haha - there's an image for you and a plan for next year!   Betty Chicken is back in lay now after her wintery rest and her crest is becoming the most beautiful bright red once again.  Hattie and Princess Leia are not laying again just yet and their crests remain a rather insipid pink colour, but as the light levels grow I'm sure it won't be long before we're a three eggs a day family again! 

Sorry for the chicken booty shot - they wouldn't keep their pecky heads still long enough for me to show you the difference in the colour of their crests. Tut! 

I took them some warm sweetcorn this afternoon for a little treat.  Spoilt rotten they are!  Their water was frozen solid again from this morning so their water feeder was topped up with hot water which would have cooled down within minutes in the sub zero temp.  They've shuffled off to bed now and i'll pop up shortly and lock them up for the evening. 

We had a chance to pop up to Brierley Hill, (a local Black Country market town which struggles to survive alongside the behemoth which is Merry Hill shopping centre situate less than half a mile away) today to do our shopping.  We decided to get all of our veggies from one of the little independent greengrocer's shops and came away laden with: 2 punnets of strawberries, a punnet of grapes, a bag of lychees (mmmmmmmm!!!), satsumas, Cox's apples, 2 punnets of blueberries, a sweetheart cabbage, two leeks, two little gem lettuce, 2 parsnips, 1 swede (breathe), 2 cucumbers, a pack of three peppers, 2 large heads of broccoli, 2 bunches of spring onions and a big lemon! - all for the princely sum of £13.40.  Not bad really eh and will do us for at least a week.  I do love having lots of lovely fresh produce in the house.

Here you go - looks wonderful doesn't it?  I can't wait to get into the allotment again - I'll be able to grow most of the above, weeds and weather permitting!

Incidentally, on a slimming forum I frequent, a poster on there was bemoaning the price of fresh fruit and veg.  Being on a limited budget (aren't we all these days?) as a single Mum with two small kids, she had rocked up to the till of her local supermarket with a punnet of strawberries and some grapes for their lunch boxes, the sum total of which was £3.48.  She simply couldn't afford it so had to put them back.  She then went next door to the Poundstretcher shop and picked up an 8 pack of crisps for just 50p.   Is it any wonder that there's an obesity epidemic when junk food is so cheap compared to fresh? No wonder she was cross.

Moving on.

From the indoor market we bought a good size piece of shin of beef - which makes the best stew ever incidentally - for approximately £3.00 - so we're all set up to get snowed in tomorrow now!!  Suits me Sir!  

We went for a wintery walk over the field with the hooligan this afternoon.   I wanted to photograph pussy willows and catkins and snowdrops - and couldn't find one of either of them!!!  How bloody rude is that?!  Just acres of dun fields and skeleton trees...

Also, I'm going to have a grumble about the farmer too cos he's ploughed all over the paths butting up to the fields which makes for flippin' dicey walking conditions, particularly when the ground is frozen so hard.  We really had to concentrate on where we were walking for fear of turning ankles.  This accompanied by being rendered semi blind by brilliant sunshine and hyper sensitive myopic eyes and being unable to readily see my feet due to being rather over-blessed in the boobage department - I was glad to get home I can tell you!!

Harvey thought it was hilarious.  I was not impressed.

Burger and chips for dinner this evening!  Good old fashioned dieting food yes?! Well.  Yes actually!!

I made the burgers with lean minced beef, red onion, garlic, a stock cube and a tablespoon of burger relish - all mixerated up in the mixery thingie (technical culinary term obvs.), then either mould burgers in your own fair hands if you prefer a more rustic look, or use one of those plastic burger presses to make them all  profesh and uniform looking.  Chill in the fridge for a while until needed.  The burgers.  Not you. 

Here's some I made earlier (tee hee!) using a very old plastic burger press which is probably insured against Viking raids.

Griddled burgers topped with a melty extra light Laughing Cow triangle each, salad and a couple of small tatoes cut into chips, par boiled, drained, sprayed with Frylight, sprinkled with paprika and baked in a high hoven(!) until crispy. 

Bloomin lovely, comfort food for a Friday evening and no synning involved.  As Man is off to work this evening there'll be no synning later either.  Tsk.

Have a wonderful evening!

1 comment:

  1. Our 3 hens look much like yours, but ours are Turkens, so have permanently bare necks (poor things). And we're still getting 3 eggs a day!

    With this cold weather we have our wood-fired oven going almost non-stop; perfect for those long cooked beef stews... delicious.


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