Ok, so only one crappy photo. Sorry. My bad. Not even a complete Thermomix. Oops.
I call mine Thelma. She’s awesome. For a wide range of things. Some days she’s a glorified blender while other days I use the cooking function for multiple dishes. The steamer part – not so much so far. But hey, there’s time. I use the cooking function for risotto, soups, curry, dahl, and a variety of sauces for pasta and other. The blending function I use for baking, grinding, milling, beating and whipping.
This particular meal was home made soup – made with a little left over curry as the base that I’d done the night before – in Thelma. I added a few fresh garden veggies, 1ltr of home-made stock and some home made 30 min rolls and you have dinner. Typically I didn’t take a photo of the delightful fresh bread or hearty soup. That’s how I roll. Useless. (ignore the strawberries in the pic, Moo ate them within 2 mins of the photo being taken)
A few comments on my over all impressions. I don’t like the sales process. We didn’t buy mine through a demo. Hubby called up and just ordered one straight off. They are not hard to use. It’s not rocket science. The slightly cult type following. Not interested. The actual machine – for us – great.
At the most basic they are a fancy blender, if you don’t use its capacity to cook that is what you bought, a big fancy, very costly blender. The scales. Yeah, they are ok. Pretty accurate. I’m a kind of free hand cook, theres not a lot of measuring that goes on on this kitchen!
If you use the cooking function its a huge help in the kitchen, particularly when you have busy afternoons or little ones about. It’s not going to turn you into Nigella Lawson. But it will help create great meals from scratch if thats your thing. And it will quietly work away while you do jigsaws or read books with small people before dinner. Mine genuinely makes certain meals for me, I put the ingredients in, blitz, start cooking and I wander off. Water the veggies, play on the trampoline with Moo etc. Is it worth the cost. Yes, I think so, but only if you utilise the cooking function.
For example on the last couple of days Thelma has made – mango chicken curry, leftover veggie soup, choc cookies, banana bran muffins, green smoothie, and banana pancake mix. Oh and lemonade.
I don’t tend to follow any recipes, thats just me. I like cook books for inspiration but then I strike out alone. Its taken me a while to perfect some dishes. A good example of bolognese – a staple in our house. Made exclusively in Thelma it comes out unpleasantly watery. I make the tomato/veg base in Thelma, fry off the mince and combine to two in the pan. simmer for 5 mins and voila. Perfect bolognese – Like stir in sauce, only homemade.
I will make a big effort to put more of what we make on here.
What happens elsewhere while I cook.
We are eating well out of the garden at the moment, most of our meals are chock full of veggies we are picking ourselves. I’ve started writing my notes about this years bounty and what I have done ok and what I want to change for next season. Unsurprisingly the list of things I will do differently is huge, but I guess everything is a learning curve. I quite enjoy this process, the note taking, plan drawing, working out my rookie mistakes. Reading up on how to get the best, keep the plants producing for as long as possible.
Carrots – great, be more organised planting. Beets – as carrots, and plant more. Onions – great, same again. Beans – murdered by wind, need more mulch and more shelter. Brassicas – all slow to come through, perhaps too crowded start seedlings under cover. Peppers – doing well, more water needed, Mulch. Tomatoes – more staking, less chaos. Strawberries – good, take more room then the produce they give. Peas – been and gone, did ok. courgettes – love.
This year my biggest ‘success’ per say is that we eat everything we grow, its all spot on veggie basics and its really helping both our physical beings and our wallets to be able to have fresh veggies on hand out if the garden. And it helps my ego a little. Because I’d be totally lying if I said I didn’t get a slightly smug feeling from picking home grown veg for supper. I think so far courgettes are by far my favourite plant, so much veg, so many uses! Our newest delight is courgette choc muffins, delicious.
The sunflowers are going to be left and the seeds will feed the birds in winter. The tiger in my garden, more cute than scary. Don’t tell her though.
For our autumn/winter beds I’m planning on what beds I’ll use and which I’ll stuff with manure and leave to rest. Winter will be kale, broccoli, cauliflower, carrots (left in the ground) kohlrabi and spinach. The carrots are already seeded and starting to come up. Once the beets are out I’ll thin the carrots into orderly lines and tidy the bed. The strawberries are coming out and that will probably be the winter brassica bed, that and the ones by the back door as they are sheltered and easy to care for.
Currently it is growing very well! We are harvesting daily now. Courgettes, onions, strawberries, lettuce (oh so much lettuce) the peas have peaked and gone (pulled this week, new ones are slowly coming away) carrots and beets are also through, little paris market round carrots and beautiful striped choiggia beets. Moo loves to pick her own strawberries – coming in with bright red juice dripping down her chin. She eats peas straight, pod and all. Lettuce does not do it for her.
The tomatoes and climbing beans are coming away slowly. My 3 pepper plants are growing slowly, perhaps in need of a little additional food. I have 2 random tomato plants, sprouted from discarded ‘failure’ pots. Additional carrots are sprouting. Nutri-reds and purple dragon, some white cosmic and a few others from a ‘rainbow’ mix. An abandoned potato has sprouted at the end of one bed.
Flowers are blooming too, nasturtiums, calendula, borage are all out. The sunflowers are getting tall.
It is so lovely in our space at the moment, it feels friendly and welcoming, a safe haven. Leafy and green. Fun.
I get asked a lot what I ‘do’. It ranges from a ‘oh my goodness your a stay at home mum, what on earth do you do all day?’ to ‘so what do you do’ an obvious question to my career. And everything in-between. No to mention the usual ‘so what have you been up to’? when we see friends and aquaintences.
Now my close friends, and anyone who knows me will know that between music, swimming, gymnastics, play school, playdates, chores, quiet time and ‘mama and me’ time I try and fit in crafting, house decorating (ok, that one I ‘try’ to do – the unfinished toilet wall edges will attest to my lack of follow through) as well as sewing and the garden. I’m not intending this post to be defensive, or a justification for being at home, simply a run down for those who really do wonder what we get up to 😉
So today is Friday and this week I have ..
Run twice, made pie, gutted the pantry, sprayed frames, hung new prints in newly sprayed frames, made brownie, wall papered Moo’s birthday dollhouse (ignore the bumps, they flattened out) sewn a dress, cut and fixed in place a old broom handle for a hanging rail in madams wardrobe, felted soap, made (and ate!) cake, re-stuffed ‘sheep’ (1 pillow and 3 sofa cushions) sewn trousers (love those little patches by the hem, just LOVE them), sewn a 3rd birthday pressie (little picnic quilt)
Not to mention music on monday, swimming and groceries on wednesday, 2 playdates, a couple of casual afternoon tea parties and lots and lots of trampolining!
The garden hasn’t really got a look in apart from some watering!
This week has been eventful. I have painted a lot. The house, not art. The garden has got greener and seedlings are sprouting. Then everything nearly blew away. Literally. 100km/ph winds. Many fallen trees. No electricity. A cable fire. Firemen. Branches everywhere. More painting.
Off white ‘Gentle Wind’ – getting rid of the peachy walls
He considers himself quality control – see that peachy colour behind him … Its gone now.
They came, they saw and they conquered. Although it took a while as they had to wait for the power company to turn off the power to the cable was was down and causing the hedge fire! Two trucks closing off the road.
Seedlings still inside to grow bigger and stronger. Heirloom Tomato Copia and Black Adder courgette. Flowers rescued before the storms. More seeds germinating to replace the littlies I planted out that got annihilated by the cats. Grrr.
Elsewhere I have baked cookies -which lasted about 12h – I call that success. Also toddler painting, sunny evenings on th front step and a serious of awesome playdate with buddies. Love my friends.
A little garden round up from the week.
A greenhouse full of seedlings and my carrot bed covered to keep it warm for germination. Technically its still to cold to direct sow …. I find waiting for the seedlings to come up really stressful. An are they/aren’t they alive situation. So far my heirloom tomatoes are going great, the kale and broccoli have come up but are leggy and I’m pretty sure yesterday I saw a little bit of something poking up in the courgette tray. May be.
Garden colour and some pittosporums that Ive planted. Some under the wattle tree and another lot (16) along the far fence line. Hoping the frost doesn’t kill them all.
My Peachcot tree looking great with its pinky blush flowers – particularly after hubby helped me straighten it – it was on a steep wonk before. Peas are growing. Teeny tiny little lavender cuttings in the front of the raised bed. Hoping they grow up and provide a lovely bee inciting, prettifying line.
My other fruit trees, sadly we lost one to leaf curl and the winter weather, but 3 have survived and this ones starting to bud and leaf. The pittosporums along the fence. The hope is they will grow to form a delightful mid-hight bushy green boundary. We’ll see.
I’ve been off colour with sinusitis (infection) so I’m on a variety of drugs including antibiotics to treat it. Now if my teeth would stop feeling like they are being pushed out that would be great. Seriously I rattle like a pill box. My natural remedy loving mother would be having kittens.
Anyway, the garden. Its looking better. My broccoli are up and producing so we have home grown veg to eat this week. Ok, only one home grown veg, a small serving, toddler sized. But its a start.
We had another rain spattered weekend. Autumn is definitely here – the woodburner is on and we are back to the rhythms of welly boots, hats and woodchopping. Although I do miss the warmer weather I think there is something incredibly comforting in the season and the different patter that the darer evenings and mornings bring, a calming and settling effect, pj mornings with hot coco, snuggly dressing gowns and frosty grass (yup we’ve had frost already!)
Saturday was fine and we walked into town for a mama and daughter brunch and some leaf stamping. Hubby had been away Friday and Saturday so Sunday was a quiet day. We had a lovely morning tea with friends and watched the girls run riot and burn off steam. The afternoon was wet so much indoor time, dancing, cooking and staving off toddler boredoms.
Moose coped really well with daddy away, but was very very pleased to see him when he got in – a late night cuddle meant a good nights sleep, and no 5am ‘mama I need a snuggle’.
I cooked up a kohlrabi and kale chicken filling and made a pie (no pics of the pie – I totally forgot!), made cornflake crunchies planned some of next weeks meals.
In a fit of creativity I also broke up and melted down Mooses broken crayons and made ‘homemade’ multi coloured crayons, for a first time I’m rather pleased, now I need to work out how to get hold of crayon odds and ends!
We spend far to much time here!! It such a great cosy little place, all the staff know us, make Moose little mini hot chocs with huge fluffy toppings and no one complains when we sit and natter for ages as our drinks go cold and people mill around us, ordering, drinking and eating, leaving, almost as if we are in slow motion in the centre of it.
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