Mushrooms – merely food, or more?

For thousands of years the people of Asia have eaten mushrooms for both food and medicine. Among them, the mighty Maitake mushroom reigns supreme. Significant research has been done regarding its medicinal benefits and I will elaborate on that later. First of all, know that all mushrooms have nutritional benefits and help us to expand…

Finally made the Chrysanthemum tea!

It really did not take long at all. The hardest part was drying out the flowers. I placed them in a shallow dish on the window sill in the kitchen, which happens to get a lot of sun. It took 2 or 3 days before they were completely dry. Then for the fun part. Put…

Splash of autumn colour

One of the best things about not having put any kind of dog fence up yet is that I get to walk Max at least three times a day. This morning we caught the chilly morning mist just as daylight appeared. Then as the day warmed up, (to a very nice 65 degrees,) we got…

New to bird-watching

So, I never really considered bird watching would be “my thing”. Still not sure, but there certainly are some beautiful birds around here. We have a huge golden brown owl, which I have yet to get a photo of. I’ve seen him a few times flying between the woods and the stable area. A little…

Baking disaster

So, this is how my first cake for my son’s new school Fall Festival turned out:-( It tasted absolutely divine, and it had a whole bottle of maple syrup, 4 free range Olly eggs, Kerrygold butter and over a cup of walnuts in it. About $15 just in ingredients! Not to mention time….but alas, despite…

Cookie time!

There’s just something about the leaves falling and the wind blowing, temperatures dropping, that just makes me want to bake. And paint, for some reason, but more on that another day… After a browse through our rather extensive pantry, having recently closed a restaurant, I decide upon ingredients. Oats – slow energy release, great for…

Animal landscaping

Before actually moving here we built a stable block and fenced in two paddocks so our horse could move at the same time we did. Unfortunately the paddocks looked like this when we arrived in August: Little to no grass and a lot of weeds. Actually in August some of the weeds were over 5…

Chrysanthemums

One of the wonderful things about moving is you get to see what wonders will appear month after month in your garden; this month my favorite is these adorable chrysanthemums in such a beautiful bright yellow. They just look so summery and yet it’s nearly November. Chrysanthemum tea is surprisingly easy to make yourself and yet…

Admitting defeat to the almighty black walnut…

Let me start by saying that I love nuts, of all kinds, hence the little chestnut obsession. Walnuts, the regular kind, are actually one of my favorites and always remind me of Christmas. Dad would buy a big bag of them, in their shells, and many an evening over the holidays would be spent by…

Oranges?

Not as I know them. These intriguing looking “fruit?” are known by so many different names – Osage oranges, monkey balls, mock oranges, horse apple, bow wood – to name but a few. Its Latin name is Maclura pomifera, if that helps…. Apparently a closer relation to the mulberry than to the Orange, it does have…

What a week!

Finally finished prising the roasted chestnuts from their shells, some 6-8 hours later, with plenty of breaks I might add. Cutting open the shells with a knife required some force which my hands are not used to. They were actually seizing up! Despite various accounts of Chestnuts peeling easily out of their shells, I found…

Back to Chestnuts!

I certainly never realized what a minefield harvesting your own Chestnuts can be. Starting with the oh-so-prickly outside shells, which we did realise over time that they will open themselves (eventually) and, in fact, right now most of them are falling out of their prickly casings as they hit the ground. The partially open ones…