Saturday, November 12, 2011

indolent carrots of doom

Today the Fella and I were in a bookshop and we were looking at Indira Naidoo's new gardening/cookbook.  It's all about how she grows fantastic vegetables on her balcony and then uses them to create amazing dishes.  I heard her talking about it on the radio in her lovely mellifluous voice.  Were I in a cookbook buying frame of mind I might have bought it.

Anyway, there's a photo in the book of this superwoman holding aloft a bunch of magnificent carrots.  Carrots that she had grown in the middle of the city, in a thimble of soil and sheltered from any natural rainfall or decent light.  And they were fine carrots - robust and glowing with a proud, assertive bearing.

It made me think of my own carrots that I had harvested a couple of weeks ago.  These carrots were grown at great expense in a very special raised garden bed, planted in the finest compost soil, and freely bestowed with all the blessings of Canberra's sun and rain.  The only advantage they did not have was Indira Naidoo's honeyed voice encouraging them to grow.

Yet I can't believe that it was my squawking laugh and obscenity-littered tirades near the vegie patch that caused them to stop making any effort after a strong beginning.  It's like they simply gave up and melted into indolence.  As if they tucked up their feet and chose to watch the rocket fight with the leeks rather than put any effort into what they should have been doing.

These carrots made me angry.  But I ate them anyway.

Fortunately I had greater success with the beetroot crop:

Beetroot Tart from Rimmer, S. The Accidental Vegetarian Mitchell Beazley 2010

Modifications: Used Danish feta instead of goat's cheese
Verdict: A triumph.  And a lovely way to use up our home-grown beetroot.

Recipe scan not possible

More recipes after the jump...

Saturday, November 5, 2011

the start of a panicked frenzy

There are 57 days until the end of the year.

I have 141 cookbooks left.

I'll just have to let my belt out a notch and get on with it.

Cream Cheese Cake from Shirley, J.A. Wonderful Ways to Prepare Desserts Ayers & James 1977

Modifications: Mixed one cup of sour cream into mixture rather than mixing sour cream with sugar and vanilla and spreading on top.  Added blueberries. Made in four small tins and froze a couple so we wouldn't be eating cheesecake solidly for a month.
Verdict: Really, really good. A serious cheesecake.

More recipes below the jump break...