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Another wet day so the garden got a good water.

Did some potting up and sowed more seeds. What a difference a week makes, toms are romping away now with peppers, chillies and aubergines beginning to put on a spurt. there are far to many seedlings for the space I have and it's so difficult to cull them to the compost heap.

Been pleased with all my spring bulbs, as some die back others have flowered. One variety of daffs bloomed with 3 to 5 heads.

Frank-  starting off with a quiche, fruit pie (have a glut of rhubarb) and I'm gonna try making Italian Focaccia bread. How difficult can it be, hope it's as easy pezzsie as you say.

Newport, TF10.

Been tipping down for the last few days - that'll stop soon as I'm about to connect my new water butt up !!

Another wet day, rained for most of it.

Frank - on the baking front, not brill for the first attempt,my efforts have along way to go before I'll be asking others to taste. Looked through some cook books and settled for scones and Focaccia bread with pastry made up for a quiche and pie tomorrow.

Scones didn't rise as much as expected and the bread was a little hard on the outside. I'm not throwing in the towel just yet though. 

Misty, grey, overcast and cooler. Weather is going backwards.  Forecast says cooler still?

Grey at the moment, but forecast to be dry at least.


Definite sunshine around tea-time though - went to visit my Dad yesterday and came back with a pie-full of Rhubarb, so  rhubarb crumble for pud today


Zoomer, you are jumping in at the deep end with Forcaccio, the oil makes a big difference as to how you handle it and it does take some handling. The raising in an oiled bowl and then the knocking down can be messy. When on the oiled tray you really do have to bang your fingers into it to make the delves for the topping then a very hot oven.
Scones the less you work them the better, pull the dough together and pat into a round, flatten down gently until about an inch thick then cut through with the back of the cutter, straight down no twist, then onto the baking tray, twenty minutes 180 fan then get the strawberry jam and cream out.

Stockton weather good with some rain, greenhouse door cracked but not full open.
Grandchildren just left full of chicken dinner and ice cream, two happy kids.
I had 21 for tea yesterday and they mostly ate home cooked.



Did I say no damage done? Was planting out some hardy stuff yesterday & realised that one of our tv ariels is hanging loose. That explains the 'hollow' banging sounds I kept hearing causing me to keep going out to check on a coldframe lid! It's obviously a redundant one though as no problems with tv noticed- apart from the longstanding infuriating trick of trying to 'tape' things from Welsh channels which have rotten reception!

Today bang on 11am, as per forecast-wow, it began to rain & has been constant since. Managed to do quite a bit of potting on/pricking out in the greenhouse though.
The courgettes & beans are now too big for windowsills inside the house, so they are cloched in the greenhouse. 

Things in the 2 coldframes still cant be risked outside completely so a real 'traffic jam' still around here. J.


BTW Zoomer my OH does a 'mean' Focaccia... J.

Frank - I was, a little surprised, at how oily the bread got even just after one tbsp. Will try something simpler next time, what do you suggest... please don't say white or brown bread... It might be some time before I try scones again. Hadn't made enough pastry for pie so it was two small spinach and cheese quiches. The quiches were a huge success , the pastry wasn't soggy either.

Am I right in thinking pies can be made up and frozen before baking.  

 Sounds like a nice day with 21 for tea, hope they helped out with the washing up.

Wet and cold here in this part of the NW. Flowers loving it but veg beds looking water logged.      

Jo - it might be some time before I try making Focaccia again.


I make and freeze pies uncooked Zoomer. Need thawing before cooking though or the outside is pretty hard and dry before the inside is even warm. 

Zoomer, In the case of 21 for tea jus-Rol is the way to go and even profesional cooks use it. As with gardening anything that cuts out some of the work is worth a try.
Keep going on the Scones, do not make them too wet and the secret is to cut with a small cutter, the pastry no less than three quarters of an inch thick.
Knocking up a batch of dough in a bread maker then taking it out to raise it works. Then cut it into eight or ten buns raise again and bake, in this house they do not get time to cool.
I never put meat into pastry then freeze it, make your pastry wrap it in cling film and put it in the fridge for up to four days before use if you wish. I make Rough Puff and do that. Get it back out and roll it out for use when you need it no messing about freezing then and no soggy bottoms on the pie or from the meat not being cooked properly.
Keep at it and in time it will be second nature, Daughter said I did not weigh out the flour for the Yorkies today, well no I have done it so many times.



In a word-wild today.

One minute chucking it down, next bright sun. I have opened up the coldframes & uncovered in greenhouse, but think today will be better spent indoors. J.

Stockton sunny although bitter cold wind, opened greenhouse then closed it again leaving the vents open was enough.


Stockton on Tees, Sunshine, Rainstorm, High winds, that was the first hour, back to sunshine, less wind, cool so greenhouse just cracked open and I have flowers on my tomato's, not all bad news then.




north manchester sunshine warm wind .  suits me 


Just West of M/C central, driving back from The Trafford Centre late lunchtime it was hailing!!

Last night didnt get as cold as forecast, dull & dampish first thing- hence the retail therapy. This afternoon became bright & dry so I potted up my dahlias & chocolate cosmos into their final pots. Because of the garden's slug population. I grow them all in pots on the patio. They are still in the unheated greenhouse for the time being. J.


Thanks for the advise, will keep going with the baking, watch this space. Every now and then I like to make a big pan of potato hash, hence the pie Q, left overs are usually frozen but are delish in pasties or with a crust on and eaten with pickled red cabbage.

Frank - I like the challenge of making bread without the machine. No probs with batter, can make yorkshires to die for, never fail to rise.    

Clear blue skies and the sun was out this morning at 7am with a chill in the air but forecast dull and wet later in the day, left the GH door and plastic GH. Did lots of potting up at the weekend.  

I've been spraying stuff with a garlic mix to deter slugs, not sure it works but it makes me feel as though I'm fighting to keep the population down    


Stockton "orrible wever" Rain storms windy cold, can only get better.

Zoomer, with the time I would not use the machine, if pushed the machine will do the mixing and knocking down whilst I do something else, then take it out to raise it and cook in the oven, as an Engineer "well ex" I would use the available tools to make life easy, Jus-Rol will give a nice pie topping and save a lot of time for you rushing around people, now I have all the time in the world apart from family tea or lunch.


Weather is quite nice today.  Sun is trying to shine, no wind and it's dry.  Got some lily plantIng done