Monday, 17 September 2012

Stand back - domestic goddess in full throttle

I'm having a domestic moment so if cooking doesn't interest you look away now! September is always a time of plenty chez Kemshall. He who gardens grows lots of vegetables and the plot is at its most generous right now. So much so that I cook enough food most days to feed an army. Thank goodness for preserving, pickling and freezing - come the famine we will survive!

Tomatoes come in many guises. We seem to have them all. And true obsessives (mentioning no names) always keep them in separate bowls. Don't ask me why - must be a man thing. These are some of the large red variety he favours. We also have small red cherry types and long plum varieties especially for cooking.

Of course we have little orange ones too - delicious but more like sweets than tomatoes.

We give some of the surplus to unsuspecting visitors (even the milk man got a feed this week) but turn your back and there's more to pick. To avoid the danger of having to eat them three times a day I roast them in olive oil until they begin to char and then push them through a fine sieve. The concentrated sauce freezes perfectly and lasts us right through the winter. Add a little pasta, grated cheese, some torn basil and dinner is served!

I could bore you with pictures of the beetroot, the courgettes, the aubergines and the green beans I've also been dealing with this afternoon but instead I'll just show you something foreign and exotic. At least they are to me - those weird green things peeping out of their papery cases are tomatillos. We've never grown them before so I am experimenting with a Mexican salsa recipe off the internet. Who knows if it'll taste any good - I'll report back soon with a verdict.

I tried to resist sharing yet more baby photos but it seems resistance is futile. Here's Amelie exactly one week old.

In the midst of the harvest and the obsessive baby gazing my quilt made the local Alsace paper - thank you Chantal for sending me the cutting!

Mustn't rest on laurels - must get quilting!

Thanks for dropping by - Linda


  1. Lucky HWG (he who gardens) our toms this year were either decimated by slugs, snails or blight!

    The crop is feeble!

    Unlike you, we will starve!

  2. Our tomatoes have decided that they will rival the wisteria and climb over the pergola. I am going to need a ladder to harvest! Tomatillos are an aquired taste. I have always found them to be a little bitter. That said, we have a huge Hispanic population and they own some of the best restaurants and they prepare the tomatillo so that I don't taste the bitterness. Amelie is so very beautiful. I am entranced by her hands. They are ballerina (or artist) hands, always gracefully posistioned. Wishing you and yours a wonderful week.

  3. I'm thinking that photo of the roasted tomatoes would make a spectacular printed fabric..... Yummy on several levels!

  4. Little Amelie looks like she has her mum's hands. She's just so precious!

  5. Yum, I'll be round later!! I wish. lol

  6. Tomatillo sauce is my favorite on Mexican dishes, but I've never tried growing them. I could eat tomatillo sauce by the bowl -- hope yours turns out well!

  7. Hi Linda - here in the Dordogne our tomatos are almost over - just some late, delicious large pinky red beef toms. I love the idea of tomatillos - I shall look out for them to grow next year. We have a bumper crop of red peppers - best ever in 17 years here!

  8. Truly a bountiful harvest, Linda! I have just received my tomato seedlings in the post and will plant them in the next few weeks. Hopefully, we will have lots to look forward to, as well!