artichoke plant

Our March Garden: Dry and Desperate

Sometimes I think food gardening is a mug’s game.  It’s so frustrating to spend years nourishing the soil and months nurturing seeds and seedlings only to have lack of rain and hot weather destroy everything.  I know others are struggling with too much rain that washes away the topsoil and brings with it pests and… 

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Merlin on coffee table

Merlin the Rescue Kitten

Today Merlin the rescue kitten entered our lives, unexpectedly but delightfully. You see, our son Will asked for a dog for his 12th birthday, but after meeting several dogs that need new owners, none were a perfect match. We had just about given up hope when Will saw 12 week old Merlin in a cage… 

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fresh lime ice cream

Fresh Lime Ice Cream

Here in South Australia, summer has arrived with a vengeance.  The past two weekends have been almost unbearably hot, with temperatures reaching into the 40s celsius.  It’s been too hot to cook much and too hot to garden.  But in my opinion it’s never too hot to make ice cream. The ice cream recipe I’m… 

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konmari method teenagers banner

How to Use the Konmari Method with Teenagers

A couple of weeks ago I wrote about successfully using the Konmari method to declutter and organise my 11-year-old son’s room.  Easy, you say.  Just wait till he’s a teenager. It’s true.  Teenagers are deeply attached to their stuff and there’s usually a lot of it.  And most of the time it lives on their… 

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strawberry ice cream

Strawberry Ice Cream

Every year on Valentine’s Day I try to create a special family dessert.  One year I made chocolate cupcakes with pink buttercream decorated with chocolate hearts.  Another year I made heart-shaped biscuits and got the kids to ice and decorate them. This year, my creative mojo is languishing from stiflingly hot Adelaide summer weather that… 

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plum banner

Four Fabulous Plum Recipes

As I mentioned in a previous post, January was the month of the plum in the Rosehips and Rhubarb household. Our two plum trees, a Satsuma planted not long after we moved here in March 2010 and a Mariposa planted just 18 months ago, decided that this was the year they would produce a bumper… 

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bed and chair

Decluttering a Child’s Room Using the Konmari Method

Japanese organising expert Marie Kondo’s ‘Konmari method’ of decluttering and tidying is taking the world by storm.  Where most decluttering methods focus on what you need to get rid of — ‘you need 33 items of clothing’ or ‘declutter 27 items a day’  — Kondo’s focus is on deciding what you want to keep. Kondo’s… 

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plum streusel cake

Easy Plum Streusel Cake

Finally. Finally we are at the end of our backyard plum harvest.  And what a harvest it’s been. I’ve spent the past few weeks in a delightful frenzy of jam-making and bottling and baking.  I smile every time I look inside my pantry.  Nothing is as satisfying as pantry shelves filled to brimming with home-made… 

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figs

Essential Edibles Food Swap February 2015

As regular readers of this blog know, attending my local food swap is a highlight of every month.  I *love* it.  Food swaps are such happy events, bringing people together who are passionate about local food or gardening or both. At our food swap no money ever changes hands.  It’s all about sharing and goodwill. … 

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chookhouse, fruit trees and veggie patch

Our February Garden: Enjoying the Harvest

When I wrote last month’s Garden Share Collective post, smoke from bushfires in the Adelaide Hills dulled the sky.  Worry about friends in the Hills combined with a lesser concern that a run of 40+ degree days would destroy all the work I had done in the garden. Those who say you shouldn’t meet trouble… 

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marinated grilled eggplant with herbs

Marinated Grilled Eggplant with Herbs

I’m almost embarrassed to call today’s recipe for marinated, grilled eggplant with herbs, a recipe.  It’s more of a guide.   Only the most general quantities are provided; you throw everything together and Bob’s your uncle. Most of my summer cooking is like that.  I stroll out to the garden picking a bit of this and… 

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quinces and grapes

How to Host a Garden Share Party

It was a Facebook invitation too good to refuse: my first ever garden share party.  Lisa wrote: Due to impending renovation, our garden needs some shifting about so you are invited to visit and to dig up, take cuttings, etc… There is a whole mess of geraniums, some aggies, ferns, pretty purple leafy things. Spider… 

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black swans on the Torrens River

Silent Sunday: 25 January 2015

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