Monthly Archives: October 2014

Getting the bees ready for winter

Many beekeepers will have prepared their hives for winter many weeks ago. Here, in our sheltered southerly location, our bees work late into the year. Even now, they are still very busy and bringing in lots of pollen. However, with a change in the weather forecast, last week we took advantage of what turned out to be the last nice day to undertake a final inspection and make the necessary preparations. Continue reading


A pile of freshly prepared potato gnocchi

A pile of freshly prepared potato gnocchi

Gnocchi are the small dumplings commonly prepared in Italy. Whilst they can be made from various ingredients, those prepared from potatoes, gnocchi di patate, are the most common. With a sack full of suitable potatoes in the shed, we have been enjoying plenty of freshly prepared gnocchi of late. Gnocchi can be rather heavy and chewy, but with a little care, the home made version is ever so light and absolutely delicious. They are simple to make, and the results should be exceptional, once a few critical notions are appreciated that will ensure a good flavour and light texture. Continue reading

Lavender shortbread


Shortbread biscuits baked to golden brown

Shortbread is perhaps the easiest of biscuits to prepare but is surely one of the most delicious. A basic recipe has just three ingredients – flour, butter, and sugar – which are transformed in the baking to a beautiful rich golden biscuit. After CT took some to work, her colleagues have been after my recipe, so this weekend I made another batch and took a few notes for the blog. So, now my secret is out – this recipe makes the most superb crumbly biscuits. Continue reading