Cows and Home-Produce:Food & Babies

I found a bag containing a Christmas 2008 (!) present for a little person we know, over the weekend. (Shocking,s231b I know… I’ll make it up to her this Christmas!!) It was my intention to give her one of our “Geo-Cows”, a toy I just think is so lovely. I soon discovered that I was not the only one who thinks it’s lovely. Our little girl (14 months) soon helped it out of the wrapping, (“Genteel” should be her middle name) and shouted long and hard until I took it out of the box and she has been pulling it along behind her and putting the shapes into the slots on its back ever since. When she sees it she calls “Boo-Boo!”… very cute and all, but I’m sadly realising that I will probably never wrestle it back into the box, and I’ll have to think about investing in another Geo-Cow… but good to see that our toys are well road-tested!!


The weather is beginning to feel decidedly late-Autumnal. We had a fantastic Harvest Moon over the weekend, the weekend in which our youngest boy turned 5, and my sister gave birth to_A054713_2 a beautiful little girl, Sarah. I’m looking forward to seeing her next weekend again for a prolonged cuddle (ooh, the newborn baby smell!!) 


Despite the cold creeping in, our tomatoes, courgettes (okay, okay, so technically those enormous ones are marrows) and raspberries are fruiting away in the polytunnel. Check out the basket of tomatoes!!!! (oh, and the basket of course, compliments of Fergal: basket-maker extra-ordinaire!) We had three tomato plants this year and they have given us kilos of delicious, sweet tomatoes, and this evening was no exception! I am planning on making some very tasty tomato sauce with these, as I have done with any tomatoes that actually made it into the house (equal quantities were eaten en route into the kitchen…)PICT0042

Utterly delicious with pasta, and simplicity in itself!


Tomato Sauce

(really deserves a better name…anyhow):

Put 500g of tomatoes in a heavy bottomed saucepan with a good glug of olive oil, salt, pepper, approx 1 tablespoon of mixed herbs and 1 teaspoon of brown sugar. 

Cook until the tomatoes have split and “melted” into a juicy herby concoction. You could sieve this or stir it through the pasta, seeds, skins and all (depending on how lazy/hungry you are…) 



And while I’m in recipe-mode, one to use up the glut of courgettes (cough: marrows)

Chocolate Courgette Cake

Just one thing before I go on: this is a lovely, unusual cake, well worth making, even though my son (8) thinks his chocolate cake is considerably better (the recipe for which I will post once I get over my fit of pique)


Heat oven to pprox 180’C (350’F)

Melt approx 170g decent chocolate over a saucepan of water. Put 200g of flour, 110g caster sugar, 1 teaspoon of bicarbonate of soda, 1/2 of baking powder and 1/4 teaspoon of cinnamon. Mix briefly and add 225g courgettes, finely grated. In another bowl, mix 1 teaspoon of vanilla extract with 175mls of sunflower or rapeseed oil, and 2 medium eggs. Stir into the dry ingredients and finally stir in the melted chocolate. Turn into an oiled and papered 1 kg tin or divide between two 1lb tins. Bake for approx 55-65 minutes or until an inserted skewer comes out clean. Leave it to cool completely, then cover it with chocolate butter icing (cream 100g unsalted butter, 200g icing sugar and 50g melted chocolate or cocoa powder)




I’m off now to continue stock-taking (and see if we have any more Geo-Cows…..)