The wanderer has returned and somehow, although I have been away for a month, it is still cold! I've had to put the heating on this morning, partly because the house has been empty for a long time, but mostly because there is such a chill in the air. however, it hasn't gone below freezing and isn't forecast to either.
The good news is that all my seedlings and plants have survived, just about. The longest they were left unattended was a fortnight as I popped home for Easter and my home style seedling irrigation system - a washing up bowl full of water in the bath with a large wet towel draped across the bath with all the seed trays on it, one end in the washing up bowl - worked a treat, maybe a little too well as everything was very damp.
All the seedlings, with the exception of the aqualegia and cosmos, have germinated, which seems something of a miracle considering how cold it must have been indoors here and the bigger plants that I left in my mothers care are all ok she says, although desperate for potting on.
The garden, if not a picture, is at least pleasant. The daffodils are going to burst forth imminently everything is budding, but all the clematis look dead! Last time I saw them they were budding forth and then the snow came and all the buds are dried husks now. I hope they may come back, but I am concerned about them. Also one of my azaleas looks decidedly unhappy.
I was staying with lovely friends who made my time away a joy and from them, I have learnt new recipes, 2 of which I have tried already and one of which will be started today. I have never had great success with home made hummous, but the one they made me was so delicious that I tried again last night with much greater success. I think the problem with my old attempts has been that they have lacked flavour so their coriander and lemon hummous has changed this and it was absolutely delicious. Had that for my tea last night.
This morning I made tzatziki, another simple dish, but one that I have never actually tried to make before. Since I got my yoghurt maker for Christmas from my sister I always have a surplus of yoghurt so this is a perfect solution for using some of it up each time I make some.
The recipe that I am curious to try today is to make a sourdough starter. I was fascinated by how my friends nurtured this pot of slimy beige liquid, but one taste of their delicious home made sourdough bread was enough to convince me to give it a go. If nothing else, it will be fun, so today I will make my sourdough starter, I think it takes about a week, but I will play it by ear.
All good, cheap, easy things to make today then.
Oh, and I had a spot of good financial news while I was away, so I treated myself, finally, to a new freezer, yes, a brand spanking new one, which will be delivered tomorrow. Mine is absolutely about to give up the ghost and I am terrified of losing all my food stores if it suddenly stops working (also I am rather concerned about it blowing up or setting on fire or something, it ices on the outside now as well as the inside and all around the electrics is solid frozen ice, can't be good). It is not often I actually get something completely new, so I am like a kid at Christmas.
Well, I am glad to be home for 3 and a half weeks and will finally catch up with all of your blogs over the next few days.
No pictures today I'm afraid, but I will remedy that next time.