Sunday, 19 July 2009

Red, amber and green (ish)



I want to be looking out of my window and seeing baskets of flowers enjoying themselves in the sunshine. I want to be in my garden reading a book under the shade of the apple tree. I want to be sitting round the garden table eating supper on a long hot summer's evening. Unfortunately, what I have been doing is sitting at my computer gazing out through the window at grey, wet days and soggy washing. If I turn my head just a little to the left I can find some colour but it's not coming from the garden - in a corner of the room is this motley collection of bits and bobs that have been the only sources of eye candy the past few days have had to offer.



I haven't taken many photos recently, but, it's strange to see that those I have taken, all seem to have similar red, amber and green colours in them. A sort of "stop, get ready and go" collection of things I've been up to and enjoyed over the last few days.



Last week I was round at Emma's house again. That magical old preserving pan of hers that had produced vats of elderflower cordial was calling us once more. Emma had been given pounds of blackcurrants by her mother to make some jam. Again we struggled with our measurements and calculations and again (oh dear what will my dentist say?) we trundled down to the supermarket to buy more kilos of sugar.



So we stood and poured and stirred and giggled and waited and waited ... when would we reach sugar boiling point? We managed the most beautifully coloured scum covered brew. We skimmed it and found a jewel coloured potion lying beneath but the sheer quantity of liquid jam made it far too scary to allow it to come to a rolling boil. So we stood and waited and waited. Fear of being covered by molten jam like some kind of sugary volcano erupting led us to take things slowly. oh so slowly. Two hours later, with the crack of some almight thunder and lightening and the reminder that we had to go and collect our children from school we decided to call it a day.



Later on that evening Emma rang to say she boiled it once more and eureka we had jam! Not just a bit of jam, not just a scraping of jam on your toast but jars and jars and jars of the stuff (I told you it was a magic jam). Delicious tasting jam, sweet smelling jam, gorgeously jewel coloured jam that gleams when you hold it up to the sunlight (but this being July in England there is no sunlight, so you'll have to take my word for it).



One rainy day last week on the way back from the morning school run. I popped into the local shop and saw a packet of Fruity Liquorice Allsorts on special offer. I couldn't resist ... but they were too, too sweet for even my tooth and not nearly liquorishy (is that a word?) enough. But they did look so bright and summery next to my nasturtiums that were growing outside the kitchen window.



Finally my green photo, my favourite. Oh I do like this photo for lots of reasons. Not because it's a good photo (it aint) but because I love the green and creams of the enamel tin holding the basil and the vintage bread tin that I found at a local street party. I love the greens and scent of the basil, the smell and taste of summer. I love the pattern and shape of artichokes, I'm fascinated by their leaves and design. I love the fact that for a few short weeks during the year you can find them fresh and cheaply at the local greengrocer and if you put them together with that basil, some bread some olive oil you get my perfect summer's meal. What I really like is that in my "traffic light" colllection of photos, this one says "go", enjoy summer while you can.

PS If Devon Dumpling would like to email me with her address, I'd love to send her a few little goodies to say 'thank you' for her elderflower recipe, eton mess with elderflowers and gooseberries (Emma and I were drooling over this one) - find me some eggs and cream quick!!!!

22 comments:

Connie said...

I'm loving the vibrant colors in this blog post, sweetpea! Very pretty.....
xoxo,
Connie

Floss said...

What a wonderful colour-themed post, and so well held-together by what you have written! Thanks for that snippet of your life. We're orange at the moment - Ben is in the kitchen doing violent things to apricot kernels before putting them in his boiling fruit to make the final jam set!

Simone said...

Lovely 'traffic light' post. I have never cooked artichokes before. I'm a bit worried about the hairy choke part of it! The recipe for it sounds very tasty although today's weather seems more fitting for a hot pie of sorts!!! x

MelMel said...

MMMmmmm...lovely jam!
Boy it looks yummy-:>)x

Sal said...

A lovely combination of reds and greens,Kim!
I also love the enamel with the herbs ..I'm growing Basil at the mo and you've just given me an idea...!
Hope you are well ;-)

Lisa said...

So many lovely colourful things.
Where has the summer gone? I hope it reappears soon.
Lisa x

Louise said...

Hello! What lovely photos! I wish someone gave me tons of fruit to make jam!! Always beats the shop version hands down. I love artichokes too, I haven't had them much since living in England, but my mum used to cook them quite often back in France. I love pealing the leaves and dipping them in vinaigrette!! Thought I'd let you know I've just started my own blog, do pay me a visit when you have a second! Louise

Devon Dumpling said...

Hi Kim
I am really pleased that you liked my recipe suggestion and thank you so much for wanting to post me a little something; it is so kind of you and has really brightened up a rainy day!
I have sent you an email with my address.
Hannah xxx

Devon Dumpling said...

Hi again Kim!
I have just tried to send you an email but the link on your blog page doesn't seem to be working!?
Please could you let me know your email address and I shall give you my address?
Thanks, Hannah xxx

Sew Recycled said...

Just look at those sweeties! Mmmmmm. We did have fun again didn't we my dear. You are so clever with your posts always a treat to read.
Mappxx

Isabelle said...

So bright and colourful. Much better than soggy washing!

Susie's country cottage said...

I love your photos. You are so creative with your compositions. The colours a wonderful. Yes, what happened to the hot summer they were promising this year. It seemed to last a week and then fizzled out!

Tracy said...

Love all the tasty, juicy colors and flavors in this post, Kim...mmm..wonderful! Happy Days :o) ((HUGS))

Gina said...

I'm praying the sunshine comes to you, and that I could pop through my computer screen to eat some of your treats. Wishing you well, g`

Cowboys and Custard said...

Liquorishy is a word now... I love it and am rather taken with those fruity versions... sweet or not..I'll have to seek them out!
The green photo is my favourite too.. it's verdant abundance is beautiful and I am intrigued to hear how you found a bread bin at a street party??
Do tell M..

Dxx

Country Cottage Chic said...

I really do think we are owed some sunshine! At least you have some jolly colourful goodies around to cheer you up!

Jayne

cocoa and blankets said...

Talking of preserves...I had an embarassing moment on saturday at our monthly prayer breakfast...I opened up a new jar of lemon and ginger marmalade...made by my own fair hand...mould...the next...mould...4 jars later ..... a very red faced Helen and 4 ruined jars of my favourite marmalade....so my preserve making has been put on hold...

Rowan said...

Amber is my favourite of these colours but your lovely red blackcurrant jam looks beautiful. Sounds as though you had fun making it too:) It would be nice to have a bit more sun and a bit less rain wouldn't it?

periwinkle said...

i'm wishing for the sun too, rain rain go away -- I have to say though I love the red allsorts :-)

louise said...

Lots of lovely colour as ever. I do wish my Mum hadn't sold her preserving pan. I plan to make jam one day, maybe when I retire! I like fruit allsorts, infact I love allsorts! x

Helen said...

it must be the jam season! I made gooseberry jam yesterday . . . . my first jam ever, I am blessed with lots of jars too!

She'sSewPretty said...

I love the top picture. We're having lots of sun here but it is too hot to be outside in it. I can't even imagine making jam here in the summer. But, it looks and sounds so yummy!