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Showing posts from January, 2014

Planning parties at home - and remembering what happened!

Each year, in the weeks after Christmas, I write up what happened over Christmas in my special "events" book. I find that its great when as November rolls around again and you need to start thinking about ordering prawns or making up guest lists - you can remember what happened (that is, where not to order prawns again and who not to invite this year!)

Events are in my families blood. We can all organise a birthday for 50 people without blinking and turn breakfast for four into a bit of a production when the need arises. Its something that we are not only good at, but all enjoy. We can all cook, we can all drink and we can all organise various celebrations without raising a sweat - that's a real feat in a Queensland Summer! It wont surprise you to know that many of my family is in the Hospitality trade!

Here's what I do...

I have an exercise book that I write up all my events in. I use it to plan the event and then after the event I write up what worked well and wha…

Home made small batch mixed vegetable pickles!

I was flicking through Jamie Olivers latest cook book (that I got out from the library) and found this wonderful idea to pickle all those left over bits of vegetables that end up lurking in the fridge in that not-enough-for-a-meal-but-too-good-to-be-thrown-to-the-chooks-yet way.

He calls them House Pickles! I think they are just wonderful!

Here's what I did...

This is the page from his book, "Save with Jamie". He talks about having bits and bobs left over from salads that just sit in the fridge until they finally go off and you throw them into the compost or maybe to the chooks... (has this man been looking in my fridge??)
Its a pretty simple concept: Put a mixture of 1 part cold water to 2 parts vinegar into a sterilised jar (leaving enough room for the veges) and add 1 heaped tablespoon each of sugar and salt, stir, and add spices and herbs to taste - pop in the veges, seal and leave in the fridge for up to eight weeks.
The idea is that you can add random left over ve…

Splitting a back yard hive of Trigonia Hockingsii for the first time!

There are about 1500 species of native bees here in Australia. Only four of them (that I know about) swarm and build community hives. The other are all solitary and mate and lay eggs without hanging out with 10,000 of their buddies! (I've put some links at the bottom of the page to interesting bee sites if you are keen to learn more!)

With a new species native bee species recently being identified, the powers that be(e) have changed the formal name to Tetragonula (Tetra meaning four species) from Trigonia (Tri meaning three) followed by the species name but lots of backyarders are yet to change their vocabulary!

 Summer is the season to split Australian Native bee hives. We swapped a hive of Trigona Carbonarii with friends for a hive of Trigonia Hockingsii last year when we both split hives. (See Carbonarii split here). It's been a year since we got the Hockingsii and the husband has been reading up on them and busy building new hives in the background in preparation to split …
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