It’s that wonderful time of Summer when you suddenly find you have a glut of some fruits and vegetables – all ripening at once and needing preserving, giving away, or leaving to rot. Obviously I’m not a big fan of leaving anything to rot. I figure by the time I’ve shared the harvest with the birds and insects then I should do all I can to retain the rest for human consumption.
Today it was lemons. I hand juiced over 50 of them, put them into ziplock bags and froze them. I grated some of the rind and did the same thing – pretty sure I’ve done that before and it’s still been ok for muffins etc later on. It was worth a try anyway. The juice is very versatile. I drink the juice of one lemon every morning in warm water, and the juice of two lemons is needed in my very yummy and popular Raw Vegan Berry ‘Cheesecake’, as well as numerous other recipes!
Next on the agenda is zucchinis, I have 4 already sitting looking at me on the bench. I love that you can use them in sweet or savoury dishes and both Raw and Paleo (my two ways of eating!). With the temperature tipping to be over 40C for most of the next month I think my emphasis might be on Raw!
That’s two mornings in a row now that have been cool, and I mean the temperature has been lower and more comfortable, although it is pretty ‘cool’ to also be living here surrounded by the beautiful mountains.
A light breeze filters through and around the house, gently swaying the bushes and trees in the garden, the water from the sprinkler reflects the early morning light like diamonds cascading to the parched earth. Even the birds seem louder and more active, hopping around the lawn, drinking from the birdbath and playing in the water. It’s beautiful to sit on the verandah and just take it all in….yes, there’s still a bit of smoke haze around the hills – but nowhere near as heavy as last night where there was a glowing red sun amidst the smell of thick smoke blowing in from fires burning in the bush 60km away. The helicopters have been flying over the house and back for a few days now, carting water and firefighters to the mountainous terrain where the fire tears its way through the bush. It’s easy to feel safe here, confident in the abilities of our wonderful firefighters.
It’s also good weather to restock the snack foods, raw chocolate balls and mini mango cakes (world’s easiest recipe, flour free and dairy free – thanks to my sister Jacinta for sharing it with me).
There’s also nothing better than to be able to wander across the back lawn to the vegie garden and pick fresh ingredients for my morning omelette. Knowing there’s been no chemicals anywhere near them, spinach, basil, chives, chillies, zucchini, and this morning the first tomato of the season 🙂 I, of course, won’t be eating the tomato raw – never been to my taste, but I will bottle them for using in casseroles and pasta sauces later in the year. And the lemons are falling off the trees, trying to make room for the second crop of the year which are just starting to grow….so might be making lemon cakes later – and will freeze some of the juice for making raw vegan raspberry mousse cake later in the year!
A few more days of this cooler weather is forecast, and then back to the more usual hotter weather that we enjoy in Summer here!