31 May 2013

Chasing Butterflies

I was out checking the vege garden and pumpkin patch yesterday and noticed a flurry of activity in the air so I raced inside and grabbed the camera as I don't think I'll be seeing much of my favourite butterfly now it's the end of Autumn. These are the best of about 40 photos.

Click to enlarge.

The ones I like best are the ones with the bokeh style background especially #2 and #6. The flying butterfly in #7 is the reason I was wandering around the garden for over an hour! I particularly wanted a good photo of one in flight. All these were taken with the camera hand held as butterflies are too quick to be carting tripods around and setting them up :).

Robyn xo

30 May 2013

Souffle, Mon Amies!

Apologies to any Mon Amis that also read this blog :O! I also thought this should have a French post title as it was a French recipe :).

As my sponge cakes can turn out more like sponges than light as air treats I've put off trying to make a souffle for as long as I've had the recipe.......28 years.

However, having an excess of eggs at the moment - 4 dozen and the chooks keep delivering - I decided last night to make something egg based that wasn't a dessert, as I'm trying to lose weight, and decided if it was a 6 egg flop the cats or dogs would enjoy it and the family could have toasted sandwiches for tea *wink*.

Well, it didn't turn out too bad, even though the baking dish was a bit big for it. I didn't think to take a photo before cooking it to show how much it rose.

I'm quite pleased with my first souffle and now that I've done chicken and mushroom, I'll be trying other flavours for the savoury ones and have my eye on the chocolate souffle and the strawberry souffle for desserts. I'll just have to restrict the last two to taste testing only though (roll eyes.....I wish!).

Robyn xo

27 May 2013


The subject of raised beds has come up again on the DTE forum this week and one of the moderators posted this link to huglekultur on the thread. I found it very interesting as I've already made beds from piles of thin rotting sticks, dead weeds and leaves and my capsicums have thrived in them. As I also don't have a dedicated compost bin/s I make garden waste into piles to  become mulch/compost.

As it was a lovely day today I decided to do some cleaning up in the vege garden. This is my trial run of a fibrous huglekultur using woody green weeds and dead mulberry leaves on the bottom then layers of farmer's friends and pumpkin vines with a topcoat of mainly alder and rotting loquat leaves, mixed through with the humus that was underneath them when I raked them up, along with some soil. All this was wet down liberally with water and when it decomposes will be part of the filling for a new raised bed on this spot.

A good afternoon's work and later in the week I'll water it with comfrey and nettle solution to assist  the decomposition.

Meanwhile, I have my eye on a pile of assorted dead branches/trees that DH is waiting to dry out so he can burn them. They'd make a great base for a big huglekultur in the pumpkin patch area!

Robyn xo

22 May 2013

Best spots?!

Winter has definitely arrived and the combustion stove is in use again. Miss Maddy usually likes to perch beside it on the brick divider that separates the stove from the wood that fuels it but the last couple of nights she's found a more comfortable spot.

What is it with cats and newspapers?

Madame Ginger (top right) thought she was the star until Miss Maddy decided to intervene in her photo shoot.
Ginger top left to bottom right: 
"Aren't I gorgeous?
Hey miss you're intruding!
Nooo, don't stop there.
I can still see you... keep going 
Finally. Now you can photograph my other gorgeous side!"
(Click on photo to enlarge)

Robyn xo

19 May 2013

Belated Mother's Day Gift and Local Markets

Received my Mother's Day gift from my two adult kids in the mail yesterday and I LOVE IT !

Took my Mum to to visit the local Handmade/Homegrown markets at Gladstone, NSW today. They were wonderful. Stalls with jewellery, knitted goods, plants, preserves, paintings, foods of all kinds - including cheese and ice cream made from buffalo milk and cream from Ausbuff, Eungai.

All the food stalls had samples you could try and we did sample a few items but had to restrain ourselves from becoming greedy as it was all so yum.

We had peking duck spring rolls and Holy Goat coffee for lunch...mmmmmmm :).

Guess which doofus left her camera at home? Mum bought brandy orange marmalade, blue vein cheese from Dorrigo and a jar of Buffalo spiced quark. I did, however, take a photo after I arrived home of some delicious marmalade I bought.

If you are ever in my area on the Mid North Coast of NSW, Australia do visit the Gladstone markets beside the mighty Macleay River. They are held on the 3rd Sunday of the month from 9am - 2pm.

Robyn xo

13 May 2013

Enough bikkies?

This morning after TeenageDD went to school I was busy adding to the goodies she would be taking to share at the Beef Week she will be attending with her school agriculture group. I've already made a wholemeal pumpkin fruit cake and a dozen wholemeal banana muffins so I baked a double batch of tollhouse cookies, or chocolate chip cookies to other people.

A double batch means 72 cookies but I decided I could keep some for DH and I as the recycled ice cream tin wouldn't take them all!

As it's a 3 hour trip I wonder if there will be any biscuits left by the time they arrive as 26 children are attending this one?

Robyn xo

11 May 2013

Afternoon tea

The pumpkin scones are eaten, I haven't bought or baked any biscuits or cakes, so there's no temptation to snack on sweet things, and it's Mother's Day tomorrow, Sunday, so I'll be visiting my Mum and I don't want to go empty handed - foodwise. I'm also tired of eating a piece of fruit or having nuts and dried fruit for afternoon tea. Teenage DD is going to a week long cattle show with the school next Monday, as well, so I'll need to donate some edibles for that.....something filling as teenagers have hollow legs!

So it's a good time to cook up something healthy that I am unable to eat a lot of in one session.

After looking through the supplies and the recipe books I decided on pumpkin fruit cake as it's diet friendly, filling, healthy and pumpkin is one ingredient I have plenty of.

The recipe for this tasty morsel is on the recipes page. I only have the name Linda on the recipe as credit for it but I think she was in a quilting forum I used to be a member of. This cake keeps and freezes well and it's very easy to make a double batch, as I've done, so you can share with a relative/friend or eat one now and freeze one for later - for when you've run out of goodies to eat with your afternoon tea.....or coffee!

Oh and I should have taken the photo just after I cooked it as it disappears fast around here ;P.

Robyn xo

7 May 2013


The rain always makes the light look clearer and the colours more intense.

Thanks for looking!
Cheers, Rob xo