Our oils and new olives win medals in SA

ImageI love visiting Pat and Lina at their stall, Patlin Gardens, at the Showgrounds Farmers’ Market in Adelaide and this time I found out its not just the customers at The Garden Shed and Pantry who love their olives and oils. They have won several awards now, from the Australian Olive Society.

ImageNow available from Patlins are the jumbo kalamatas, picked before fully black, to retain their exquisite flavour and texture plus the shiny, black manzanillos. I have ordered a barrel of each and they will be available from Dec. 8th.


Lina’s favourite method of preparing the olives is to soak them in water for a few days to reduce the salt from the brine then bathe them generously in a mixture of olive oil, crushed garlic, lemon pepper and dried oregano.


Clean Conscience for Cygnet!

Eco cleaning products…

Created, made and bottled in Tasmania, Tracey and co. at Clean Conscience aim to provide an ethical, honest and authentic alternative to chemical-based cleaning and show why using back to basic cleaning agents such as bicarb-soda, essential oils, vinegar and pure soap are the best choice for a healthier life and the future of our planet.

This Sunday Nov 18th at the Cygnet market, Tracey, the founder of Clean Conscience,  will be at The Garden Shed and Pantry stall from 10am – 11am to answer all your questions.

Now available at The Garden Shed and pantry:-

        Laundry powder

Spray cleaner

Cream cleaner

An article from the Clean Conscience website

Our Palm Oil Journey

When Clean Conscience first started we had no idea about the palm oil issue.
It was not until 2009 whilst attending a green expo a few of our customers raised the issue with us. Concerned with what I was hearing I started to research the subject and was very upset with what I uncovered. Even worse two of our most  popular products (laundry powder and Automatic dishwasher powder) were made with pure soap powder which contained palm oil.
Such was the shock of what I found within the palm oil industry, I started working on an alternative as I could not and would not be a part of this environmental devastation.
We finally came across the fantastic ingredient of soap nuts and with a bit of research, testing and hard work
the very first Palm oil free laundry powder on the market was born.
Admittedly I was a little worried that consumers may baulk at a beige coloured laundry powder but our customers embraced it and were only to happy to try a palm oil free alternative. Clean Conscience laundry powder is now one of our best selling products.
The casualty of this story is our Automatic dishwasher powder. We removed this product from our line as we could not find an effective alternative ingredient (within our standards). We are still working on this product and hope to have a palm oil free Automatic dishwasher product out by the end of the year.
I believe the Palm oil issue is one of the greatest environmental disasters or our time and we all must become more aware of what is in the products we are using.
In the face of growing consumer concern with palm oil. some manufacturers are switching to “sustainable palm oil”.
Both businesses and consumers who are concerned about palm oil often look to the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) . The RSPO is a voluntary initiative that aims to create a certification standard for “sustainable” palm oil.
It is my opinion this organization lacks transparency and enforcement and as a result is ineffective.
We do not believe true sustainable palm oil exists.
For more information on sustainable palm oil please follow the link below:

It’s not too early….

It’s really not too early to be thinking about Christmas….

Here is a great book to give to the person who loves to cook Italian food.

The Silver Spoon

The Silver Spoon

This is the classic Italian cookbook that has only been recently translated into English.

The Silver Spoon:

The book that is the standard wedding gift in Italy.  Fifty years old (but updated when translated into English), 1,000 plus pages, hundreds of photos  and over 2,000 recipes.

All sorts of recipes - squid is a favourite of mine

All sorts of recipes – squid is a favourite of mine

Contents includes:

Eating is a serious matter

Cooking Terms

Tools and Equipment

Sauces, Marinades and Flavoured butters

Antipasti, Appetizers and Pizzas

First Courses

Eggs and Frittata


Fish, Crustaceans and Shellfish

Meat and Variety Meats




Desserts and Baking

Menus by Celebrated Chefs

List of Recipes


Not $69.95 but as a special introductory offer, buy or order this weekend at the Cygnet Market and it can be yours for less than half the retail price.

Pistachios available now!

We are very pleased to be able to bring to you pistachios from McLaren Vale Orchards in South Australia.  Mark and his wife Lisa own and operate McLaren Vale Orchards with produce supplied from their farm in Merbein Victoria, and their orchard in McLaren Vale where they also reside.  Mark is a second generation farmer and his father was the first person to grow pistachios commercially in Australia.

The pistachios we sell are natural and sun dried.  They contain no added salt.

Pistachios have been grown in Australia since the early 1980’s. The new high yielding variety, Sirora, was selected for its:

  • Excellent flavour
  • Bright green kernel colour
  • High percentage of wide splits, so it is easy to open
  • White shell (we do not use bleach or other chemicals)


Nuts are a great source of plant based protein and are an excellent source of vitamins and minerals. Nuts can be regarded as a complete food because they usually contain enough of the essential nutrients that we need – energy from oils and fats, proteins, vitamins and minerals.

Nuts also benefit overall health in the following ways:
Nuts help in keeping arteries elastic and controlling blood pressure.
Nuts have antiviral properties.
Nuts help to reduce the factors that lead to cancer.
Nuts are a healthy energy source.
Nuts, in common with other plant products, contain no cholestrol.
Nuts assist in weight reduction and lower the risk of weight gain.

Enjoy the healthy eating available from the Cygnet Market.

Three New November Products

Two new muesli styles

Most nights I put 1/2 cup of my home made, organic bircher in a bowl, pour over 1/2 cup juice and leave it to soak on the table overnight. In the morning I add some fruit, usually a banana and something fresh or stewed, plus some home made yoghurt.

There are dozens of variations of this theme and the great thing is it is delicious, nutritious and activated by soaking, ensuring your body takes in all the goodness. And, the way I make it, its totally organic and Australian.

Now I have decided to sell Kate’s Raw Bircher Muesli at The Garden Shed and Pantry. There will be plenty at the market too, starting this week.

My son, Hugh, has his own business in Adelaide, called Hughsli. He started making toasted muesli a few years ago and offered it to a local cafe. The rest, as they say, is history. Now Hugh’s range has expanded into markets and niche shops all over Adelaide.

I am going to be selling his Everyday Tasty Cereal from mid November, alongside my Bircher. It is a simple, wholesome and tasty breakfast cereal which is made of 80% South Australian ingredients and has 80% Certified Organic ingredients. Well balanced in nutrition; all at a good price.


French green lentils, organic and Australian. Puy lentils are considered by many to be the best lentil because of their unique peppery flavour and the fact they hold their shape during cooking. Try the recipe below.

Our stocked range of organic, Australian lentils and beans include:

French green lentils, mung beans, chick peas, yellow split peas, (red lentils coming soon),

Salmon fishcakes on French green lentils

For the fishcakes
200g cooked potatoes
200g cooked salmon, flaked
1 free-range egg yolk
55g/2oz cooked broccoli, chopped
1 tsp Dijon mustard
2 tbsp chopped fresh dill
1 tbsp chopped fresh chervil
salt and freshly ground black pepper
55g plain flour
1 free-range egg
55g  breadcrumbs
15g butter

For the lentils
150g French green lentils
1 tbsp red wine vinegar
pinch chilli flakes
15g butter
2 tbsp chopped fresh chives, chopped
2 tbsp freshly grated parmesan
½ lemon, juice only

Preparation method

Place the lentils into pot and cover generously with cold water. Simmer until they have just softened – this can take between 15-30 minutes depending on the age of your lentils. Drain and set aside.

For the fishcakes, mash the cooked potato in a bowl, then mix in the salmon, egg yolk, broccoli, mustard and herbs. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper.

Divide the fishcake mixture into three equal portions and, with damp hands, shape each portion into a patty and dust with the flour.

Beat the remaining egg in a bowl, then dip the floured fishcakes into the egg and roll in the breadcrumbs.

Heat the butter in a frying pan until foaming, then fry the fishcakes for 3-4 minutes on each side, or until golden-brown all over. Set aside and keep warm.

Next, place the cooked lentils, vinegar, chilli flakes, butter and chives into a pan and warm through for 3-4 minutes. Stir in the grated parmesan and lemon juice.

To serve, spoon the lentils onto a serving plate and top with the fishcakes.

Seed Sowing Guide – November

Sow these seeds in November:

Sow these seeds in the garden:

Beans, Bush, ‘Royal Burgundy’, ‘Windsor Long Pod’ and ”Cherokee Wax’

Beans, Climbing ‘Purple King’

Beans, Runner

Beetroot ‘Bulls Blood’

Broccoli Raab

Broccoli ‘Summer Purple’

Cabbages ‘Munchkin’ F1 and ‘Red Express’

Carrots ‘Merida’, ‘Amsterdam Forcing’ and ‘Scarlet Nantes’

Cauliflower ‘All Year Around’

Chicory ‘Red Rib’


Kai-Lan ‘Chinese Kale’

Kale ‘Toscano / Cavolo Nero’

Leek ‘Bulgarian Giant’

Lettuces ‘Flashy Trout Back’, ‘Winter Density’, & ‘Rouge d’Hiver’

Parsley Mix

Radish ‘Watermelon’

Rocket,  ‘Heirloom’

Spinach ‘Tyee’ F1, ‘Steadfast’ & ‘Bloomsdale Longstanding’

Spring Onion ‘Red Beard’

Snow Pea ‘Oregon Sugar Pod’

Sow in trays in the hothouse:

Basil & Lemon Basil

Celery ‘Tall Utah’

Chamomile ‘Roman’


Corn, Sweet ‘Legacy F1’

Cucumber ‘Lebanese Sultan F1’

Melons ‘Mountain Sweet’ & ‘Cool Times’

Pumpkins ‘Golden Nugget’ & ‘Waltham Butternut’


Shiso ‘Red’

Tomatoes (a dozen different varieties chosen by Kate and Seedsaver Sam)

Sow (and grow) in the hothouse:

Asparagus ‘Mary Washington’ (in containers but outside during summer)

Basil & Lemon Basil

Capsicums ‘Antohi Romanian’, ‘Lipstick’ & ‘Italia’

Eggplant ‘Lavender Blush’ F1 & ‘Orient Express’ F1

Hey! Hey! Hey! Spring is here now!

It’s seed sowing time! 

tomatoes in the new seed rack

You can buy these seeds from my market stall at The Cygnet Market.

If you need any further advice, please ask. My father ran a successful nursery for many years in Adelaide and I have grown up amongst trees, plants and seeds. I want people to be able to grow their own food.

If you would like to purchase Cottage Garden seeds or Native seeds, you can order these from us at Cygnet Market.

All of my products are also available most days from 1pm at The Garden Shed and Pantry, Cygnet