Marvelous May Newsletter

Below you will find an excerpt from my May newsletter. To read the whole thing, including some new recipes, please click here. It is fun and fabulous!

Almonds
Everyone, including me, has been waiting for news on Richard’s fantastic Johnston and Somerton almonds, grown in the almond district, Willunga, south of Adelaide. I spoke to Richard on Tuesday. He told me there was a fabulous crop this year and he will be sending them sometime in June! Yippee!

swap crop logo

Introducing Crop Swap
Recently I came across an Australia and NZ group of people as keen as I am to share garden produce and, in fact, anything edible or related to food. So, I joined the group and made us a sub-group and website Crop Swap Cygnet and Surrounds. There are several others in Tasmania too. Please join the Crop Swap Cygnet and Surrounds facebook page for updates etc. If you would like to help me make this work, please contact me asap. I am really keen to get started! No money is involved at all. Whether you are a backyard gardener, home cook, forager, seedsaver, cuttings guru, pickle maker or bread baker, you are welcome.

Sundried apricots, pears, plums and peaches
Kevin and Cindy’s fabulous, new season’s organic, sundried fruits were supposed to be arriving this week but the silly freight people have not picked them up….. so it will now be the first June market before they arrive. Oh lalalalala, how do businesses survive that are run so badly? 

Rain-fed rice
The Qld floods inundated the Lismore freight depot but now they are up and running again. I am pleased to say that Slater Farms’ magnificent, fragrant, bio-dynamic, long grain rice did not get flooded and will be at the market, along with rain-fed medium grain rice and rain-fed rice flour too. 

May Sourdough Workshop-full 
I am pleased to say there are no places left for this workshop but I will be running another in late June or early July. Read about my sourdough workshops here.

More than just Permaculture
There are lots of permaculture design certificate courses but our Gumboot Gardeners group is helping to host something broader, deeper and more easily used for your own property. Please read about Julia and Charles’ course below, based on 25 years of teaching all over the world.

Just for a laugh
Here is a little video I made about 10 years ago, of how to easily dig in green manure. For some reason it is not playing as clearly as it used to! Check out the dry stone wall in the first few seconds. I built that, with stone from my yard when we were making terraces. I had to raid a roadside cutting to get a few bits to finish it off. It is a tricky, twisted circle, going above then below where I am standing, as it was on a massive slope!

Square eftpos
The Garden Shed and Pantry now has credit card, debit card, chip and contactless payment facilities! Square is a simple and cheap system suited to every form of transaction. It may be cheap but it is not free, so I would still prefer cash but no longer will there be any inconvenience if you do not have enough cash with you! 

March Sourdough and Cultured Butter Workshop

The March workshop date is Friday, March 24th, 7.30pm – 9pm and Sat. March 25th, 8am – 9.30am. You must come to both sessions. $55.

To read about my sourdough workshops, click here.

For bookings of the March workshop click here. To book, add your EMAIL (NOT your name, even if I know you) now.

This is a fun and informative workshop for anyone wanting to make easy, foolproof, nutritious, delicious sourdough bread with fresh, organic, Australian ingredients.

Sourdough Bread and Cultured Butter Workshops

Making sourdough bread is the simplest way of making bread. Believed to have originated in Egypt, where it just so happened that the grains they grew and milled behaved magically with the yeasts and bacteria in the air, sourdough bread has come to the forefront of modern day bread connoisseurs.

Following our greater understanding of the human gut, we also now realise the health benefits of slow food and the slow proving and natural fermenting of the sourdough loaf is part of this phenomenon. For those with some intolerance to gluten, sourdough bread is a godsend as the slow proving and fermenting uses up a great percentage of the gluten, unlike the fast and artificial process of using commercial yeasts.

Warmth is not required to prove the bread. Time is all that is required. A good, long proving time gives an excellent texture and that distinctive, sour taste.

In my workshops I teach you to make the best bread you have ever eaten, made simply, using the traditional, no-knead method from Egypt.

The workshop in my kitchen.

The workshop in my kitchen.

Following the fermenting theme, I also show you very easy cultured butter, which is common in France but expensive to buy here. Two litres of cream will produce about 1kg of the best butter you have ever had, cultured and delicious.

Here are the details –

The workshop runs in two separate sessions and is conducted in my kitchen at 4 Winns Road Cygnet.  The maximum number of workshop participants is ten.  That way we can comfortably fit in the kitchen and I have sufficient time to answer all questions and see that everyone receives the help they need.

The first session is on Friday evening and runs for one and a half hours. It includes how to make the dough,  the first rising, caring for the starter and tastings.  We also churn the cultured butter and learn about the culturing process.

Session two of the workshop runs on Saturday morning for one hour and  includes preparing for the second rising and how to bake it and more tastings (breakfast, with our cultured butter, coffee and teas!).  Specific times for the workshop sessions are confirmed on the booking sheet.

During the second session, participants can check out the goodies in the Pantry and stock up on their sourdough breadmaking (and general cooking) needs. With the 10% discount on offer for the participants on workshop day, the prices are very reasonable.

The cost of the workshop is $55 and includes enough flour etc to make another loaf at home. Of course you get the starter which will keep you going forever. The flours are all high quality organic flours from Four Leaf Milling in South Australia.  The workshop kit also contains one dough scraper, a handy (Australian made) measuring jug and more of my favourite recipes. We make the bread and butter together and I answer all your questions so that you go home confident to make easy, wonderful bread on your own.

Payment is by transfer to my bank account and must be completed before the workshop. Details are sent by email once the workshop participants are finalised.

That's me! I love these workshops as much as the participants.

That’s me! I love these workshops as much as the participants.

For those who do not reside locally, I recommend you search Airbnb for places to stay in Cygnet; there are several close by.  Find out more here.

Please feel free to contact me if you would like more information or to be put on the Sourdough Workshop email list for future workshop dates.

Feedback from some of my sourdough participants…..

November 2016….. We shared the loaves with friends.  They loved them as much as we did….Won’t make too often – way too dangerous  J

Thank you for your huge thought knowledge effort and generosity that goes into your workshops. We’ll tell all our friends about you  Kate

Flip and Ian

flip-and-ians-bread-nov-16

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Hi Kate

On the way home I had to stop suddenly for a bettong ( or similar) and when I got home I found that the dough had tipped out of the bowl and was embedded in the car mat !  Nevertheless I rescued it and carried on as per your instructions and it was fine and delicious. Thank you for finding this great method of producing sour dough !

Nicky
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Fermenting and Sprouting Workshops

$55 / person. To book for my October workshop please add your email (NOT your name) here.

Along with sourdough bread making, fermenting and sprouting are ancient crafts being now recognised for their health-giving properties and simple preparations.

Whether you want to stay healthy, regain vitality or are unwell, fermenting and sprouting will help you. These simple, ancient methods of preparing vegetables, nuts, pulses, seeds and dairy are still an integral part of the diet of most people in Asia, Europe and South America. Fermented foods improve digestion and add digestive enzymes that are lacking in many people’s diets. Ferments are easily created in your kitchen with ingredients you will already have at hand. Come and learn how to take charge of your gut, your health and your brain, by making simple, delicious foods for daily life.

Various ferments

Various ferments

Left, pickled radishes. Right, making pickled zucchinis.

Left, pickled radishes. Right, making pickled zucchinis.

Sprouted red lentils and a slice of sourdough in a bowl of slow-cooked baked beans.

Sprouted red lentils and a slice of sourdough in a bowl of slow-cooked baked beans.

Hand in hand with fermented foods, sprouted grains and seeds can easily be added to your diet. Freshly sprouted in your home, they provide a bounty of nutrients. Let me introduce you to my easy, foolproof sprouting method.

There are always plenty of samples for you to try in my workshops and you will be delighted to discover that such beautiful flavours can add such vitality to your body and spring to your step!

The table in my workshop bursting with food for participants to try!

The table in my workshop bursting with food for participants to try!

Workshop dates advertised on the home page.  Alternatively, to be on my newsletter list, please send me your email address. Newsletters are sent fortnightly.

September Sourdough and Cultured Butter Workshop

The July workshop was a hoot; the 9 participants were such fun and came from far and wide. We sorted out all the challenges, from baking in a wood oven to how to make sourdough in Darwin!

The September workshop date is Friday, Sept. 9th, 7pm – 8.30pm and Sat., Sept. 10th, 8.30am – 10am. You must come to both sessions.

To read about my sourdough workshops, click here. For bookings of the September workshop click here. To book, add your EMAIL (NOT your name, even if I know you) now.

1-DSC_0003$55, Total bargain!

July sourdough + cultured butter workshop

Friday July 22nd, 7pm – 8.30pm + Sat. July 23rd, 9am – 10.30am. Two sessions and you must come to both.

To register, add your EMAIL address (NOT your name) to the July Sourdough + Cultured Butter Workshop booking sheet. I will then be in touch with payment details.

$55 / person

Cultured butter

Cultured butter

The dawn of civilisation in Egypt heralded the start of seed saving and sowing. Cereal grains were easy to collect and easy to grow and thus began the evolution of bread creation, culminating in the discovery of using soaked and fermented flour to make risen bread, which we call sourdough. Created before the invention of any modern equipment or ingredients, sourdough bread remains today one of the world’s favourite and simplest breads.

Before modern factory butter making, cream was usually collected from several milkings and obviously not refrigerated. It was therefore several days old and somewhat fermented by the time it was made into butter. Butter made from a fermented cream is known as cultured butter. During fermentation, the cream naturally sours as bacteria convert milk sugars into lactic acid which makes for a fuller-flavoured and more “buttery” tasting product.

In this workshop we will make cultured butter and sourdough bread. The sourdough method I choose to use is easy and foolproof, producing nutritious and delicious bread every time.

Fermented foods, including sourdough breads and cultured butter, allow the human body to absorb all their nutrients and cause less health problems than faster, industrial methods.

To read more about my sourdough workshops, click here.
Sourdough Loaf

Kate's sourdough workshop

Kate’s sourdough workshop

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To register, add your EMAIL address (NOT your name) to the July Sourdough + Cultured Butter Workshop booking sheet