First Blackberries

I made jelly and jam. I was just going to make jelly but couldn’t stand to throw away the pulp so only strained a small amount of juice, enough for one jar of jelly. I squeezed two and a half jars of jam out of the pulp. I usually bulk out my blackberry jam with apples for the extra pectin but cheated with lemons this time.

Treasure on Pirate Day

It was Pirate Day in Hastings U.K. today. The streets were filled with pirates of every description. The procession was fantastic with lots of drumming

I spotted some knitted participants

And found a lovely pile of treasure in a shop in Old Town…

These machines were in pretty good shape. The underwood had spools but no ribbon, but otherwise seemed well presented. Lots of other good treasure in this shop too. I didn’t have time to investigate thoroughly as we were in town for pirates but it was great to see these machines after a run of not finding anything much for a while.

I also had my first swim of the year in the sea this morning and I can report the water was great – calm and not chilly 🙂

Wonderful Bacteria!

I started out with 10g of kefir grains. It made one small glass of kefir. In two days it had doubled in size…
Cultured kefir ready to have its grains scooped out to start a new batch. The grains thrive on the lactose in the milk, and their activity creates the fizziness in the finished kefir.
How it looks from the top when it’s ready. It can take anywhere between 12 – 36 hours to culture depending on ambient temperature and the happiness of the grains. They like consistency and get a bit grumpy if you change their regular milk for something new. So if you swap from cow to goat milk for instance, mix a bit of cows milk with the goat milk at first to ease the grains into their new food environment.
Monster blob. Do not be afraid or grossed out.
The new kefir and the separated grains ready for fresh whole milk. I never bother measuring the blobs to ratio of milk. This is a lot of kefir grains for 500 ml of milk, and you could use half the amount I have here.
The kefir itself. This batch was semi set like Greek yogurt.
Banana and Necatarine kefir smoothie in the morning sun.