Pip and/or Dakota also scarfed a plateful of cocoa-rich cookies on Christmas night so we were on the 'phone to the vets calculating how much chocolate per body weight they might have ingested, and whether or not we were going to have to get out of our sick bed and take them to the vets. I'm glad to report we all made it through.
A few days' illness meant we needed to catch up on some chores. I re-pressurised the heating system and cleaned up broken glass - the winds blew a pane out of the greenhouse during the night. Mike split logs. The weather's been cold and wet, but the fire's roaring away so much so that I'm stripped down to my long johns now. (note to self - no future career as a phone sex operator...)
A Christmas addition to the freezer
Although we haven't been eating much over the past few days, we have been discussing food. Particularly that our diet has been a bit meat heavy recently. Understandable as we're harvesting a lot of (free) game this time of year, and our garden is empty due to my poor planning and limited space. Traditionally only the estate owners and wealthy people would have had a meat rich diet. Workers like us would get their calories from carbohydrates like grains and root vegetables, and lard (which explains the British proclivity for suet puddings and pies).
I picked some turnips for this evening's dinner, and extras for the animals: the chickens eat the green tops and the sheep will eat the whole plant. Mike said as he set off to walk the dogs, Nellie the old spaniel was tucking into the green tops alongside the chickens. I guess even she's fed up with venison leftovers.
Mike was dubious after enduring the Great Swedefest of '08 (too much of a good thing..). But, having just finished dinner, I can confirm that the turnips were a success. Granted I mashed them with marscapone cheese and topped them with a parmesan breadcrumb crust which added flavor, but definitely edible. I see turnips in our culinary future.
Santa brought me a coffee grinder for Christmas and now I'm thinking that I might collect and dry a few maize cobs and see if I can grind them into a rough flour using the coffee grinder. Turnips with a polenta crust??
A working raddle courtesy of donaghys.com