You need about 450g of grated courgettes. I grate mine on a coarse grater, then spread them out on a tray and let them dry out a little (a few hours) before I use them. But you can also sprinkle salt over the grated courgettes and then wring them out in a tea towel to remove the moisture.
Then add 2 tsp active dried yeast to 50ml of warm water and leave to stand (15 mins or so).
Stir the yeast solution into the dried courgettes adding 400g of strong plain flour (and salt if you didn't use salt earlier on). Add a little water and knead to form a dough. Keep going until it is smooth and elastic. Mine was a bit sticky so I added flour while I was kneading.
Put the dough in an oiled bowl, cover and leave to rise for as long as it takes (an hour or two - I left mine in the fridge over night). Knock back and shape (I do an oval loaf). Place on a baking sheet and leave to rise again (until it doubles in size).
Put into the oven at 200C and bake for 40-45 minutes. Mine took a little longer as I like a dark crispy crust. Good with cheese and pickles in a Ploughman's Lunch. And a great way to use up a glut of courgettes. I'm going to eat this one but I'll make another and freeze it to see what happens.
Picking and pulling onions, carrots, beetroot, courgettes, and radishes. Have cut all the herbs back (oregano, sorrel, chives) so we get some fresh growth before the autumn.
Will start pciking French beans in a couple of days, there are masses of them.
We've been so busy with the honey we haven't spent much time in the polytunnel. But the squashes and the pumpkins are really doing well now. I think we will have to pick some and store them before the Slow Food market in October, otherwise they will be too enormous to get on the trailer! Before the autumn we will have to put a drainage ditch down the middle of the tunnel as it gets quite damp in one or two places when it rains really hard. We will also put some chicken wire at both ends of the tunnel to keep the rabbits out. Not sure how to keep the mice out though...
Guessed this would happen. I think we are going to eat around three cucumbers per day each from now until the end of August...
Put up a new raised bed inside the tunnel for "cut and come again" lettuce. They won't be ready until mid August but hopefully we will have lettuces until the frosts arrive.
Squash and pumpkins are doing well.
We were in Billnas for lunch: the Magasinitori was grilling West Chark's beef fillet and we were ravenous, so we treated ourselves to steak and salad. But this evening was even more special because we had our first cucumber out of the polytunnel. It was really good and I'm dead pleased that we can grow cucumbers so easily - no sticks or strings or anything complicated like that. Just an organic grow bag and daily watering (we now had a drip feed system). The cucumbers grow like courgettes so they don't need to climb. By this time next week I have a feeling I will be sick and tired of cucumbers...
Picked courgettes and some more beetroot.
We went up to Rosendal to pick the blackcurrants as there are about 8 or 9 mature bushes up there which are covered in fruit. When we got there we changed our minds and netted them instead. We will wait another week or so before we pick them. it is so much easier to harvest the whole crop in one go rather than pick out the ripe ones and return a second time.
I also weeded the leeks and the garlic and we dug up some more early potatoes (Timo).
The saskatoon plants are doing OK but the ground is very dry.
It had been raining in the night so we donned our wellies and went blueberry picking in the forest. We collected about 3 litres of berries - not great but a good start. There are still more to come but it doesn't look like it will be a great year. Wild raspberries are already starting to appear but no chanterelles yet as it has been way too dry.
It rained nearly all day! At last! So we stayed inside the polytunnel.
There is an old root cellar (maakellari) in Rosendal, but the roof has needed some TLC so last weekend we fixed the drainage and got some help (a big digger) to pile some more earth on top. Then the next job will be to plant some ground-covering plants to stabilise the soil.
And we'll probably add a wooden beam across the front door and extend the roof a little. A rockery would be nice, or a shrubery and even a garden gnome or two...
When it's all done, I,ll take some new photos. But for the time being, it's work in progress...
Zsazsa picking (and eating) blueberries. She is much quicker at doing this than I am.
We had one shower last week which lasted about an hour. But since then it has just been hot and dry. Daytime highs are around 28C and nighttime the temperatures are briefly going below 10C due to clear skies and a slightly longer period of darkness. We need to close the polytunnel at night now to retain some of the heat and avoid a large diurnal range in temperature which will stress the plants.
Everything in the polytunnel is coming on really well (cucumbers, tomatoes, squash, pumpkins etc) but laborious watering at least twice a day is absolutely essential.
The cultivated blueberries had been doing really well. They were covered in big green berries that were starting to ripen and we had been watering them religiously.
Then... today I found some nice footprints in the ground all around them and all the young shoots and the berries had been nibbled away.
The blueberries are now in cages.
The deer eats shoots and leaves...
Spent hours rigging up the tomato plants which have grown like vines over the past few days.
It is amazing what a difference a greenhouse and a sunny summer can make. Growing tomatoes against a south-facing wall in Espoo, I was lucky to pick any before mid-August and most of the yield would ripen off on the floor in the living room.
This year we are already picking cherry tomatoes and, the fruits on these vines will be ripe in a few days time.
Most of the tomato plants are in organic growbags but watering is a real problem. We now have a drip system which keeps the bags moist during the day, but we water by hand in the morning and the evening as the drip isn't enough. The growbags are expensive to buy and high maintenance, so next year we might make our own (ie bigger and easier to water).
Some of the compact cherry tomato plants are in large pots and a few are planted in border soil in the polytunnel. It will be interesting to see how they do.
The pumpkins and squash are being pollinated by insects, so no need to hand pollinate. In fact, we have so many insects in the polytunnel that we even had a couple of swallows come in for a feed. Grr... don't really want them in there!
Borago Officinalis is one of the bees' favourite plants.
They are really easy to grow and flower profusely just when the spring flowers are finishing.
We'll collect the seeds this year and plant a wider area next summer.
Also froze a few in ice cubes for a Pimm's. When I remember to buy some lemonade.
The hemp fields desperately need rain.
On the back field the plants are less than 1m tall but the growth is even. On the front field the growth is very uneven: some plants are maybe 1,50m tall whereas there is a large patch if very small plants in the centre which are struggling to beat the weeds.
The plants are flowering on both fields.
This is a male plant in flower.
This is the female plant.
The female plants are probably about half the height of the male plants.