Wednesday, 6 May 2020

Sharing

A few weeks ago I posted a message on the village app to say that I would put surplus seeds and seedlings in the redundant phone box outside our house for anyone to collect. Now other people are doing the same and every day or so something different is on offer. Red hot chilli seedlings today! (Yes, we are careful when opening the phone box door with it's metal handle, I always wear plastic gloves when I leave the confines of our garden.)
I gave away small lemon trees that I'd grown from cuttings and was very pleased to receive a thank you gift of eggs, two of them with beautiful pale blue shells. I used them in an almond cake made with a home-grown lemon and orange.
Tarta de Santiago

6 eggs separated   whisk whites until stiff.
250 g castor sugar   beat together with the egg yolks to a cream in separate bowl
250g  ground almonds    add to the sugar and egg yolk mixture
add grated zest of a lemon and an orange and slacken mixture with the juice.
Fold in the egg whites.
gas mark 4 for 30 - 40 minutes.
Dust with icing sugar before serving.
The recipe is from an article by Claudia Roden in the Guardian newspaper some years ago. (She grinds whole almonds and adds almond extract but doesn't use any lemon or orange juice.) The cake is sold in the shops and cafés in the cathedral city of Santiago da Compostela in Galicia. Pilgrims and tourists visit because it is believed that the relics of the apostle St James are buried here. The cake is often decorated with the shape of a Santiago cross. 
Something else for the village to share are these oyster mushrooms. They look and taste lovely!

23 comments:

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  2. Love that you're sharing with the box. And, those eggs! Wow!

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    1. My camera didn't pick up the colour of the blue-shelled eggs, they looked lovely. I must ask what sort of hen lays them.

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  3. I LOVE this idea. Very fun. Very nice. A friend of mine and me traded seeds via the post (we don't live near each other), and she gave me among other goodies, REAPER seeds. Carolina Reapers. So happy because I love those. Happy Planting and boogie boogie.

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    1. I shall have to look up what reaper seeds are. It's nice to swap seeds, and amazing to think that you can have thousands of potential flowers from a handful of tiny seeds such as poppies or foxgloves.

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    2. Carolina Reaper is a hot wonderful little gem of chili! Love it.

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  4. We have a sharing table down the street, it was always a gathering place but not now. I have some nice blue Italian Cypress that I started from cuttings that I will take down there in the morning. The almond cake looks devine.

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    1. You obviously live on a very nice street, Doc, a sharing table sounds good.

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  5. What a wonderful idea and you have a redundant phone box in your front yard ?????? I am so envious !
    I have a pink square Japanese phone box I still need the green one but a Red Phone Box so lucky ! ! !
    Your water color is wonderful.
    parsnip

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    1. The watercolour is a detail from a larger painting. The village bought the phone box for £1 when it became redundant - a bargain!

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  6. Great idea to give the old phone booth a new and useful lease of life! That cake looks delicious, I can almost smell it!

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    1. It's nice to be putting the box to good use.

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  7. Since March, I have been growing plants to share this spring. I have over 70 tomato plants and a majority will go to our food bank. In these times of struggle, it is good to be able to do something to help others.

    That cake looks wonderful!

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    1. 70 plants- excellent!
      And, yes, the cake is very tasty!

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  8. Phone box near here is used as a book swap. Unfortunately my tastes appear to differ from those of the people who use it. Either that or they're just using it to get rid of their crap.

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  9. Yes, I've only seen them used as book swaps and the problem often seems to be that they become a dumping ground for books that no-one wants to read. There needs to be someone to take control and have a good clear-out every now and then.

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  10. Claudia Roden, now there's a blast from the past. She had a moony sort of voice on her TV programmes, as if the weight of dispensing culinary wisdom was slowly compressing her into the density of a black hole. I find she is one year younger than I am and that she has survived to the point of receiving the culinary equivalent of a damehood. That Yotam Ottolenghi (whose primary role in life is to infuriate Guardian readers by citing ever more obscure spices in his recipes) has written an introduction to her Book of Middle Eastern Food. Fame indeed.

    My experience of cookbooks is glancing. I did look on in fascination when VR (my far better half) elected to do a super-difficult three-toque recipe from a lush publication carrying (I think) the imprimatur of Raymond Blanc. The dish was in two distinct halves and to my mind the two never came together. The first half involved poaching quail's eggs - not an impossible task, but fiddly. But made more nightmarish by the sheer number of eggs.

    Later in our marriage when we ceased being comfortable and became vulgarly wealthy, we celebrated an anniversary with an overnight stay at Blanc's Manoir aux Quat' Saisons, totally seduced by that specialised use of the apostrophe. The experience improved on the quail's eggs by a country mile and justified the enormous expense via its emphasis on front-of-house skills, notably by the receptionist and the sommelier. I have lunched twice more at Manoir under even more satisfactory conditions - ie, as a journalist with someone else paying. Hand on heart I can say: Il vaut la dépense."

    I'll bet you breezed through the quail's eggs recipe.

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    1. My, how the other half live! ( I fancy a spell of being vulgarly wealthy but fear I've left it too late.)
      Quail eggs look delightful in the shell, but really, what a faff to peel them.

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