Saturday, 17 October 2009

Invocation and the ritual dance of the young pumpkin and cider making

Normal service has been resumed from WTA ...Still harvesting some good feeds off WTA...not too much work on the blog or WTA due to the 'day job 'and thesis...but things are under control ... don't panic! Winter green seedlings (cabbages, sprouting broccoli) have gone in along with over three hundred winter onion sets... The last runner beans and summer carrots are also being picked.

Visitors and noteable absences

Mart the chief of staff and Author Jan have swung through and had their first full tour of WTA this morning. Mart the chief of staff picked a massive Orbit pumpkin that had been sitting proudly in the pumpkin patch ready for harvest and I also picked my first 'crown prince' pumpkin this morning. It's been the highlight of the WTA year to have them here. I also butter nut squash over the past few days and made the squash into stonking butter nut squash soup that has gone down a treat in this breezy and darkening autumn days of late. My own exclusive WTA butter nut squash soup recipe will go up on the blog soon!

I as wondering where my mate Johnny Bridgmeister had got to after long noteable absence from WTA this year. I was a little perplexed by his no-shows until but finally got a letter from one of his 'handlers' - one Howard Bigot Johnson this week informing me that Johnny was too busy to help out with weeding due to his commitments to contributing to one which has had now taken on the mantle of the blogosphere's NO.1 satirical bridge playing sites!

Old Sleningford farm

Went one of my annual off-allotment forays into the North Yorkshire wilds today with Mart the Chief of Staff, Author Jan and the Hearing Scientist today and visited the folks at Old Sleningford farm (see WTA links)to press my own apple/cider juic gathered from apples from Annie's place adjoining WTA. The Sleningford farm crew are a brilliant lot and have set up community apple juice pressing operation that is inspirational in it's social vision and community inclusivity. We maged to get about 18 litres of the most fragrant and luscious apple juice from the 37 kgs we brought with us. The hearing scientist brought along some apple wine we made last year which was generally considered a rather ribald little number, so much so I have been asked to up the apple wine recipe we used by one particularly keen punter of Norther origin. At this stage I must acknowledge the apple wine recipe's source which comes from the legendary C. J. J. Berry's First Steps in Wine Making (Standard Press -Andover).
So here it goes!
WTA's Apple wine recipe
10 kgs of mixed apples (windfalls)
1.5kgs of Sugar (to the gallon of liquor)
4.5 litres of water
Method: Chop the apples into small pieces an put into a bowl. Add the yeast an waters(water will not cover the apples). Cover with fine netting (to prevent vinegar flies getting in). Leave for a wee k, stirring vigorously several times a day to bring the apples from the bottom to the top. Kep the bowl covered and in a fairly warm place. Then strain the juice from the apple 'pulp'. Press the juice from the apples and add to the rest of the liquor. To every gallon add 3lbs of sugar.. put into a cask or glass fermenting vessel (demijohn) and fit an airlock, racking when it has cleared. TGhe win willb ready for drinking within six months,but improves being kept for a year.
Grow and drink well.

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