Now in all my perusing around teh intarwebs, I haven't really come across many articles or videos that deal with cooking at the allotments. It may be that this is a little too complicated for most people, given the lack of facilities. Well I come from a Scouts and Venture Scouts background and have an active interest in camping, hiking and stuff like that. So I am keen to see what my little alcohol stove can do apart from brewing the kettle for a cuppa. So this morning I decided to have a go and cooking Bannock for breakfast.
Bannock is a Scottish bread traditionally cooked by pan frying it. So maybe it would be ideal to cook over an alcohol stove? There are many different recipes but they all come down to the basic same two ingredients. Flour and a rising agent. My mix is plain flour, milk powder, baking powder and a sprinkle of salt. So I took the dry mix in a bag ready to be used, mixed it with a little water and put it in one of my cooking tins.
Now this is where it all starts to go wrong. The alcohol stove puts out a very intense heat, albeit for a short duration, so it's ideal for heating water. But for cooking like this it doesn't seem to do well. The first thing that happened was that the base burned. The heat was kept in the billie due to the lid so it warmed up very fast. This cooked the outside well, but unfortunately it didn't heat the middle which was still a bit gooey. I think I'll have to find a way to make a small oven system to cook Bannock with this method. But breakfast wasn't all that bad. Have to figure out alternative recipes to cook.
The remains of breakfast.
The coke can alcohol stove in full burn.
It's been raining and my water barrels are full. I'm pretty sure it's going to rain some more at some point so any more rainfall would just be lost unless something is done about it. Well in the opposite corner of my little plot, actually on plot 30a, there is a water tank. It has no tap of means to fill it. It is simply dumped there. So I decided to siphon off my barrels into this tank. The next time it rains then these will fill up again. So we end up saving even more water.
That grey thing with "30" painted on it is a spare water tank.
As I mentioned in my round up, the Raspberries are not doing very well. So it's time for them to come to an end. But no sooner do I get down to their roots, do I find endless rhizomes of couch grass throughout. So the digging just keeps on getting bigger and bigger. After about my fourth wheelbarrow of rubbish I decided that I'd had enough digging for today and made a start on getting rid of the blackberry runners that were infesting the boundary between myself and my neighbour to the south. Spiky little buggers but I did manage to cut a lot back. Guess I'll have to do more digging to get the roots out. But as the light is beginning to fade in these short autumnal days, it's time to head out.
What started as this...
ended as this...
But as I was leaving I bumped into Paulina who was just arriving. We had a short chat about the Walnut Tree problem. More specifically about the Allelopathy problem it creates. My only source of info about walnuts comes from the RHS and Wikipedia. Neither of these say about the best way to remove the insidious chemicals which inhibit the growth of plants.