Veg Patch

To read the story of my Veg Patch in chronological order use the links in the Blog Archive

Friday, 11 May 2012

Following on from the earlier Newsflash!

It happened. Finally, I have grown something edible. 7 Months after I moved to my garden with house attached and started my quest to grow my own I have harvested my first grown!

Regular followers will not be surprised to hear it was a strawberry. In fact 6 Strawberries. 

I have not had much time in the garden this week, apart from the rain keeping me inside, On tuesday I was having a happy afternoon outside in the sunshine. I wandered into the house mid afternoon and upon my return to the back door one of my Wellies had tipped over. As I bent to stand it up something popped in my lower back... Agony !! it has taken me until today to be able to stand up straight again. Its still very painful but enough was enough and I needed to see what had been going on at the end of the garden. 

Birds or something else winged have been snacking on my Broccoli and Sprout seedlings, Quite a few are gone, just lonely little stalks left blowing in the breeze! 

Luckily because of my plant the whole packet policy, I have plenty of spares to take the place of these sad little things. I can't put them in yet though as this time, I will put a cover over them, and I can't bend over enough yet to do that..

The parsnips had not suffered the same fate and are now looking very parsnippy.

And I seem to have acquired a lot of weeds!

As soon as I can bend, they will be out, as a lot of the plants I have hardening off need to go in that bed.

My Peas are finally growing, three attempts in the greenhouse before they appeared. I will be trying a different variety next time!

And my Italian let salad is nearly ready to eat with a nice bowl of pasta.

So now back to the main event. The Strawberries! Once again there were a couple of rotten ones, I suppose that can't be helped with all the water we have had. But there were some beauties, they looked perfect so before they could rot it was time to pick them. 

A quick tussle with the bird netting and 6 of them were resting in a bowl waiting to be turned into something interesting. 

I was lucky enough to find a brilliant cookbook in my charity shop a few weeks ago. Delia Smiths Complete Cookery Course. I had been looking for a recipe in it for custard and saw one for Creme Patisserie. As I looked at the Strawberries, an image of Custard tarts popped into my head. So that's what they were designed to become. 

First I made some sweet pastry, and while that was resting I fished out my flan tins

They were soon in the oven.

So following Delia's instructions the filling was made using 4 lovely fresh egg yolks

I got a little distracted and the cases cooked a bit longer than they should of so they were nice and crisp!

The Custard went in, after a quick taste to make sure it was ok.

And finally the washed, and sliced strawberries. As I only had a few, I also used a nice fresh mango I had in the fridge. If only we had the weather here to grow them as well!

Well they looked great. But as always the proof is in the eating. 

Delicious. The strawberries were sweet and juicy and the pastry just right. A Triumph . My first crop picked and used within an hour. 

Finally Gibson. He had a visitor this week. His brother Rufus, who is a London dog these days, was visiting relatives nearby so he dropped in for a catch up. 

A great time was had by all on the beach, and the boys seemed pleased to be together again.


  1. Those strawberries look delicious bet it was worth the wait! I haven't, as yet , harvested anything but I did start a bit later and the weather hasn't helped! Good job I am a patient soul! ;)

  2. so sad about the sprouts, ha! but even sadder you've eaten all the strawberries, those tartlets look delicious! any chance some more will grow in the next 2 hours before I arrive? x

  3. You'll never want to buy strawberries again after you have tasted the 'real' thing! The tarts look very French!

  4. nice blog checkout mine on


    feel free to leave a comment

  5. wow! The strawberries looks yummy.

  6. Strawbs look YUM! Good job. Also, Gibson and Rufus are absolutely stunning!