Sunday, 18 August 2013

Scarborough Fair Breakfast Frittata

Yesterday, another Sunday has arrived - so quickly, it seems.

The sun was bright, the sky was blue, and I felt inspired to make this easy, versatile frittata of my own invention for our breakfast.

I headed out into the sunshine (and the wind!) to collect my favourite 'Scarborough Fair' herbs (parsley, sage, rosemary and thyme) and a bunch of English spinach, then began.

Scarborough Fair Breakfast Frittata


Butter (approx 1 tablespoon)
2 cloves garlic, crushed or finely chopped
A few sage leaves, torn up
2 handfuls (approx) fresh English spinach, stalks removed (leave whole unless very large, as they shrink down)
3 eggs
1 or 2 tablespoons of thick cream
2 handfuls of cheese (eg Jarlsberg), grated
1 sprig each of parsley, rosemary, thyme, chopped
Salt and pepper to taste


Put butter in frying pan on low-medium heat.  When butter has just melted, add crushed garlic and sage leaves.

After a minute or two (i.e., when it is starting to smell yummy), add spinach leaves and let them wilt slightly.  This only takes a minute or two.

Break eggs into a bowl, add a dash of cold water and beat with a fork.  Mix in the cream, herbs and half the grated cheese.

Turn up the pan to medium, tip egg mixture onto spinach leaves and spread gently but quickly, so all is distributed more or less evenly.  Leave to cook until just set.

Meanwhile, turn on grill in readiness for last step.

When frittata is set, sprinkle remaining cheese on top and immediately put pan under the grill for about a minute till the top is golden.

Here's mine, daggy frypan and all.

Yum!  As I say, it is great for weekend breakie as it is quick and easy.  If you have a posher pan, you can serve it directly to the table in the pan.

If you give it a go, let me know what you think.


False spring

The last few days have seen warmer temperatures than usual, but with very strong winds.  It seems that a lot of spring plants think spring is almost here

While wintry conditions are sure to return any day, it is lovely to enjoy the hint of spring.

Here's what's happening:

These ornamental trees - plum (foreground) and pear (background) - are budding up.

Above and below are some of my hellebores, which are nodding prettily under various deciduous trees.

And I am loving this japonica (flowering quince), below, though it is still too little for me to bring any branches in to display.

And finally, this pretty wax flower, with its pink buds and starry flowers.

The promise of spring really had me thinking it was really here, but as I write, a cold front is moving towards us.  Farewell, false Spring.  Hopefully the real one will be along shortly.


Friday, 9 August 2013

Dreaming of my spring garden

You know how you go into a kind of mental hibernation during winter?  I was certainly in that sleepy warm state last week.

But this week, there was a noticeable change of mood.  Sure, things are still wintry outside, but I have been awoken from my hibernating state with pleasant thoughts of the coming spring.  

This came about when two lovely things arrived in the post.  The first was my new membership pack for the Diggers Club (I have been meaning to join up for some time, but only got my act together last weekend).

The pack came with this Garden Annual catalogue . . .

As you can see, it is a feast for the eyes (and hopefully, in due course, a feast for our tummies and a boon for the garden).

AND, it came with a pack of heirloom herb seeds! 

I have not grown some of these herbs before.  I am particularly looking forward to giving Florence fennel a go.  

The membership pack also came with these bonus seeds.  I was not expecting these!  You will recall that I plant tomatoes every year, and am particularly fond of heirloom tomatoes like Tommy Toe because of their flavour.  What a selection!  And love-in-a-mist, being easy care, will fit right in.

Then, my monthly Gardening Australia magazine arrived . . .

With a packet of microgreens!  

I have marked this article for close attention . . .

As someone who has planted at least 30 trees on my previously hot, bare, desert-like block, I am very much 'into' the value of trees.

And on a tree-ish note, a further gardenesque thing happened this week - a couple of bare-rooted trees were left on my doorstep by a kind friend.  So now I have a silver birch and three more crabapples to find a homes for in my garden.  They too will fit right in!

So here's to the weekend!  Mine is going to be filled with productive gardening.

I hope you enjoy yours.