A question for you …….. What does my husband have in common with Otzi, the iceman ?
No, Ron isn’t older than the pyramids and Stonehenge. All will be revealed in due course. Please read on………..
The theme of this blog is self-sufficiency. A lifestyle choice of ours which underpins Ron’s approach to cooking. For us, a key aspect of self-sufficiency is not relying on supermarkets to provide our daily food. The supermarket is where we buy some food …….but………much of what we eat is grown and reared on our smallholding.
We have a polytunnel where we grow tomatoes, strawberries, cucumbers, lettuce …… a kitchen garden filled with potatoes, onion, sweetcorn, rhubarb, beetroot ….. herb patches where mint, parsley, thyme and a bay tree grow …. apple and plum trees …. blackcurrant, raspberry and gooseberry bushes. We have sheep, chickens and pigs.
Key to self-sufficiency is, if you can’t produce it yourself, buy from your community. So, our beef is Welsh Pedigree Black Beef from Dyfrydog Farm which is just up the road from us.
You can taste the difference when you cook with fresh, good quality ingredients.
Ron’s brand new self-sufficiency project !
He is making wine and beer !
Nothing new ! I hear you say… Fair enough, many people brew their own ………… but wait………read on……..
You know how Ron likes to cook and bake from scratch ?
Our blackcurrant wine is made with from fruit from our own blackcurrant bushes.
The rosehip wine is made from rosehips collected from our hedges and frozen a little while back…………..
Our mead is made from Anglesey honey…… We don’t have any beehives on our land …….. yet !
But that’s not the new project !!!
Earlier this year, Ron bought some grain.
Not just any grain.
This is the oldest known cultivated strain of whole wheat in the history of agriculture. It is claimed to be a “superfood”. It is prized for its nutrients. It also grows in Morocco, Turkey and Russia. Our research tells us that the grain was growing as far back as 7500BC.
You can buy Einkorn flour from Amazon to make the bread. But, Ron bought the grain from a farmer in France and grew it over the summer.
He has kept the seeds from our own crop to use this coming spring, when he’ll plant again…….
Then Ron will brew our own beer with this grain………. we’ll let you know how he gets on.
There may also be a new course in 2021.
Many of you in our online community have attended our pork pie and piccalilli, our bread-making and cob-building courses.
In the spring, as well as brewing beer with the Einkorn, Ron will be milling our Einkorn grain using a mill wheel he has built.
Earlier in the blog, I asked you to think about what Ron and Otzi the iceman had in common ?
You might remember hearing on the news a few years back that Otzi’s preserved body was found in a glacier on the border of Italy and Austria. He had lived 5000 years ago. Well, both Ron and Otzi like Einkorn bread. Einkorn was found in Otzi’s stomach – evidence that humans have been cultivating and eating Einkorn for thousands of years.
Einkorn is reported to be richer in nutrients than the grain our 21st century bread. It contains zinc, iron, potassium, riboflavin, Vitamins B6 and A, protein and fibre. It still contains gluten. Apparently, Einkorn may not provoke as strong a reaction in those who are gluten-sensitive, but if that is you, we recommend that you take professional advice before trying it !
So, that’s wine and beer – and bread – from scratch !
If you produce your own drinks, please tell us about them. If you have any photos, then do send them to us !
Just one last point………… Self-sufficiency isn’t just about sourcing your own food. It is also about being secure and content with yourself. If you have a sense of inner completeness and balance, you may be less likely to be de-stabilised during this Covid period.
I’m not expert on this, believe me, but …….
gardening and cooking are very rewarding …….
creating a meal from what you grow is very satisfying ….
In my view, these activities promote positivity and contribute to strong emotional well-being.
During these very difficult times, and while our country’s leadership is trying to navigate a way through these unchartered waters, we hope that this blog gives you ideas about how to be productive and positive at home.
We hope it helps you feel connected and have purpose.
Stay safe, and please share this blog !
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