Whilst the sun shines over the valley outside,
we have cloudier skies in the house as Tony’s grumpiness has apparently spilled over from yesterday. He didn’t surface from deep beneath the duvet until 10am; & then seemed almost determined not to help with the farmyard chores, moodily stomping up & down the corridor in the goat shed & over-exciting the animals. So I kept out of his way as much as possible, opting instead for the luxury of tucking myself away for an hour to finish reading the latest & last ‘Harry Potter’ novel, the much-hyped ‘Deathly Hallows’ (shame about the abysmal final chapter – what a waste of ink!).
Prior to that, in an effort to appease his churlish mood, I cooked Tony a delicious, thick, fluffy tortilla for lunch made with our own onions, potatoes, eggs, tomatoes & herbs – a particularly satisfying meal; especially as the ingredients were so very fresh, completely free from the poison of pesticides, & literally the most ‘local’ of dishes with the ingredients sourced from only a few feet away from the house!
Tony spent the afternoon working on the internal design for the dairy, adding some valuable space by including a ‘lean-to’ on the side of the building which will house the entrance hall, toilet, shower & changing room. He also made inquiries into the mundane but important subject of drainage as we will need to get rid of any waste water which cannot be recycled (plus the toilet facility will of course require a septic tank).
Meanwhile I spent the remainder of the day trawling through paperwork & doing further training with Nanuk as Tony tends to lose patience too quickly when he’s in ‘that sort of mood’. We’re trying to improve her diet to bring her ‘up to weight’ (the breed standard specifies that female Greenland Dogs should be around 30kgs; but when she was weighed by the vet she was only 23kgs. So I cooked up some pork & beef mince with rice in the hope this will assist her weight gain. It smelt so appetizing & I was so hungry, I was almost tempted to snaffle some myself!
However, I opted instead to ‘phone our friend & neighbour Sylvia, who is famous for the delicious dishes she serves for her Hay Tea meal (see Post for 1st August reference this traditional, local meal in the farming calendar); & I was extremely grateful to her during our first year here when she & husband Bernard put a great deal of time & effort into ensuring my ‘novice’ Hay Tea, was a roaring success. As Allan & Sue may be bringing their son Barney over for a Barbeque in the near future (subject to the relaxation of FMD restricitons), I picked her brains for her wonderful Sticky Chicken recipe. It took a bit of coercion as she’s a ‘natural’ who instinctively creates culinary masterpieces; & I made a few minor adjustments while experimenting so as not to fully reveal her original ‘secret’ recipe…..but I’m indebted to her as it’s absolutely delicious; so, to serve four people, try this:
CHICKEN RECIPE: STICKY CHICKEN
8 x portions free-range organic chicken; 4 x cloves garlic; 4 x tbsp dark, runny local woodland honey; 4 x tbsp dark soy sauce; dash of oil for frying; pepper to taste (there’s enough salt in the soy!); pinch of chilli powder or a small, fresh medium-hot chilli, chopped (optional); & 2 x tbsp demerara sugar or 1 x tbsp unrefined molassed cane sugar.
Heat the oil in a shallow pan & brown the chicken. Finely chop or crush the garlic & add it to the pan. Drizzle in the honey, soy sauce & sugar; mix together & cook on a medium heat, seasoning with pepper & chilli to taste. Keep cooking, turning the chicken pieces regularly, until the sauce is reduced to a deliciously sticky glaze coating the chicken. Ideal & irresistably tasty succulent finger food!