Support systems

For today’s #SixOnSaturday theme I took a closer look at the pea tendrils, clinging to a variety of rustic poles in my vegetable plot:

As you know, I love pea plants, for their flowers and, of course for their peas, but it’s always worth taking a closer look at their clever support systems: beautiful tendrils clinging to the nearest twig. I use rather rustic poles to hold my peas up, cuttings from other parts of the garden mainly. and the peas wind their way round these as they reach for the sky. Note the bottom right picture though, where a clever pea has attached itself to a nearby onion.

We all need support systems and these are being challenged just now. My family (though mostly distanced), my garden and the wonderful natural world are helping to hold me together. I’ve also been doing lockdown emergency baking on days when I can’t concentrate on anything else, which is a bit of a challenge when there’s only two of us to wade through the results. I hope my sons are prepared for the massive backlog of cake love (and vegetables) which will be heaped on them when I am allowed to see them again. My mother helps us with some of the cake mountain as visits to her come within permitted lockdown rules and sharing home baking with her seems to be a way of making social connections when so much else is forbidden.

Last week I found a relatively healthy muffin recipe. It became extra healthy when I forgot to add sugar but turned out ok. I made some more less healthy ones today. Recipe based on a great wee recipe book by Sam Stern ‘Eat Vegetarian’, which unlike most of our other vegetarian cookery books includes cakes and puddings.

Emergency muffins

  • 2 eggs
  • 125 ml sunflower oil
  • 500 ml milk
  • 280g flour (mixed white and wholemeal – whatever you have to hand)
  • 2 tsps bicarbonate of soda
  • pinch of salt
  • 110g oat flakes
  • 175g sugar (if you must – they turned out perfectly ok without!)
  • 220 g raisins, nuts, pumpkin seeds, choc chips, fruit – or whatever you have in the cupboard*
  1. Beat together eggs, oil, and milk
  2. Sieve together flour, bicarbonate of soda and salt and add oat flakes (and sugar)
  3. Mix together the dry ingredients and the liquids beating well but leaving some lumps
  4. At this stage you can reserve some of the mixture and store in a container in the fridge for baking another day
  5. Add the dried fruit or other extras – you can do this by splitting the main mixture into two bowls with different fruit etc in each so that you can make different varieties of muffin from the same mix. *Today’s muffins included a small batch of chocolate fudge crumbs, leftover from a previous very unhealthy baking session.
  6. Spoon into muffin cases – if you have them – I didn’t have any today so put the mixture straight into a greased bun tray, making the muffins less muffin like and more bun like.
  7. Bake in an oven at 180 degrees/Gas mark 4 for about 15 minutes

These are mostly the unhealthy buns with the chocolate fudge filling but there are some healthy sugar free buns with pumpkin seeds and walnuts lurking near the top of the picture.

That may have dealt with my baking urge and tomorrow I’ll try to get back into the garden. Have a nice weekend.

2 thoughts on “Support systems

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