Allotments and ...

… freezers go together like love and marriage or a horse and carriage, at least in my opinion. I can’t see the point in the former without the latter, although I know a lot of allotment holders don’t have freezers – how do they cope, I wonder?

As an example, I’ve used the Christmas break to repack my big outside freezer, moving the bags of frozen peas and beans indoors so that we can enjoy them through the winter. Is there anything nicer than your own French beans, full of the taste of July, steaming in a little pool of butter on your plate in January? I think not.

I’ve used the space created to make and store some ‘hearty’ soups. These are not the kind of ‘hearty’ soups advocated by TV advertisements, where men have beards and women have all day to spend in the kitchen, and soups have monosodium glutamate and starch to make them tasty and substantial. These are really hearty – full of parsnips, dried broad beans, onion and carrot, tomato puree and sliced green peppers. The only two ingredients that didn’t come off the allotment were the beef stock and the pasta shells that add the final ballast to the pan. Packed into individual containers, these soups generally make their way to the allotment again, in my flask, as I tour round talking to my neighbours, or to my husband’s workplace, where he can sit and sup a bowlful of home-grown freshness at lunchtime, to fortify him for the afternoon to come.

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Posted by The Allotment Blogger on Sunday, January 6, 2008

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