Day 79: Green fingers and ice cream

I’ve been a bit lacking on diary posts of late, I’ve been distracted by work related things. My company are unfortunately having to make redundancies to survive so we are going through a consultation period. It’s sad but I guessed it would come to this. Not sure any travel company will be coming out of the pandemic unscathed!

But on a brighter note I was able to get gluten free flours the other day from whole foods which has meant from Friday onward I’ve been in baker mode. Feeding the sourdough starter, doing the pre-ferments and then all the proving time. There was a lot of flour in the flat yesterday. 

I have ended up making a white sourdough boule, another recipe by George Eats. I also decided to make a buckwheat & butternut squash sourdough loaf from Naomi Devlins River Cottage Gluten Free as I had a chunk of butternut left over. The highlight bake was sourdough English muffins! I only have one crumpet ring so making them last night was a long process but oh my were they tasty this morning. Probably best gluten free bread item I’ve ever made. We tried the butternut loaf at lunch time and its fairly dense as you would expect from gluten free bread but the flavour is good ( I roasted the butternut first). Will try the white sourdough later in the week. 

A white sourdough boule
A buckwheat & butternut squash loaf
Sourdough English Muffins and Bread
the weekend baking haul
English Muffins for breakfast today!

Today we decided to go for a walk rather than a cycle. We headed towards Balham, my old stomping ground and had a tea stop at my sisters, all properly socially distanced of course. On leaving we accidentally passed Jefferson’s a delicious ice cream place. All the flavours are marked GF or VG which is super handy. It’s also damn good ice cream.

We then headed towards Neal’s Nursery as Mr Life London Food wanted to look at plants for the balcony. It was really busy. We had to queue to get in then there were lots of people getting plants etc. I had never actually been before but walked past it a few times. They had a great selection – not that I know very much about plants –  but everything looked healthy. They had lots of social distancing in place, a one way system in and out, lots of anti -bac hand wash about etc. We only saw a couple of customers in face masks but its mostly outside so we didn’t bother wearing ours. 

With plant in tow, we decided to get an uber home as it was just that little bit too far to walk with a plant. This was the first time either of us have got an uber or been on any kind of transport since the middle of March. It felt weird, but also oddly normal. Uber now ask everyone to wear masks, which we did and the driver had his on and anti-bac gel in the car that we could use. All felt rather ok. My sister got one the other night and the driver had a plastic sheet partition up! 

Returning from plant shopping

We have ended up with a small tree that is meant to be decorative and one that you are meant to topiary. Special secateurs have of course been purchased! They also had lots of indoor plants but that will have to wait till next time. Seen as I killed a succulent lately. Oops!

the latest member of the urban garden

As the evening fades I am sitting on the balcony with a new gluten free beer we found from Gipsy Hill brewery – Bandit. It is rather pleasant. The week ahead looks like its going to be a hot one, so I think I will be spending a lot of my time in our little urban balcony. 

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