Sunday, September 19, 2010

Onion Strings

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Quilters can be gardeners and gardeners can be quilters and it seems that more and more people are getting into growing their own vegetables.  I guess that means there could be more quilters too!

At The Cotton Patch we had lots of vegetable seedling and plant swops earlier in the year and now exchanges of vegetable gluts of courgettes and cucumbers are taking place.At one time we had 12 cucumbers in the fridge and we haven’t bought many vegetables since June.  I’m sure the apples will be next as it seems to be a windfall year this year. I can just see the apple being quite a prominent ingredient at the village Harvest Festival lunch next week.

Yesterday we had our annual pilgrimage to Abergavenny Food Festival which if you haven’t been has always been a really excellent way to sample some of the local food of Wales and the Marches.

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We come back laden with lots of gorgeous Elan Valley Mutton, Trealy Farm Charcuterie (Hugh Fernley-Whitingstall is a fan and they won an award last year from the Food Program on Radio 4),    Gloucester Old Spot pork and Seeds of Italy seeds ready for planting next year. You get to chat to the producers and the butchers and there are usually a few bargains to be had by buying at source. Monty Don (below) chatting to one of the sausage makers of organic pork sauages.

MontyDon

This year we couldn’t believe how busy it was – the busiest ever apparently. It was impossible to get close to the stands for good photos so  I’ve posted a few photos from last year.  The garlic stand from the Isle of Wight was excellent with a huge variety although the climate is a bit kinder on the south coast than in Worcestershire. Our elephant garlic wasn’t quite the epic proportions that theirs were!

Garlic1

Still having planted our garlic bulbs it was a joyous moment when I got to string them having dried them thoroughly in the sun for several weeks.  They are now hanging along with our onions from the ceiling in the kitchen. Its a very satisfying moment when each one is cut down and used to know you’ve grown it yourself.

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Our strings seems to be quite chunky compared to others but it does the job!

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The Cotton Patch is a family run patchwork and quilting business which was started by Jean Sewell in 1990. The shop is situated in Hall Green, Birmingham and expanded in 1999 to include the shop next door. Originally offering Mail Order catalogues, The Cotton Patch established one of the first patchwork and quilting websites in the UK. The Cotton Patch continues to be a premier supplier of patchwork and quilting fabrics, tools and notions and supplies customers throughout the UK and the world.