Cauliflower Salad

Today I am just going to give you a recipe for a really delicious salad.  I was paging through a gluten free booklet that I found and I saw a lentil and chickpea salad that looked really delicious. I went to the local supermarket and bought .. cauliflower. They didn’t have lentils or chickpeas. When you live in a rural area you get used to it but you also become very resourceful, learning to improvise with what you have. This morning the black Labrador got hold of my Princess Camille (just for a second) and fortunately no damage was done. She definitely knows now that he doesn’t share everyone else’s opinion that she’s just the very cutest girl in town!


The cutest girl in town

I cooked the cauliflower florets. One tiny cauliflower is more than enough for one serving. I fried three rashers of bacon and roasted some pumpkin seeds on the grill. I love having a hot grill always available. Well, when no-one is making burgers or toasted sandwiches it’s available. I crumbled some feta cheese, (homemade –  I’m going to have to share the recipe too) chopped a small tomato and some onion, and a sprinkling of sunflower seeds. Drizzle this with some balsamic vinegar and voila! What a tasty salad. Here’s a more logical version:


Gluten Free Cauliflower Salad

1 small head of cauliflower (boiled)

3 rashes Bacon (fried)

1 handful pumpkin seeds (roasted)

1 small tomato

half a small onion

1/4 cup crumbled feta cheese

sprinkling of sunflower seeds

Toss together in a bowl and drizzle with balsamic vinegar



Gluten Free Cauliflower Salad (I remembered to take a photo before I finished eating!)

By the way, the banana muffins I posted in a previous blog (Little Foxes) work just as well if you use grated butternut squash instead of bananas and add some orange juice for a lovely citrus taste and the extra moisture needed.



To Google or not to Google …

When I need to know something, especially in a hurry, I just Google it.  I really like to use Google when I get one of those broadcast messages that tell me about missionaries who are about to be beheaded or a child with some dreaded disease who won’t survive if I don’t forward the message to 245 people in the next 7 minutes. You know the one’s I mean? There are websites which can tell you whether a message is a hoax or not. But the messages aren’t my problem – well, they are, but not in this blog.

If I need to look for and organic remedy for aphids on my cabbages or how deep to plant runner beans, I go straight to Google, or even better Pinterest. I love Pinterest. I love the pictures and the way you can save them and organize them and I can even share them with my friends.  I get completely carried away at times and imagine all the wonderful crafts I could do and things I can make. Old car tyres (tires in American) get recycled into garden ornaments and furniture. Pieces of scrap metal become wonderfully bright giant flowers which would make my garden look absolutely fabulous…etc…etc…etc.

I like dreaming. No! I love dreaming.


Something that is evident though, is that when I Google something, I am on my own. My phone or my computer and me. I don’t have to involve the people around me at all. Before all this technology I would be asking my family for advice, or I would have gone to someone who I knew to be knowledgeable on the subject I needed help on.  Then, of course, there was the library. I used to love the library.  The adventures which were locked up in all the books that lined the shelves were just waiting for me. Unfortunately because I live in a very small town the library doesn’t often get new books. Except that buying book is expensive, they take up so much space, so I bought a Kindle. Not a fancy one with backlights, just a basic one. It’s just so amazing to be able to have a lot of book at my fingertips. Granted, most of the one’s I want to read I have to buy, but I have them forever and I can reread them whenever I want. I can take all my books with me on holiday!!


Mealies coming along nicely



The Handyman (aka my husband) mounded the potatoes for me. I must say that he’s a really efficient worker, and I didn’t even need to pay him. All I had to do was pull up the weeds faster than he could dig which resulted in a pretty good workout. We found a couple of tiny potatoes so I have proof that there will actually be a crop.


Patty Pan Squash have started flowering

Sorry, I’m rambling. What I want to say is that because of technology we don’t communicate with people as much as we used to. I don’t ask my neighbor when the best time is to plant mealies and what kind of peas work well in this area. If I have a problem with caterpillars or eelworms I don’t ask my friend, I just Google. So is Google causing me to be antisocial? Or is Google saving me a lot of time on the mundane issues and allowing me to spend time socializing with my friends and talking about issues that really matter? Who am I fooling? Google does solve my problems quickly, and allows me to get lost in another adventure with my Kindle!


I have been busy in my garden and it has expanded to almost double it’s original size.  I have sowed beetroot and carrot seeds which have come up beautifully.  My mealies are about half a metre high and I’ve transplanted four different varieties of tomatoes so far.  I also have patty pan squash and spanspek (sweet melon) that are growing.  I found some discarded shelving that I have put up as trellises.  I want to see if they will grow vertically instead of horizontally so that they take up less space.  I even have some footlong beans and Chinese cabbage seeds that have germinated.  An Asian friend asked me to plant them so that we can share the harvest. Last week I discovered and unidentified growing object which had disappeared the next day. I googled it and found that it is a fungus called Mutinis elegans also known as elegant stinkhorn, the headless stinkhorn or the devil’s dipstick!  An orange spongy finger-sized object who’s visit was fortunately short lived.




Patty pan quash that need weeding!


Chinese Cabbage making an appearance






I wrote in one of my previous blogs that I planted some apple pips.  I now have two apple “treelings”. They are too small to be called trees but they are growing quickly.  Apparently it takes five to eight years for and apple tree to bear but I’m very patient.  I can visualize sitting in the shade of the apple trees having a cup of tea with a friend.  I put stakes in next to the cherry tomatoes but they aren’t exactly strong enough so the branches flop all over the place and I keep cutting strips of plastic from shopping bags to tie them up.  They have started bearing and it’s a competition between me and the birds to see who can eat the most tomatoes!


The bigger one of the two apple trees.


I got a kitten from my friend during the week. She is adorable and I am calling her Princess Camille. She’s such a diva, pretending to be very offended if you pick her up, but settling down so quickly once she is in your arms. The first day she really missed her mother but now she has settled down and claimed our house as her own.


Princess Camille. The photo isn’t exactly in focus, but she wouldn’t stop moving around!


While I was picking her up and having a cup of coffee with my friend the conversation turned to the state of affairs in our country.  Nobody can deny that the situation in South Africa is not ideal.  I am full of hope for a better future, possibly because it’s in my nature to have a glass that is half full.  At times overflowing; I suspect those are the “fools rush in where angels fear to tread” times.  Be that as it may, she said that each one of us must create their own paradise because we can’t expect things to come to us.  As I was thinking about it I thought of the verse in Isaiah that speaks about a tabernacle which will be a refuge.  Then I came upon this verse:

Isaiah 32: 2

A man will be as a hiding place from the wind,

And a cover from the tempest,

As rivers of water in a dry place,

As the shadow of a great rock in a weary land.


That is what we should be. To our spouses and children we should be a safe place.  They must feel safe with us, loved and nurtured.  To our friends we should be like the rivers of water in a dry place.  A place where their souls can be nourished.  To the stranger we should ne like the shadow of a rock in a weary land.  Just being in our presence should give people peace.  That is what Jesus was to people when He was on earth, and He said that we would be like Him. (1 John 3:2)  We could surely be doing many things worse than trying to emulate Jesus.  I am NOT suggesting we try to do it in the flesh or in our own strength.

Live your life, dream your dreams, be yourself.  The more we are going to be ourselves, the true, authentic version that God intended us to be, the more peace we will have and the less harsh we will be on ourselves.  I read somewhere that if you are operating in your function things will be minimum effort and maximum productivity. I don’t know where this paragraph came from, but I am leaving it here.  Have a fabulous week!

Daily Prompt: Ancient

via Daily Prompt: Ancient

I planted some heirloom tomato seeds recently. I had no idea what “heirloom” meant when I was given the seed. Google informed me that they are seeds from plants that existed before the Second World War and are not hybrid seeds. That means that the seeds will give you a plant which is identical to the mother plant. That’s my interpretation. In days gone by, since ancient times, that’s how plants were grown. The farmer would plant a crop and then save the seeds until the next season and plant those seeds. Science and technology intervened and made all kinds of modifications to plants by crossing varieties and by genetically modifying fruits and vegetables.



One of my heirloom tomato plants



Take potatoes for instance. You plant potatoes by cutting off the “eyes” and planting them into the soil. Stems and leaves grow from these cuttings and produce a new crop of potatoes. The problem is that if you use cuttings from modified potatoes you get wonderful foliage but no potatoes under the soil. Seeds from certain hybrids also don’t germinate. It can be a very frustrating and disappointing exercise. The reason that plants are interfered with is that by crossing varieties there is a higher yield and also stronger and disease resistant plants. This is very good for the farmer who grows for the market and is reliant on his crops for an income. This is very good and can potentially solve the world hunger crisis. There are less and less people who grow their own crops. Its much easier to simply go to the store and buy fresh vegetables. No need to till the soil and water and fertilize and pull up weeds.


My apple tree planted from a seed


Its becoming more and more expensive to buy seeds. What has become of the tradition of neighbours exchanging seeds and cuttings and every household having their own garden and growing their own vegetables? Have we become so comfortable in our daily routines that we don’t want to be bothered with ancient traditions? Even the smallest flat (apartment) has space for a window box with a few vegetables. See this website for ideas for small areas. Square Foot Gardening in South Africa

Jeremiah 6:16 – This is what the Lord says: “Stand at the crossroads and look; ask for the ancient paths, ask where the good way is, and walk in it, and you will find rest for your souls.  But you said,’We will not walk in it’.


A brand new patty pan squash plant


Is that what the problem is with the world at this time? Aren’t people willing to follow the ancient paths? Do they just want to follow their own minds and their own hearts? We should be willing to learn from the ancient ways in order to survive the modern ways. We will be much less stressed and there will be less depression and suicide. Slow down and stand at the crossroads and look …