in my kitchen – September

Greengages, damsons, cherry plums and Czar plums picked from the trees in the garden. Many of the fruit trees were hit by the frost and these small yellow cherry plums were the total harvest! I’ll cook the damsons and large plums in crumbles or gently poach them (lumps and custard) and bottle a few, but the greengages will never make it as far as the heat for eating a greengage in its sweet, almost honeyed ripeness is one of life’s pleasures.

Through the kitchen window. In the foreground the sweet peas, parsley and runner beans are in full swing and in the back beds the potatoes have been dug up and replaced with leeks.

Chocolate from the Farmers Market this morning. I’m not sure how chocolate qualifies  for a farmers market in England, nor the stalls selling greetings cards, mass-produced keepsake boxes and jumpers in lurid shades of acrylic yarn. It’s not my idea of a Farmers Market and I feel they should rename it, but despite that, this chocolate is delicious and the lady who makes it is charming.

New cushion covers because for my last IMK post I took a photo that included one of the kitchen chair cushions and I suddenly saw my cushion covers through new eyes (and instantly deleted the photo). My mother made me some beautiful patchwork covers but fifteen years of being sat on every day and washing on a probably too hot wash had taken its toll. They were full of holes, unpleasantly marked and generally tatty. So before these get knocked to the floor and sat on by people in dirty overalls, I can photo them.

A pot stand that my sister made for me. It’s an ‘a’ for Anne and in two pieces so is very adaptable. As you can see, it’s well used.

Nougat or some other sweet confection? No, it’s soap. In the past I’ve read about soap making but it was always made out to be a dangerous operation only to be carried out in solitary confinement with equipment that should never ever be used again for cooking. But then I read Janine’s calm and measured instructions and gave it a go. In the kitchen. I was careful, I took note of her safety precautions and hey presto, after a period of curing (see I’ve already picked up the terminology) I have soap. It’s lovely to use soap that just smells clean, rather than reeking of artificial scent and it lathers beautifully. My family of course just rolled their eyes and muttered under their breath when they heard what I was doing. Apparently, it’s a step too far in home produced goods and only a step away from eccentricity. Hey ho.

What’s happening in your kitchen this month? Why not join in with  Celia at Fig Jam and Lime Cordial.

21 thoughts on “in my kitchen – September

  1. Olallieberry says:

    I want to be in your kitchen… everything is always unique and so very interesting.
    Your soap looks terrific! Glad it turned out so well, thanks for the mention.
    PS – Eccentricity is a form of creative genius. Wiki says so it must be true ;D


  2. Jane @ Shady Baker says:

    Hello Anne. You have the most delightful kitchen window view! It looks like a postcard as I may have said before! I agree on your Farmers Market comments…some things should not be there! That pot stand looks very robust and well loved….so useful.

    Your soap looks delicious and good enough to eat. I laughed at your eccentricity comment, it is good to keep the family guessing at times don’t you think? x


  3. big house, little prairie says:

    Loving your kitchen this month. Your soap looks fantastic! I’m waiting to give that a go until we get lard from our feeder pigs later this year…I’m looking forward to it, a lot…I think my eccentricity might be showing. 🙂


  4. Mrs Thomasina Tittlemouse says:

    Love your still life of plums – aren’t those colours gorgeous together? And you are right about greengages – far too good to cook! Now that soap! I’ve been flirting with the idea of soap-makig for a while and like you, have always felt it may be too complicated. It looks fantastic and I am going to check out the instructions to see whether it may be a possibility in the kitchen here too! Thank you so much for sharing your spectacular results and the link to the how-to-do-it. E x


  5. Lizzy (Good Things) says:

    Loving the goodies in your kitchen. I want some chocolate now, LOL. And I’m going to bookmark that page for soap. Peter and I have been wanting to make soap for ages. Thanks! And your garden looks lovely.


  6. walnut95 says:

    Great post, can we have a post on how you made the soap please Im intrigued. Yes not a good harvest this year for stoned fruit – I have been told ny usual source of damsons and apples are both saying their crop is non existent this year ! I love grengage jam !


  7. Jane says:

    Soap looks great! Heheh… the actual line of crossing into eccentricity is being constantly pushed in our house too… slowly the ‘odd’ becomes the ‘normal’ 🙂


  8. Mrs Mulberry says:

    Oh my – those plums are so beautiful! I discovered greengage plums a year or two back, they are so delicious! Such a lovely honey flavour. What a great haul you have in your kitchen ; )


  9. Celia @ Fig Jam and Lime Cordial says:

    Ha! I understand, I get a fair bit of eyerolling from my tribe as well. 😉 The soap looks great though, as does everything in your kitchen. I love the new cushion covers, and I always adore looking out your kitchen window to the garden – it’s the thing I most look forward to whenever I click on your IMK posts! The pot stand is a true gift of love, and tell me you’re making plum brandy! We can’t make enough of it each year! 🙂 Thanks for sharing your kitchen with us! xx


  10. knitsofacto says:

    I so want to make soap and yet feel not quite brave enough … if I can injure myself with euphorbia I feel I’m bound to have an accident with lye. But what am I, a woman or a wimp? Janine did it. You have done it. My mind is made up, soap there will be 😀


  11. heidiannie says:

    Love your blog post!
    I agree with Celia- my favorite is always the pictures from your kitchen window of your garden beds- but the soap is exquisite. I have always pictured myself making soap- but so far have contented my desire by felting the handmade soap I bought. I like wool and it isn’t quite so daunting as working with lye and lard!
    Thanks- I had a lovely time wandering about in your kitchen, today!


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