Thursday, June 11, 2009

kitchen ideas

I love making things from out of the garden, and so often these processes have later made their way into my artwork. The last few days have been inspired -- first the harvest of our first successful broad beans (also known as fava beans) which have provided several delicious meals so far.
The plants are very architectural, and very different from runner beans or green beans we normally grow. I spent the other morning drawing the plant and the beans, and know this will work its way into a tapestry or a printed textile.
Then last night we went out on a country road where Ben had spotted masses of elderberry bushes growing. The flowers were at peak, and we both are very into a lovely syrup made from them called Elderflower Cordial. This isn't alcoholic -- though you might choose to mix it with gin! -- you mix it with fizzy water and ice. It is a big hit with guests who prefer not to drink alcohol. So we picked 60 large umbels, as directed, and boiled a sugar syrup with 3 liters of water and loads of sugar & sliced lemons. Now this mixture is steeping for a few days, then we will strain it & bottle it. Ben looked at the contents of the pot and announced "Now that looks like the beginnings of a tapestry!".