It’s been a good day.
This morning (well, afternoon, I slept in) I gathered leaves in the garden and put them in a bin bag. So in a year we should have some leaf mould to mulch some stuff! I then turned the soil, which we dug some manure into last week. We don’t have a rake at the moment, so we used a fork instead.
We split the bed into three sections. On the right, I made a wide drill, a few cm deep and planted the peas I took from Richmond. They are of the ‘Meteor’ variety, which are suitable for autumn sowing. If planted around this time of year, they should be ready to harvest in Spring, earlier than other Spring crops.
We planted broad beans ‘Aquadulce’ next. They went 4cm deep, 23cm apart. Both the beans and peas were planted in alternating rows, a more efficient way of planting.
We put a plank of wood in between each plot, so that we can get to the stuff at the back without compacting the soil. In the last section we planted onion sets, both red and white. We planted them quite close together, as they will grow as big as the amount of space they have. I alternated between red and white. Exciting, eh!
Later, we planted iris and daff bulbs near where the strawberries are.
The other day Ayla said she wanted iced buns, so I decided I would make some! I used Paul Hollywood’s recipe, but veganised it! Here’s the recipe…
Makes 14 (pretty big) buns
500g strong white flour
50-60g caster sugar
2 tbsp ground flax seed
2 sachets instant yeast
2 tsp salt
150ml warm oat/almond/soy mylk
200g icing sugar
5 tbsp cold water
1. Whisk together the flax and 6 tbsp cold water in a mug. Put it in the fridge for around 15 minutes, until it becomes gelly, like egg. It might need to be stirred a few times before taking it out.
2. Combine the rest of the dough ingredients in a large bowl, holding back some of the water. Mix the ingredients to form a dough, and knead until everything is combined. This can also be done in a stand mixer, using a dough hook.
3. Knead on a floured surface until the dough is smooth and stretchy. Put the dough back in the bowl and cover with a damp tea towel or some cling film. Leave it to prove in a warm place, until it has doubled in size. This will probably take about an hour.
4. Rip off handfuls of dough, and make them into balls by rolling them between your hands and the work surface. Then, shape them into sausages and arrange them on a non-stick baking tray, allowing enough room between each piece for it to double in size.
5. Loosely cover the dough with cling film, and leave the tray/s in warm place for about an hour, for the second prove. After about 50 minutes, preheat the oven to GM7/220C/425F.
6. When they have proved, they should be just touching each other. Bake the buns for 10 minutes, until they are golden brown. Leave them on the trays for a while to cool, then transfer them to a wire rack.
7. Sift the icing sugar into a bowl and slowly add the water, until the icing is a thick consistency, but still spreadable. Using a teaspoon, scoop some icing onto each bun, and with the back of the spoon, spread it over the desired area. The icing should be thick enough that it doesn’t run down the sides of the bun.
And this is how they turned out!