Thursday, 13 October 2016

Autumn is really here...

Autumn is most definitely here - the harvesting of grapes bears witness to that and we had some fine bunches given to us this week for which we are very grateful.  I am considering trying to dry some of them and make sultanas except that they would be full of pips and I would have to spend a messy hour or so removing them if I wanted to bake - the only trouble is everything ripens at the same time so is it glut or dearth, feast or famine.

If we were in no doubt as to the season this morning we could not see out of the conservatory as it was swathed in condensation, so much so that we could have been forgiven for thinking it had rained in the night.

Watering will probably stop now as the high daytime temperatures make way for low nighttime ones and with that comes the condensation.  In fact this evening when I ventured out to the bin I felt a real chill in the air only to discover that the outside temperature was around 18 degrees - we have clearly become acclimatised and will find winters colder when they really are not!  I will try and stop John from lighting the wood burner for as long as possible but think that holding that off until December is going to be unlikely!

We were back in the gym today - we don't normally go on a Thursday but Diana has something happening tomorrow morning so we rearranged - actually we quite liked the change of day and the fact that we weren't rushing off to get ready to go to Paphos afterwards.  Don't know what John and Diana were discussing in this photograph but it looks like she is reading him the riot act!!!

We went down to Polis afterwards to do some shopping.  We rarely see anyone we know in Paps when we are shopping which is odd bearing in mind that it is the only supermarket now in Polis but today I bumped into all sorts of people that I knew which meant it took a lot longer to go round than I had anticipated!  Mid way through I had a phone call from a number I didn't recognise and it turned out to be one of the younger women in the village who is organising some craft classes - these are also government sponsored but different to the traditional ones we attend in November.  These go on for about six months.  I was really quite chuffed to have been asked to go and now I know where Georgia lives have been invited to call in any time.  I am guessing that once our new Mukhtari building is finished (it is the size of the United Nations) they will need to fill it with activities - hence the phonecall today inviting me to join a Cypriot Dancing class which I had to decline as I simply don't have enough days in the week!!

Back home I was on cooking - I am having the family here for lunch on Sunday and we are threatened with a six hour power cut in the morning so I want to be as prepared as I can be so that we can complete the meal on the gas burners if needs be.

I have plumped for coq au vin which I will cook in the pressure cooker now and then it only needs warming through.  I am in two minds as to whether or not to stick all the veg in it now and make it a one pot!!!  I shall see!!

John has got the generator back from Mina and Claire and we have a gas barbeque and a couple of gas burners so we will be ok if the worse comes to the worse.

We are trying to eat out of the freezer as it is packed with some unidentifiable packages of stuff that has clearly been in there for two long - I have never got the hang of labeling things before they go in!!! John took out what appears to be a pork tenderloin and that is what we are having for tea tonight which is quick and easy so whilst I was preparing the coq au vin I embarked on making a sauce to go with the pork.

Our lime tree is shedding excess limes - apparently citrus fruit trees do this so they can then concentrate on growing fewer but better quality fruits.  John collected up all the little cast offs and I decided to use them in the sauce and also to help flavour the pannacotta that will be for Sunday's pudding.

They may not be very big but these limes are packed with flavour and so I made a lime, chili, mustard cream sauce to go with the pork.

The pannacotta is going to be infused with lime basil and a vanilla pod so that it has a distinct flavour and will be served with some sharp raspberries to cut through the richness of the creamy pudding.  I game John one to try this evening as my head of Quality Control and he said that the combination was fantastic.

As I said Charlie has taken to finding random places to sleep which look most uncomfortable - today's chosen spot was out on my work bench with his head rammed up against the watering can!  He was quite happy there!!!  He was my excuse for not tidying up that bench in readiness for our weekend visitors.

John was busy this afternoon helping Sean with a building project so I shot off up to see Elena who has, at long last, had the pot removed from her leg (yesterday).  She was in excellent spirits as she now has a bit more freedom of movement although it is going to take a while to build up the strength in both her legs.  She is now desperate to get down to the beach so we will need to organise this for her.

On my return late this afternoon the clouds began to amass over the hills towards Lysos - rain has been forecast although it didn't come to anything here - it made for some spectacular cloud formations though!

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