Buckwheat Flour Simple White Cake

Pep's Free From Kitchen

24th March 2017 Photo Update

As promised, in making the second, or true, cake I have taken photos of each step so you know what you’re getting. I will say that my cake decorating skills have never really improved, I pretty much frost every cake exactly the same way. This is just a simple cake for me to, finally!, share with others, especially children, so I’m really happy it worked and that it’s all ready for my birthday tomorrow. Not everyone bakes their own birthday cake, but you know me dear reader, I’m just that amazingly wonderful. I’ve had two non-free-from people try the basic cake and they found it delicious. I wouldn’t let them lie to spare me, so you know it’s true. A no gum or added starch cake, with just a single flour, not too shabby eh? Okay, onto he photos.

 photo WP_20170324_001_e_zpss0vundsc.jpgEven if the sugar and butter…

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Buckwheat Flour Simple White Cake

24th March 2017 Photo Update

As promised, in making the second, or true, cake I have taken photos of each step so you know what you’re getting. I will say that my cake decorating skills have never really improved, I pretty much frost every cake exactly the same way. This is just a simple cake for me to, finally!, share with others, especially children, so I’m really happy it worked and that it’s all ready for my birthday tomorrow. Not everyone bakes their own birthday cake, but you know me dear reader, I’m just that amazingly wonderful. I’ve had two non-free-from people try the basic cake and they found it delicious. I wouldn’t let them lie to spare me, so you know it’s true. A no gum or added starch cake, with just a single flour, not too shabby eh? Okay, onto he photos.

 photo WP_20170324_001_e_zpss0vundsc.jpgEven if the sugar and butter is a tad lumpy you’ll find it smooths out with the eggs. I added the vanilla at this stage to help dissolve the sugar.

 photo WP_20170324_003_e_zps5uychcro.jpgThe batter is very thick, but don’t be tempted to add too much milk, you’ll spoil the structural integrity.

 photo WP_20170324_004_e_zpsz0tof45l.jpgIf it stands up when you plop it into the tin. This is the right consistency.

 photo WP_20170324_005_e_zpsf2ao3jle.jpgWith gluten based cakes tapping helps get the air out to avoid pockets, in free-from ones, same idea, but less pockets and more total collapse.

 photo WP_20170324_007_e_zps3u6rjgib.jpgAgain, strangely no risen top. Maybe it’s the baking powder instead of soda, or just all hat sugar and butter.

 photo WP_20170324_008_e_zpsp8b8piol.jpgTen minutes to cool and out it pops. You can handle it easily, but still be careful, a broken cake is heart breaking. Let it cool for a few hours before cutting.

 photo WP_20170324_009_e_zpsyqqwocqf.jpgI was terrified it’d break here. A really sharp knife and long, slow sawing motions help.

 photo WP_20170324_010_e_zpsnehaydw1.jpgGoodbye diet, it’s buttercream time! Never stint on a cake’s frosting. I’ve added the perfect ratios for buttercream below.

 photo WP_20170324_011_e_zpsmtd9g883.jpgDot, dot, dot. Ad nauseam. Glacé cherries are best washed so the syrup doesn’t melt the buttercream. The chopped ones are just a surprise for the children. Both big and small.

 photo WP_20170324_013_e_zpsptqau61z.jpgAnd now we let it rest. One tip before I go.: Ice both the top and the bottom together, but let them rest a while so the buttercream can set, then when you put the top on the buttercream won’t squeeze out from the weight of the top.

23rd March 2017 Update: Just a quick update. I’ll be making the second cake tomorrow and will have a few photos to share. Today I just want to let you know that the cake was still okay after three days. The first day the cake is better left alone, by the second it was softer, sweeter and just perfect. Not always the case with buckwheat flour. The third day, today, it had gotten slightly drier, but you could still enjoy it. I’d say three days is just right, four might be pushing it. Ideally it would be baked one day, let rest overnight and then served the next day. I’ll have to ice mine a few hours after baking so it an all be left to rest. For this time I’m just doing a simple vanilla version, but I’ll probably return a few times and see what else can be done with it. Sadly I can’t eat chocolate so unless an intrepid reader braves those high-histamine depths we’re all going to have to settle for vanilla. Looking back on my wheat recipe, this is just guesswork, take it with that in mind, about 200g (Maybe 120g? Like treacle?) melted chocolate with 2 Tbsp Cocoa powder might create a chocolate cake, but I can’t say for sure. It worked for cupcakes back in the day, but without the gluten to bind you might end up with the chocolate sinking and spoiling the cake. Like I say, you try it it’s on you, I’m just speculating. Okay, see you soon with a photo update. Take care, dear reader.

 photo WP_20170321_010_e_zpsaktewkmy.jpgStrangely the bump that usually rises in buckwheat breads didn’t happen here. It divided like a wheat cake.

I neglected to take photos of the uncut loaf, the batter in its various stages, not due to age, but because I had little faith. I have to apologise, fervently, to the creative soul this recipe’s original was the brainchild. What was once a wheat based recipe, one that was created from scratch with much research and tweaking made by an untrained, yet full of potential, amateur, now changed, only slightly, into a gluten free, near identical to the original, cake. So, thank you, me. Yeah. The past me joins the future me in smug celebrations. This cake was originally a recipe that failed horribly, so I worked at it from scratch and ended up with either a Madeira or simple white cake, whatever your preference in cake names, to make a birthday cake for my nieces and nephew. The recipe has been in use from it’s creation, by not by me, when I gave up the gluten those days died, not without a little sadness of what might have been. You know the story, the limits, the lot. Now, instead of looking at a cake I can’t share with other I have one I can. This is exactly the same according to my Mother who makes the original these days. The recipe is fine as is, but I’ll be making an iced version Friday and I’ll add in any pertinent information. It’s strange how once I’d have eaten the whole cake, iced as easily, but now this is so rich I couldn’t even think of a third slice, I struggled with a second. Funny how things change, eh, dear reader.

 photo WP_20170321_012_e_zps3pa4cbxa.jpgWhat a show-off.

So, I’ll lead in with the usual question: What’s the big whoop? Your colloquialisms crack me up, dear reader. Well, no added starches, no arrowroot or potato or tapioca, no gums, either chewing or xanthan, just good old, fresh actually, eggs and the ever marvellous buckwheat. So, it holds, the texture is light and fluffy, it’s cake, not a sweet bread, nor a dense cake, like I’d have thought it would be. Shame on me for not believing in me. The buckwheat flavour is mild, the cake is sweet. There was a slightly thin bit of softness at the basic, a literal millimetre and only just a few centimetres in the middle, but I am to blame there, I removed it from the tin too soon. I was impatient, just do as I say below and let it cool in the tin. Other than that it’s an absurdly great cake. I was eating it within an hour of its being baked. Nearly no crumbs, no cracking and the cake is sturdy as you can see in it’s free-standing slice. It’s a basic cake, nothing special taste or flavour-wise, but when you factor in all that wasn’t needed to make it hold then it becomes a bit special. The raw flour is what you’ll usually get when buying buckwheat, I’ve had this confirmed by a very experienced dear reader, so it’s just there to tell you not to use toasted flour. I’m not sure beating the flour with the eggs does anything here, but I did it anyway, you never can be too careful. You really can’t see it in the photos, but this cake is so light and springy, it’s almost as if it weren’t buckwheat. I’ve never gotten it this light before.

 photo WP_20170321_013_e_zpszpcaq781.jpgInto the freezer you go. I’m not overweight now, I can’t eat a whole cake these days.

So, for the first time in a long time I’ll be able to share a slice of cake with other people. This one was a test, the next will be the main attraction. A bit of buttercream on top, perhaps a split down the middle with even more buttercream, nothing fancy, but the joy of being able to join in and eat with others is indescribable. I’ll freeze the rest of the cake, perhaps using a few slices to test out on others, and then bake another later on and update this post. The  recipe below won’t be altered. All that was changed from the wheat version is that there was originally caster sugar, a little more of it too, a little less milk and that’s it. Not often a wheat recipe works one to one with just a single free-from flour replacement. Okay, that’s it. See you soon.

Ingredients

225g Raw Buckwheat Flour
175g Sugar
120g Butter, Softened
2 Medium Eggs (60-65g in Shell)
1/3 Tbsp Baking Powder
1 Tsp Vanilla Extract
150ml Milk

Tastes better after a day.
Can be frozen.

To frost the top and middle you'll need 300g Icing Sugar and 75g Butter for the Buttercream.

Method

1. Preheat the oven to 175ºC (No Fan). Grease a Loaf Tin with Butter, line the bottom with greaseproof paper and dust with Buckwheat Flour.

2. Cream the Butter, Vanilla and Sugar, scrapping down the sides as necessary, until Sugar has mostly dissolved.

3. Gently beat in the Eggs and then beat, with an electric mixer, in 25g of the Buckwheat Four on High Speed.

4. Then, with an electric mixer, beat in half of the Flour with half the Milk until just mixed, Then add remaining Flour and beat while gradually adding Milk until a smooth thick batter is formed.

5. Scoop into the prepared tin, tap the tin on the counter top and smooth down with a wet spoon. Bake for 60 minutes, turning halfway and covering for the final ten minutes with greaseproof paper. Make sure top is firm to the touch and a knife comes out clean.

6. Let cool in the tin for 10 minutes then turn out onto a wire-rack and let cool completely before slicing.

Quinoa and Amaranth

 photo WP_20170319_001_e_zpsepyfs5lr.jpgNot only a new recipe, but it already has variations!

I just realised that my Quinoa recipe was in dire need of editing. It’s been sorted now, sorry to anyone that tried it and had trouble. So, again, I’m back with a basic recipe, but you know what? I’ve found that often when these seeds, not grains, not pseudo-grains, are being sold they can often be listed with erroneous recipes on how best to prepare them, if they include a recipe at all. You’re flat out of luck if you’d like a little flair with your new side. That’s why I’m here, I was caught time and time again and one day decided I couldn’t do any worse. Think of these as the four Mother Seeds, like the sauces, you know?…Just Google it. You have Amaranth, Pigweed, The seed of the Aztecs, blah blah blah, you’ve heard it countless time and probably haven’t seen much use for it outside of porridge. I have you more than covered. No, no need to thank me. Wait, do, do thank me! I’m just wonderful, right? So humble, modest too. Then there’s Buckwheat, oh, you delight, seed of my heart. Perfection, to me at least. Then there’s Kaniwa…moving on. And finally Quinoa. You might be a bit dull, but you’ve stood me well in time, my old seed. I think no healthy free-from diet can be without a few of these seeds regularly. Just check the links and tags because if you think I’m linking to all those recipe you’re a sanguine lunkhead.

What’s the worth in listing a recipe this simple? Because chances are you don’t know how to cook these seeds singularly never mind together. I can only guess at this, perhaps you’re all, everyone one of you, well informed, but secretive, but I don’t often see them used, never to the absurd extent I’ve tried them. I’ve been on a restricted diet so long that it no longer feels that way. It takes so much effort, graft and willingness to get to here and that’s why I’m sharing the fruits of my labours. Quinoa and Amaranth go together really easily because they share a cooking time The water and weight was different for each, but they cooked perfectly. The basic side is very bland, hence the addition of a variation below. What you end up with here is a slightly differently textured amaranth. This is more on the side of homogeneity rather than the individual  distinct grains of quinoa. I like this. Mix it up with some nut or seed butter, some additional flavours and you’ve got a side that you can enjoy in place of mashed vegetables. I’ll just say that you should give these seeds a chance, they might be just what your diet needs. Oh, about the peanut butter and cranberry: You’d eat a peanut butter and jelly sandwich right? That’s what this is, just savoury. So good with sweet potato and broccoli. Okay, dear reader, I’ll leave you now, to go and lament my lack of compost on this fine day, but to also marvel at my started seeds. Until later.

Ingredients

160ml Water
25g White Quinoa
30g Amaranth
Olive Oil

Method

1. Put the Quinoa in a fine mesh sieve and rinse with cold water.

2. Add a little Olive Oil to the pot and heat. Add the Quinoa and cook until dried. Then add in the Amaranth and Water. Bring to boil, reduce to a medium heat, cover and cook for 15 minutes.

4. After the 15 minutes is up, remove from the heat. Let it stand for another 5 minutes. After 5 minutes, lift the lid and take a fork and fluff.

Variations

Peanut Butter and Cranberry: Cook as normal. While cooking mix together: 1 Tbsp Cranberry Sauce, 1 Tbsp Peanut Butter, 1/2 Tbsp Olive Oil, a Pinch Sea Salt and Black Pepper until a smooth Paste is formed. Stir Paste into Quinoa and Amaranth just before serving.

Quinoa and Amaranth Flour Bread

 photo WP_20170318_007_zpsjbu2jsb3.jpgFresh out of the oven.

Hmm? You again? Dear reader, you are a jewel of the ocean, the acme of blog readers, etc etc, but you can’t expect me to stay with you forever and ever, can you? Okay, fine one more recipe and that’s it. I mean that. I had wanted to test out quinoa flour and amaranth flour, but there was no quinoa flour that wasn’t absurdly expensive, so I gave up, no, sorry, made my own, again. It’s tedious, but at least you avoid the nasty taste so many store bought flours possess. I’m going to cut this short, it worked, but it’s nearly identical to the all Quinoa Flour Bread. That’s not a disparagement, that bread is really great. I’d praise it more if it weren’t my own recipe, but modesty prevails and I quietly mumble its praises. The one thing I love about this is that one minute out of the oven it was cut without any crumbs. I do think the texture is slightly firmer, but that might be the lessened water. Go to the quinoa flour bread page and you’ll get all the information you’ll ever need. This is just here because it worked. It’s never a bad thing to know additional flours work and because it was too different to list as a variation. I used two small tins, I think they’re four and a half inches each, because you get a better crust to, ummm, not crust? ratio, but you could use a normal sized loaf tin and it should be fine. I just prefer to list what I used so you’ll hopefully avoid any failures due to me. Your failures are yours to accept. I’m perfect! Heh. Okay, until later.

 photo WP_20170318_006_zpszlo5spcs.jpgLook! It’s tulip time. More tulip time…

 photo WP_20170318_005_zpsmfygdwv5.jpgPotato time too. I’ll have to cover them with more compost and feed soon.

Ingredients

170g Toasted Quinoa Flour
30g Raw Amaranth Flour
25g Ground Flaxseed
150ml Water
2 Tbsp Olive Oil
2 Large Eggs (70g to 75g in Shell)
1/3 Tbsp Baking Soda
Pinch of Salt

Makes two small loaves.
Can be frozen.

Method

1. Preheat oven to 175c (No Fan).

2. Grease (With Butter or Olive Oil) and line a 6×3 inch loaf pan.

3. In a large bowl mix together the Egg, Olive Oil and Salt. Add the Quinoa Flour, Amaranth Flour, Flaxseed and Baking Soda and stir until combined, then add the Water and stir together until smooth. Rest for 5 minutes until batter has thickened. It will be lumpy.

4. Pour batter into prepared tins and bake for 40-50 minutes, turning halfway if needed, until brown, the tops firm when pressed, and a skewer comes out clean.

5. Remove from he tin and let cool completely on a wire-rack.

Amaranth Flour Flat Breads

 photo WP_20170318_002_zpshhfuvpfp.jpgI froze two so I’ll list it if they freeze okay. I don’t see why they shouldn’t.

Buckwheat did this in one, whereas amaranth has taken three separate recipes. Buckwheat is incredible, but amaranth is at least interesting. I have a baked cracker with flax seed, I have a egg free flatbread made with yoghurt and now I have a dairy free flat bread. Three recipes, none of which can be used to make the other. Amaranth is not a versatile ingredient. Not in the slightest. Still, I wanted to try making a dairy free flatbread, with amaranth this time, as you never know when you’ll need another. This is basic as it gets, but it’s still a single use flour recipe. I like those, you can see it in the dozens of similar recipes I have, all of which had no added starches or gums. To be honest, dear reader, today is one of those days when, well others at least, would like to thrown in the towel, I get these fed up days, yet I never think of stopping. There is no stop option in my life, that’s just who I am. Maybe it arrogant to say it, to type it rather, but I see so many people who quit, who cheat, worse is those who revel in their failures, and that will never be me. I don’t know if I’m that strong a person, but I must be strong enough to stick at this like I have. Okay, back to this recipe, there’s also a second cooling downstairs, unless it’s vile I’ll post the recipe in a few.

 photo WP_20170318_004_zpsawe15pjb.jpgThis isn’t the full meal shockingly.

I’m going to try and list whether the flour is raw or toasted from here on out. It matters a lot with some flours so it might be helpful to you, dear reader. I’m always here for you, now just remember to spell my name correctly when writing the cheque. Just address it to Cash. Heh. Now, the flatbreads. The adding of a little more flour is crucial, annoying, but the sticky mess that is your dough beforehand proves its need. I almost threw it out. The flatbreads had two interesting characteristics. The first was that they were better cooled. They weren’t as hard, that seems to be a benefit of amaranth flour. The second was that the taste of the amaranth was really mild. Perhaps the time it took to brown them cooked the amaranth enough, I’m not sure. They made a decent addition to a meal. My flour is ground in a coffee mill so it is a little rough. I  often fail to answer the question: What would you do if you won the lottery?”, I’m just rather unimaginative it seems, I guess now I can say I’d invest in one of those expensive blenders that grind seeds to a fine powder. A simple, basic recipe but one that covers so many diets. With options available in other recipes to suit even more. Not too shabby.

Ingredients

100g and 15g Raw Amaranth Flour
1 Medium Egg (60g to 65g in Shell)
1 Tbsp Olive Oil
Pinch Salt

Makes Four Medium Flatbreads.

Method

1. In a bowl mix together the wet ingredients and stir into all the dry ingredients, except the 15g of Amaranth Flour, with a fork until everything has combined into a sticky dough. Then add in the last of the Amaranth Flour and coat the dough. Knead the mixture until a barely sticky firm dough has been formed. Form Dough into a ball.

3. Split the dough into four parts and roll out, between two sheets of greaseproof paper, into rough fairly thin circles. Handle carefully when transferring to the pan.

4. Heat some Oil in a pan and on a high heat cook the Flatbread for until browned and blistered then flip and do the same for the other side. Repeat for all Flatbreads. Tastes best when let cool.

Nut Butter Milk

 photo WP_20170316_001_e_zpsbad2tklx.jpg“Your hands are clean? Right?!” Define clean. (Original here)

I predicted blue skies for this evening, then it started to rain and I still trudged outside, unmindful of the sudden shower and due to some concatenation of the celestial bodies and the firmament of the heavens combined with pure fluke, the sun, as Annie should’ve said, has come out today. So, not to shock you, dearest reader, I have been in the garden, but I still pulled myself away, or rather ran out of compost, and have made a delicious glass of watered blended nuts. Hmm? Oh, I’m supposed to pour forth rapturous eloquence on the wonders of…liquefied nut butter. Nah, you’re too smart for that and I’m much too jaded to put up a farce. How do I keep getting views? Seriously. Okay, blended nut milk, yeah. It tastes, well, like wet almond butter, a bit richer than  the usual nut milk thanks to the added bulk of the nut and the extra fat. I’m not exactly dairy free, by which I mean I’m not at all, but I do limit my dairy and happily support those who are whenever I can. So, I can only speak for myself here, I imagine this would be useful if you were stuck without an alternative to dairy milk. You will be getting more with a glass of this as opposed to strained pulp water so you might have to watch your intake. I have no idea, you’re intelligent enough to figure out if drinking large quantities of nut butters in water, any nut butter will do really, is for you, so go to it if you’d like. Now, I do say that I hope this doesn’t sound disparaging towards those who are dairy free, it’s just I can’t stand the grandiose grandstanding that every recipe like this seeks. It’s helpful, but simple to a fault. I’m just sharing because it might be helpful. So, like I say: Dairy free is okay by me. It’s tough you know? I mean have you ever tried to milk an almond? There goes my readership. Heh.

The weather has been wonderful and thanks to the more even heating of the greenhouse I already have seedlings starting. They’ll need to be thinned later, but for now I can happily poke my head into the greenhouse and marvel at the little seeds that seek to become plants. This is just the start, there’ll be these rushes of activity followed by periods of patient waiting, then a flurry of action, again and again. Good times. That’s it for today, I’ll see you again. Take care.

 photo WP_20170316_002_e_zpsjb5fbj5c.jpgCabbage and both broccoli.

 photo Mams 69th Birthday_e_zps4kxdq3vy.jpgI’m so glad to see you gladioli.

Ingredients

120ml Water
1 Tbsp Natural Nut Butter of Choice

Method

1. Blend everything together until smooth. Sweeten if desired.

 

Garden? No, Sorry, I’m Three Tyred

 photo WP_20170315_015_e_zps97pceqp2.jpgYes, I know the joke is two, but you see, yes, but…

 photo WP_20170315_008_e_zps4jms4la4.jpg…shhhhhh.

The recycling continues, dear reader. I was attempting to salvage a tyre stuck between two buildings, to no avail sadly, but a neighbour happened to have three just thrown carelessly about and now they belong to Jack and await flowers. I’m not painting them as I love how well the black in the garden contrasts the multi-hued flowers and they’d just chip eventually and paint and primer is expensive. I do have one tip, you can’t say these posts aren’t a learning experience, whether it’s worth learning is a whole other thing, and that’s to add drainage holes to he underside of the tyre. I used a forstner bit you see, because it’s the only one I had that was large enough. The smell of burning rubber abounded, the scissors were prevailed upon to sever the rubber, but when I was done I had no worries of water-logged bulbs. It’s amazing just how much water the inner part holds and how hard it is to remove. You don’t need me to say it, safety concious reader, but be careful when drilling something this large and unwieldy. You have little fear of the tyre slipping, but he drill is another matter entirely.

 photo WP_20170315_009_e_zpsdbzpwrzy.jpgI almost chucked it, but patience prevailed.

Did I ever tell you about my planting some store-bought purple garlic? Even if I did you’re stuck unless you skip this paragraph. It was a gamble, but if it works I’d gain some garlic for separating and replanting for next year. They’ve sprouted so that’s really great, they should grow if I look after them. I just used two two litre pots as I wasn’t wasting space on two cloves of garlic. Garlic is slow and can be rather dull, but it’s enjoyable to see it starting even before Spring and enduring long after the other fruits and vegetables have since wilted. I never guarantee success in any of my ventures, but I like sharing with you all regardless.

 photo WP_20170315_016_e_zpsdx1edhep.jpgAnemone still look primarily like parsley to me.

 photo WP_20170315_017_e_zpse8gjv2kf.jpgThe flowers are pretty at least.

Oh! My Cabbage and Broccoli, Purple and Green, seeds have started. I pulled off the bags today and now I let them grow and eventually thin them out to one a pot. Separating and re-potting is just tiresome. I’ve found it better to just plant enough in each pot and thin as needed. I’ve also seen a single carrot and one parsnip. That’s enough right? Surely everyone just plants one of everything. The greenhouse was almost thirty degrees yesterday, a new record. Sadly today is much cooler, though I am grateful for the reprieve from pot filing.

 photo WP_20170315_011_e_zpsj2irmkqf.jpgThey go from pinecone to flower so quickly.

 photo WP_20170315_007_e_zpsjlcd1lmx.jpgI love seeing each stage for the first time.

 photo WP_20170315_005_e_zpspnoc0xam.jpgThe Shakespeare tulips have flowered a long time before all the others.

 photo WP_20170315_010_e_zpso94ufsdp.jpgSorry about the origination, Photobucket isn’t cooperating.

I was worried about my potatoes as they have already put out roots in the bag, but they seem to be doing fine. They’re rather deep down and I still have to top them up as they grow. I also plant to add fertilizer to the compost as I add it to help feed them. I’m hoping for  decent crop. I was gifted some artichoke bulbs which I promptly shoved into a huge pot. I’m looking forward to watching them grow. I even have shallots, which I can’t seem to stop pronouncing: “shallats”, so, yeah, I’m growing things I’ve never eaten before.

 photo WP_20170315_012_e_zpsuy3cvjnm.jpgIt begins!

This year I fill the squash pots and they stay filled, no borrowing the soil to fill, well, everything else. I added compost to the bottom, I took the best of a bad batch and I’ll slowly fill the bags with potting compost. I think ten, five Harlequin, five Table King, is just the right number.I’ve also put down my tomato seeds, this year it’s one a pot. I’ve had bad luck with tomatoes, but with my Gardener’s Delight and Heinz, yes the ketchup people, seeds I hope to do well. I  planted some bell-peppers too, they’re a newer variety, Bell Boy, so I’ll just hope they do well and look after them as best I can. I’ve never grown them before either, but I can eat them, sadly.

 photo WP_20170315_006_e_zps9acykmbk.jpgBeautiful, but no fragrance sadly.

 photo WP_20170315_020_e_zpscn6lzymf.jpgA Naru Interlude!

Naru has now figured out that when the gloves go on the gardening commences. She’s out and about tottering here and waddling there, content as any dog. She wanders up to me on occasion to say hello. She’s a genuine joy. I do have to watch her around the slug pellets, but a tap on the backside and she runs, well, tries to run, away. She’s mostly content to amble about looking at all the flowers and secretly drinking whatever rain water has collected. Naru’s idea of secrecy is that if she can’t see you, she’s invisible.

 photo WP_20170315_004_e_zpsez8qpfkw.jpgThese tulips have striped leaves. I have no idea what they’re called, but they’re interesting.

 photo WP_20170315_003_e_zpsniz25y3i.jpgA few late starting crocuses. Or maybe mine started too early.

 photo WP_20170315_018_e_zpsxwalzsky.jpgThat’s a lily, right? Or maybe a peony rose…

I always thought they were pina roses, that’s the way everyone here says it. There’s at least two scattered about. Okay, that’s all from Jack, I hope if you are gardening hat it’s going well fr you. Not as well as for me you understand, that just wouldn’t do. Until next time.