Monday, September 02, 2013


Our weather for the last few days has been ever so wet, temperatures have lowered and the mornings are chilly now. During the day it is quite mild.  It is so wet today with what is called locally, sma' rain falling, (very fine rain that wets you through, also like 'Scotch Mist') that even the Daddy Longlegs  are desperate to get to the dry side of the window.

At the weekend we drove 250 miles return trip to see a performance of Dunsinane, given by The Royal Shakespeare Theatre Company, (RSC) who are taking the play on a limited tour. The cast included some well known good actors.   You could call it, I suppose, bearing in mind dramatic superstitions, 'the second Scottish Play;' the first one that actors don't usually name, is Macbeth.  Dunsinane is a story set post Macbeth, just after he has been killed.  Lady Macbeth lives on. There is an inter-regnum, a gap to be filled and warring clans have to be brought on side to make alliances where there are usually none. Macbeth's widow and her supporters are pivotal in this political scenario.  There were many evocations of the current complex situation in Syria.

On our way home,we stopped off for a bite to eat in a favourite eatery.  I was easily tempted to a dessert, the crowning glory of which was a home-made meringue.  When it arrived, other customers and me gasped at the size of the meringue with the strawberries and coulis dripping out of a thick layer of double whipped cream sandwiched between the top and bottom of it.  I didn't have a camera with me to do it artistic justice, but, I can vouch for the fact it was amazing!

Today, between showers, I pulled up two of my golden beetroots.  One of these and another one grown in a different plot. The leaves of these beetroot are edible and make for a great delicate vegetable dish, when they are briefly tossed in oil with fried onion and chopped garlic.

There's a bit more space now for the cucumber plants.  They've flowered, though, I don't think there's time for them to fruit.  The flowers are very pretty. Their tendrils encircle anything and everything. Could they have been the inspiration for The Day Of The Triffids?

 And here's a couple of demure flowers that are hiding. 


Snowbird said...

A lovely post and what interesting beetroot!xxxx

ZACL said...

Hi Snowbird,

Thank you for your nice comment.

I was thinking about possible difference between the golden and red the beetroot. The main thing I came with was that after cooking the texture seems a little different. As I haven't cooked a red beetroot for sometime, I can't thoroughly compare.

Anonymous said...

I hope that the weather has improved.
That has to be a less common RSC Shakespeare play.
The meringue sounds delicious.
Golden beetroot are sweeter than red ones. I have grown both, and prefer the former.
I'm sorry to say that I think you're probably right about the cucumbers, but fingers crossed. Flighty xx

keiko amano said...


You described the pie so well. It made me feel I just have to have it.

I didn't know about golden beetroots. I love red beet, so I probably do for golden kinds, too. But cooking red ones is messy, so golden kinds must be easier to handle.

I'm in US right now, and it's so hot. Your life with Shakespeare, cool weather, and vegetable garden is very enticing. I love all your photos, and I'm glad you didn't show the pie! Otherwise, my weight will shot up.


ZACL said...

Hello Mr F.

We ate some of the golden beetroot tonight, and I do agree, they are sweet, deliciously so. At the moment, I only have red beetroot that has been pickled (a gift) so, I could not compare. I do believe you are right about the different sweetness, though.

ZACL said...

Keiko, you would have adored the meringue. I am truly sorry I did not have a camera with me to take a picture of the way it was presented at table. My waistline is having problems recovering!!

Thanks for your comments and I am glad you liked my pictures. I hope you have more comfortable temperatures soon.

ZACL said...

P.S Your thoughts Keiko about handling the golden beetroot are correct, they are easier to handle, they do not leave any residue of colour on you. I started to wear latex gloves when dealing with red beetroot. I haven't done it for sometime, but when I do it again, I will put on the gloves to avoid red stain on my hands.

Rebb said...

Enjoyed the photos and reading through your blog, ZACL. We could certainly use some of those rains over here. It has been quite hot and a fire broke out on a nearby mountain yesterday.

I think I've only ever had pickled beetroot. I might have to see if the market has it and try preparing it as you have. It sounds like it would be tasty.

ZACL said...

My goodness, that is very dramatic Rebb, a mountain fire. I do hope it has been brought under control, that everyone is okay, and not too much damage occurred.

By our standards, we've had a dry-ish few months. Earlier in the year things were different.

If you cannot find uncooked red or golden beetroot in your market, you could get a good size tub and think about growing a few of your own next year. Providing you water them every now and then, perhaps with the occasional feed, the beetroot plant (at least the ones I had) need very little encouragement to grow. You can leave them to appear and swell for sometime, then harvest the beetroot when you think they are ready and when you want to use one or two. There's no need to pick them all at once.

I am pleased you enjoyed my post Rebb.

Rebb said...

I must say, ZACL, It was strange seeing the black smoke pluming out from the top of the mountain I see and appreciate everyday. I love this mountain—Mt. Diablo. The fire had grown to 800 acres on Sunday, that number has risen to 3,700 acres. It has only been brought under control by 20% so far. As far as I can see from the news, I don’t think anyone has been hurt. They have forced evacuations and people are scrambling to get their horses, etc., to safety. The one thing I always dread about summer is the fires that inevitably occur.

It seems each year the weather gets more bonkers.

It’s good to know that the beetroot plant doesn’t need too much attention. I will have to check the market and possibly give a go at planting a tub of them.

ZACL said...

Your breathing environment is probably affected, even if the fire is too far away to be overwhelming. I am glad to hear that livestock is being moved, with their bipeds. It must be awful for those who are in the line of fire.

If you do go in for growing beetroot, (mine were grown from seed) you do need to make sure you go for a tub with good depth and width. The leaves spread and are large. A 3ft (width) flower trough could probably take two, possibly three plants, but no more. the 'root' needs space to grow out of the soil.