Thursday 13 June 2013

Swarm Spotter, Frugal Mince and a Crafty Minx

Hello Frugal Friends,
Good growing weather here, which is code for warm and wet!
Below is a picture of our local "swarm spotter" L. he lives across the road and often comes over to help D with tasks around the smallholding. When he and his parents spotted a cloud of bees in our garden L. dashed across to tell us. We managed to find some bee gear to fit him, so he was able to take a look close up.  I am sure you will be meeting again over the summer.
 When we were away last weekend, YD had a BBQ. She put the leftovers in the fridge. We had the cold sausages in sandwiches and there was a bowl raw veg which was crying out for a frugal sprockle!
 Here are the ingredients that I had in store. The meat is a kilo of the Ox heart I froze earlier in the year. There is a tin of tomatoes, a couple of onions, stock cubes, garlic powder, the bowl of veg and a couple of crusts.
Using the mincer I had for my birthday I minced the heart and then the veg. I then (as my mother taught me!) "cleaned out" the mincer with the crusts. I seem to remember that she used to be extra vigilant cleaning out her mincer in difficult times with more crusts! In this case I thought it also lightened up what is a fairly dense meat. I browned off the meat in a little dripping and put the meat in the slow cooker. I then fried the the veg to soft, added the tomatoes and garlic, the breadcrumbs and a pint and a half of stock and poured the mixture over the meat in the slow cooker. This I left on all day. I now have 4 pints of basic savoury mince, which can be turned into a chilli or a pasta dish with other seasonings. (any other ideas?)
Yesterday I was clearing round our Wisteria and look what I found....Craft Minx !
EGD and her boyfriend are a Frugal pair, who have recently found Pinterest. EGDB has found section on using Pallets. As you know we are fond of a pallet or two around the smallholding. It's a smallholding sort of thing you know, pallets and baling twine! So I have determined that I shall take pictures of the uses of pallets here to see how inventive D has been ! I reckon I better not show him the Pinterest section on pallets though or I may never get the current jobs finished!
All for now folks. How do you use pallets and baling twine?
Welcome Andrew, glad you have joined us here


  1. Goodness, I had totally forgotten how my mother "cleaned" out the mincer with bread; it was out job to tell her when it started coming through.
    It is such a shame that so many would nt know how to make meals out of those raw ingredients and would order a pizza instead.
    I think times are going to have to get a lot harder before folk learn some of the old ways.
    Love your little bee-catcher/spotter. We have to be careful here in the u.s. as some of our bees are becoming africanized and are a lot more agressive than they used to be.
    I would love to keep bees but my neighbours would lynch me !

    1. What a shame when bees are aggressive. it puts people off an essential insect... and not without reason.. aggressive bees are really scary! Ours are such sweet creatures, they are a lovely dark colour, which seems to denote a quieter bee.
      I can understand your neighbours but what a shame for you !

  2. Bees! they have just set up home in the bottom of my new steps which the landscapers only finished last friday!
    My neighbour keeps bees and they are a delight. They have swarmed on 2 occasions, but are quite peaceful when they do and are easily collected by her husband in his suit and veil.

    1. Though bees might look scary when they swarm it is when they are at their calmest as they are drunk with the stores they are carrying to their new home ( I hope serious bee keepers will allow that simplification of a complex situation !)
      I am so glad you welcome your neighbours bees. I think Lizzie (above) would love a neighbour like you.