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Thursday 9 February 2023

Preparing lichens for natural dyes

 We've been doing a little experimentation with different lichen species, mostly ramalina and xanthoria varieties, to see what dyes we can come up with. Some of these we know will be photosensitive so that's exciting. The preparation times for these is normally around 16 weeks and we are nearly at the end of that now so stay tuned and hopefully we'll have some nice colourful  swatches to show you in the not too distant future.

Sunday 5 February 2023

Gravalax, a simple recipe.

 If you mange to catch a salmon this is a nice way of preparing it that doesn't require cooking. Fillet the fish making sure you remove the ribs and pin bones.

First prepare your mix, a half cup of salt, a quarter cup of brown sugar and a quarter cup of white sugar. Tradition has it that you add fresh dill also but I actually prefer fresh fennel, so a few sprigs from the garden and we are ready to proceed.

Place your salmon skin side down on a layer of your mix then pour the rest over the fish making sure its well covered.

Place in the fridge for 12 hours, the thicker the fillet the longer you may need to leave it for.

12 hours later you can see how much moisture had been drawn out of the fish.

Rinse it in cold water and pat dry quickly to stop it reabsorbing any moisture

It's ready to go, cut thin slivers off the meat and eat as is or on wheaten bread with a home made mustard sauce..  delicious.

Though salmon is traditional it also works well with trout or char.