Friday, July 30, 2010

Solar Oven

One of our CSA members has recently lent us her Solar Oven. 
Weather forecast finally gave the thumbs up to no rain or cloud cover and preparations for dinner started the night before on a rack of our Tamworth Ribs. Michael made up a dry rub and let the ribs sit coated over night. 
Ribs went into the oven at 8.20am, with the oven facing south east.
Within an hour the temperature was up to 200F, which the oven maintained for most of the day.  Michael turned the oven a few times to make sure it  kept an optimal angle to catch the suns rays.

A couple of our CSA members where very interested in the process yesterday, and as we all stood watching the temperature and oven you could smell the ribs cooking.  

At around 3.30pm we opened the oven to discover the ribs where cooked, and the meat was just falling off the bone.
Our ribs where served later in the evening with braised pac choy from the garden. Yummy!
We will be cooking chicken, duck, ham roast and a cake over the next few days.  If the rest of the meat cooks as well as the ribs I think we might be putting a solar oven on our wish list.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Thank You

A huge thank you from the Strattons Farm team to everyone who has given their support either through e-mails and phone calls and an even bigger THANK YOU to everyone who have given up their free time to help on the farm over the last week after the storm on Saturday.

Monday, July 19, 2010


Michael and I have both been in Monsoons but neither of us have experienced a storm quite like the one on Saturday. One of our friends described it as a "Florida Hurricane".
We were transplanting lettuce out when the black clouds started to roll in.  With most storms they tend to roll either to the North or South of the farm, this one stayed centre.  The wind was blowing from all directions and even now I am stunned at how few trees we lost.  I have never seen trees bend quite like that and still remain standing.  I think the market garden would have been fine if it had not been for the hail, and it was not just a little bit of hail.  The hail has left its mark all over the field, from ripping holes through leaves to physically marking the tomatoes, to putting holes into the beans and tomatillos. The wind did a great job of flattening the corn, but with the help of friends on Sunday we have fingers crossed managed to save some of the plants.
Even the greenhouse suffered damaged but this was just on the floor where the rain had ran under the base and washed the floor away.

Just as a double whammy we had another heavy rain storm through the night which has left most of the land like a mud hole and this will slow down our rescue operation of the vegetables.

A huge thank you to everyone who have helped us over the last two days and the offers of help that are coming in.  I think it will be a good couple of weeks till the farm is looking normal again and until we see the real extent of the damage.