Spicing up my cider with cinnamon & ginger (plus how to make kale chips & parsley sorrel pesto)

in ecoTrain3 months ago (edited)


I mentioned in a recent post how this year I am making kiwi wine, persimmons wine, pumpkin wine & cider but I failed to tell you how to spice up your cider (or other drinks) with cinnamon sticks and freshly cut ginger, just prior to bottling. Adding such things to your medicine (organic fermented fruit with no other ingredients except sugar & sometimes lemon or water) will only increase the potential benefits of drinking it.


One other reason I add these bits is to force me to wait now a full three months before drinking! Only after this period will the cider be at its best and the newly added flavours fully infused.

Esteban was doing his homework with Sabrina during my sudden morning desire to bottle cider.


I had already added my priming sugar (to give the cider bubbles) and my sugar alternative (to give the cider sweetness) and was ready now to add the final bits and bottle it up.


You can add other things but these are what I had to hand. Last year I tried vanilla which was amazing.

For your reference this is what cinnamon looks like before it is broken up into the pieces you can see on my table.

Screenshot 2022-12-18 at 12.59.20.png

Not sure how much to add but this looks about right.


As you can see we are using our bottles from last year and some of the labels amazingly are still in one piece.


And that's it. 12 bottles of the good stuff.

None of these bottles have corks, just in case the priming sugar creates too much fermentation and pushes them out. Swing tops or screw tops only for cider.


If I had more self control I would open one bottle on the 1st of each month and keep going for the whole year. Trouble is, friends visit, unexpected parties happen, cider gets drunk! Which is fine ;)

I wonder if the cinnamon will sink to the bottom over time?


Finally they are put away in a dark place for three months where hopefully I will forget about them.

Kale chips

On a quest to increase the amount of calcium in my daily diet (for a teeth repair & regrowth project) I wanted to try out something I had seen here on hive, kale chips. We have three different types of kale in the garden and this seems a fun way to eat more of it while potentially encouraging the children to join me.


All you do is remove the tough bits in the middle and cut the rest into small pieces.

Then sprinkle with olive oil (not too much), seeds of choice & salt. Give it all a good mix and place on baking sheets.


You can also do a sweet version with sugar. I like it with a mix of sugar and salt.


Not long in the oven. Just ten mins and it will be crispy crunchy yummy.


You will know how much kale you are eating because your poop will turn green!

Calcium-boosting pesto

For the same reason as described above I am also making plenty of parsley & sorrel pesto, both of which are high in calcium and able to grow through the winter.


I use hazelnuts because we still have loads of them from the 2020 season. Walnuts create a more creamy flavour. Pine nuts are best, but they are ridiculously over-priced and I've not (yet) figured out where to harvest them from around here.

Once mixed together in the food processor with olive oil, garlic & salt you have this.


It keeps much better than basil, retaining its colour and flavour for a good few months.


If you can make it last that long.

The perpetual salad

Someone in the village asked us to make a salad for their Christmas party a week ago.


At the last moment I realised I hadn't added physalis, so I ran to the garden and picked the last ripe ones!


There is nothing in that salad we didn't grow. Except the pine nuts!


I mention this because salads are amongst the small group of plants which continue growing through the winter, yet how many of us continue to eat them all year round? Not enough I would say. Sure, the tomatoes, nasturtium & physalis are over now but the rest just keeps on going. Lettuce of multiple varieties, spinach, kale, parsley, rocket, coriander & dill are the main ingredients for my winter salads. I recommend you eat a large salad every day. My personal feeling is that one should be eating more green stuff than any other colour. And you should be doing this throughout the entire year (as dictated by nature).

Here is the final buffet display at the Christmas party.


Ah yes, we also made these pesto and sun-dried tomato nibbles, tomatoes from the garden, dried at home. I didn't make the bread though. Have been a bit off the ball with bread making in recent weeks. Not enough hours in the day!


The party was fun. Everyone ate & drank well.

Growing up

Later that day Luna's first tooth fell out!


She figured it would be a good idea to give it a little brush before the tooth fairies arrived that night.


Better achieved with the assistance of her brother.


Lucky her, the fairies were impressed by how clean it was and left her a little money.

New restaurant

I also wanted to mention there is a new restaurant in our village! Well, it's actually been here over a year already and changed hands twice but this is the first time I have been. Yep, that's how much I indulge myself, even when there is a restaurant on my doorstep!

I made some physical cash recently (totally unusual in my life) looking after someone's cats for a few weeks, so I took Sabrina for lunch.


Yes, miracles do happen!


I had the sea bass with chips, parsnips & plantain (with a pathetic looking salad which should have been a whole lot bigger!)


Something tells me it won't be long before I am selling them salad. Or perhaps swapping salad for the occasional meal! I mean really. Their rocket was pathetic when compared to ours. And I haven't even started using all the electroculture techniques yet!


Sabrina had the chicken with peanut sauce.


Yeah, I'm not strictly a vegan. I'm more into listening to my body and eating what I feel like.

Importantly I always express my gratitude to the animal in an appropriate manner prior to eating it (usually in silence in my head) and ask that only the best energies come to me. Bit like a Reiki prayer.


I did a seven day fast just over a month ago and have since then been on the most incredible journey of discovery for which I am most grateful, but one of the main things I have noticed is an enhanced appreciation of food which continues on and on. And it's not just the eating process, but also how it makes me feel.

Consequently I cannot even come close to explaining how much I enjoyed eating this fish and the feeling which came with it. Beyond incredible. Satisfaction at every level.

And I have decided we will eat at this restaurant more regularly!

Finally, here's me making a copper Lakhovsky coil for Sabrina today. All you do is find a way to hold both ends of your wires and twist. I am using four wires.


On the ends I have put bees wax balls, infused with intention. This will be her Christmas present.


Always better to make these kind of things if you can.

Intention and creativity are omnipotent.

Happy Solstice everyone 🌱



I adore kale chips and used to make them with nutritional yeast, so addictive!

They really are addictive aren't they. And the children weren't into them, so they were all for me! One day they will appreciate such things, but not quite yet it would seem...

Good idea for the nutritional yeast. Hadn't thought of that one.

If I had more self control I would open one bottle on the 1st of each month and keep going for the whole year. Trouble is, friends visit, unexpected parties happen, cider gets drunk! Which is fine ;)

Yes, I know that feeling. When you have something in handy, it could take a lot of self -control to keep yourself from consuming it every now and then.

Thanks for sharing.

Funny you should mention that because I just put a bottle of cider in the fridge, a full three months early! We don't have anything to drink in the house tonight and I have friend coming round later. Haha. It's good to have targets at least! No matter if we don't hit them ;)

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