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Happy Solstice

At 11:47AM CST the winter solstice occurs marking the longest night of the year. If everyone has been good, the days start getting longer tomorrow. Locally, the sun will rise at 6:38AM and set at 4:49PM for a total of 10 hours and 11 minutes of daylight, but tomorrow will be a whole 2 seconds longer.

This also marks HogWatch, so don’t forget to put out the turnips.


1 Jack K., the Grumpy Forester { 12.21.09 at 12:10 am }

“(i)f everyone has been good”

…guess I’d best go put new batteries in the flashlight…

2 Bryan { 12.21.09 at 12:29 am }

Good is a relative term, Jack. Everyone is good at something.

3 hipparchia { 12.21.09 at 11:08 pm }

and a happy solstice to you too.

i stopped by the store this evening. they’re having a sale on turnips, HUGE bunch of them sitting by the entrance.
.-= last blog ..Light =-.

4 Bryan { 12.22.09 at 12:12 am }

The weird thing is that everyone I know eats turnip greens, but I don’t know any locals who actually eat turnips. Someone must, but I’ve never seen them served. I think they were hog food on the farms.

5 hipparchia { 12.22.09 at 1:45 am }

hog food on the farms may be right.

some people here serve turnip greens with diced pieces of turnip added, but it’s still a dish that’s mainly greens. the ones for sale at the store entrance were the entire vegetable, roots with greens attached.
.-= last blog ..Light =-.

6 Kryten42 { 12.22.09 at 5:14 am }

We use turnips in Soup. That about it I think… I doubt I’ve ever seen them serverd any other way here. *shrug* I could be wrong… 😉

7 Kryten42 { 12.22.09 at 5:36 am }

Well, here’s a long over due recipe. Too late for this Christmas I’m afraid. But plenty of time for next year! 😉 😀

Traditional Christmas Pudding

This very old fashioned recipe uses suet and has no sugar, so is diabetic friendly. 🙂
September to November is the perfect time to make this Christmas pudding.

250 grams sultanas
250 grams raisins
250 grams currants (or substitute figs)
250 grams mixed peel (or substitute prunes)
3/4 cup of nice port (or substitute Irish stout)
3 eggs (lightly beaten)
250 grams chilled suet
125 grams plain flour
1 teaspoon salt
250 grams fresh breadcrumbs
1/2 teaspoon (or to taste) of each: mace, cinnamon, nutmeg and ginger.

1. Combine all fruits with some port and allow to steep, covered in a ceramic bowl for min 12 hours or up to a week (longer is better).

2. Combine flour, spices and breadcrumbs in a large bowl. Coarsely grate suet into dry mix. Add fruit with any remaining juices and eggs.

3. Stir well. (Tradition dictates that each member of the family take a turn to stir and makes a wish for the coming year).

4. Dust a square of clean unbleached calico with flour, heap pudding mixture into the middle then gather up cloth and tie it securely with string leaving a strong loop that the pudding can later hang from.

5. Steam the pudding in a large soup pan (or large boiler, kettle) of just simmering water for 6 hours. Ensure the base of the pudding does not come into contact with the bottom of the pan, either sit it on an upturned saucer or sit it in a free standing colander within the pot, or suspend from a piece of wood across the top of the boiler (pan).

6. Suspend the pudding in a cool, dry position to mature for a minimum 3 weeks to 6 months.

On Christmas day, steam as before for 2 – 2.5 hours.


8 Bryan { 12.22.09 at 12:04 pm }

Turnips are used much like potatoes in the North, but not down here. Yes, I remember the few pieces of diced turnip with the greens, now that you mention it, Hipparchia, and I’m sure they appear in some canned soup, Kryten, but I think that they are generally regarded as animal feed down here, much like the way the Germans view corn/maize.

When I get some time I’ll post the recipe, Kryten, but things are busy.

9 Kryten42 { 12.22.09 at 8:08 pm }

LOL No problem… I figured things would be pretty busy for everyone right now! 😉

You have months to post it or whatever. 😀

Hope you (and all) have a great time with your families and/or friends. 🙂

All the best…

10 Bryan { 12.22.09 at 9:06 pm }

Real Life has been a PITA recently, but it will hopefully calm down.

Have a Happy Whatever, and stay cool. May the only thing burning be a Yule log.