Sunday, 3 October 2010

Hunting gall bladders and other odd activities

Someone said to me recently "I did not know you were a blogger". Well having not posted for over 3 months "blogger" is probably too strong a word for my occasional utterings.  I thought It was about time I gave it another go, after all it can be added to the list of odd activities that I get involved in. Now for instance I am writing this, nursing a tender back from splitting logs a few days ago, but this morning I was chasing chickens round in circles, something I find I do quite often.
Lesley, Emma and I have moved out of room one at Brook House to a cottage up the road, which had some resident hens and some newly hatched chicks. We are really enjoying the sense of space and the partial outdoor life with the hens and the wood burning heating system.
At Brook House the year is quietening down rapidly, Dad and I have started work on room one bathroom, we were quite surprised to find it had a cast iron bath, we left it in the bedroom only to find that when we came back after lunch it had miraculously found its way outside -thanks to Owain and Phil!
We have had a bit of a change around with the beers on the bar, after 12 years on the bar, Tim Taylor's Landlord has been replaced, this was a hard decision but with prices increasing we decided it would be better to offer a cheaper local brew in these troubled financial times.  "Cumbria Legendary Ales - Langdale" is now a permanent fixture, cheaper it maybe but the quality is excellent and at 4% it provides a good step up from  "Hawkshead bitter", allowing us to have some stronger guests such as "Yates IPA".
In the kitchen we have a new supplier for butchery which has proven to be a good addition. The butcher has introduced some new cuts of meat including a "lamb cradle" which is cut from the leg, we pan fry then roast it and serve very pink with a minted port berry sauce. Also they supply Cumbrian pork which we have been curing and turning into our own bacon. Chicken livers are now also sourced from Cumbria but you do have to look out for those little green gall bladders, they can ruin a lovely batch of Pate!

The valley is looking lush and vibrant. We have had about 40cm of rain since the beginning of August, which has made it difficult for campers and maybe put a few people off coming, hopefully the coming month will see a bit less water and a little more sun as the trees put on their autumnal cloak. All the pubs in the valley are in good shape now and with the ratty still running October is an excellent time to visit Eskdale. We have rooms available for some weekends and during the week.

Off back to my proper job now - time to do a bit of cooking.