A few weeks ago I paid a visit to the home of a friend I have made through the Spinning and Weaving Guild I belong to. The purpose of my visit was to be taught how to spin alpaca fleece, however, honestly not a lot of spinning was done. I was too distracted by all her other amazing skills!
We got talking about our vegetable gardens, and I explained I had been researching how to preserve my produce during a glut. I asked her if she had ever tried preserving, to which she walked without a word to her cupboard and pulled out jar after jar of preserved goooooodness. Dill cucumbers, bread and butter pickles, relishes and chutney. All sealed up in Ball Mason jars. My jaw dropped. I demanded answers, explanation of how I would be able to achieve such a feet. I was pointed in the direction of The Redback Trading Company, as this is where she buys her canning supplies. I placed my order as soon as I got home.
Apparently you can't go past The Redback Tracing Company's own "Pickling Spice Blend"...
But my education was not to stop there. Next I was to be taught about cheese making. That's right, she even makes her own cheese! The taste of home made Camembert and feta I simply cannot describe...
~ Camembert ready to be wrapped in foil and refrigerated for at least 4 weeks ~
~ Feta ~
I am excitedly waiting for the Postie to deliver my order from The Redback Trading Company, because in my garden there is a glut of beans just waiting to be canned, and cucumbers begging to be made into dill cucumber pickle.
Oh, and just in case you were curious, I did spend 15 minutes with my friend spinning alpaca fleece. I found the fibres to be very different to sheep wool. I had read and been told a number of times that alpaca was different, but I guess I didn't expect it to be different in the way that it was (oh dear does that even make any sense?) The alpaca felt like it had almost zero elasticity to it, and the fibres appeared not to naturally fuse to each other. The yarn it created was so incredibly soft though which makes the effort worthwhile.