Sunday 13 May 2012

A delicious discovery

Many years ago I learnt to make quince pâté/paste: a delicious concoction that you can serve on crackers with cheese or simply nibble on on its own.  Then a year or two ago I purchased guava paste - the same general idea, but made from tropical guavas.  Right now we're in the middle of a major guava glut so I decided to have a go at making guava paste with our own strawberry guavas.  The result was delicious.  We've simply been cutting it into cubes, rolling it them in caster sugar and eating them like jubes although think it'd be nice on crackers with cheese as well.

Should you like to have a go at making your own guava 'jubes', it's very simple.

1. Simmer guavas until soft with a small quantity of water (just enough to stop them burning - we used about 1/3 cup water to 2 litres guavas).
2. Pass through a mouli to remove all the seeds (you could force them through a regular seive if you didn't have a mouli, but it'd be a bit of a pain).
3. Put the pureed guavas in a wide pan with an equal volume of sugar (we used our big preserving pan and the high sides were great as they meant that the splatters were contained as the paste was cooked down).  You only want about 2-3cm of puree/sugar mix in the bottom of the pan.
4. Bring to the boil and cook, stirring constantly, until the mix has reduced to about half the volume and you can draw a wooden spoon right across the pan before the trace fully closes up.
5. Pour into non-stick containers to about 1cm depth and leave to cool (which will take hours - it holds its heat amazingly).

Store between layers of baking paper in air tight containers.  Should easily keep more than a year.  Yum!

Wednesday 9 May 2012

TED talk on energy

A few weeks back Martin and I watched this TED talk entitled 'People, Power and Area'.  It's by one of my heroes - British physicist David Mackay who not only wrote the program I use to type using only a mouse but also wrote the wonderfully informative book Sustainable Energy Without the Hot Air.  I appreciated his clear explanation of why we can't just switch to renewable energy and otherwise carry on living 'business as usual'.  I was also stunned to learn that the UK and Saudi Arabia both had the same amount of fossil fuels under their soils (one in coal, the other in oil) before extraction started.  I hope to be able to direct people to this talk in future as a good, clear explanation of where the world is at in terms of energy availability.  To be honest, I do find a clear explanation of where we're at kind of scary, and it drove me to pray - thanking God that He is in control and pleading for his mercy in this dire situation.