Hot water pastry makes less mess for blind bakers but also works with commercial “wheat/gluten-free” flour as I tested this week. Just adding a teaspoon of xanthium gum to the flours and we made individual pork pies and a “baked blind” pastry case ready for the Royal filling (cooked spinach, broad beans, tarragon plus egg/cream mix). A chance to treat anyone who can’t eat usual pastry.
The apple trees are looking wonderful (I’m told) with fresh pink flowers against the new blue skies. However, there have been comments on the apparent urine sample bottles hanging from their branches. Rest assured: they are the sous-chef’s special non-fatal insect traps so he can monitor the Spring wildlife. He is particularly interested to check any sightings of the pesky invasive Asian hornets that could pose such a huge threat to his bees and other pollinating insects that are so essential for our gardens, farming, and horticulture.