Thursday, 1 November 2012

Ruby Red Crab Apples

I sold my vintage Evans racer the other day; with the profits, I bought myself and the Head Chef, a pair of bikes more suited to riding across the Common or down New Forest trails with the children.
Lovely Lugs!
Obviously, a test bike-ride was needed and we set off along a familiar route; through the parks and along the river Itchen towards the Mansbridge Community Orchard.
Miriad jewels (From Solid Ground)
During the recent Apple Day Event, we noticed that, although fruit crops had generally suffered badly with the unusual weather this year, one of the big Crab Apple trees at Mansbridge was absolutely bending under the weight of its myriad precious jewels.
Hold Steady, Will You?
I clambered deftly through the branches and it only took a few minutes to easily fill my swag bag with the tiny ruby red gems. I tried to take a couple of photographs but I’m afraid it was quite problematic to manage the; grip the camera steady, grasp a bag full of apples, cling onto the slippery branches swaying in the wind equation. To add to my woes, on the way down, I managed to rip the bag on a sharp branch. Such are the potential hazards of foraging
Life is a Bowl of... Crab Apples!
Eventually, the bikes, crab apples and family were all returned home safely. Here the leaves and stalks were removed and the fruit was washed. Last year we made some scrumptious Crab Apple Chilli Jelly. This year, I’m going to make Crab Apple Wine. We may return later to collect some more to make jelly again, there’s enough left on that tree to fill a whole jam shop.

Mmmmmm! This Looks Exotic.

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