It's raining today, not heavily but the kind of rain where cascading droplets trickle slowly down the unshuttered window panes and collect in tiny pools along the weather beaten sills. It's hard to imagine yesterday afternoon was spent lollygagging at the beach, sweltering under a stripy umbrella until the clouds turned black, and the wind came from around the corner, threatening to turn our umbrella inside out, pick it up and parachute it away.
We spent the best part of the morning wandering around an authentic farmer's market, located in an inner city renovated railway workshop.
It was bustling with locals chatting to food artisans and farmers, herding around the profusion of springtime offerings proudly on display.
The market stalls looked so alive. Photogenic fruits and vegetables, gleaming, their vibrant colours catching the dappled morning sunlight.
The best tasting healthy food, quality grass fed meat from local farms, organic and free range eggs, herbs and spices filled the air as we crunched, munched, nibbled and taste-tested our way through the myriad of merchants. It's such a fun way to shop, from the people who grow your food and share with you it's history. And by the time we reached the end our basket was firmly ladened with spring season treasures.
On Sundays I like to make my own full flavoured stock, with some of the left over vegies I have in the fridge and a whole chicken. I let it simmer on the back burner while everything else is happening. Once you've made your own stock you'll never go back to the store bought packaged ones again. And you'll be able to sniff out an additive filled stock cube from ten paces. Real stock tastes so much richer and enhances everything. And it's so easy to make...
Basic Chicken Stock
1 whole chicken
2 litres of filtered water
2 tablespoons freshly squeezed lemon juice
1 large onion chopped
3 celery sticks chopped
2 cloves garlic
1 bunch parsley
1 bunch rosemary
1 bunch thyme
2 bay leaves
Sea salt and pepper to taste
The How To
Place chicken in a large stainless steel pot with water, lemon juice and all vegetables and herbs
Bring to a boil, and remove foam that rises to the top
Reduce heat, cover and simmer for 6 hours
Remove whole chicken with a slotted spoon
Remove chicken meat from the carcass and reserve
Strain the stock into a large bowl and refrigerate until fat rises to the top and congeals
Skim off fat and place stock in a jar or covered container in your refrigerator