5 January 2013

Checking my Fences and Yummy Soup.

It's been a grey day here in Cornwall. I don't mind so much because it's not raining and my field is at last starting to resemble a field again, rather than a mud bath. It's been quite mild too so it was a perfect time to go and have a good look at the damage the recent bad weather has caused to the fencing in my field. It's actually quite bad. I have lost about 45 foot of fencing. It just got washed away along with the riverbank itself, of which I would say there is about foot all the way down the edge of the field that has been eroded by the pounding of the river over a prolonged period of time.

You can see part of the eroded soil here.

It will take a few days to fix and about 20 fencing poles and some fencing wire which I will have to nip to my local farm shop to pick up and to be honest, I'm loathe to even start it just yet because I have a feeling that before the Winter is through there are likely to be more storms. So for now, I will have to be satisfied with picking up all the rubbish and debris that has accumulated along the fence line and bagging up all the wet leaves into black bags because when they rot down they make great compost. I'm all for free compost.

Flattened Fencing

After checking out the field, I came back inside and made one of my favourite soups, Potato and Watercress. It's so easy but it's totally delicious. 

Potato and Watercress Soup.

3 or 4 large-ish potatoes
A bag of watercress
2 chicken or vegetable stock cubes
Milk and water

Chop the potatoes into small cubes and put in a pan with a knob of butter and stir them around a bit.
Wash the watercress and add it to the pan.

Add half and half hot water and milk to cover the potatoes and watercress, or if you like you can just use milk but I'm not keen on milk so I use half and half. It makes quite a big pan full but if you don't eat it all at once you can pop it in the fridge and eat it the next day. 

Add 2 stock cubes. I use chicken stock cubes because I don't like celery and I have yet to find a vegetable stock cube that doesn't have it in.

Then all you have to do is simmer until the potatoes are soft, blitz in a blender and season to taste.  If it gets a bit low on stock during cooking, just add a bit more milk until it's the thickness you like your soup.

After lunch, I sat down and made two lavender filled chicks for a friend of mine. I call them Doris and Boris and they will be winging their way to Cheshire first thing Monday Morning :-)


  1. Oh that soup looks lovely, I'm all for a new soup recipe.

  2. Wow you had quite a lot of damage. That soup looks lovely and very easy to veganize, so am going to have a go at that. Doris and Boris are so cute x

  3. Gosh Kay what a mess the field is.Think it is a good idea just to tidy it up and make it look a bit better but I think like you we will get more of the same.Its going to take a while to get back to how it was xx

  4. I will perhaps put this soup on my list of LOVES...
    I lived in hillsborough for many years before returning to Wales!

  5. Kay, do you have another field for your Alpacas while the fencing is down? Or can they be trusted to stay away from the river?
    A horrible mess to clear up and an expense you could do without. However, that soup looks very tasty! Thank you for the recipe.

  6. Hi Rambler, Luckily, my field is divided into two, so at the moment the llamas are in the side of the field away from the river. They usually stay in that side of the field for the winter for just that reason. Although I have to say, the river has never been this bad in all the time I've lived here and I've been here for 9 years now.
    Kay xx

  7. That soup sounds lovely. I love watercress but my husband is not so keen. Maybe if it is in soup and he doesn't know in advance what it is.....

  8. Hey Kay, sounds like a pot of soup is the perfect meal to enjoy with the weather you are experiencing.
    What a shame about losing all that fencing, floods or bushfires they both do so much damage.
    Love the idea of the free compost and Doris and Boris are very cute indeed.
    Hope you get to enjoy a little bit of sunshine this week Kay.....

    Claire :}

  9. In the spirit of "make it do or do without", may I suggest that you make your own vegetable stock? You simply save up whatever veg ends, bits and pieces you might otherwise toss into the compost bin - ends of carrot, potato peels, onion skins, NOT celery if you don't like it, and maybe (if you're not a vegetarian) toss in some chicken bones all into a freezer bag or other container in your freezer. When it's full, dump the contents into a stock pot or a slow cooker and add just enough water to cover. Simmer for at least four hours, strain, and you have a delicious stock for free. You can add whatever herbs you like, add salt and pepper or not. I've been doing this for years now and there's really no substitute. So easy, and so thrifty!