Rosé, sunsets and plum jam

It's Rosé time, not a favourite drink of mine unless we're talking Laurent-Perrier, Cuvée Rosé Brut but it sort of goes with July and the amazing sunsets we get at this time of year. We're often bathed in pink light from the roof light above the kitchen, whereupon it's down tools, knife in one hand, camera in the other to snap the shot.

Allium sphaerocephalon

This Allium sprouted in July and is the colour of some of our local Rosés which are strong and robust, more like a light red wine. From the species of culinary plants 'Allium sphaerocephalon' that include onions, leeks, garlic and chives - we've found many wild varieties with their easy to spot heads in varying shades of purple, pink and white.

caper flower

The caper flower is in its full glory, delicately held in the tough arms of its sprawling vine. The complete life cycle can often be observed on one plant. We harvest some of the very small buds and the seed pods, then store them in brine. After the flower has bloomed the pods develop and become very large, eventually exploding, scattering their seeds over the ground. Preserved capers pair particularly well with fish.

We continue to dry botanicals and flowers throughout the month. The bay, sage and rosemary here are ground into fine powders and used to make body wraps, dusting powders, bath salts and scrubs in the spa kitchen.

plums

There are two plum trees on site, not cultivated but standing amongst the almonds, perhaps from a shepherd's thrown-away stone long ago. They come and go quickly but if we catch them they make a really well set tasty jam.

Along with the sunsets come some amazing cloud formations, sometimes streaked the entire width of the distant mountain - for a split second the sky is still blue as the sun sets.

morning glory

Morning glory planted to add some mid-summer colour to the herb circle where there is work to do. Rising early to get the tougher jobs done as what doesn't get done by 10.00, doesn't get done at all.

Bird of Paradise (Strelitzia reginae)

The striking Bird of Paradise (Strelitzia reginae) flowers mid-summer, unfurling in a profusion of colour.

sunset andalucia

And more...