It takes a lot to get me off my island and into Kirkwall. Most times when I think about going I end up saying that I really don’t need anything that badly, and I stay home. The general idea is that I go on a semi-regular basis to buy some of the things that I can’t get here on the island.  The truth is however that most essentials may be had here and we can get by. True also that we lack variety and certainly we lack choice and quality in fresh foods. After along winter of wrinkled flabby yellowed veg and cotton wool tomatoes, it was good to stock up on some tasty fresh veg.

Tomatoes are a particular issue as we both enjoy a good tomato.

A long time ago I paid for the sins of some previous life by working in a supermarket. I was in charge of the fruit and veg department. One thing that was drilled into us in our training was that there are some items that should never be refrigerated. Tomatoes of course are primary amongst these. Tomatoes, like potatoes and bananas are stored at ambient temperatures. If you chill a tomato it becomes woolly and tasteless, even if it starts out in life as a good example of a tomato.  Here on the island the tomatoes that do appear are not of the best quality to begin with. They are kept at ambient temperatures but when the shop is unheated, the ambient temperature is often below that of a decent chiller. We were very tired of buying tomatoes that wrinkle and blacken before they ever ripen. Tired of eating tastless acidic things that really do not deserve the appellation. So when I asked Mr L what he wanted on the shopping list this week, his first response was tomatoes! (even before Pork Pie!)

I did my duty and brought home tomato supplies. Three varieties in total.  We had all but one of one kind last night,

They won't last long
They won’t last long

The rest will be long gone before I head into town again on Thursday. Each and every fruit will be relished.

Yesterday I made parsnip mash to go with our kidneys and we also had some cauliflower. Today I cooked samphire, courgettes and new potatoes to go with our fishcakes. Some of the above tomatoes disappeared in a Pastrami bagel at tea time.

There was a time when I took the ability to eat all these good things for granted. These days I treasure every morsel.

It is good to be having fun in the kitchen again.

Not to mention photo fun, using my veg for photography practice 🙂

More electronics bits arrived today, and also a set of 3 laser pointers.

Art, it ain’t
Art, it ain’t

We may have a bit to learn 🙂

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