There are books where watercress is referred to as a... poisonous plant. Not a very encouraging recommendation for this exceptionally savoury herb. Watercress has been around humans for centuries despite that nasty label, though. And not in vain. As recent studies suggest, its fleshy leaves contain an abundance of minerals, vitamins, antioxidants, and some other stuff which is hoped to possess curative properties against lung cancer. This recommendation sounds far better than the first one and those who have tried watercress salad or soup could also say something about the taste. The tangy flavour has few matches neither does the rate the small seeds turn into full grown plants. If you have a damp spot in your garden and nothing wants to grow there, think about watercress. It will.
A great country-style cheesecake with a hint of rose essence. Although the rose petals in sugar constitute a minor ingredient on the list, their impact on the taste buds is beyond description. How to prepare rose petals in sugar is presented in the second post of the blog. Who did it, now can bake the cheesecake. Who did not, still can bake it, the only difference is that the taste of the cake will be easier to describe in earthly comparisons.
The recipe also contains pureed cooked pumpkin. If you do not have fresh pumpkin you can use the canned kind, or simply skip it substituting it with the same amount of pureed cooked potatoes. As all recipes I know, this one is also subject to changes and alterations driven by brave imagination without which cooking or baking are not art anymore.
No one knows why this ornamental plant became sweet william. There are legends which try to relate the common name name of Dianthus barbatus to different famous or unknown people, but none of them seem to be credible. Sweet william is sweet indeed. Cultivated for centuries for the beauty and strong smell of its flowers, it has acquired a very characteristic flair related to a slightly old-fashioned style which now belongs to the time of our great grandmothers and their gardens . Well, being old enough I could say, it belongs to our childhood filled with unforgettable aromas of vacation, country gardens, sunny and carefree days. Enjoying popularity for many many years, today sweet william has become a little less important than it was in the past. I hope, it will not fade into oblivion and I count on more famous people to hype this graceful plant the way Catherine Middleton did. She included sweet william in her wedding bouquet and it is not a legend.
I am a little late with this post whose protagonist is Philadelphus, an unusual flowering specimen. The last flowers have just faded away although in Scotland the first buds are ready to open. Philadelphus - a perfect combination of snow white colour of gracefully shaped petals and captivating perfume lets no-one indifferent. Even those who do not usually notice flowering shrubs will definitely smell the alluring inimitable aroma. The common name of the shrub tries to find a noble comparison between orange blossoms and that of Philadelphus. In a way this trial is justified but only to some extend: the strength. But the characteristic undertones of the mock orange aroma seem to be more refined and subtle, just like architecture of the flowers which very often goes totally unnoticed. But it does deserve a closer inspection. Let not the fragrant essential oil make you blind to the design of the mock orange flowers.
When the scorcher is unbearable kombucha should be the first choice to think and act about. Nothing is as good at bringing relief to our thirsty mouth than that cold fizzy tea. Yes, kombucha is tea although the following description what happened to that tea does not sound very appetising. It is all because of that SCOBY (to decipher the acronym click on kombucha in the opening sentence) and the way it looks although the way it works is more familiar and easy to accept. Why? Because kombucha is a result of fermentation carried out by some human friendly microorganisms, in this case bacteria and yeast. Their symbiotic relationship needs tea in order to thrive but their aim is to grow as jelly-like kombucha mushroom, the drink is just a by-product. The mushroom looks weird but the drink as by-product is just great!
I feel slightly ashamed for the title of this post; sounds too obvious , I know. It is all because the ornamental garlic I would like to present here leaves very little to the imagination. Or... my imagination is not flamboyant enough to create other comparisons than 'cosmic' or 'fireworks. Of course this spectacular plant is not to be blamed, not at all. As a matter of fact it could be studied by students of architecture what ingenious patterns exist in the world of flowers and inflorescences. Ready to copy. Allium schubertii - the Latin name of the hero embodies the creative aspect of nature which made us think: Why this way? It is only a plant, does it have to be so awesome? The garlic knows the answer.
Black elder is not famous for its odour, I would say it's rather infamous. Ivory white tiny flowers form quite spectacular inflorescences which a lot of people admire from a safe distance not to be attacked by the very intense smell they give off. However, the slightly repelling characteristic of this handsome bush should be overcome if we want to discover and relish new tastes and aromas. Believed by some ancient cultures to be a sacred plant empowered with magic, black elder offers new ways in culinary experiences both with its flowers in the spring and black berries in the fall. Let's take advantage of the last flowering inflorescences and make a delightful liqueur full of... magic.
One of the English names for Rosa x centifolia is the cabbage rose. With all due respect, it does not reflect the old-fashioned charm of this very old rose which has been in cultivation for centuries now. But it does reflect the overall shape of the flower which resembles ... a cabbage but wonderfully scented with rose oil. There are a lot of cultivars of the hundred petaled rose ( a literary translation of its Latin name), mostly pink or magenta in colour. They bloom only once a year producing a profusion of flowers and the time is just now. After having enjoyed the perfume of the fragrant flowers we can put them to good use making rose petals in sugar.
I have a lot of roses in my garden. Each variety affects the senses with a different force and message. Today I whispered to myself a well-know quote seeing the first flowers of Jacqueline du Pre: "A rose is a rose is a rose" , so was Jacqueline du Pre, a genius cellist who stopped playing her beloved cello far too early.
I would like to start off inviting everybody to visit my blog as often as possible. The idea is that different energies create a fantastic and powerful mixture which can stimulate growth, flowering and fruiting. These three conditions provide description of the essence of this blog whose name refers to the universe as well as a charming plant called Cosmos; hence its picture in the header.
Cosmos meant as the universe symbolizes order, harmony, simplicity, an ideal contradiction of chaos. Just like the graceful petals of cosmos flowers...
I was destined to be born gardener. In order to become a professional one I had to enjoy years of studying at various schools and universities... read more