Z maintains a stiff upper lip

It’s quite hard to keep my spirits up and I know I’m not alone in that. Cooking helps, it takes time but not much energy, which is really lacking at present.

I made a batch of medlar jelly the other day. Medlars are peculiar fruits, which are inedible until they’re overripe to the point of rottenness. The term for that is ‘bletted.’ Medlar jelly, made by cooking the fruits in water until they’re soft, then straining through muslin, then added to sugar and boiled until they set, is eaten with meat or cheese, rather than as a cake filling or whatever. They don’t have a great deal of flavour, to be honest, not compared to quince or redcurrant (used in the same way) but the jelly is pleasant enough. I bought the rest of Simon’s stock – because I’m really nice and he hadn’t sold any more since I last bought it – and will make more this weekend.

I also made courgette and apricot chutney and will make more of that (my children will receive a box of preserves among their Christmas presents) and have also ordered a kilo of chilli peppers which will be added to what I’ve picked from my own plants and used for, possibly, the best relish in the world.

And I’ve made bread and rolls and will make naan bread and yoghurt tomorrow. It’s not quite obsessive but it’s borderline. I want to be busy and not become either despondent or frustrated; which I am but don’t acknowledge. Again, I’m with practically everyone else here, but we all cope in our own way.

I will, at least, have a change of scene next week. I’ll drive down to Wink again and pick up anything more that she doesn’t want to go into the removal van. Tim is making a flying visit to Reading too, and then Wink’s moving day is the week after. Then, basically, we’ll hunker down until Christmas. But we’ll all be together and we’re looking forward to that.

Roll on vaccination, darlings.

4 comments on “Z maintains a stiff upper lip

  1. Scarlet

    It’s been harder, this lockdown, than the first. I think it’s the inevitability of deaths rising that plays on my mind; that it is not quite yet December and things will get tougher; and that Winter often throws up a host of other nasty surprises – such as destructive storms and snowy weather.
    Thankfully I have settled into a few hobbies now, we need our obsessions!!
    Stay safe.

  2. Blue Witch

    It’s strange for us – the whole country adopting our normal lifestyle, for months on end.

    But, I can understand how hard it must be for you, and others who have ‘family’ at the centre of their lives.

    For us, similar torture as lockdown for most, would be forcing us to be constantly out, going to shops, pubs, cinemas, restaurants, and in the presence of others and all the noise this entails, all the time.

    Strange times – but think how much less well people would be coping without the internet!

  3. Sarah

    Thank you Z. I was feeling all out of sorts but you gave me the idea of baking. All it took was one coconut and lime drizzle cake and an apple and blackberry pie. I feel much better now

  4. Z Post author

    I think that cooking is such a comfort. It really helped me the winter after Russell died, too. I knew it was a bit absurd, but I felt it showed I was caring for and about myself, which seemed a good thing. Glad I helped, Sarah. Scarlet, I’m also wanting to settle to hobbies but I seem to need to do useful things to be able to concentrate.

    BW, we don’t do much normally either, but it means that what we do means a lot. Not having anything to look forward to is hard. I have planned the food for the next blog party, mind you. I guess it’s a bit far for you to come (assuming that it happens) but you’d be very welcome to stay, or it might coincide with a trip down south.


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