I began today with a trip to my favourite butcher, John O’Flynn & Sons.This is a proper, old-fashioned butcher’s shop. They don’t sell breakfast rolls or coleslaw and they don’t sell cut-price bargains. They do sell the most mouth-watering, succulent steaks but they are famous for their sausages. Big, juicy, tasty sausages. Today, I opted for spicy lamb sausages and pork and apple sausages. I plan to take the skins off the lamb sausages and convert them into meatballs. The pork we will have, straight up, with bread and butter and maybe some Dijon mustard. I’m getting hungry just thinking about them. Mr. O’Flynn cut and trimmed five steaks for me. He cuts them slowly and gently as though reluctant to hurt the hunk of beef. He assigns each steak to its owner as he cuts, ‘that’s for Dad, and that’s a lovely one for Mum….’ . The ritual is priceless. I love it. It seasons the meat.
In other news, our first ripe strawberry appeared. Guess who got first dibs?Husband has constructed an impressive cage to protect the berries from the birds. You may think you see weeds. You do, but they serve a purpose. I bought a seed tape of ‘wildflowers’ which are supposed to act as a slug barrier. Surprisingly, it seems to be working.Husband hit the jackpot on my birthday this year when he had a half dozen David Austen rootstock roses delivered to my door. One by one, they have been displaying their blooms. It’s such a delight because I don’t really know what they will be until they open. Today’s new arrival is Claire Austin (named for his daughter, isn’t that sweet?).Beautiful. Seriously, best birthday present ever.