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A whiff of vinegar

The house stinks.
Our clothes WILL smell tomorrow.
Come too close and you will discover that our hair smells too.

Evaporating vinegar pervades every corner of the house - every open drawer, both dog beds, the exposed strings of the piano, the clean stack of washing, our books, even my mug of coffee. Our eyes water on entering the kitchen, we sneeze, we breathe in and taste the vinegar in the air.

This is balsamic apple cider vinegar (no common malt vinegar in this house, as not strictly gluten free). And it's organic! It is mixed with apples, red onions and brambles, with cinnamon, salt, ginger and mace added for flavour. It bubbles angrily, a deep dark red of simmering, fruity fury.

Bertie Baggins and Four-legged-friend however sleep through anything  Especially when their bellies are stuffed full of apple-peelings and brambles. Bubbles and strong smells simply seep into the backgrounds of their dreams.




Rather depressingly, only an eighth of the apples-that-were-saved-from-the-always-ravenous-thief-that is-Bertie Baggins went into the 2013 version of Bramble and Apple Chutney. This is what we have left




In 2010, Littlest and I used the same recipe...




What's a recipe book without added personal touch? The pages are falling out, there are strange brown stains on the recipes my mother used and by writing in it now, I make it my own. One day Littlest can have it, And cry when she finds a scribble of family history beneath a recipe.

Ho hum - we sleep bathed in vinegar, dreaming of apples and wasps and brambles. And quietly plot more vinegar-evaporating, human-pickling experiments tomorrow...

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