Corey has been super hard at work these last few months, working on site everyday with the Equipa Quatro team, mainly been assisting Paulo. In the last few days the Woodmen have come and Corey has been working with them. The woody construction continues, photos to come.
As the seasons are changing and the colder weather is getting in, have plenty of Ginger root tea. You can add lemon and honey, but it is the Ginger that will warm you up and get the dampness out of your bones.
There are many different varieties of Olive trees at Ceratonia and since late September the olives on the trees have been getting plump and looking tasty! However if you have ever picked an olive straight from the tree, you know how bitter it tastes! So I set to work on finding out how to make them edible.
Here is what I have done:
We picked a large amount of gorgeous green olives, put them in a large bowl and added water and a small handful of coarse sea salt. Then every day for 8 weeks! I have rinsed the olives, given fresh water and extra salt. Finally this week, after having a little taste of an olive wow they are ready! Actually tasted delicious! I gave the olives a final rinse and put them in a large glass jar with a sealed lid. I have added 2 litres of water with 1\4 litre of red wine vinegar and a little extra salt. Along with huge amounts of fresh thyme I picked from my father´s garden (we don´t have enough at Ceratonia yet!), oregano, 3 bulbs of crushed garlic, chilli from my first Chilli bush, lemon and Bay leaves. So now I leave for about a week and then I hope we will all enjoy! I will let you know how they tasted..
Olive (Olea europea) Oliva is a great antioxidant medicine and is high in Vitamin E, A, B, C, D and has healing fats. This herb helps with many imbalances in the body and strengthens the heart and digestion. The leaf is also used in medicine again for the heart and the immune system. The leaf also has powerful anti-viral and anti-fungal properties and is said to have anti-parasite action. Research is finding great benefit in Olive treatment for some cancers. Again another amazing plant!
Here is a delicious recipe for a soup that I have just discovered here in Portugal
Chop 3 onions and plenty of garlic and olive oil, fry 10 mins or so. add salt and chilli optional can add sausage\ham. could add sliced mushrooms.
Boil either potato, pumpkin or sweet potato until very soft. Add to the onion mix with the boiled water.
Finely chop a green leafy veg. and add at the end.
Cook for a further 5-7 minutes.
Olive leaf, this picture was taken in the Spring and you can see the tiny baby olives just forming. There is a picture of the plump green olives I have been working with earlier in this blog.
We put the first coat on the garden hut yesterday.
The roof is on the Centre!
What will this week bring..? The walls I hope!!
Corey has been busy with the beginnings of paths...and much more!
You can see our trusty white van.
Walnut (Juglans regia) Nogueira planted. Gave it extra mulch from under the humus rich Carob. Protected it from the munching goats and sheep that take their evening promenade and feasting through Ceratonia most nights! Tis a bit of a problem! But as time passes, changes are occurring and they are tweaking their routes. In the last month or so all plants planted, are still all in tact!
Bom dia! Living here in the Algarve is very different from Glasgow in many ways, but there is a similarity of Strength, Força in the people and the land. As unsettled as it all is not having lived in our own home for over 6 months, feeling your feet on the ground gives a mighty support from this dear Land. There is also a good connection with the two Westerly countries via the boisterous Atlantic. Our language skills are improving slowly but surely! A varied and complex language, wonderful to have the opportunity to learn it.
Today it is raining, first time in over a month. You could feel it tempting its way here. The Plantas love it and it is a wonderful thing to see them transform and in some cases into life from a very dormant state.
The Water is good as I planted two Walnut trees on Thursday. The first sapling trees I have planted at Ceratonia. Feels great! Walnut is the medicine for Change and there is much change at Ceratonia! The Centre being built, the gardens transforming, shaping, waiting. We are soon to be living there along with our dear bush cat Cato.
In the last couple of months building work has started on the Centre. Twists and turns and a very low budget, we are on our way! Oh la la! Amethyst and Rose quartz have been placed in the foundations of the building, to enhance balance and the flow of Love. Tons of stone work, metal work and soon Wood work will commence and create this centre that will give us a home and give shelter to those that come to learn, to teach, to heal , rest and be inspired.
Only problem with the rain, is work tends to slow to a stop. OH! The Earth at Ceratonia is red and heavy with clay. It turns into an amazing soft engulfing material… Big machines sink into the ground. The soles of your shoes quickly form inches of thick sticky clay. Not the easiest to work in. One of our aims is to nourish and improve the soil, adding sands, composts, manure and planting plenty of greens! It is a big plot and we are starting with one small bite at a time. It is Fun, an education, gives comfort and joy.
Muito respect to the amazing world of Plantas.
Earlier I wrote of the Carob tree but some how my musings got lost.. The Latin for carob is Ceratonia. In Portuguese it is Alfarrobeira (throughout this blog I will write the Portuguese in bold). As I said it nourishes the earth and nourishes us. The high mineral content with especially high levels of magnesium make this herb a great tonic. Spending time with the Carob trees, which there are numerous in the gardens at Ceratonia. Creates a calm, a strength and a sense of Peace which has been of great benefit at this time of huge transition for us. The essence of the flower helps one to break the ties and heal our ancestral repeated patterns.
Here in the Algarve, the Carob is highly esteemed and in Septemebr\October at the time of harvesting you see heaped baskets of the plump bean pods everywhere. Here they make a flour with the carob and create the most delicious almond and carob cake. Along with many other confectionaries!
The rains and winds have an impact on internet signal, so as I try to continue with this blog, the Elements are stopping me!
Old olive down by the river.
Almond in September.
Left to right. Lavender, Scilla, Orchid, Down to the river, Early morning, olive, ruin.
Please bare with me, I wrote loads on the last blog, but sadly it only put the first few words up... At least you got the photos.
Hello! We are here in Portugal and Ceratonia is becoming more of a reality everyday. Ceratonia is the Latin name for Carob, a peaceful tree that gives strength and is a great source of magnesium. A tree that not only nourishes the earth with its nitrogen
Daisy Mae and Corey Smith at Ceratonia