Vicki and Sarah’s Blog




Vicki and Sarah

A Slice of Sussex

Autumn activities in full swing here over the last week.  It might have been the most perfect week did it not start with shooing Bill and Ben off the remainders of my prize radicchios

now you see it and...imag0380

now you see it and …………………………………………………………….   now you don’t                                                                      

I then spied them sitting on the kitchen garden fence eyeing their next target.  imag0375

Of course, my sunflower heads, left specifically in the hope of luring birds away from my other vegetables, are not doing too well, a few pickings.  I clearly need to do a major harvest up there and then surely they will get eaten!




Otherwise we have been gathering the apples (before the badgers finish them off!).  Off in the car tomorrow to Mayfield for juicing!







 Sarah and I have been baking ALOT.  Sarah’s cake table at school raised a massive 600.00 for theFlames of Hope charity.  In fact her raspberry and chocolate creation reached 50.00 in the auction!  She also made a batch of  apple and blackberry cakes topped with fresh toasted cobnuts, just what the doctor ordered on a chilly autumn day! 20161011_154058





My best effort went into chocolate and pear tart. Infact the one I made disappeared so quickly (do bear in mind that our children have now left home! ) that I had to make another (for when they come home).

Sarah has told me off for putting in too many things, but here’s the thing, its only a fraction of what goes on here.  Anyway, I will be good and just throw in a cheeky extra!  Curing and smoking of bacon, followed by slicing and vacuuming.  Indeed it was fresh bacon sandwiches for lunch that day.


I AM QUITE SURE NOW THAT ANYONE WHO KNOW ME AND READS THIS UNDERSTANDS MY GREAT LOVE OF RUNNING….It is simply the only way forward with the constant flow of food around.!!!

Vicki x

Autumn at Thimbles


Sarah and I are starting a blog…. so watch this space!

It has to be said that Autumn is rather wonderful this year in Sussex.  With early morning mists rolling over the lake here at Thimbles (and frustratingly impossible to catch on camera before the mist quickly disappears in to a mere vapour).One day i will get this on film (or digital!) along with the heron stealing our fish!

bill-and-ben-and-the-blackberriesimag0305Bill and Ben my very smart french wheaten maran cockerels have been up to no good. Here they are after glutting on my prize thornless blackberries, after they had had their full of my apples from the orchard.



Huge successes and disappointments in the Kitchen garden each year.  Never explicable either!  This year the sunflowers grew to 16 feet plus and I have no idea why, and never blew down.  I had to get the loppers on them when they gave up on their magnificent flowers.  As usual I leave a row of heads for the birds to gorge on, in the half hope they will prefer them to my kale.


Rather pleased with the radicchios lettuce this year (although not without complaint from the family for its bitterness).  Dahlias too! Whereas beetroot, which has to be the world easiest vegetable to grow, just would not, or not enough anyway.  Again delight from the family for the never ending beetroot and goats cheese pizzas and shockingly pink risottos!


butternut-squashWonderful butternut squash! but will they ever ripen in time?  Just wait for the pumpkin collection, but I am saving that for a Halloween blog

I really could ramble on but I won’t as its my first blog, but i do have to say it is horribly difficult to photograph chocolate.  Sarah’s serious chocolate orange for Fabulous bakes are simply divine (it really is little wonder that we have both taken up running and fitness – its called necessity when you do as much baking and experimenting as us).  Next week I will show you Sarah’s apple and blackberry cakes with crushed cobnuts on the top!  in the meantime, here is the choice orange sticks photo

Actually for all of you who are sad that the summer is over, get yourself some autumn and winter loving ornamental grasses.  Simply fabulous!  Bye

autumn-grass imag0284 imag0285 imag0280-3

Our patient and knowledgeable friend, Camilla, has helped introduce me to how to do this (all very technical).  She is great, see