There is a reason it looks a bit ugly!We have had the external render applied and it looks rather weird at the moment. Because the original finish on the house is textured, we opted to match it as best we could. The strange appearance you see in the shot above is because a layer of ‘spatter’ has been applied over the smooth render, then that’s been troweled to smoothe it off. Because this spatter layer is more cement than anything else it has a different colour to the render underneath. It reminds me of the old tramways or railway station toilets that were painted in 2 tone green! Once its painted it will come close to fitting in un-noticed with the original render.
There are two major jobs scheduled to start this week. The floor boards in the kitchen/dining area being laid and the plastering of all the walls and ceilings. The floor will become the same level right through the entire room. The blue thing in the centre is where the sink will be. See how the original floor sits up about 60mm from the slab, that will all become one level.
Then there is the plastering. These 2 jobs will entirely change the feel of the entire space I am sure. I must admit to being a little melancholy last night, it took so long before we could get started and now we are going to the final stages it seems a little surreal. I will almost miss the horrid smell of rotten timber and the wondering about how things will look. For the first time in years, we are finding that having a space where we can have a dedicated table for people to gather and prop is proving a great addition. This space is already proving to be a natural gathering space, I love that!
Our first family dinner in this space went well (considering the conditions). I put a leg of lamb in the slow cooker, sat upon a bed of onions, a few tomatoes, some mint, rosemary and a blend of different peppercorns. I also did the obligatory slivers of garlic placed into the joint. I covered the leg with some foil to retain the steam and let it do it’s own thing for about 10 hours on low.
I had been hankering for a traditional roast, but due to an ‘I can’t be bothered’ attitude and a quite obvious change to preferences, I opted for a blend of roast crossed with a pulled lamb style dish. I did normal roast veg, some roasted tomatoes in olive oil, pepper and a slurp of red wine vinegar. This is how you manage in a toy oven for space when doing this
I made a yoghurt dip just by adding chopped mint to greek style yoghurt then drizzled it with garlic-infused olive oil, cooked some peas which the roast tomatoes and mint were mixed with. I drained the excess fat from the slow cooker juices, added a little red wine vinegar and blitzed it to make a juice (jus?) rather than make a heavy gravy. All these were set on the table with flatbread so whoever wanted the traditional roast could serve that and for those like me who wanted a wrap/pulled style meal I could just put what I wanted onto the flatbread, wrap and munch. That yoghurt, mint and garlic oil was a winner. I really enjoy this style of eating now as my dodgy hands always make me feel a bit self conscious when trying to tackle using a knife and fork. First of many family dinners in this new space I think!
In the garden it is obviously taking the turn to Autumn, yet I am still feeling the sting of Summer! It is bizarre, it feels as though it is cooling down then at 8.30pm the temp seems to rise and the humidity climbs back up. Not conducive to good sleeping patterns I’m sad to say.
The tomatoes are coming to an end, this has been a great season indeed for them.