Skinflint Sunday: It’s stone fruit time!

This may sound odd coming from a woman who has an orchard in her front yard, but I’m not a person who is naturally drawn to fruit. Sure, if someone cuts it up and arranges it in a bowl or on a plate I’ll eat and enjoy it, but given the choice between fruit and veggies, I’ll go for the veggies every time.

But there’s something about stone fruit, isn’t there? Especially when you eat it stewed, mixed through your morning porridge. Delightful way to start the day.

I discovered this breakfast soon after I moved to The Best House in Melbourne. Porridge made with just water (no milk) and some stewed fruit mixed through it. At first, I added sugar to the fruit, like Mum used to do when I was a kid, but soon I found that I really enjoy the tart tanginess of just the fruit. It’s a dance of joy for my tastebuds.

This year for the first time, instead of going to Aldi and buying a bag of plums/apricots/apples at a time, I’ve decided to be more efficient. I googled “fruiterers near me” because my suburb doesn’t have one, went on a little drive and came home with a box of plums. Ten kilos, reduced from $3.99/kg to $3.50/kilo, because I bought the whole box.

The photo shows the plums that were left after my first batch of chopping and cooking in my two large saucepans. Last summer I went to K-Mart and bought heaps of icecube trays to use for days like this. I stopped cooking for the day when the trays were all filled.

This morning I popped all of the frozen plum cubes into large plastic bags and continued with cooking the rest of the plums. The box is now in the recycling bin and the icecubes are full again, with a saucepan’s full still waiting to be ice-cubed tomorrow. I estimate I’ll get 3 months’ worth of breakfasts from this box of plums.

On Tuesday I’ll go back to get a box of apricots, then later I’ll get a box of apples to stew with my rhubarb, which is currently growing so enthusiastically that it’s threatening to take over the backyard.

By the end of next week, my breakfasts for 2022 will be covered.

I want to get the cooking of the fruit finished early, before the produce from the backyard starts needing to be processed. The beans are already off to a good start. This is a pile of Lazy Housewife beans that were starting to get too big. I didn’t want the bean plants to think that they’ve done their job for the year – they need to keep producing! So these beans needed to be picked.

I cut these beans very small and froze them. These are fantastic to have on hand to use in soups and casseroles in winter. It adds colour, fibre and nourishment for free.

I’m always really keen not to waste any food we grow, but this year with the Adblue diesel shortages coupled with covid supply chain problems, I’m making doubly sure we make the most of what we have. I’m also thinking ahead, such as with the stewed fruit, and quietly getting organised.

Covid is going nuts in Victoria now, so I’m glad I had my booster last week. The next few weeks I’ll be spending very close to home. I’m not saying I won’t get it, but I’m certainly not going to be running towards covid with my arms outstretched either! Yesterday I found out that 3 people I know personally have it. This is the first time since the pandemic began that I’ve known someone personally who has had it.

I’ve heard from a few sources that this wave will take 6 – 8 weeks to subside. I don’t know if that’s true, but thanks to being able to retire early, I’m in a position to hunker down. If I get it, I get it. I’m triple vaxxed, I’m doing all the right things to protect myself, so the only way to be is philosophical about it.

Our massive lockdowns gave us time to take advantage of the vaccines being invented, and time for even our botched rollout to take effect. Now we’re on the covid carnival ride with everyone else.

Stay safe, everyone!

Dad joke of the day:

My Girlfriend Just Broke Up With Me For Talking Too Much About Video Games.

What a stupid thing to Fallout 4. 

11 thoughts on “Skinflint Sunday: It’s stone fruit time!

  1. Our son tested positive for Covid a week before Christmas. He had gone to the office for Secret Santa, which was outdoors and socially distanced. His symptoms were those of Omicron. He has a phobia of needles but he was so poorly that he is considering going for a booster jab – he had the single dose J+J which was pretty amazing in and of itself.
    Sadly I knew one person who has died of covid – we used to chat at the pool in the summers so we were friendly if not exactly friends. She had been fighting metastasized breast cancer for a good ten years.
    I am envious of all your fresh fruits and veggies since we are freezing in winter. I think I will freeze peaches and plums again when they go on sale in the summer, I love them in the winter with yogurt.
    I thought of you when Djokovic was in the news. I can’t imagine how Melbournites feel about him being given a waiver after the lockdowns you have endured. Here in the US lock down was more a suggestion than a reality.

    • We hate Djokovic with a passion. He’s fighting the visa block today in the courts – I don’t think he realises the reception he’s likely to get from the crowd if he makes in onto the tennis court to play.

  2. What a great idea freezing small ice cube quantities for your breakfast. I have been to the supermarket for the 2nd time today in 2 weeks and I go at 7am so it’s pretty empty. Unfortunately so are the shelves. They had absolutely no chicken whatsoever at all which was what I was after. I have been basically staying home myself since Christmas and just going out for a walk in the afternoon. My booster is on Thursday. Both my good friends 20 year old’s here in Brisbane got Covid a couple of days before Christmas and the other one got it on Boxing Day at a music festival [that was a guarantee Covid event] and they know so many others here with it too. It’s so hard to fathom that we worked so hard for 2 years and now anything goes. Testing queues are through the roof so instead the RAT tests can be done however there isn’t a supply of these so very poor planning on behalf of the Government. They should be bringing in the army to manage some of these logistics to help Australia. I have been however sewing my “Big Patch Quilt” which I started in August 2020 and never got back to so I have been putting “Sea Change” on Netflix [from the beginning] and have that on while I sew. I’m getting through it and enjoying it. Our big wave is expected in 2 weeks but I’ll be tucked up at home keeping to myself. Saving a lot of money on petrol in the last 2 weeks which is one benefit of not going anywhere. Stay safe.

    • Oof. I comfort myself by thinking that all of the sacrifices we made over the last 2 years has enabled lots of people to be vaccinated.
      Honestly, I have no sympathy for anyone who hasn’t taken advantage of the breathing space the lockdowns afforded to get vaxxed.
      Like you , I’m planning on laying as low as I can for the next little while.

  3. Pingback: Frugal Friday: Off to the fruit shop! - Burning Desire For FIRE

  4. I love porridge with some stewed cooking apple as a treat, but most days I just have it with a few raisins (made with milk not water).
    Using freezer to keep summer fruit for year round use is the best!

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