• Huttons Valley Permaculture

Just a little effort

I’ve had this fruit press for about a year and a half and had been in two minds whether to actually use it or not. The base was really rusty and I was worried that even a brief encounter with the juice would have an adverse effect. Eventually I decide renovating this one, rather than investing in a new stainless, expensive model would be the way to go given that I would only be dragging it out on a couple of occasions a year. So I got the base painted up with a food grade paint and I’m pretty happy with the result, except it wasn’t green (they didn’t have any at the shop and of course I’d left this project too long to have to wait a couple of days for them to get it in!!)


I gave it a test run with a small batch of pears. I first had to cut the pears into about quarters depending on size and sorted at this stage to get rid of any bad bits. I had been given a fruit crusher ( aka a very small garden shredder), by a neighbour. You could only feed in one piece at a time but it crushed the fruit really small which was perfect to go into the press. After lining the press with an old sheet I piled all the fruit in and covered it over then loaded with all the wooden bits. I found that I had to add a few more bits of wood as the amount of fruit I had was so small. Anyway I got the whole thing going and before you knew it lovely juice was streaming out the bottom. Took a few turns to squeeze it down. The whole process was a lot less messy than I had imagined. The sheet contained all the crushed, squeezed fruit and made transferring to the chickens very easy. With just a little effort I was left with the fresh juice which will head to the kitchen for cider making.

I didn’t get much planting done over the weekend however I did manage to get a couple of small kale seedlings put into my kitchen garden. In winter when the mornings are cold and damp I just know I won’t go up to the veggie patch for greens for breakfast but always gather just outside the back door - the kitchen garden. Just need to get the variety going there and my winter omelettes will be a treat. Also with breakfasts in mind I’ve been honing my coconut yoghurt making skills. I bought organic coconut milk powder in bulk to do away with all the tins that milk and cream come with and it is working out well. I did buy in the starter, a commercial yoghurt (in a plastic tub) to get my batch going. Hopefully I’ll keep a batch on the go all the time to bring me further towards my zero waste goals and give delicious yoghurty treats.

Had a great visit from Matt and Phil. It was nice to enjoy a home grown lunch with the lads and was happy to send them home with a couple of grocery bags full of fresh produce. The tomatoes are particularly delicious at the moment and I’m sure they’ll find some equally delicious ways to enjoy them.

Another nice weekend had down on the farm!

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