Cooking with … Thermal Mass

Thanks to Neil and Catherine Tait, last Sunday we were not only well fed and warm, but now have a much better grasp on using our pizza oven. As part of our membership day, Neil talked us through the basics of wood selection, lighting, maintaining heat, workflow, cooking and timing. Catherine whipped up some lovely pizzas for entrees. Bullboars from butcher Ross, root vegetables, boned out lamb with garlic and rosemary, quinces and a garden salad completed the menu.

In between courses we gardened, making room for the next bit of eating. We now have a renovated strawberry patch, new ground ready for communal planting (greens, onions, etc), and less weeds. As well, we had the big unveiling of our garden sign – thanks again to Neil and his lads. Tait Iron have been strong supporters of our garden since we started in 2010.

A (very rough) video of Neil running through some aspects of the oven operation can be found here (and apologies for the audio/quality). We look forward to more practice in the next few weeks (and on videoing!).

It was also a chance to celebrate the refurbishment of our benches which had been out of action for so long. Thanks to a community grant from Mount Alexander Shire we have been able to cover the tops with a durable and attractive perforated steel.

In amongst all the action, June has arrived and so to the June Notes, now posted. And an active month it will be in the garden, as we continue on with working bee tasks, make compost, put out BD500, prune the berries and grapes, and enjoy the moist soil and green growth. And fire up the oven.

We have one plot available – if you have been thinking about joining us, or would like to garden where there’s water on tap and good soil, now’s the time. We also have any number of digger or supporter memberships available for those who’d like to support us, share in joint activities and harvests.

Don’t forget the Produce Exchange on Saturday, 10.30 outside Dig Cafe. Call by before or after the opening of the next exhibition at Newstead Railway Artshub – Friends of Box Ironbark Forests are bringing their ‘tree’ show from Togs Cafe to the Arts Hub. And come and admire our Heritage Award winning building!

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