What do angora, Green Hubbard, standard bronze, brisket, and Delaware Jersey have in common? Answer: they can all be found on a farm! (FYI in case you’re wondering – rabbit, squash, breed of turkey, prime cut of beef, and a type of axe head :)).
Whilst my current inner-city existence is far from farm living, I have fallen head-over-heels in love with farm produce over the years, especially now that my work revolves around food and recipes. I’m a sucker for heirloom tomatoes, bunches of freshly picked herbs, fresh cuts of meat, and of course, I love putting my own twist on old-fashioned recipes like lamb shanks or roast chicken.
Recently I’ve been busy completing the illustrations for my own new book, and I’ve able to draw inspiration from Julia’s work. Love her depictions of produce, flowers, tools, kitchen utensils, and bits and bobs that you’d find in a country kitchen. Her drawings and pictures are easy to interpret, simple and lovely all at the same time. I think it’s safe to say you could pretty much pick any farm-related topic, and chances are you’ll find it mentioned in Julia’s book.
She somehow manages to make heavy machinery and various cuts of meat as appealing as cute drawings of bees and hens!
When you’re reading the book, you’ll really feel like you’ve been transported to a real farm. You can imagine crisp autumn leaves crunching underfoot, and the smell of tomatoes ripening on the vine. And you might even catch yourself out daydreaming about swims in a creek, or running through a enormous vegetable garden.
Now for me, chances are I may never need to reveal hidden knowledge about the history of tractors (although never say never), or how to shear a sheep – but I’m sure down the track I may need to learn how to set up a chicken coop, or a how to organise a small compost if I have my own garden in the future.
My favourite chapters (of course) are focused on suggestions for growing and cooking your own food. From tips on how to tell if an egg is fresh (an old egg will float when placed in water), to how to identify different edible flowers, Julia shares her insights into farming and self-sufficient living. I also love the pages dedicated to making your own cheese.
GIVEAWAY: I’ve got a signed copy (and Julia has included this little illustration too) of ‘Farm Anatomy’ to give away. Merci Julia 🙂
For your chance to win, leave a comment here on my blog (and spread the word via your own blog, Twitter or Facebook for bonus points!) and share with me what would be your secret skill if you lived on a farm. Mine? I would make marvellous batches of homemade yoghurt to give to the neighbours!
I’ll be drawing a winner on Wednesday June 5, so you have until Tuesday June 4 to enter. Bonne chance!