Tastes of toil

This week has been burdened with multiple late nights of processing. Part of our journey in this homesteading lifestyle has been to not only grow but also make, bake and brew more of our own foods.

The romantic notion of the self-sufficient country idyll, portrayed so enticingly on Instagram and in carefully published cookbooks is completely different in reality.

We love kicking back with a cold beverage after a good day in the garden, but sometimes we wish that cold beverage didn’t require 4 hours of washing, crushing, pressing and cleaning, nor the additional 6 months of waiting for a potentially unpalatable attempt at wild cider.

Yet even as we savour every last sip of that effortful drop, we would still choose toil over our ostensibly ‘easier’ past lives in the city. It may be exhausting to generate this fuel for life, but it is extremely rewarding and empowering to build the knowledge and skills to look after yourself and it gives us a much greater appreciation for the true value of things.

The only problem is that all this work makes us more thirsty…..


This familiar and comforting condiment can make your sandwich and is a great companion to the chip. It can take a lemony or spicier chipotle form or be enjoyed as is. One thing is certain, when you’ve made your own from fresh eggs, you are hard pressed to go back to the store bought variety…makes about 2 cups.


  • 3 egg yolks
  • 2 cups oil (we find olive oil a bit overpowering and prefer vegetable oil instead)
  • 1 lemon, juiced
  • 1 tbsp Apple Cider Vinegar
  • A pinch of salt
  • A dollop of mustard (we like dijon)

Step 1: It is possible to do this by hand but we have only ever used mechanical help 🙂 Whisk egg yolks for 3min on the highest speed, until a paler yellow and stiff.

Step 2: Reduce whisking speed slightly. Add oil 1 tbsp at a time. If it’s done too quickly the mayo risks splitting. We add some of the lemon juice as we go to also help prevent this.

Step 3: When all of the oil and lemon juice has been whisked in, add remaining ingredients.