Dairy & Egg Free Jam Tarts and Leaf Mould

Today I collected the leaves from around my fruit trees and spread them over my new woodland area.

After this, I moved a whole pile of leaves from a house next to my allotment site, as the lady wanted to get rid of them and kindly offered them to me.  I also scattered these in my woodland area.

My new woodland area

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Later, I emptied two of my black dalek bins, that I keep my leaf mould in.  I find it rots down quicker in these types of bins rather than storing the leaves in a chicken wire cage and it keeps the leaves moist.

I mix my leaves three or four times during the year to help them to rot down.

Over the last year I have tried something new.  I read that if you mix your grass cuttings into the leaves, then they rot down quicker.  Below is the leaf mould I didn’t add grass cutting to:

And the next photograph is the leaf mould I did add grass cuttings to:

You can clearly see that it has sped things up, so I will do this again next year.

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I spent time spreading the leaf mould over two of the beds where my onions and roots will be planted in the spring.  I won’t fork it in for a few weeks though, as I noticed there are a lot of tiny grass seeds that have blown over to my plot and have germinated.  The leaf mould will kill these.

Leaf mould won’t add any nutrients to your soil, but it is a brilliant soil conditioner.  I can certainly tell where the leaf mould has been added a few months later.

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I found another shark fin melon today, that I had somehow managed to miss when I picked the others.  I must work out what I want to do with them.

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I had another look at the patch where I sowed grass seed just over three weeks ago.

Before I sowed the grass seed

I am so pleased as this is how it looks now:

How it looks today

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I also noticed my nasturtiums are still flowering lovely too.  These particular ones were self-seeded.

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This is the last day I’ll be writing about dairy and egg free treats, for the moment.

Today I decided to make Jam Tarts.

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Just as a reminder, I thought I’d show you again, the dairy and egg free jam tart that I bought from Tesco’s ‘Free from’ range:

We did feel they were a bit ‘stingy’ with the jam.

Below is a jam tart I made using the easy recipe below.  I know which one my daughter would choose out of the two:

My homemade dairy and egg free jam tart.

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Dairy Free Jam Tarts

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225 grams plain flour

100 grams of dairy free margarine

A little cold water to mix (approx. 2 tablespoons)

25 grams of caster sugar

An assortment of your favourite jams

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Preheat your oven Gas Mark 6 / 200 C / 400 F

Put the flour and sugar into a bowl and rub into the margarine, until it looks like breadcrumbs.

Add the cold water, a little bit at a time, mixing with a round bladed knife until it begins to come together.  Use your fingers to bring all the mix together and knead lightly.

At this stage it is best to put your pastry in a small plastic bag and leave in the fridge for an hour, as pastry rolls out better when it’s cold.

Roll the pastry out onto a floured board.

Use a cutter to cut out ‘rounds’ and put them in cake cases.

Put a teaspoon of your favourite jam in each case

 (Do not over fill with jam, If you like lots of jam, add it when they have finished cooking).

Bake for 15 minutes.

Leave to cool for a while before taking them out of the tin.

Homemade dairy and egg free jam tarts

Please let me know if you have enjoyed my egg free / dairy free ‘goodies’ week, by leaving a comment.

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Thank you for reading my blog today.

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11 thoughts on “Dairy & Egg Free Jam Tarts and Leaf Mould

  1. Your home made tarts look so good. Thanks again for sharing, its not something I thought about making but I can make lemon curd tarts until I get some extra fruit in. Thanks for the idea.

  2. Your plot looks so good! What awesome changes have happened since you staeted working it! It is such eye candy to look at! Love it, love it!
    Do you eat your nasturtiums? I like ’em, but they are a wee bit hot for everyone else.
    Hmmm, now, your pasrty recipe is the same as mine, but mine always ends up a tad on the hard side after I’ve cooked it… maybe I over cook it? I dunno, but I love this tart recipe, as its a good way to use up all my home made jams that have been sitting in the fridge a bit. You know how it is. There is a assorted range for the family to choose from, depending on whats been abundant and what I’ve jammed, and they open several, instead of just one 😛 😛 😛

    • At the moment in the fridge I have half used Seedless Blackberry Jam, Strawberry Jam, Crabapple Jelly, Rhubarb and Ginger Jam, Piccalilly, Courgette chutney Beetroot Chutney and some lovely Crab Apple Icecream Syrup (which I’ll post the recipe on my blog later this week- thanks I forgot to do it).

      I’ll need a new fridge if my lot open anymore jars!

  3. Wow great blog and full of useful tips and advice,going back to your leaf mould I’ve done what you said not to do and leave in the open. I made a frame from chicken wire and filled with leafs,it has started to rot down but slowly. I thought if the leafs were in the black compost bin it would be to dry for them,but looking at your it seems to work better than leaving them outside.

    • Hi Steve, welcome to my blog.

      I have used chicken wire for my leaves in the past and it works fine. I just found that it rots quicker in my black darlek bins, especially as I now add the grass cuttings. I ‘inherited’ my darlek compost bins so I decided to use them in this way.

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