Tag Archive | Make your own compost bins

A Quick And Easy Microwave Chocolate Sponge with a Chocolate Sauce

At my allotment today I finished my new compost area:

I built three different compost bins with the ten pallets that I managed to get hold of.

When I make a compost bin out of pallets, I always tie the pallets together with garden string.  I know if you are reading this, you will be thinking that they are not very secure, but they really are.

Below, is a compost bin that I filled two and a half year ago.  You can see that it’s still very solid.

I make sure I tie the top and the bottom of the pallets with lots of string.

I will be filling the left hand compost bin first, so I have only tied the front pallets temporarily on the other two.

I used some old weed suppressant and reused some black plastic, to line the inside of the compost bin.  This stops the light getting in, which prevents the weeds from regrowing.

I put all the weeds that I cut back at the beginning, in the new compost bin.  The weeds half-filled it, but I’m sure they will compress down very quickly.

I’m very pleased with my compost area and I can now begin my pre-autumn clear up.



A Quick And Easy Microwave Chocolate Sponge with a Chocolate Sauce

We don’t normally have puddings in our house, unless we have a guest for dinner.  However, last night, we all fancied something sweet to eat.

It would have been easy to nip to our local shop and spend three or four pounds on chocolate, which is what we would have done a few years ago, but we didn’t.

I made a really quick microwave chocolate sponge, with a chocolate sauce and served it with custard.  The whole pudding took less than 15 minutes to make and we have some left for tomorrow.

I worked out that all the ingredients totalled just £1.05 to make, and yet it tasted very special.


This is how I made it:

Microwave Chocolate Sponge

100 grams margarine

100 grams granulated sugar

2 eggs beaten

75 grams self-raising flour

25 grams coco powder

2 – 3 tablespoons of milk


Beat the margarine and sugar together until light and fluffy

Mix in the beaten egg

Fold in the flour and coco powder and add enough milk so a dropping consistency is achieved

(i.e. it drops off the spoon easily)

Pour into a microwave dish that has been greased with margarine.  Cover with a lid or microwave cling film

Microwave on full power for 5 minutes (based on my 700w microwave)

Leave to stand for a couple of minutes before putting turning it on a plate.


Chocolate Sauce

While the chocolate sponge is in the microwave you can prepare the sauce:

43 grams of cooking chocolate

1 teaspoon of margarine

35ml water

165 grams icing sugar


Melt the chocolate and margarine over a really low heat

Add the water and stir

Add the Icing sugar and stir for a few minutes until it becomes a smooth, chocolate consistency with no lumps

Pour over the chocolate sponge and sprinkle with hundreds and thousands.

You can eat it as it is, or serve with custard or ice cream.

Both the sponge and the sauce can be made dairy free, by using soya milk, dairy free chocolate and dairy free margarine.  So this is a recipe that can be enjoyed by all the family.

Thank you for reading my blog today.