With COVID-19 and the whole stay at home thing, I’ve been watching a lot more telly of late, and I discovered two of Jamie Oliver’s shows on CTV Life in Canada: 15 Minute Meals, and 30 Minute Meals. There’s actually quite a lot of good tips in both of those shows for cranking out quality food in short times, but the best thing I learned from the show — by far — is Jamie’s “Cheats Pizza” recipe from one of the 30 minute meal episodes.

The rest of this article has been moved over to my vanity site, Spiffle, which I’ve had online since 1997.

(for lettuce)

Hydroponically grown “Little Gem” romaine lettuce

I’ve been (trying) to grow lettuce in the winter, in the basement of my 110 year old home, for three winters now. Up until this year, I had very little overall success. This year, I decided to try something different.

In previous years, I tried growing lettuce the traditional way — in soil — and in staged containers. First, little starter plugs, then transplanted to 5" clay pots…

The rest of this article has been moved over to my personal website, Spiffle.com. Please visit if you’d like to read it all.

Chilean Guava fruit still about 45 days away from maturity. I think.

One of the reasons I garden for food production is I can grow things you simply cannot find in any fruit and veg store locally.

One of those things I’ve chosen to grow is a plant called, in latin, Ugni Molinae; it’s more commonly known as Chilean Guava. It’s much…

“Say, what’s that type of onion there; I don’t recognize it.”

“Well, let me tell you. Plant this onion in an area with good soil that drains well, and then basically ignore it. Come back in 2 to 4 seasons, and your entire area will be filled with them.

“How’s that possible?”

“Because this onion literally will walk across your field as it grows. That’s how.”

That was my introduction to the “Egyptian Walking Onion” when I first spotted the plant at a GardenWorks in Victoria, BC, a year ago. Of course, I didn’t believe the horticulturalist on staff at the time (I should have!), but I was intrigued. I asked him to tell me more.

The rest of this article has been moved to my resurrected vanity blog website, Spiffle. Please take a look at it there.

Nutritious, beneficial, tasty, and easy to grow — what more could you want?

For several years now, I’ve been thinking about growing microgreens at home. I have been buying them for about a decade at the fruit and veg stores, dropping $5-$7 for a paltry 100-150g of them, at least once a week because I like them so much as my “green” choice…

Recently, Facebook-owned Instagram changed how their timeline works, with no regard to how it’s product (that’s us, folks — we’re IG’s product) actually uses the service. They introduced a new “algorithm timeline” claiming to show you posts they assume you care most about. Reality is, it’s done 100% for advertisers to force more ads into your stream and deliver more and more photos you don’t want to see in order to generate revenue for Instagram…

The rest of this article has been moved over to my revamped personal website, Spiffle.com. Go check it out!

Nearly 12 years ago, I bought my second Volkswagen; a then brand new 2004 Jetta TDI Diesel Sport Edition (TL:DR — it’s (supposedly) not one of the models caught up in diesel-gate; those are cars from 2006/7 onwards). My first VW was a used Rabbit I briefly owned and drove in Ontario in the late 1980s…

I’ve moved this story over to my revamped and relaunched personal website, Spiffle.com. Please continue reading there.

Been experimenting with making an old timey root beer syrup at home, to add to carbonated water. Of course, I could just do a properly fermented root beer (and that will probably be my next tackling of this), but I wanted to go easy for now. So how to do…

Oh Canada, we drink our beer with thee!
Our homes are strong, and very winterproof!

When you walk down the street, there are neighbours you’ll meet,
And you exchange your pleasantries.

At the hockey game, Oh Canada, we drink our beer with thee!
God, keep our land, hopefully Trump Free!

Oh Canada, we drink our beer with thee!
Oh Canada, we drink our BEEEEER with THEEEEEEEEE!

Mark@CoffeeGeek

Hello there. I like espresso. And coffee. And photography. And cocktails. And topical news. And espresso.

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