New server

After several years of a slow blog site, and consistently running out of space on the old VPS server that was hosted by Webfusion UK, I have finally taken the plunge and have moved my site to a new AWS instance meaning that for the first time ever it is not on a physical managed server but is now on a virtual cloud server.

The new AWS cloud instance is running Ubuntu Linux, has 1Gb RAM and a 16Gb Hard Disk. Its more than enough to host the site, but means that (hopefully) the 500-600 daily visitors will find it a bit faster to load!

Feedback on your thoughts about the loading times appreciated – please do leave a comment!

Homemade fruit cordial (Fruit Acid Royal)

For: Strawberries, Raspberries, Blackberries, Elderberries, Blackcurrants etc.

This recipe makes a minimum of 6 pints (usually more depending on how juicy the fruit is) of fruit cordial / concentrate / squash.

Day One:

  • Place 5lbs of fruit (with stalks on, or off, it doesn’t matter) into a large plastic container
  • Dissolve 2 1/2oz (70g) of tartaric acid in 2 pints of cold water
  • Pour water (& tartaric acid) over fruit
  • Seal container with an air-tight lid
  • Stand for 24 hours and then strain through a fine-mesh sieve (with muslin on top if you want to ensure zero small parts of fruit get through)
  • Place juice in mixer bowl, and with mixer on slowest speed setting, add 3lbs of sugar and continue stirring until fully dissolved.
  • Bottle in glass bottles (a funnel helps a lot!) and then store in a cool place (or fridge).

Day Two

  • Repeat the same as day One using the fruit left over, but only use 2oz (55g) of tartaric acid and only 2 1/2 lbs of sugar.

Day Three

  • Repeat the same as day One using the fruit left over, but only use 1oz (30g) of tartaric acid and with only 2 1/2 lbs of sugar.