Today's chilli harvest at Zaia and Tom Kendall's permaculture farm in Queensland

Monday preserving

Monday preserving

This morning after doing the animals and having had a breakfast of mince meat, eggplant and tomatoes, I did some harvesting. Beans, more eggplants, cherry tomatoes and parsley were all picked. I also had a bag of chillies from last week in the fridge that needed processing and a whole heap of chokos. Another batch of chilli choko sauce was in order!

Today's chilli harvest at Zaia and Tom Kendall's permaculture farm in Queensland
Today’s chilli harvest, from just two bushes!

First we had to process 4 days worth of milk from our cows. Tom separated the cream, we got about 750ml of cream today! Some went in the fridge for use, the rest is sitting out for 24 hours and I will make butter with it tomorrow. I used some of the skim milk to make a solid curd “frying” cheese, haloumi style. I made the curds by adding lime juice (we currently have an abundance of limes) to the hot milk, then I scooped the curds out into a cheese mould and placed a weight on top to make it solid. I also put a yoghurt on, which is sitting overnight in a “wonderbag”, an insulated bag which will keep the yoghurt warm so the bacteria can do their job. And I put yoghurt culture into some skim milk, which I will leave for a few days and then make a cheese from.

Another batch of Kombucha was ready and poured into bottles and I put another batch on. Then it was time for the chilli choko sauce.

Peeled, cored and cut chokos in the Vitamix blender
Cut up chokos in the blender

I chopped the chokos after peeling them and taking the core out. I halved the chillies and put them in the blender together, with some salt and the juice of 2 limes. I blended that up and poured it into a pot. I added some honey and boiled the mix for around 1/2 hour, after which the thick mixture was poured into sterilised recycled jars.

I harvested even more chillies which I will dehydrate tomorrow to make chilli powder. I do enjoy my Monday preserving day!

©2016 Zaia;, incorporating Permaculture Research Institute Sunshine Coast, simplicity, permaculture, self reliance, self sufficiency, sustainability, food, health and homesteading, Monday preserves, chilli choko sauce


    1. Hi Helen,
      Chokos are a vegetable that grow on a vine, they are green, quite bland and reasonably slimy. They are a similar family to squashes like pumpkin and zucchini. Due to the blandness of the vegetable, it is easy to mix them with other flavours and use them as a filler, eg in apple pie if you don’t have enough apples, or in chilli sauce 🙂 They are also really nice baked in an oven. They grow very well in our sub tropical climate.

      1. Thank you, Zaia. They sound interesting but unlikely to love my cool temperate climate 😉.

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