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Home visit: grown your own food

Share the joy of growing your own food with the next generation – it’s a great way to spend time together and help children learn about where food comes from. Try these simple tips from Margaret’s organic garden…

Pots of herbs lined up in the garden

To get children into growing, start them off with something simple to tend, such as potted herbs. Looking after their own plants will give them a sense of responsibility. Make sure they have the tools they need so they feel able to take charge. ‘I learnt that home-growing was trial and error from the beginning,’ says Margaret. ‘We teach our grandchildren that it’s worth the effort. Being able to pick herbs from the garden to use for meals is rewarding.’

‘Our children saved their pocket money to buy and plant their first fruit trees – they watered and nurtured them. Now, the wonder of nature is part of our grandchildren’s lives, too’

Margaret, New South Wales

Homemade summer feta jar

‘My daughter, Yamuna, made this jar of preserve using some herbs and chillies from our garden,’ says Margaret. Try Yamuna’s recipe…

Makes one jar:
450g cubed feta
2 tablespoons sun-dried tomatoes (sliced)
1 1/2 teaspoons coriander seeds (toasted for extra flavour)
1 teaspoon whole black peppercorns
2 or 3 fresh chillies (sliced or whole)
1 handful rosemary sprigs
1 1/2 cups extra virgin olive oil
1/2 cup oil from sun-dried tomatoes
A jar with lid, scissors and garden twine (to store and decorate)

1. Sterilise your empty jar.
2. Gather the feta, sun-dried tomatoes, coriander seeds, black peppercorns, chillies and sprigs of rosemary together and fill the jar however you like. There are no set rules for this part!
3. Pour the combination of oils in to the jar, alternating between 1/2 cup of olive oil, 1/4 sun-dried tomato oil, until the jar is full.
4. Close the lid and wrap the jar with twine. Tie a bow with an extra sprig of rosemary, for decoration – the jar makes a great gift!
5. Store in the fridge. Take out a few hours before serving and enjoy at room temperature.

Watch how nature does its thing. ‘We’ve always used heritage seeds and would definitely recommend them.’ Heritage seeds are an organic type of seed that reproduce year after year, without having to be replanted. ‘Using those seeds means that much of our garden comes up by itself. Things don’t always sprout where we would like them to grow, but they appear where nature intended – which is good for our grandchildren to see. Our garden looks a little wild most of the time,’ says Margaret.

We love to see our customers get creative with our products. Go for it! But please note that altering or modifying IKEA products so they can no longer be re-sold or used for their original purpose, means the IKEA commercial guarantees and your right to return the products will be lost.

Made by

Interior stylist: Jason Grant
Photographer: Alicia Taylor