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Olive leaf extracts have been used for some time to treat high blood pressure and diabetes, with some degree of demonstrable success. There is also some antiviral and antibiotic abilities in the extract as well. All the scientific stuff aside, it makes a great bitters to go in the gin & tonic. Seeing as we are blessed with an over-abundance of olive leaf, we thought we might make some. The recipe is rather simple: Take 500g fresh olive leaves, add 1.5 litres of 40% abv alcohol (we make plenty of that), seal in a bucket and shake every other day for 6 weeks. Yields about 1.25 litres of extract. Picture shows the latest batch with the donor olive trees in the background.

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We are also in possession of a number of unwanted wild bunnies, which unchecked will kill our olive trees. With the aid of a silenced, very high-power air rifle these are humanely converted into bunny meat, and thence into rabbit meatballs, or “hareballs” as we call them. Again a simple recipe: In a foody processor blend 6 cloves garlic, 2 thick slices of home-made bread and your favourite home-grown herbs (sage, thyme etc.). Add 500g raw bunny meat, thoroughly de-boned, and 4-5 rashers of dry, fatty bacon, salt & spices. Blend well. Add one free-range egg and blend until it holds together. Makes 20 hareballs, or a dozen hareballs and 4 tasty sausage meat patties for breakfast the next day.