Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Yes, our solar panels are UP!

In recent years, solar panels have become very popular. With the increase in electricity rates and the Government rebate system about to be reduced, every house in Australia is racing to put the solar panels on to their roofs and our house is one of them. After shopping around and comparing prices, the quality and the guarantees, we decided to buy a 2Kw system from True Value Solar.

We purchased in the middle of June, just before the Government planned reduce the rebate. I felt a little worried when the installation kept on being delayed due to the many rainy days this winter. That's why I was so happy when on Monday morning, somebody knocked our door and said that they had come to install our panels. Unfortunately, I had class on Monday afternoon, so I couldn't stay to watch the installation process. But David took some pictures for me and with the solar guy's help, I also got some pictures from the roof.  

Well, here are those pictures.


Looks good, right?! Hopefully, in few months, we won't have any electricity bills to pay. ^_^

Thursday, August 4, 2011

Making Marmalade

My new life in Adelaide is very colourful and full of learning processes. There is always something new and interesting to learn. In between my busy school life, I try to find time to learn about life in my new country. Today, I learned how to made marmalade from my father in law. He is an expert and almost once a year he makes a batch for his friends at the card club. 

This is how to make marmalade.

Step 1 :

Prepare 4 pounds of fruit (just under 2 kilos), consisting of grapefruit, oranges, lemons, mandarins and pineapple. Dice finely leaving the skin on the citrus fruit. Add 8 pints of water (around 4.8 litres) and leave overnight. 

Step 2 : 

The next day, bring the mixture to the boil and boil it for 1 hour to soften the fruit and make sure it's cooked properly. 

Step 3 :
Add 12 pounds sugar to the mixture and continue to boil for a further 45 minutes. The sugar acts as a preservative, so you can keep it for a long time. 

Step 4 :
While the marmalade was cooking, wash the jars using hot water without soap and then warm them in the oven. 

Step 5 :
Keep stirring the marmalade until it becomes golden brown in colour.

Step 6 :
Put a little bit of marmalade on a plate and let it cool to test whether it is thick enough. If it is still too watery, cook a few more minutes and test again.

Step 7 :
While still hot, put the marmalade into the warm jars. 

Step 8 :
Put the caps on immediately........

Step 9 :
So when they are put outside to cool, a vacuum will form making the seal complete. 

Once cooled, the marmalade is ready to serve.