Let’s Cook with Bellingen’s Pete Bufo

I love bello shire, Bellingen, Let's Cook with Pete Bufo, Northbank Community Garden
Pete – a well loved member of the Bello Community and regular volunteer at Northbank Community Garden, shares his love of gardening, the community gardens and his passion for all things hot.  So Let’s Cook.
Lilly Pilly Chilli Marmalade- Yum!!
This is a sweet, spicy, tart marmalade that is great for savory food as well as a sweet chutney in its own merit.

540 g of pitted Lilly Pilly (Ryeberry-Syzygium leuhmanii) that were (source: a local tree, private property.

One Lemon thinly sliced (source: Bellingen Green Grocer)
Handful of Lemon Myrtle leaves (source: Northbank Community Garden or NCG)
1 1/2 cups water
Salt to taste (Source: Bellingen IGA)
Combine all ingredients and bring to boil and simmer for 20 minutes.
Remove lemon myrtle leaves and discard, remove lemon and set aside.
Blitz the mix with a stick blender. Put the lemon back in.
Add chillies: 5 fatalli, 2 cayenne, 4 scuds, 2 serranos, all from NCG and home. I added 1 jigsaw (super bloody hot) I got from from Bayleaf Herb And Chilli Nursery (Scotts Head) at Bello market.
Add 4 cups organic raw sugar (source: Kombu Wholefoods Bellingen) bring to boil and simmer for 10 minutes. Add hot mixture to sterilised jars and seal.
I am vego, but friends suggest it would be great with pork, duck and chicken. Great for cheese plate.
Pete’s history at Northbank Community Garden (NCG)…
NCG began in 2008 by Steve Smith at 100 Northbank Road, North Bellingen. Steve and I are old friends and we had recently busted up with our partners and moved from Thora into town. My involvement as a volunteer was typical, community work days, couple of hours here and there. Steve is still the major driving force behind the garden and I am proud to say, our friendship is still great.
My involvement has been, and still is, as a volunteer. I am also a long serving committee member. I volunteer in the nursery, that is my forte with horticulture. My particular passion is chillies of all different heat ratings and flavours. I come from a bush regeneration and botany background and am passionate about native species. We have grown some natives and still do, but not on a grand scale. The main people involved in the garden are good mates, a close knit family even. The best people to have a beer with.
Can anyone volunteer?
Yes. Anyone. We are going to have regular community work days again in the new year. Through the week is good too, but as we have regular jobs, we aren’t there till the arvo sometimes.
 Is produce sold locally?
No, but the public is encouraged to come and pick produce. There is an honesty box where people can leave a donation. We may sell produce again, we do not know.
What is grown?
Whatever is seasonal. We are experienced gardeners and horticulturists and grow to season. Generally speaking, we grow lettuces, corn, herbs, chillies, capsicum, zucchini, cucumber, eggplant, tomato, leeks, peas, beans, brassicas, fruits, the whole kit and caboodle! For example, you can’t grow broccoli now, but corn yes. We honour that seasonal timing.

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