Monday, 30 April 2012


A lip smacking meaty feast with a positively perfect vegetable combination.
 Your friends and family will adore this easy, one pot meal.

Serves 4
Four lamb shanks
3 carrots, cut into large chucks
2 celery sticks, cut into large chunks
2 onions, cut into large chucks
4 cloves garlic
1 tbsp flour
1 glass of white wine
1tbsp cider vinegar
2 dessertspoon tomato puree
1 bay leaf
600ml water
Bouquet garni (herbs of your choice - we tied together,
thyme, mint, rosemary, chive, lovage and oregano from the garden but use what you have!)

Brown the lamb shanks in a frying pan with a little oil and transfer to a casserole dish.
Place in a warm oven to await the rest of the ingredients.

Throw all the prepared vegetables into the same frying pan as the lamb was in and fry off for 5 minutes on a medium heat.

Take off the heat and stir in the flour.
Put back onto the heat and add the wine, cider vinegar, tomato puree, bay leaf and water.
Simmer gently while stirring to to warm all the ingredients through and combine together.
Take the lamb shanks from the oven and turn up the temperature to 180 degrees
Pour over the vegetable gravy and add your bouquet garni.

Cover with the casserole lid and put back in the oven to cook for 2.5 hours.

Serve with crushed or mash potato or white or brown rice
Or as we did, cous cous with chopped prunes and toasted pumpkin seeds...

...and fresh green beans

 Succulent and sweet with just the right amount of gravy juice to mop up with your mash!

Wednesday, 25 April 2012


A quick and easy pudding that you can throw together in 10 minutes and everyone will love.
An alternative to the traditional bread and butter version using French brioche.

You can also use stale croissants or hot cross buns and sprinkle over flaked almonds for an extra
nutty crunch

5 French Brioche Rolls, cut in half and lightly buttered
3 eggs
1/2 pint milk
2 dessert spoons caster sugar
4 drops of vanilla extract
golden syrup

Place the buttered brioche rolls into a baking dish
Whisk the eggs and milk together in a large jug.
Mix in the sugar and the vanilla extract and pour over the brioche rolls
If time, leave to soak in for half an hour

Drizzle over a spoonful of golden syrup and then
Bake in the oven in a bain marie for 20 minutes at 180 degrees

Serve with a spoonful of strawberry jam and pour over double cream.

Tuesday, 24 April 2012


Try this super quick, super tasty vegetable soup with a hunk of bread and butter.
A healthy, meat free lunch or tea with a spicy kick.


50g butter
1 medium onion, chopped
½-1 tsp green Thai curry paste (depending on how hot you like it!)
½-1 tsp red Thai curry paste

2 sweet potatoes, peeled and cubed
350g butternut squash, peeled and cubed
700ml of vegetable stock
160ml coconut milk or cream

Natural yogurt and chopped coriander to garnish

Melt the butter in a saucepan and gently fry off the chopped onion until softened.
Spoon in the Thai pastes and fry for another minute or so.

Add the cubed sweet potato and butternut squash and cook for a further 5 minutes on a medium heat to soften a little and take in the curry flavours.

Add the stock, bring to the boil and simmer for 25-30 minutes
to allow the vegetables to cook through.

Take off the heat and blend until lump free.
Add the coconut milk

Its now ready to serve

Spoon on some natural yogurt and sprinkle with chopped coriander, parsley or lovage
Serve with a hunk of bread or toast

Sunday, 22 April 2012


I just love kedgeree. It's quick and easy, tasty and cheap and can be eaten anytime, 
breakfast, lunch or tea. 

This time, instead of the usual pile on a plate, I served it from a cup
with the egg in the centre.

A kedgeree tower, that when you break open, reveals a gooey middle. 

A delightful combination of fish, rice and egg with a squeeze of lemon


Serves 4 depending on the size of your cup!

1 leek, chopped (or medium onion)
150g brown rice (or white if preferred)
350g smoked haddock
1 tsp cumin or mild curry powder
1 bay leaf
300ml milk
1 egg per cup (free range, always)
lovage, parsley or coriander
lemon to serve

First, poach the smoked haddock in the milk for 10 minutes with the bay leaf
Once cooked, remove the fish from the liquid and leave to cool.
Set the milk aside to use later. 

Soften the leek in a little oil.
Add the cumin or curry powder and cook for a couple more minutes.

 Strain the milk used to poach the fish through a sieve into the rice, discarding the bay leaf.
Add a knob of butter, a pinch of salt and a twist of pepper and simmer for a further 10 minutes until the rice is cooked.

In the meantime, soft boil your eggs for 4 minutes, plunging directly into cold water immediately after
 to stop them cooking anymore - you need them to be runny.

Once the fish is cool enough to handle, flake and add to the cooked rice with some
chopped lovage (optional) or parsley, coriander if you prefer.  

The kedgeree is now ready to be loaded into your cups.

Wipe the cup around the inside edge with oil or butter.
Load the cup to a third full with the kedgeree and then place in the soft boiled egg
Spoon in more more around the egg and to the top,  firmly pressing down all the time.

You need to make sure its compact enough to keep its shape when its turned out.

Chill for a couple hours......

Once chilled, place a plate over the top of the cup and turn over,
All being well, the cup should just lift off to reveal your kedgeree castle....

Garnish with a coriander leaf and serve with plenty of slice lemon

Stir in 150g brown rice and fry for a few minutes.
Apologies for my lack of posts in the past fortnight, however, I have lots to add and will be posting up some great stuff very soon.

In the meantime, take a look at my beautiful brassica!  I can't take credit for it though,
 its from my dad's garden and he traded it with me for a half dozen eggs.
A fair exchange - what a beast.

Monday, 9 April 2012


I wonder how many pasties are sold in Cornwall every day? Answers on a postcard please! :)

Sunday, 8 April 2012

Thursday, 5 April 2012


A labour of love but worth it. 
Fortunately, Will has the patience and the time for this one.

We love croissants, especially on a sunny Sunday morning and although the shop bought ones are okay,
there's no comparison to a home baked one, just out of the oven and if your lucky enough to have some of granny's homemade jam in the cupboard, then even better.    

We've used Paul Hollywood's recipe, having been suitably impressed with last summers British Bake Off


625 g strong bread flour
12 g salt
75 g sugar
20 g dried yeast
water, for mixing
500 g butter, chilled
1 egg, beaten

Place the flour, salt, sugar and yeast in a large mixing bowl. Using a wooden spoon, slowly mix in a little water until the mixture forms into a pliable dough.
(We used our trusty Kenwood)

Place the dough on a floured surface and knead well until it feels elastic.

Return the dough to the bowl, cover and chill in the refrigerator for 1 hour.

Return the chilled dough to your floured work surface and roll it into a rectangular shape,
around 60cm by 30cm.

Roll out the chilled butter into a rectangle about 1cm thick, around 20cm by 30cm.
(This was not easier as it kept getting stuck to the rolling pin and breaking. 
We ended up doing it in sections and spreading it out with a pallet knife)

Place the butter rectangle in the centre of the dough rectangle, so it covers around two thirds of the dough.

Fold the remaining dough third over the butter layer, so that the dough is now in 3 layers.
Return the dough to the refrigerator to chill for a further hour.

Scatter some more flour over your table and roll out the dough to a rectangular shape,
around 60cm by 30 cm.

Repeat the folding process, then return the dough to the refrigerator for a further hour.

Repeat this process of folding and chilling two more times, then wrap the dough in cling film and set it aside to rest overnight.

Using a rolling pin, roll out the rested dough to 3mm thickness.

Cut the rolled out dough into squares, each square 20cm by 20cm.

Cut each square diagonally, making 2 triangles from each dough square.

Place the dough triangles on a lightly floured surface with the narrow point facing away from you.

Roll each dough triangle up over itself and curl the dough roll around into a traditional crescent shape.

Place the shaped croissants on baking trays lined with silicone baking parchment
and leave to rise for 1 hour, 30 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 200°C/gas 6.

Once nicely risen, lightly egg-wash the croissants

and bake for 10-15 minutes until golden brown.

Not bad for a first attempt.

We made 24 croissants from this mixture
Baking six for now and the rest for another day - yum.

And there you have it!  A step by step guide to making and baking your own croissants.
Go on, have a go.  

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