As I rent a house I am in the unfortunate position of being lumbered with the oven and hob that I’m given. Don’t get me wrong; having a hob and an oven is certainly one up from having no heating implements at all but they definitely leave a lot to be desired. As such a roast dinner is not something I can easily make; a small oven, an untrustworthy thermometer and a lack of appropriate oven dishes being the main reasons. A casserole or stew however
After my last £6 supper on BBC Radio Berkshire, Paul Ross was quite disappointed that the recipe included no frozen peas. It got me thinking that actually there's plenty to celebrate in the humble frozen pea. They're cheap, you can always keep some in the freezer and they are a welcome shot of greenness and sweetness at this time of year. This quick, easy and cheap meal is a little mid-week fanfare of the frozen pea.
Foraging for food is something I have started to do over the last few years. Hunting down blackberry bushes in the autumn is something I've always done but I've never considered it to be 'foraging'. To me, proper foraging involves a wicker basket, curiously shaped knives and an innate ability to avoid thorns and nettles. Since I started to appreciate the other things that can be found outdoors I have added other wild foods to my repertoire: rosehips,
I like to browse other people's blogs and I particularly like the posts where there has been some sort of link or challenge and lots of bloggers take part. I like to think of them as online coffee mornings. I thought it was about time I got involved and had a go at one; enter Dom from Belleau Kitchen and his challenge called Random Recipes. I love the idea of opening a random cookery book and having to cook whatever is on the page that opens.
I'm not sure if you've ever been in the designated driver situation where you end up at a soiree and the host assumes that the only guests not drinking alcohol are children? As much as I like Um Bongo it's always a little embarrassing to reach the end of the carton and make that loud, conspicuous slurping noise while in the middle of a conversation. Down with this I say and hooray for the now bursting market that is adult soft drinks and cordials. I'm not
The next beverage in my adventures with Mr Fitzpatricks cordials is Blackcurrant and Liquorice Lemonade. The smell of this cordial makes me think of old sweet shops. I love blackcurrant; it's my flavour of choice for the last sweet in the bag. Liquorice I'm pretty unfussy about as I don't mind if it's there and I don't mind if it's not. The cordial smells rich, dark and mysterious so I thought it would be an idea to mix it with something sharp and
Those of you who have been reading my blog for a while will know about my penchant for sloe gin. I'm not sure what it is about infusing your own alcohol that I like so much. Perhaps it's the romantic idea of foraging for food, connecting with the land and being able to puff out your chest in pride when you've picked a kilo of berries. It could be to do with the fact that I like gin. Either way, my second post about drinks looks at mixing up sloe gin
One of my favourite things to make is drinks. They are so simple and there is a world of flavours and so many combinations to choose from. I recently met a great company called Mr Fitzpatricks who make a range of interesting cordials. To make the most of their intriguing flavours I am doing a series of posts all about drinks.
The first of four posts is about the curiously named Blood Tonic. It's got a fantastic deep red colour
I think everyone has a particular vegetable that they always end up cooking the same way. I simply couldn't have another plate of steamed or stir fried chard so I put my thinking cap on and set about making a chard and bacon lasagne. I also realised maybe chard isn't the only vegetable I haven't paid much attention to. Whenever I have leeks around they normally end up in a slow cooked pork stew; namely because I don't really like leeks
The third and final part of my demo is raw asparagus salad. This is a brilliant way of enjoying asparagus. It almost tastes of fresh peas or beans. Eating asparagus raw means you can enjoy its crunch and subtle flavours. Don’t worry though, it’s far more elegant than shovelling whole spears in your face, it’s delicately peeled into thin strips with a very simple dressing.
You will need (for two):
A bunch of asparagus