A while ago I was having some lunch in a restaurant. For pudding I had some soft, sugar covered dough sticks which were to be dipped in a well known hazelnut chocolate spread. At some point in the kitchen a rogue bit of rosemary had ended up on my dough stick. I imagine there must have been some sort of herb-off going on in the kitchen between the chefs and the remnants of the duel had not been cleared up. Unbeknown to me I submerged it in hazelnutty
Last year for Valentine's Day I posted a three course meal; Beetroot and Goat's Cheese Risotto, Boeuf Bourguignon and Dark Chocolate Tart. They were great together for a lovely meal in but this year I wanted to make something a little romantic and very indulgent. I know Valentine's recipes will be two a penny at the moment but my truffles are a bit different. Not least because they're not heart shaped and look rather plain and innocent. Until you
Spring greens offer so much in their name. They suggest that either spring is here or is just around the corner, they have disguised their cabbage relations with their seasonal pseudonym. I happen to think that spring greens also deliver a lot. They look shrivelled and unwelcoming with their leaves closed to the outside world but once you start to snap them off and slice them up they are wonderfully versatile. As a relation to the cabbage, spring
For some reason I have a bit of a thing for French food. It's the food that never fails to put a smile on my face; partly because of the flavours but also because it's a great excuse to showcase local, British ingredients in different ways. It's a funny time of year, I feel it's almost time to crack out a salad but at the same time I still want comfort and warmth. What better than the absolute classic French onion soup?
There's nothing quite like
You can’t have Valentine’s Day without a little chocolate. This tart is great because you can make it in advance and leave it in the fridge so there is no last minute pudding fretting! It's beautifully rich and very easy to make; made even easier if you use a food blender for the pastry. If pastry is your nemesis, it used to be mine, I have a previous post that will make you feel much more relaxed about constructing this tart.
Start by making
Beautiful, traditional and French; a perfect meal for Valentine's Day. This one's a winner because the bottle of wine you need for the boeuf bourguignon you can then drink with the meal or yourself during the preparation as a reward for all your hard work. Being a slow cooking dish means once it's on the go you don't need to worry about it and you can get on with other things. If that wasn't enough, it's also incredible and actually quite cheap.
This is the first of a three part post for Valentine's Day. It's designed to be seasonal, sumptuous, divine and stress free. The quantities are meant for two. The dessert is one that can be prepared in advance and kept in the fridge; the main is meant for long cooking so you have ample time to make the simple starter. All this spare time means you're not rushing around desperately trying find that Barry White CD at the last minute. After all, it's
Luscious sloe gin will inevitably result in spare berries when sloes and gin are separated. There is only so much sloe chocolate you can eat and extra sloe gin you can make before boredom sets in. I was informed by a kind friend that sloe port was worth a try but receptacles were thin on the ground. Fortunately my Granny had given me a Rumtopf a while back which was perfect for transforming my gin soaked berries into deep red port.
The first of the season purple sprouting broccoli was standing tall and proud at the Farmers' Market letting us all know that Spring is just around the corner. Everyone wanted some of this majestic member of the Brassica family.
In order to celebrate the first greens of the year there was only one companion up to the job - extra mature Cheddar cheese. To make it a glorious trio I bought some excellent collar bacon. This is one of those recipes
Pesto, hummus and bread are just a few examples of things that if you make yourself, couldn't be further from the shop bought version. Chicken liver pâté is another. I have long had an affection for this most accepted of offal and I felt it was about time I got myself some to see how a homemade one compares. I couldn't have asked for better livers. They were free range, organic and fresh as you could ask for. I never eat supermarket chicken and