I've always been prone to getting out an exceedingly large basket and frolicking amongst the hedgerows at this time of year. I'm normally trying to amass as many blackberries as possible before they disappear. This year has been different as my world has become festooned with plums of all colours just ready for the picking.
These plums were no bigger than an apricot and tasted quite similar. The flesh was as bright as the skin and as sweet as honey.
Summer is a wonderful time for unctuous puddings. Sweet ones, sharp ones, gooey ones and normally in some shade of pink. I wish I had the willpower to buy millions of summer berries and freeze them so I can knock up a pudding anytime I fancy, but I can barely resist them enough for them to make it to the saucepan. How can you go wrong with inky blackcurrants and vibrant gooseberries? Over the weekend I had occasion to make luscious puddings with
I planted my own broad beans back in February full of anticipation and excitement for that day when I could finally snap the pods from the plant, lightly cook them and enjoy them just as they are. To say I was jealous of the broad beans at the farmers' market is an understatement. I couldn't possibly buy any and cheat on my home grown ones...could I?
Some of my broad beans are at the mangetout stage and I enjoy the occasional one immensely straight
After spending my Sunday trying to resist everything I clapped my searching eyes on at my local farmers market, I ended up buying hundreds of carrots. How could I say no to a bunch just picked and two for £1 purple cauliflower? Either way I am now inundated with these sweet orange roots and so I consulted several recipe books and decided a carrot cake was the order of the day. They all asked for different things so I picked out what I thought were
So as I am inundated with thousands upon thousands of broad beans and courgettes, instead of becoming the next Alan Sugar and make millions selling my prides and joys, I decided I shall eat them myself and share them around. I say thousands but I mean more than I hoped for.
One of the meals we had entailed both broad beans and courgettes. I wish my tomatoes were ready but they are stubbornly green. As per usual with these lovely beans they needed
To tell you nowt but the truth, my broad beans have been nothing short of prolific. I cannot urge you enough to throw a few broad beans in the ground and watch them develop. They are so nutty and so so green. There's nothing like picking a few pods and whiling away a few moments popping the little guys out of their silk lined beds. I really enjoy squeezing them out of their old grey skins once cooked. Unless I'm in a rush.
Despite all the care
It has been such a busy time recently. As you may note, not even a tiny snippet of bloggage crossed my keyboard in the whole of July. Not for lack of wanting to but for a lack of time! During the hectic haphazardry that ensued I did manage to whip up a few culinary delights. And so to begin... Strawberry Ice Cream.
What you will need (for enough for 4-6 people):
600g strawberries, stemmed and sliced
4 tbsp fresh lemon juice
I fancied making some shortbread and in my quest I stumbled across an interesting variation of this classic. It was in James Martin's book entitled 'Desserts' (see link below). I love this book, the recipes are so easy to follow and are always yummy. He calls this particular recipe 'Grandma's caramel shortbread' and I am so grateful she shared this recipe with him so I was lucky enough to be able to make and eat it.
What you will
This is another cheap and cheerful recipe that was recently discovered. Again, it feeds two for less than £3 and counts as two of your five a day. My recipe for gnocchi with bacon, broccoli and creamy garlic sauce is quick, easy and frugal too. It's really creamy and just what you need when you're craving a dauphinoiseque meal.
What you will need (for two people):
Potato gnocchi - 59p
4 rashers of bacon - £1
Small head of broccoli
It's the end of term and funds are running low. Gone are the days of spontaneous eating out and in are the days of making whatever is edible from the darkest corners of the cupboard.
Never fear. Over the last few days I have made meals which feed two for £3 or less and even if I do say so myself are rather nice. Also, they are at least 2 of your 5 a day! Here's my recipe for a budget spaghetti bolognese.
What you will need (for two