Check out My Thai Green Curry Recipe by clicking on the link below:
The very short asparagus season is in full swing at the moment. This delicious vegetable (or is it a herb?) has a very short season of between 6 and 8 weeks. It is normally available in the UK from the beginning of May, but this year the season was a couple of weeks early due to the warm and dry weather we had in March/April.
Most years I make elderflower champagne, and sometimes it is good; more often it is explosive and very, very dry! The recipe I use is Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall’s from River Cottage…
This year I am hoping for a good, fizzy variety…
The elderflower season is pretty short, and elderflower cordial is an easy recipe to allow you to savour the great elderflower aroma later in the year. If you are planning to keep this cordial for any length of time you will (a) need a lot of willpower, and (b) ensure that you add the Tartaric Acid.
Everything seems to be early this year, and the Elder bushes coming in to bloom are no exception! Elderflowers have a glorious aromatic quality and make great cordials, sorbets and champagne (more of that in a later post…)
I picked up a large bag of lemons at Bicester street market yesterday in preparation for making one of my favourite sorbets – elderflower (although you could leave the elderflowers out and call it lemon sorbet if you wished!)
Now that English strawberries are starting to appear in the supermarkets and grocers, it is time to make my favourite Muffins! Along with all muffin recipes, there are a couple of tricks to make them foolproof ~ It is important to measure the baking powder accurately, and even more importantly: once you mix the dry and wet ingredients together, the quicker you are at getting them muffins in the oven, the better they will turn out!
This is the first post from a guest author: Jason Ayres.
I have known Jason since I moved to Bicester, he has a local Karaoke & Disco Business and loves his food nearly as much as I do!
Earlier this year he asked me a question: “I like cold roast beef – such as you would buy sliced off a deli. However, no matter what I do I cannot achieve this effect with my left over roast. Whether I slice it after cooking, or keep as a joint, wrap up and slice the next day (as I would a ham), the effect is always the same. My gorgeous Sunday joint becomes dry and chewy, any sinewy bits not in evidence at Sunday lumch suddenly appear too. It’s absolutely useless for sandwiches. It’s impossible to slice to the thinness I require which may be part of the problem.”
My response was that I thought Deli Beef was cooked in a Sous Vide which would give the required properties but would be useless as a roast…
As a result of my response Jason came up with this wonderful method (which I have yet to try, but he seems to produce on a regular basis judging by his FaceBook statuses…)
At Easter I like to make a Simnel Cake, as I think that the shop bought ones are so expensive and bland. You can even make your own Marzipan if you are feeling extra keen. – I normally do, but for ease purchased a pack of ready made marzipan this year.
If you are ever caught short for a dessert, this is a very quick and simple recipe that you can try. It only takes 3 or 4 minutes to make, and is great with ice cream or by itself.
If you have a little bit of time on your hands and fancy a great, creamy, fish dish then you can’t beat this fish pie recipe. It has smoked and unsmoked fish along with prawns and anything else that you would like to add. If you have some fresh parsley in the garden you can add that too! This recipe will easily serve four people with fresh minted garden peas.
Apologies for the lack of posts, but with the snow, holidays and work I haven’t had time to upload anything recently. I have a large back log of articles so hopefully I will manage to get one up every week from now on.
My Grandmother always made the best marmalade – I don’t think that I ever helped her make it, and the recipe I use is not her’s but at this time of year when the Seville Oranges are in season there is nothing better to do with them than make marmalade.
With Halloween upon us it is time to do a bit of carving. When I was a child we used to carve pumpkins with a knife and the results were decidedly random.
Onions are one of those wonderful items that keep very well in a dry shed once the leaves have dried off, but there is nothing quite like a pot of home made caramelised onion chutney if you have any surplus! This recipe is a mixture of several different recipes I have tried and is great on Boxing Day with cold turkey.
This is a great autumn favourite of mine, however I didn’t grow any sweet potatoes and my parsnips aren’t ready for digging up yet so a call to the green grocer was necessary:(
I am not sure where I originally found the recipe, but you can make it with a low fat cheese so it can be an incredibly low fat dish if required.
A week or so ago I was watching BBC Two’s The Great British Bake Off and they were in Mousehole baking among other things Pasties. Whilst watching I thought to myself “I haven’t made any pasties for a very long time…”
I have been making my own mincemeat for quite a few years now, and this recipe is based on a recipe by Delia Smith. The house is filled with a most glorious smell during the slow cooking. n.b. this recipe contains suet to seal everything together – if you are vegetarian you can happily use vegetarian suet and it should taste just as good.
Friday is market day in Bicester and we are lucky enough to have two fruit and veg stalls in the market. During my normal Friday afternoon stroll down sheep street, I noticed that one of the stalls had fresh figs at 6 for £2 and the other stall had them at 5 for £2.
Today I took delivery of an Italian sausage stuffer: the Minnie-Plus Little Demon Stuffer supplied by Weschenfelder.
One of my favourite BBQ party pieces is to butterfly a leg of lamb and marinade it for BBQing, as the leg has been reduced to a thickness of less than 5cm, it only requires 10-15 minutes on each side to cook. It is great finger food too, as you can serve it in pitta bread with a salad just like a kebab. This recipe is my version of a Rick Stein classic…
This weekend we are having a little party at the plot so I will be preparing this to BBQ in the afternoon.
This year I was keen not to miss a trick, so I called my Aunt to make sure that I could get some of the pears to do the same with. Sadly due to the hot weather this summer (yes believe it or not it has been a hot summer…) the pears have ripened a month earlier than last year and I didn’t get as many. I have managed to fill two half litre preserving jars and they are now maturing ready for Boxing Day.
The hedgerows are currently full of ripe and juicy blackberries, so it is time to make some of my glorious hot hedgerow chutney. This has a most wonderful red colour to it, and is excellent on boxing day with cold turkey and ham.
This year looks as if it will be just as good for sloes as last year, and when there is a bumper crop of sloes the best thing to do with them is make sloe gin!
There are a few tricks to the perfect sloe gin, and one of the key ones is not to add too much sugar – you can always sweeten it later on but it is pretty hard to reduce the sweetness.
Continue reading Sloe Gin
A week or so ago I made a large batch of passata. One of the things that I make with passata is tomato ketchup, and as my tomato vines are still producing tomatoes at a rate faster than I can consume them I decided to make a batch of ketchup.
This recipe is loosely based on a recipe by Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall, which in turn is from The Big Red Book of Toatoes by Lindsey Bareham. As on Hugh’s site I am not going to give you my exact spice mix as it is a trade secret, but it is fun to try and make your own ‘flavour!’
As autumn approaches it is time to preserve as much of that fresh grown goodness as possible. Pickled beetroot is one of the easiest to do and should last until the following year’s crop are ready to eat!
This weekend my neighbours harvested their cooking apple tree and they gave me a couple of bags brimming with them. I passed 75% of the apples on to friends, but have retained enough to keep me going for several months.
As the blackberries are ripe and readily available in the hedgerows at the moment, I decided to make an apple and blackberry pie for desert.