STORE CUPBOARD RECIPE: Oat slice

STORE CUPBOARD RECIPE: Oat slice

Whilst not perfectly formed, the balance of sweet cream butter, soft brown sugar bound together with rolled oats, is so very comforting. This recipe will take you less than five minutes to make, and a quarter of an hour for baking. So grab a mixing bowl whilst you are...
STORE CUPBOARD RECIPE: Spelt soda bread

STORE CUPBOARD RECIPE: Spelt soda bread

It was my very first visit to Dublin that I tasted soda bread.  Thick with Irish butter and a generous spoonful of marmalade.  I will never forget that perfect combination of soft wheaten bread with creamy butter and the perfect balance of sweet and sharp preserve. I...
RECIPE: Savoury Welsh Cakes

RECIPE: Savoury Welsh Cakes

Whether guests have joined us for a personalised AGA cookery class or simply ‘escaped to the pantry’ for some time out in the Dorset countryside, they all seem to fall in love with the flexibility that the AGA simmering plate offers.  Even if you prefer a...
RECIPE: Traditional lemon & sugar pancakes for Shrove Tuesday.

RECIPE: Traditional lemon & sugar pancakes for Shrove Tuesday.

No matter how much we ‘dress up’ a pancake, the most popular topping always seems to be lemon juice and sugar.  Following closely behind, will be the request for a liberal coating of Nutella straight from the jar or warmed beside the AGA. Memories of...
RECIPE: Dark chocolate pancakes with cherry compote.

RECIPE: Dark chocolate pancakes with cherry compote.

Shrove Tuesday falls on 25th February this year.  Perhaps you are a traditionalist and insist your French style crepes are flipped on to an awaiting warm platter with a generous squeeze of lemon and vanilla infused caster sugar?  Or you may insist that the beginning...
RECIPE: Seville Orange Marmalade

RECIPE: Seville Orange Marmalade

The uplifting aroma created by squeezing, juicing and shredding sour oranges to create bitter marmalade is a rewarding seasonal ritual.  Seville oranges are ready to pick from mid December, although they can normally be found in the shops from the first week of...
RECIPE: Plum Pudding for Stir Up Sunday

RECIPE: Plum Pudding for Stir Up Sunday

You need no excuse on a wet November Sunday, to start planning your Christmas menu, this recipe creates a light and fruity pud, which will gently mature over the coming weeks and be perfect for Christmas day. Stir up Sunday fall on 24 November this year. ...
RECIPE: Brown Banana Pancakes

RECIPE: Brown Banana Pancakes

We were so fortunate that we enjoyed a glorious October afternoon for our allotment club gathering on Wednesday.  The children were very excited to try their home grown baked beans as well as share their produce with the other allotment holders and parents.   Before...
RECIPE: Eat Your Greens

RECIPE: Eat Your Greens

Whatever the weather, our friend and neighbour Emma Chambers, makes a delivery of her vegetables with a cheery smile.  She grows most of her produce within the walls of the Shaftesbury Estate, Wimborne St Giles and at the beginning of the week we receive an email full...
RECIPE: Cacao, Spelt & Pear Cake

RECIPE: Cacao, Spelt & Pear Cake

After spending some time working in York recently, I also took the time to discover the city’s intriguing chocolate history.  Now that I  have returned to Dorset, hardly a day goes by when I am not tasting fine chocolate or experimenting with sweet and savoury...
RECIPE: Damson ‘cheese’.

RECIPE: Damson ‘cheese’.

I will never forget a particular late summer day I visited All Hallows. This was at a time when my friend Helen lived in the farmhouse.  She has been gathering damsons from the tree in the walled garden and had been working in the kitchen for several hours to make...
RECIPE: Brioche Buns

RECIPE: Brioche Buns

To make sixteen individual brioche buns, you will need: 50 ml (2 fl oz) lukewarm water 15g (1/2 oz) of fresh yeast or 1 tablespoon dried yeast 50 ml 2 (fl oz) milk at room temperature 150 g (6 oz) unsalted butter at room temperature 50 g (2 oz) caster sugar plus one...
RECIPE: Easter Buns

RECIPE: Easter Buns

My friend Jo popped over to see us yesterday.  She is married to a miller who is the fifth generation to work their watermill near Shaftesbury in Dorset. It’s the busiest week of the year for flour millers and bakers, but her husband (who also trained as a...
RECIPE: Forced Garden Rhubarb

RECIPE: Forced Garden Rhubarb

Those tender pink stems are so very tactile.  Is it the vibrant colour after a long grey winter and the promise of spring warmth ahead?  Or the contrast of tempting ruby stems against almost fluorescent leaves,  which have been starved of daylight and are eager to...
RECIPE: Spiced venison with prunes and pecans.

RECIPE: Spiced venison with prunes and pecans.

January brings a much needed calm to the farmhouse.  The opportunity to slow down, recharge and prepare for the coming year.  Seed catalogues are strewn across the sofa as we try to realistically pare the order to a manageable number of packets.  A box of Seville...
RECIPE: Cookery in the Country Living Kitchen

RECIPE: Cookery in the Country Living Kitchen

Thank you to Marie-Claire and Michelle, the Country Living Chefs, for making us so welcome at the Christmas Fair this week. Ideal to feed a crowd, these colourful ‘pass and share platters’ make a welcome start to a lazy morning during the holiday season.  Sage and...
Redcurrant Jelly

Redcurrant Jelly

You will need  900g (2lbs) redcurrants, washed well and leaves removed but stalks can remain Measure the water depending on the ripeness of the fruit. If the currants are under rip then allow 300ml (1/2 pint)  but if they are ripe simply add half this amount.  If you...

COOKS TIP: Spring Greens

After much anticipation, Wild Garlic or Ransoms are in season. We first discovered tender green shoots peeping through the last snowfall a couple of weeks ago.  Now that the milder weather is here, this rampant  Allium can be found in deciduous woodland and beneath...