When I planted my goldengage tree it was more out of curiosity and fascination than potential fruit volume. The fruit that I cannot get elsewhere or the rarer varieites are those that I chose to plant. My goldengage is in its second year and it produced seven fruits. I picked the two ripest and quartered them to share so that we could all enjoy a slice of this evasive plum. It was the most honeyed and nectarous of all the plums I had ever had. My
I'm not sure what has happened. I have turned from overindulging at dinner to starting the day on luxurious breakfasts. I've gone from pies to porridge. I suppose that this is the time of year where it's nice to be able to (even if only sometimes) sit outside and enjoy that first meal of the day. There are plenty of glorious contenders to do this with: Eggs Benedict, a full English, pancakes with maple syrup and simple, but wonderful, toast with butter
This is almost the meal that changed my life. Until a few years ago I considered any food that wasn’t plain boiled pasta disgusting. I was completely disinterested in anything that wasn’t beige and flavourless. I went to University and had to start fending for myself so a few more exciting things crept into my culinary repertoire; a little melted butter on my pasta for example. I know, exotic.
I suppose I was what you would call a late flavour bloomer;
I was terribly excited about making muffins. If you had asked me how much I was looking forward to making muffins I would have responded so enthusiastically that you might have thought you'd asked me the wrong question. The reason for my eagerness was twofold; firstly I had never made muffins before and secondly I had some succulent redcurrants at my disposal.
It was all going so well until I realised I had no muffin cases. Not to worry though
Wonderful, glorious, British tomatoes are what summer is all about as far as I'm concerned. In the month of August if there isn't a tomato in the house then there's something wrong. Big ones, small ones and funny shaped ones it doesn't matter I love them all. I have grown my own this year and am waiting for them to ripen at the moment but I was very lucky to have got my hands on some more unusual varieties.
When you are faced with such a selection
I think we are very lucky to have seasons in this country. Each season brings with it an anticipation of some new food; asparagus, tomatoes, pumpkins or sprouts. The weather is something that we can all comment on and moan about. One of the wonderful things about a British summer is the berry season. I don’t count it as summer unless I have had at least one of every berry available. This year I haven’t been lucky enough to ascertain a gooseberry
Comfort food is wonderful. It's always the things which are full of bread, cheese, pasta, pastry and the like. Sometimes I want the comfort without the guilt, and particularly for this, without the expense. Beef wellington is as magnificent a dinner as they come; it's one of my all time favourites. However, pork fillet is about a third of the price of beef fillet and therefore makes a brilliantly cheaper alternative.
I had to ask my butcher to
I planted eighteen broad bean seeds under their little cloches back in March and I had eighteen successful broad bean plants come up giving me lovely green pods all of July and early August. I planted eighteen French purple bean seeds under their little cloches and I had two plants come up. I'm not sure it was my year for these little chaps.
Fortunately the two little plants that managed to battle the elements (and the neighbours heavy pawed cat)
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.
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