We tend to think of Christmas as a time of food & feasting, but for me, Summer will always be the time, when feasting on fresh healthy food comes to the fore.
I can think of nothing nicer than whiling away a hot summer’s day with friends, whilst enjoying a delicious light lunch. Maybe you grow your own herbs & veg to make your own salads & dressings. Serve them with this light summery dish, made the night before. Toss a salad on the day & serve with my Small batch, Artisan, Fennel & Sesame Bread. Add some fresh strawberries & raspberries for dessert & Voila a tasty, healthy, summer meal.
Opening our bedroom door on the second floor of The Camelot Castle Hotel, Cornwall, (we had been upgraded to a sea view, family room,) I was immediately drawn to the two large bay windows framing the magnificent views below:
A Cornish Sunset
Pot of Gold
After the long drive I was ready to dump the suit case & settle into our large bedroom, overlooking those granite cliffs, swelling sea & the ruins of the legendary Camelot Castle. This hotel, as far as I was concerned, had all the home comforts I desired.
Plonking Gypsy’s bed on the floor, she snuffled around the edges of the room, seeking out new aromas, while I familiarised myself with the rooms facilities.
As with the rest of the hotel, the walls were adorned with art by the castles Artist in residence Ted Stourton. Art, of course is a question of personal taste & for me these paintings were amazing, each one, allowing me to escape into my own world of imagination. With each view, I discovered something I had not seen before, or had I? The Artist had created for me, on a canvas, rich applications of colour, allowing me to interpret & indulge my own fantasies, seen within these art works. Something I pondered on over the next few days.
We had booked one of the Camelot Castles special spring offers, leading me to suspect we would not have the best suite in the hotel. Personally speaking, the room was perfectly satisfactory. I had read various negative reviews on Social Media, but, to me, you would get rattling windows in a listed building standing on top of a wind swept cliff! The carpet was a bit thread bare, but who would put someone with a dog (understandably only certain rooms accommodate pets,) in a room laid with the best broadloom?
The bathroom, very clean, but not large I must admit. However, who wants to spend all day in there? It reminded me of a pod on a plane. Whilst I am tall, I am not broad, for me it was perfectly serviceable & provided all the services for my ablutions a bathroom is designed for.
The beds, of which there where four in our room, one double & two singles were perfect, as were the pillows & bed linen. Perfectly clean, soft & providing a good nights sleep after our bracing, daily walks. Our room was cleaned quickly & efficiently on a daily basis. I was a happy bunny.
Refreshments were in order, we retraced our steps to the bar, where afternoon tea was being served. I would bypass the cake at the moment, as I had been sitting down all day but, Oh my, it did look delicious, homemadely [is that a word?] delicious. Now I have a
Tea is served M’Lady
Gooey Chocolate Cake
thing about Mocha, that rich, chocolatey, stand your spoon up in, luscious drink normally served in the morning. In fact I am very fussy about them, [I know, get a life] Not for me sickly sweet syrups or cheap powders, I need the real thing. Chocolate & Espresso Coffee. Camelot Castle Hotel, you really made the Earth move for me. Thank you.
As sure as afternoon tea precedes dinner & breakfast follows a night-cap, our four days at The Camelot Castle Hotel were filled with bracing, healthy exercise & leisurely breakfasts in the dinning room, overlooking the sea. Afternoons were spent reading & snoozing in front of log fires in the splendid Great Hall, while evenings held the delights of home made food in Irina’s Brassiere. We feasted on locally caught salmon fish pie followed by a little libation. Ok, you’ve got me on this, a lot of libations. I would thoroughly recommend a stay at The Camelot Castle Hotel, Tintagel, Cornwall.
I hope you enjoyed this blog as much as I enjoyed my stay at this amazing hotel. Thank you to Mr & Mrs Mappin, Artist in residence Ted Stourton & all of the Staff at The Camelot Castle Hotel. Hope to see you again in October
If you would like to find out more about this Hotel and Artist Ted Stourton please click the links below:
Happy New Year Foodies. Hope you all a fantastic Christmas and are facing the New Year with a fistful of positive thoughts and a desire to eat healthier & save money.
Hopefully, the recipe I am going to give you below will not only help you to get creative with some vegetables, but it may also help you save money.
To the basic recipe, which is gluten free, dairy free, vegetarian and vegan, you can add whatever leftovers you may have. You could add cooked chicken, beef, lamb, pork if you are meat lovers. For the Pesco-vegetarians among us you could add, fish, canned or fresh, or sea food. Change the veg if you like and stir in a couple of table spoons of crunchy peanut butter to give a Satay like flavour. Variations are endless. TRY IT.
BASIC RECIPE. Serves 4. GF/DF/V/Vegan. Time taken 20mins + Cooking. Varies on Veg used & size of chunks. ALLERGENS IN BOLD.
The video clip above gives yo a view of the different cooking stages.
2. Tbspns Olive Oil
2. Large Garlic Cloves, peeled chopped
1 Large Red Onion, Peeled & finely sliced
2 Fresh Chillies, Finely Sliced. ( Seeds removed if you like less heat)
2cm Fresh Ginger, Peeled & finely chopped
2 Tbspns Tandoori Spice Mix
1 Tbspn Ground Coriander
2. Large Parsnips, Peeled & Cut into chunks
2. Med Pots, Peeled & Cut into chunks
1 Large Aubergine, Halved & Salted for 20 mins ( Removes the bitter juices)
400 ml Can Chickpeas, drained & rinsed
4, Leftover chopped soft Fresh Tomatoes or a Tin of Tomatoes
Heat the oil in a large pan on the hob over a medium heat. Add the chilli, ginger & onion & fry for 5 mins. Add the potatoes & parsnips & sir fry for a further 5 mins.
Stir in the ground coriander & the Tandoori Spice & Stir Fry for a further 5mins. Add the tomatoes. Bring to the boil, partially cover & simmer until the veg are soft.
5 mins before the end of cooking, stir in the chopped garlic & the rinsed, salted aubergine, which has been cut into chunks & the Chickpeas.
Season to taste. Sprinkle on the chopped Coriander.
Serve with warm naan bread, thick Greek yoghurt, sprinkled with toasted sesame seeds & lime pickle. Alternatively served with boiled rice or pearled spelt.
This dish is even better, reheated the next day & is equally delicious served cold as a lunch box salad.
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If you were lucky enough to be given or bought a lovely home made Stollen this Christmas, you MAY have some left over along with some drops in the bottom of your liqueur bottles!!!!
For this recipe you can use Brioche, Croissants or any other bread product you happen to have to hand.
INGREDIENTS. ALLERGENS IN BOLD. Serves 6 Oven 180c 350F Gas MK 5 Time taken 20mins + Standing time & Cooking
Slices of Stollen,( I used my own Homemade, filled with Cranberries, Pistachios & Marzipan) or any of the above.
3 Large Free Range Local Eggs
150ml Double Cream
2 Tbspns Rum, or Cointreau
Grated rind of 1 large Orange
1/2 Tspn Freshly grated Nutmeg & Cinnamon.
Butter a large ovenproof serving dish & lay the slices of Stollen over the base, building several layers.
Beat together the eggs, cream, orange rind, liqueur & spices.
Pour over the sliced Stollen pushing the slices down to cover in the liquid.
Leave to stand for 40mins.
Bake in the centre of the oven for approx 45mins until the pudding is just firm in the centre.
Allow to cool slightly, before serving, dust with Icing Sugar and add a good dollop of Clotted Cream or clotted cream Ice Cream. ( Marshfield Farm do a superb clotted cream & gingerbread Ice Cream if you really want to go mad).
If you want to use Croissants slice them & spread with Nutella & add a layer of chopped dried apricots, or leftover ripe bananas before proceeding as above.
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The season to be jolly is rapidly approaching, so I thought in the run up to Christmas & throughout January I will share with you some of my recipes, hopefully to inspire you and also to help you #loveyourleftovers.
This week, its STUFFING. Three recipes to help you add a different way to “Stuff that bird”.
Always keep in mind that stuffing can be used in numerous ways. Try stuffing different vegetables & baking them. A good hearty stew, either with meat, poultry or vegetables can be turned into a flavoursome dish with the addition of some homemade stuffing balls, dropped into the pan 30 mins before the end of the cooking time. A healthier option to dumplings.
APRICOT & PISTACHIO STUFFING *
50g Butter or Olive oil
1 Large Onion, peeled & finely chopped
2, Stalks Celery, Finely chopped
150g Dried Apricots, chopped
Grated rind & juice of 1 Orange
150g Pistachio Nuts, Shelled & chopped
Chopped, Fresh Parsley & Thyme
Chicken Stock or White wine.
Heat the oil & better in a pan & fry onion & celery until golden.
Put the remaining ingredients in the pan & mix well until all ingredients are combined.
If you fell the mixture is to dry, add a little stock or white wine.
SWEET POTATO & LIVER STUFFING *
1kg Sweet Potato, freshly cooked
50g Butter Softened
1 Large Onion, peeled & finely grated
Liver from the Turkey, chopped
2 Eggs, beaten
2 Tbspns Chopped fresh, Parsley
1 Tbspn Chopped fresh Sage
Sprinkle of Chilli Flakes, or more according to taste,
Mash the potatoes finely, add all remaining ingredients & mix well. Leave until cold before using.
SAVOURY RICE STUFFING. *
1 Large Onion, peeled & chopped
1 Large Yellow Pepper, deseeded & finely chopped
100g Smoked bacon lardons
1 Tbspn Olive oil
2 Large Tomatoes, skinned & chopped
Finely chopped Basil & Oregano
200g boiled brown basmatti Rice (cooked weight)
Seasoning to taste.
Heat the oil in a pan & slowly fry the onion, bacon & pepper until the onion is golden.
Remove from heat & stir in the rest of the ingredients until well combined.
Leave until cold before using.
* Food Hygiene. Always remember when making stuffing in advance, to cover & store in the fridge until needed, especially those containing raw meat or rice.
Leg or Breast?
Nice big bird
Left over Salad
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