Country life · Food & Drink · Harvest · Sugar

Sugar: From British beet to bake…

This morning I awoke to a tweet on my phone’s screen which simply said, £27/t. It meant nothing to me, but a little digging revealed the news that NFU Sugar and British Sugar have announced a one-year sugar beet contract for 2022. It means that beet farmers will receive a fixed sum of £27 a… Continue reading Sugar: From British beet to bake…

Cooking · Food & Drink · Kitchen garden · Preserving · Recipe

A glut of homegrown raspberries (and a recipe for raspberry jam)…

This year seems to have been a stunningly good year for raspberries – well, while we’re at it, any kind of soft fruit. Here, we’ve been inundated with berries of all kinds – strawberries, blackcurrants, gooseberries, loganberries and now blackberries, which are rapidly coming into full force. All manner of other soft fruits are filling… Continue reading A glut of homegrown raspberries (and a recipe for raspberry jam)…

Cooking · Food & Drink · Kitchen garden · Recipe

Can we talk about fennel? (a recipe for fennel frond pesto)

This month I was overwhelmed when I harvested my very first fennel bulb. It may sound melodramatic but in the past I’ve lovingly sown my fennel seeds, cared for them, watered them, fed them and talked to them but have never had a bulb to show for it. The only way I’ve redeemed myself is… Continue reading Can we talk about fennel? (a recipe for fennel frond pesto)

Beef · Cattle · Cooking · Food & Drink · Great British Beef Week

Celebrating beef with homemade bresaola

Every year, St George’s Day marks the start of Great British Beef Week. Running for seven days, the celebration promotes our great British beef industry and champions the role of beef within a healthy and balanced diet. As a guardian of cattle, I fervently believe that events like this are integral to supporting the wider… Continue reading Celebrating beef with homemade bresaola

Cooking · Food & Drink · Harvest · Kitchen garden · Recipe

Cheese fondue, in a squash?

Last season I grew eleven different types of squash – 2020 seemed a good year to go all out. As lockdown V1 struck I set about furiously ordering seeds, it was the thing to do – everything was scarce and seeds were at a premium. I stockpiled Black Futsu, Butternut, Galeux d’eysines (a warty squash… Continue reading Cheese fondue, in a squash?

Cooking · Country life · Food & Drink · Foraging

Homemade horseradish sauce…

Now, I like foraging and for a few years I’ve had ambitions of hunting for horseradish. I was inspired by a cracking horseradish sauce I had with a roast at a pub in north Norfolk. It was at once hot, peppery and creamy and perfect with beef. Come November each year I’ve set about searching… Continue reading Homemade horseradish sauce…

Cooking · Food & Drink · Foraging · Kitchen garden · Preserving

The joy of preserving (and a recipe for preserved green figs)…

As I sit down to write this a saucepan is simmering on the hob – full to the brim with rosehips and cooking apples. After a night in a straining bag the concoction will transform into a jelly, which will lovingly see us through winter as a vital and delicious ingredient for stews, gravies and… Continue reading The joy of preserving (and a recipe for preserved green figs)…

Cooking · Country life · Food & Drink · Foraging · Recipe

Damson ketchup is a winner…

Deep down I secretly enjoy the slow turn of seasons as summer melds into autumn. Yes, I miss wearing a bikini in the garden, slopping around in flip flops, sipping rosé in the sun, sitting outside late into the night, flinging on a pair of towering sandals, lighting barbecues, wrapping myself in floaty dresses and helping… Continue reading Damson ketchup is a winner…

Food & Drink · Kitchen garden

Why I’ll be giving lovage a home in my garden…

When a friend visited recently she came bearing a bunch of green leaves – in all honesty, I had no idea what they were. It turned out to be lovage. She’d grown the ornamental herb in her garden and it had sprouted furiously. The leaves were big, lush and vibrant and the scantest of touches… Continue reading Why I’ll be giving lovage a home in my garden…