Cured egg yolk – day 10

I've managed to resist disturbing my yolks for almost a week. It's definitely time to see what they've been up to. Left undisturbed for a respectable interval the salt and sugar mix has set much more firmly - as hard as a rock in some places. I dug the yolks out quite cautiously, with the… Continue reading Cured egg yolk – day 10

Unlikely things to do with a potato: Scottish macaroons

I love it when the nieces come to visit. There's always an adventure. This time, soon-to-be-sommelier niece arrived with delicious burgundy and pretty French macarons. Once the burgundy was drunk, we fell to musing on the macaron - or macaroon, as the box would have it. For a family of pedants that extra 'o' was… Continue reading Unlikely things to do with a potato: Scottish macaroons

The glory of cooking with autumn leaves – part 2

I was so excited by last night's autumn leaf broth that I needed to taste more - thank goodness I'd not used all the leaves in the first experiment! Even better, just a few pages on in the same book was another recipe with leaves at its heart: 'Vegetables cooked with autumn leaves' (p 194).… Continue reading The glory of cooking with autumn leaves – part 2

Cured egg yolk – day 3

I love that fact that these yolks are so forgiving of my daily interference. Most things I've ever decided to steep, cure or macerate have needed to go into a permanently sealed container and rest in the darkness of a cool cupboard, quiet and undisturbed, until I've almost forgotten about them. It is so much… Continue reading Cured egg yolk – day 3

Capering around with nasturtium seeds

Nasturtiums are one of those fantastic plants that combine ease of growth with good looks. Their big tough seeds always come up and the plants seem to survive whatever you or the weather might throw at them. I plant trailing nasturtium seeds around the edges of the pots on my small London terrace every year,… Continue reading Capering around with nasturtium seeds

Damson Chutney

Damsons are the most delicious plum to cook with. Sharp and deeply flavoured, in my opinion they make the very best chutney you can eat, and the strongest flavoured plum jam. I was overjoyed to find them in my local Borough Market a few years ago – but not so overjoyed by the exorbitant price.… Continue reading Damson Chutney

Bramble (blackberry) chutney

The only blackberries that really taste of anything are the ones you find in the hedgerow in late summer and early autumn. They are usually much smaller than the ones in the supermarket punnets, but their flavour is intense. When I was little we’d spend weekend after weekend filling buckets with fruit from the fields… Continue reading Bramble (blackberry) chutney

Apricot chutney with a touch of wild cherry

Almost all the chutney I make ends up looking a dark brownish black, mainly because it is made with dark fruit and/or dark brown sugar. There’s nothing wrong with that, but it does mean that even though the different versions might taste different, they do all tend to look the same.  This time, I was… Continue reading Apricot chutney with a touch of wild cherry

Fresh apricot jam

A good ripe apricot is one of the joys of summer, but a woolly one is one of its cruellest disappointments. Living in central London means I am at the mercy of the fruit-sellers, and at best I only have a 50/50 chance of getting a good one. So, whenever I find myself in a… Continue reading Fresh apricot jam