Tag Archives: main courses

Pumpkin and Chestnut Macaroni Cheese

fullsizerender

Never fear, Halloween haters, it’s safe to come out for another year. Love it or hate it, it’s undeniable that the surge in spooky celebrations has been a boon for pumpkin farmers. Every year, we enter the fiercely competitive Tooting Common Pumpkin Carving Competition and even managed to score a second prize last year with the scary fellow above. This year – allotment smugness alert – we managed to grow our own. I would love to take credit for their vastness by claiming that I’d administered secret potions or performed arcane fertility rites but, in reality, I forgot what I’d planted and only discovered them when we returned from a fortnight’s holiday.

Continue reading

20 Comments

Filed under Cheese Recipes, Uncategorized

Cornish Blue and Veggie ‘Stargazy’ Pie

dscf0735

One of my favourite blogs is Mrs Portly’s Kitchen. If you haven’t come across it before, do check it out for a wealth of local, seasonal and also more exotic recipes. I do, however, have one criticism of its author, Linda, and that is her point-blank refusal to cook and write about Stargazy Pie. For those unfamiliar with the dish, it’s a Cornish speciality, renowned for the fact that the heads of the baked pilchards poke out through the pastry. You can see photos of it here, as well as read about the legend of heroic fisherman Tom Bawcock, who is said to have inspired the dish.

Continue reading

13 Comments

Filed under Cheese Recipes, Uncategorized

Squash, Apple and Smoked St Gluvias ‘Burgers’

dscf0710

Anyone who uses Facebook is likely to be some kind of bore. You might be a baby bore, a triathlon bore or a ‘where I ate lunch today’ bore. Some people manage to combine all three. I have become a vegetable bore, forever parading my allotment produce. As social media bragging goes it feels fairly harmless; it seems unlikely that my rainbow chard is going to send anyone into a fit of envy, self-loathing and inferiority. Last week, I was especially pleased to parade these beauties; I never dreamed I’d be able to successfully grow butternut squash but in truth they pretty much grew themselves this summer.

Continue reading

8 Comments

Filed under Cheese Recipes, Uncategorized

Chard and Westcombe Ricotta Ravioli

DSCF0650

It’s fair to say that there were some doubters in my inner circle when I took on my allotment. The early signs looked likely to prove them right as my garlic rotted, the broad beans got infested with black fly and the slugs and snails rampaged with glee through my emerging seedlings. But, now we’re in the full fling of summer, things are looking good. French beans, runner beans, globe artichokes, onions, courgettes, summer squash, new potatoes and salad are all on the menu, as is the unstoppable rhubarb chard. Although the slugs had only left perhaps six or seven seedlings, they are now the gift that keeps on giving. Relentlessly.

Continue reading

21 Comments

Filed under Cheese Recipes, Uncategorized

Cavolo Nero and Sheeps’ Tor Pesto

So much news to pack into one post! Where to begin? Okay, a confession: I bought a spiralizer. Yes, yes, I know, no doubt it will soon be relegated to the spot above the washing machine, along with the pasta machine and the bread-maker. In the meantime, though, I’m having fun with it.

DSCF0544

Continue reading

6 Comments

Filed under Cheese Recipes, Uncategorized

Vulscombe, Red Pepper and Fennel Tart

DSCF0397

I wondered if I could pass this off as a pie, in honour of British Pie Week. Pie, tart, pastry case, pastry base, it’s all the same surely? But in my heart of hearts I knew I had a tart on my hands (so to speak). Possibly a flan. But not a pie. Last week’s chunk of Vulscombe seemed to deserve something better than just me secretly scoffing it when the house was empty, plus I had a veggie coming for lunch which always throws me into a pickle. This is super easy, even if you make a mess of the puff pastry like I did and don’t use the right-sized baking tray.

Continue reading

17 Comments

Filed under Cheese Recipes, Uncategorized

Radicchio and Durrus Risotto

DSCF0304

I’m sure you have all been on the edge of your seats, waiting to hear of my progress up the allotment waiting list. Well, big news here, I have a plot! I’ve been pretty lucky to inherit a patch that’s been well-cared for until recently, compared to some of the weed forests that are also up for grabs. In fact I’ve been pretty lucky full-stop, considering that I live in London where some waiting lists are 40 years long and people even put their children down to secure an allotment for their future middle age!

Continue reading

20 Comments

Filed under Cheese Recipes, Uncategorized

Courgette and Nottinghamshire Blue Cheese Soup

Courgette and Nottinghamshire Blue Soup

This week brought the exciting news that I have reached number six on the allotment waiting list and so should get my soft city hands on a plot in the next few months. Usually in London, to get an allotment you have to: a) wait for two decades; b) bump off the 73 people ahead of you on the list; or, c) sleep with at least seven senior figures from the borough council. Fortunately for me, one of my local allotments got funding a couple of years ago to regenerate some disused land to create about 70 new allotments and so the waiting list is short and the turnover relatively high.

Continue reading

9 Comments

Filed under Cheese Recipes

Crab, Samphire and Barber’s 1833 Quiche

img_0003

Well, it looks like the summer holidays have certainly taken their toll on my blog. Museum visits, cricket in the park and excessive ice-cream consumption (not to mention the small matter of doing some actual work on top) left little time for writing about cheese. And the more you feel guilty about not doing something, the harder it becomes to actually do it after a while. Fortunately, the schools have opened their doors once more and, at the same time, the cheddar-makers at Barber’s asked me if I’d like to develop a new recipe for their flagship 1833 brand. It was just what I needed to get back on the cheese-horse again.

Continue reading

15 Comments

Filed under Cheese Recipes

Butternut Squash and Highcross Lasagne

Butternut Squash and Highcross Lasagne

This weather is crazy. Just when you think it’s time to live on watermelon and salad in your flipflops, hailstones the size of conkers start smashing up your greenhouse. It’s important to be prepared for all eventualities and this includes having comfort food and a slanket to hand. This lasagne is easy to make, fools small children into eating vegetables and is perfect for sub-zero summer afternoons. I used Highcross from Wildes Cheese which is matured in a vat of salt, water and lemon. It’s salty and crumbly, a bit like Feta and its sharpness goes well against the sweet squash.

Continue reading

2 Comments

Filed under Cheese Recipes