Tag Archives: main courses

Potato, Celeriac, Pear and Nuns of Caen Bake

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You know you’re advancing in years when a) you get excited by the thought of buying a mandolin (the chopping, not the Captain Corelli variety) and b) you then get enraged because it turns out it doesn’t slice thinly enough for your liking. So, all ideas of conning my children by making vegetable crisps out of the window, I was left pondering what to do with my new toy so that I didn’t hurl it against a wall. As fate would have it, I was also pondering what to do with the remains of last week’s Nuns of Caen that the kinds folks at The Cheese Market had given to me in abundance. This recipe is therefore the coming together of some too-thickly-sliced vegetables, a luscious cheese washed in perry and – it only seemed fitting – some pears. It was eaten with pork chops, also cooked in perry with shallots and sage.
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Sourdough Pizza with Salami and Paddy’s Milestone

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I am fascinated by natural yeasts and like to grow a sourdough starter in my kitchen. It was given to me by an Italian friend who got it from her in-laws in Italy who got it from a bakery. So it feels a bit like a pedigree pet, one of those long-haired hamsters or something that needs food and attention or it starts to smell. The problem is that if it was a hamster I’d be in big trouble with the rodent obesity protection league as I feed it far too much and end up with a giant Kilner full of starter:

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Caveman’s Cheesy Meatballs

Caveman's Cheesy Meatballs

As I wrote last week, I was lucky enough to be sent a truckle of Wookey Hole Cave-Aged Cheddar to try and, although we have been gobbling it non-stop throughout the festive period and beyond, it stands undefeated. I swear it grows back overnight. So, I thought I’d use some of it to cook up something suitably troglodyte-friendly. I pondered about what cave-people would eat (probably not mature cheese, to be fair) and the basic principle I came up with was: MEAT.

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Peppered Venison with Stilton Scones

Peppered Venison with Stilton Scones

I was struck by two things recently: one is that it’s flipping chilly now; the other is that I hardly ever feature meaty dishes on this blog. There’s a veritable panoply of bread and quiches but meat-wise only the odd burger and a sprinkling of ham. I don’t know why this is. Cheese and fish together often make me feel a bit queasy but there are plenty of classic cheesy meat dishes out there. So I thought I’d try a bit harder. I’ve also been trying harder to eat more game so when I saw a variation of this recipe in my Ultimate Slow Cooker book, a plan started to come together.

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Golden Cenarth Sorta-Tartiflette

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I am increasingly loathe to post any variation on a traditional recipe for fear of igniting national indignation à la Jamie and his Jollof rice. Admittedly, my readership is somewhat smaller than Mr Oliver’s but nevertheless I learned my lesson with the whole ‘your Bajan Macaroni Pie looks like thrush’ blogpost episode. However, Tartiflette – a French cheese, bacon and potato combination – sounded like such a divine way to put on half a stone in one sitting that I decided to throw caution to the wind and experiment using a British cheese. I then found out that Tartiflette was actually invented in the 1980s to drum up sales of reblochon cheese and so it felt much less like cultural plunder then anyway.

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Smoked Goat’s Cheese and Squash Tarte Tatin

Smoked goat's cheese and roasted squash savoury tarte tatin

Anyone who has been reading this blog for a while will know about my nostalgic obsession with autumn. It’s always sad to say goodbye to summer but nice to welcome hot water bottles, cocoa and the smell of real fires. Alas, there is a long-running debate in our house about adding a real fire or logburner and I appear to losing, so I have to take my smoky fixes where I can (note: I realise that this makes me sound like an arsonist so, for the record, I’m not).
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Making Sparkenhoe Cheese and Disguising Cauliflower

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Red Leicester cheese has got a bad rep and, in many cases, deservedly so. Like many British cheeses, farmhouse production was wiped out by the Second World War and, as a result, most Red Leicester comes in a sweaty, claggy block. But, thanks to David and Jo Clarke, farmhouse Red Leicester has risen, zombie-like from its cheesy grave. I discovered Sparkenhoe last year and was blown away by its rich taste of biscuits and brown butter, surrounded by an earthy rind. If you’ve never tried it, get yourself to a monger forthwith; you won’t be disappointed.
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July’s Cheese, Please! Challenge Recipe Round-Up – Summery Cheese

First of all, apologies for the tardiness of my round-up this month. The summer holidays are taking their toll on my available time as I seem to be engrossed in a constant round of Dinosaur Top Trumps, playhouse-building, learning-to-ride-a-bike supervision and football retrieval. But, as ever, a lovely haul of recipes makes the wait worthwhile.
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July’s Cheese, Please! Recipe Blog Challenge – Summery Cheese

The Big Cheesy Barbeque: Halloumi Rosemary Skewers vegetable kebabs

It’s early in the morning as I write this but the sky is bird’s egg blue and the sun is shining. Of course, in the blink of an eye the rain could be cascading through the drainpipes but nevertheless it feels like a sort of summer has arrived. So, in its honour, I declare July’s Cheese, Please! Recipe Blog Challenge to be all about cheesy summer food.
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June’s Cheese, Please! Challenge Round-up – Cheese and Herbs

June has been a busy one, so much so that I’ve had little time to even eat cheese, let alone write about it. A sad state of affairs indeed. Fortunately, my fellow bloggers have waved the cheese standard, passed the cheese baton and generally paid homage to the fromage and so this month’s Cheese, Please! Challenge, as usual, has some lovely recipes, all featuring the abundant, fresh herbs that are verily flourishing at this time of year. So without further delay, I bring you cheese and herbs…
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