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Recipes

A place where I spread the word if it needs spreading and give away my trade secrets on request!

Pottage

Pottage or what remains of it here is a stove-top stew that would have been eaten by the majority of people in the Britain and Northern Europe for centuries. It is the ultimate one pot meal that would have kept going all week. Traditionally it would have made use of what was obtainable at the time and would have been added to as the week went on. If there was any meat available, most likely a rabbit, this would have been chucked in too. The recipe here aims to keep within those past traditions, potatoes didn't arrive into Europe until the latter part of the 16th Century.

Ingredients (serves 10-20)

A knob of butter/Or  2 tbs of oil to keep it vegan.

1-2 large onions

2 leeks

2 celery sticks 

4 large carrots

1 swede (or 2-3 turnips)

3 parsnips

Water

1/2 a cup of porridge oats

 A few sprigs of wild garlic

A handful of fresh mixed herbs, sage, thyme, rosemary or whatever is available.

Method

  1. Heat the butter/oil in a large stock pot/Dutch oven over a  low-medium flame.

  2. Once the oil is warm, add the sliced/diced onions, leeks and celery to the pot and stir before covering over with the lid to soften for approx ten minutes.

  3. Then add the chopped root vegetables, stir and leave for a few minutes to soften and take on the flavour of the onions and leeks.

  4. Add at least enough water to cover the vegetables, more if you want to thin it out and make it go further, increase the heat and bring to the boil.

  5. Then reduce the heat so it is just simmering and add the oats to thicken and herbs for flavour. Top up with more water if necessary.

  6. Leave to  simmer for about an hour, then taste!  

Caramelised Apples

Ingredients

(Serves 1-4!)

4 peeled, cored and sliced firm dessert apples.

50g salted butter

1 tbs corn flour

250ml water

60g dark soft brown sugar

2 tsp of cinnamon or mixed spices of your choice.

I was asked to cook up some of the lovely apples at Brogdale  Collection's National Apple Festival in Faversham. I had a few initial ideas, then decided to get a few fresh tasty apples, caramelise in a pan over open fire and serve with a fresh flat bread. These turned out to be a real winner over the weekend. It is a simple dessert that I will definitely be cooking up again!

Please note: When I cook this, I add the ingredients by site, so the measurements are just approximations! 

Method

1. Heat a large deep based saucepan or pan over a medium heat, before adding the butter to slowly melt.

2. Once the butter has melted, pour in the peeled and cored apples to soften and cook, stirring and turning occasionally.

3. While the apples are cooking, mix the cornflour with the water.

4. After 8-10 minutes of cooking the apples should have  softened, but still hold their shape, pour in enough of the cornflour mix to just cover the base of the pan before adding the sugar and spice.

5. Mix everything together in the pan until the sugar/cornflour mix start to thicken and caramelise,  producing a sweet treacle-like texture.

6. Remove from the heat and serve, with a fresh flatbread or in a bowl with custard!