Lock-down Reading List

The coronavirus lock-down has turned us all into home cooks, whether we want to be or not. We’ve seen large numbers of people embracing the joys of sourdough and posting social media pictures of cakes and cordials, pastries and pies. Long may it last, I say, though I suspect many new cooks will find they revert to old habits as the lock-down eases and the different rigours of ‘normal’ life ratchet up.

If you want to carry on cooking but make it fit around work and/or home schooling, here are some cookbooks I’ve found useful for easy but delicious meals, and a few more to provide inspiration for when you have the luxury of time. Continue reading

Things on Toast

I know that sounds a bit Addams Family but there are so many delicious things you can put on toast, and there are times when a mere sandwich won’t do. Times when it really has to be hot, comforting, crisp, crunchy toast, whether it’s artisanal sourdough or a sliced white. I was profoundly shocked to read recently that most Americans don’t eat toast. Can this be true? No wonder they threw such a hissy fit at that tea party. Continue reading

Lemon, Ginger and Honey Cake

I can’t stop eating this cake, I’ve had to put it into isolation in another room. I’m a sucker for anything containing lemon, and if you add in ginger and honey I’m in heaven. The smell alone is enough to make my mouth water. Continue reading

Lock-down

My get-up-and-go has got up and gone. The irritating thing is that I can’t go with it. Lock-down affects us all in different ways. I don’t actually mind staying at home but I do miss the creative kick in the pants that cooking for friends gives me. It’s all too easy to default to beans on toast when there’s only two of you. Continue reading

Cheese Plea(se)

If you’re at all interested in food, you’d have to have buried your head in a bucket of sand to have missed the news that there’s a high profile campaign going on to save the UK’s artisan cheese makers. Continue reading

Cultural Collisions in the Kitchen

I try to avoid treading on anyone’s toes when it comes to fiercely guarded cultural and culinary traditions, but when you’re trying not to waste food during lock-down, some strange combinations can result. If I was a famous chef there’d be people with pitchforks and firebrands at my door, or writing angry letters to newspapers, at least. Continue reading

Savoury Granola

I don’t know about you but in spite of my good intentions (mastering the art of watercolour painting, getting to grips with my abysmal French and Spanish language skills, reading improving books), the Coronavirus lock-down has led to me gorging on trashy novels, trashier TV programmes and an awful lot of snack food. Continue reading