I love cooking. I love eating. I love growing food. I keep hens. I’ve got an ever-expanding cookery book collection and the waistline to go with it, a spice rack to die for and an FBI pinny (long story).
I worked in broadcasting for much of my life but these days I’m a food and features writer, cookery teacher and recipe developer. I’m a home cook: if I want restaurant food I go to restaurants. What I want to make in my own kitchen are flavourful dishes with minimum faff, but hopefully ones that are imaginative and appetising.
I am a strong supporter of local producers, because these small, often family-run businesses deserve all the help they can get to stay afloat and they rear, grow or make some very fine food.
We generally eat seasonally because it’s common sense and it tastes better. You’ll find recipes here that include meat, fish and dairy but plenty of fruit and veg – we grow our own – and sometimes it’s even vegan. To be honest, though, that’s mostly accidental.
What I share here is what we actually eat, not just food that’s been styled and prettified and allowed to get cold. I try my best to make it look attractive but I’m a cook and a writer, not a photographer, so I hope you’ll make allowances.
I firmly believe that if you can read a recipe, you can cook. I’m an inveterate tinkerer, although I promise every recipe has been tried and tested. I see recipes as guidelines, so feel free to adapt to your personal taste, but I’ve tried to be as accurate and specific as possible for people who prefer not to go off piste.
There’s a jumble of cuisines represented here although as time goes by I find myself increasingly cooking traditional British food. That’s my heritage. You’ll find ingredients and influences from different cultures – we make harissa from our home-grown chillies, for instance – but I try not to trample over the sensibilities of others. I may not always get it right and feel free to call me out if I put my foot in it. Preferably privately rather than on Twitter, please and thank you.
To summarise, then, this blog is a celebration of food and I hope an opportunity to share some of my culinary discoveries and passions. If you’re of a like mind, I invite you to loosen your belt, hide your bathroom scales, tuck in your bib and join me in Mrs Portly’s Kitchen … and you can in reality, now, with one of my cookery classes! (Now back up and running after a lockdown hiatus. Fingers crossed.)
Before I go, the ethical bit: very occasionally I’ll be given a free product to try out. If that’s the case it will be clearly stated in the post. I don’t make a habit of this because, without wishing to sound pompous, I try to retain my journalistic objectivity and because this blog is a labour of love and I don’t want to monetise it.
I do however labour for lucre elsewhere. If you’d like to commission me as a food and features writer, recipe developer or event compere, please check out the Ask Mrs Portly page for contact details.
You can find Mrs P’s Facebook page here. I’m on Twitter as LindaDuffin and Instagram as linda.duffin. I’m always up for a chat, pop into one or the other and say hello.
All words and images © Linda Duffin and Mrs Portly’s Kitchen, 2012-2021 except where otherwise stated. Unauthorized use and/or duplication of this material without express and written permission from this site’s author and/or owner is strictly prohibited. Excerpts and links may be used, provided that full and clear credit is given to Linda Duffin and Mrs Portly’s Kitchen with appropriate and specific direction to the original content.