Country Life

I hadn’t realised quite how much I’d come to hate my job until I lost it. Rather than plunging deep into ‘how do we pay the mortgage’ anxieties I found myself literally dancing round the garden. It took me a full week to come down from that euphoric high. Continue reading

In Defence of British Cooking

I’m at the Oxford Symposium on Food and Cookery this weekend and although we’re pretty much guaranteed some delicious meals, with so many overseas delegates in attendance, it made me wonder what they really think about British food.

Our cooking lost its way after the Second World War and P.E.D. (Pre-Elizabeth David) we lived in a culinary wasteland of Brown Windsor Soup, grey meat and soggy veg. Right? Wrong! Balderdash, codswallop and poppycock.  Continue reading

The Splenetic Diabetic

I was going to write about strawberries today, with a recipe (how well do you know me?) that inevitably involved fats and carbs on top of, or rather underneath, the fruit. Then I read a post by my friend Nicola Miller, who has just been diagnosed with diabetes, and who now can’t even eat a single juicy peach without doing complicated mathematics and without suffering unpleasant consequences.  Continue reading

Truffles: The Cheapskate’s Fix

Image of black truffle

Black Périgord truffle, image courtesy moi-même

Truffles are divisive … you either love them or hate them, so if you’re looking ahead for a Valentine’s Day recipe for your beloved, it’s as well to check with them first. My husband once watched, with bemusement and possibly just a tinge of horror, as I troughed through an entire truffle-based menu at a French restaurant, from starter through to dessert. Continue reading

Vandal and the Vampire Chickens

Image of Vandal posing

As an antidote to endless Christmas recipes (guilty as charged) I offer you: Vandal and the Vampire Chickens.

This bit of doggerel arose from a long-ago Facebook photo of one of our cats, Vandal, stalking the hens. But I mis-typed the caption and said he was staking them: cue much FB hilarity and jokes about vampire chickens. One thing led to another and I wrote this.  Continue reading

Aldeburgh 2015

Image of Aldeburgh Food and Drink Festival

Copyright Bokeh Photographic

As I write, there are just 24 hours to go to this year’s Aldeburgh Food and Drink Festival. For us festival-goers it’s a day out but the producers who man the stalls will have been slaving for weeks to make sure they’ve got enough product to sell and hoping it flies off the stands. Continue reading

Dolphin and Duffin

… not a recipe, although it sounds like something 18th century sailors might have eaten on a deep sea voyage when they ran out of pemmican and hard tack. No, this is a reference to my recent appearance on BBC Radio Suffolk, on the afternoon show hosted by Lesley Dolphin. She has generously invited me to do a regular seasonal foodie spot and I made my debut on Friday. Continue reading