Rice is a fantastically versatile ingredient. It is the main staple food for a large part of the human population. It is the no. 1 crop worldwide.
We use rice in lots of dishes at home and probably eat it 3-4 times a week.
Main favourites are chilli and rice, risotto, rice salads and loaded rice ( basically anything reaching the end of its life veg wise, bacon and some crumbled feta).
A great filling dinner it is new my main staple for parties.
Paella is fun, filling and looks amazing in a big dish in the middle of the table for all to enjoy.
I like to do chicken, prawn and chorizo, although rabbit is traditionally used.
You can omit or add meats as you want although stick to white meats and fish.
My recipe is a bit of a mix of my favourites and a Sardinian classic.
Onto the rice, for me there are 3 rices to use for a paella, which in essence is a dryer paella…..
Paella rice- Bahia, Balilla, Bomba, Calasparra and Senia,
Carnaroli rice and
Arborio rice- mainly used in risotto.
Flour is powerful stuff.
Flour has been around for a long long time. The earliest recordings go as far back as when they found wheels to grind corn and wheat. It is the main ingredient in most cultures across the World for daily staples such as bread and doughs, and comes in a huge variety of different types, proteins ratios, derivatives and flavour.
It is used in so many recipes I just could not it all into one post and still keep everyone interested, so here is part one, some basic recipes and uses- to more advanced….
There are also a staggering number of flours available…
Here I will be blogging about general all purpose plain flour, self raising, and white bread flour.
I am making just going to do a couple of recipes to start off.
Basic white sauce- to make a morbier, prosciutto and spinach mac cheese- plain flour
Simple cinnamon buns- self raising
Brioche- prosciutto wrapped Camembert baked in brioche- white bread flour
Seasonal treat- Venison!
Amazing venison is in season from About November till March. It is lean and tasty and everso nice!
It is a seasonal treat and should be enjoyed.
Use it in the same way you would beef.
Healthy and filling it is a great meat option. Also a lot of UK venison will be wild, which for me is great. If venison is farmed is is outside and is not intensively farmed, so your concious will enjoy venison as well as your tummy.
Two of venison’s best friends are chilli and chocolate.
I love a recipe that calls for a spicy bite and a smooth chocolate note. Don’t overpower with either as venison is a delicate flavoured meat.
Venison Stew with chilli and chocolate.
X 100g of stewing venison per person
x 4 rashers of back bacon ( smoked ids nice)
x 3 onions chopped
x 4 sticks of celery
x 3 carrots
x 2 bay leaves
x sprigs of seasonal herbs
x 1 glass of red wine
x splash of brandy
x 1 chopped chilli
x approx 400 mls water
x flour for dusting
x 100 g good quality dark chocolate- I used Valrhona Manjari. This dark chocolate has red berry notes and goes very well with savoury dishes. The red berry notes work perfectly with savoury food and with the venison.
So everyone loves going out for dinner, but sometimes this can be a bit of a hassle and expensive. For special occasions its great to be treated to no washing up, table service and a fantastic meal someone else has prepared, cooked and served.
But for the times when you want to save some pennies, have a treat but still stay you can re create your favourite dishes at home.
We love Mexican!
Wraps, burritos, nachos, guacamole. Its all good!!My favourite of these are Chimchangas!
Ah they are just so so good!
the crisp shell, the warm spicy soft interior, the cooling sour cream and zing lime. Chimichangas have it all.
And they are very easy to make.
OK OK, I know its a little late, Halloween has been and gone. But that is sort of my point. Pumpkins aren’t just for Halloween, their for life.
Well for autumn/winter anyway. A smashing seasonal, healthy and hearty vegetable(although technically its more of a fruit).
I love using local and home grown. The pumpkin came from The Farm Shop in Stoulton, Worcestershire and the butternut squash was home grown by my green fingered soon to be mother in law.
Related to and in partnership with squashes of all shapes, colour and sizes, they make excellent soups, pastries pies cakes and can be used for sweet and savoury dishes.
Pumpkins are full of vitamin A and C. All parts cam be used, from flowers to seeds and the seeds are a great source of protein, magnesium, copper and zinc. YUM!
So here are few recipes for you to try.
September was the Month of GoodWood Revival.
A great chance to experience a vintage affair. With cars, planes, motorbikes, a shopping village THAT’S right village!!!(amazing) and much much more, including a vintage Kenwood stall and coffee shop! AHHHH my nirvana!
It also proved to be an extra special day as my partner and I got engaged.
Pictures of out helicopter engagement will be at the end of the blog if your at all interested.
Starting with a 3 hour drive, my hair set in rollers and a net, I did look a bit of a plum walking into Reading service station, but hey this lady needed her curls to set.
Arriving and after a quick car change, make up and hair poof and we were ready.
Walking to the arena, the cars could be heard screeching laps round the circuit. On the way we walked past a huge array of beautiful vintage cars ready to race.
Getting in you are met with a fantastic amount of shops, vintage fairground and nibbles. I was quickly trotted past most of the shops and into watch some racing!
The cars were amazing and had been restored and kept beautifully.It was a bit chilly round the track, so with this we made or way over to the planes. Ah they were gorgeous and a flying display was one highlight of the day. My dad was in the RAF and it was wonderful to see the planes he would have worked on in the 50′s. His favourite a spitfire made a flyover and I gave him a little nod. He would have loved GoodWood.
Here are some highlights
GoodWood has managed to create my heaven. Vintage, Shopping and Kenwood. Although the mixers were not on offer, but it made me proud to have 3 in my collection, and more to come I would imagine.
Autumn in a plentiful time. The hedgerows and orchards are full. Make the most of these fruits for the whole year to come…
Jams, jellies, chutneys and alcohols are great ways to preserve fruits and vegetables till summer.
Jams, jellies and chutneys are great ways of preserving fruit and vegetables for the whole season and make great gifts.
Our orchard is full of apples, plums, end blackberries and blackcurrants, elderberries and pears.
The allotments and vegetable patches are packed with squash, marrow, courgette, beans, carrots and more….
Available now and for the next few months. A seasonal and generally free treat.
Full of vitamin C these little lovely are nearing the end of their season, so get in quick.
As well as there great flavour in jams and cordials, they are high in antioxidants, immune boosters and can improve heart health. So its a bit of a foragers super fruit really.
Elderberry has been used to help aid coughs and colds for donkey’s years and recent studies have seen it used in cancer prevention drugs as well as aids medicine.
You can use the flowers to make wine and cordials in spring/summer and use the berries to make jams and juices in the winter, they also spruce up a general apple crumble or fruit compote, yummy. What a perfect addition to your Winter food groups, delicious and great for the flu season, winner!
You can find elderberry trees all around your local gardens and woods, but remember a couple of things.
Hello all my lovely readers..
As you will have seen I was in the July issue of Good Food magazine. Part of this was winning a fabulous prize…
A Joseph Joseph Baking set, Digital scales and Juicer. As you guys all know I have a very well equipped vintage kitchen as as gorgeous as they I felt these pieces would be better in the hands of people that need them..
With this in mind I am selling them on eBay as a charity action for my local Worcestershire Food Bank. they do a sterling job in helping people who can not afford such basic necessities as food….http://worcester.foodbank.org.uk/how-it-works to see the great service they provide.
Please visit this link to go to the action page and bid.
Here are the fantastic prizes- you know you want them for your kitchen!!!!
Please give generously and remember you are not only getting a collection of great kitchen equipment, you are also helping feed families across Worcestershire.
With thanks to Good Food magazine and Joseph Joseph for this great prize, and to all local and national media for helping to publicise the action.
Also thanks to Neilsen-Massey who also gave into the prize- I kept these however as they are my favourite favourite, and have just run out of vanilla!
Thank you to everyone who bids, good luck,
Love Janine xxx
We are focusing on some yummy picks of the season.
Elderflower- the flowering part of an elder tree, A great seasonal treat.
Strawberries- One of the greatest summer fruits.
I have two amazing recipes for the season. Great for summer days, warm afternoons and enchanting summer eve’s . Enjoy the pick of the season with these yummy recipes.