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welcome Welcome to the April issue of flavour!
Art Director: Richard Cook Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
In Season Tom Bowles and Stuart Ash bring you the best of the season's produce
11 WIN! A case of Orchard Pig cider! 12 Guilbert's A new era for historic Bristol institution 25 Spring Lamb Mouth-watering recipe from The Royal Crescent's new head chef 42 Healthy Schools Death of the Turkey Twizzler
Even if you find his cockney colloquialisms a little gauche, you can’t help but feel a bit sorry Jamie Oliver right now. Set in the US, his new show ‘Food Revolutions’ met such a hostile reception that he broke down in frustrated tears on camera, incapable of understanding why the Fast Food Nation cling onto their bad eating habits with the same determination as the fat clogging their overworked arteries. It's probably fair to say that Americans don't take kindly to being told what to do, especially in this case by some 'pushy Brit' they’ve never even heard of. Things are a little different on our side of the Atlantic. He might not be without his critics, but the majority of us acknowledge the positive changes that old Jamie has tried to enforce, especially where children’s health is concerned. So in the spirit of recognising good intentions when we see them, we paid a visit to three local schools who value their student’s diets just as much as him – turn to PAGE 42 to find out more. And just to remind you that he’s not all furrowed brows and government petitions, we’ve also included a signature sunshine recipe from his new cookbook on PAGE 14. Elsewhere in this issue, we've been chatting to Bristol's oldest chocolatier following a stunning new makeover (PAGE 12), seeking out some hidden foodie gems on the Bristol to Bath cycle path (PAGE 56) and bringing you the latest updates from the UK's biggest annual celebration of regional food (PAGE 34). We hope you enjoy reading this issue as much as we enjoyed making it.
Happy Eating! Holly Aurelius-Haddock
If you have any news or events that you would like to share with us here at flavour then email email@example.com
MRS B BAKES
Mrs B Bakes is simply about taking good oldfashioned quality cake recipes and bringing them up to date with that magic touch. Her cakes use only the finest ingredients sourced from local suppliers, ensuring that her products are some of the best around. Everything from her scrummy chocolate brownies to her irresistible Bakewell slices are handmade, which gives them a distinctly artisan quality. Mrs B currently supplies to various deli and coffee shops across Bristol and is planning on attending farmers’ markets in the near future.
Sicily meets the West Country as the doors of a new deli café opens in Bath’s Northumberland Place complete with high ceilings, funky décor and a friendly welcome for everyone.
Tel: 07886 218057 Visit: www.mrsbbakes.co.uk
From homemade Sicilian cookies to a range of Italian cured meats, olives, pastas and stunning pastries, this café offers everything from breakfast to a sandwich, panini or a full lunch, seven days a week.
Located in one of the city’s old alleyways, Roscoff Deli is the idea of Rosario Bavetta, born in Bristol and brought up in Sicily. With strong, vibrant colours and the rich, wholesome taste of Italian home cooking, Rosario hopes to bring some flair, fun and fabulous food to the people of Bath.
10,000,000,000 THE NUMBER OF SANDWICHES THAT US BRITS CONSUME PER YEAR, EQUAL TO 1,340 LOAVES OF BREAD IN A LIFETIME, WHICH WHEN STACKED, ALMOST REACHES THE HEIGHT OF THE EIFFEL TOWER!
WINNERS LUCKNAM PARK COMPETITION - Congratulations to Tina Mortimer who wins a 6 month spa membership at Lucknam Park! EXETER FOOD FESTIVAL - Congratulations to Mrs K Sims who wins a 3 course meal at Combe House Devon, a Darts Farm luxury hamper and two tickets to the Exeter Food Festival! 4
CHEF NORBERT NIEDERKOFLER
A TASTE OF ITALY NATIONAL TRUST AND THE GREAT BRITISH MENU
PHOTO: ANDREW HAYES WATKINS
Two chefs competing in the fifth series of Great British Menu are being challenged to source ingredients from in and around National Trust estates in Dorset and Somerset. John Hooker from Browns Hotel Wine Bar and Brasserie in Tavistock, Devon will be working to source ingredients from the Trust’s Golden Cap and Burton Bradstock estates in Dorset, and Henry Herbert (pictured right) from The Coach and Horses, London, from the Holnicote Estate in Somerset.
Rosa Alpina promotion 11-16 May 2010 THE PARK RESTAURANT Tasting menu - £86 per person
The 45-part series will follow three chefs each week as they unearth the very finest produce from the farms, gardens and neighbourhoods surrounding their local Trust house or countryside location. Carol Holt, who leads the National Trust’s food group in Wessex, said: “It’s wonderful to see sustainable, locally-produced, quality food from Dorset and Somerset being championed by programmes like this, and also to see it increasingly becoming available and sought out by growing numbers of people throughout the country."
Next month sees Lucknam Park kick off its exciting calendar of food events with a visit from Rosa Alpina’s two Michelin starred chef Norbert Niederkofler. Alongside Executive Chef Hywel Jones, Norbert has devised a special menu which promises to give diners a taste of the finest Italian cuisine cooked by one of the country’s most prominent chefs. Hywel Jones says, “We are all very excited about working with a world-class chef for the week and look forward to welcoming Norbert and his team to Lucknam.”
Millefeuille of deer with liquorice, kumquats and celery mousse **** Buckwheat ravioli stuffed with buffalo milk ricotta on calamaretti spillo and a cream of Bobby beans **** Mediterranean turbot with “Geröstel” of black sausage and smoked foie gras CHEF HENRY HERBERT
The series kicks off with a double bill at 6pm on Tuesday 6th April on BBC Two Daytime. For more information visit: www.nationaltrust.org.uk/greatbritishmenu
**** Local lamb: the ossobuco with our own polenta and the chops with Sicilian eggplant, artichokes and oven tomatoes **** Green apple delight Three course à la carte and brasserie menus also available. Please call 01225 742777 or visit: www.lucknampark.co.uk for more information.
A new real ale from a family brewery is being launched at an event aimed specifically at women. This is the first time that a family brewery has created real ale specifically for women and is the result of many months of research. The launch comes after new consumer research showing more women than ever having tried real ale for the first time. This increase also comes at a time when there are now more than 700 breweries in the UK, brewing more than 2,500 real ales. Is real ale becoming the new Chardonnay? Visit: www.camra.org.uk 5
Cut me out and keep me!
Spinach is becoming readily available all year round but nothing quite beats young, tender, locally grown plants picked early in spring. When it’s cooked it has a wonderfully sharp metallic bite but with a creamy texture which makes this little salad so unique. It’s also packed with vitamins for an extra health boost. When buying, be sure to buy enough as along with all those lovely healthy vitamins, spinach is mostly made up of water which means when cooked, it will shrink, a lot! It’s a good idea to give it a good wash before hand though to get rid of any nasty bits. Fresh spinach should have firm and crisp leaves with a deep dark green colour. It’s best to leave them in the bag or use right away if just picked.
A walk in the countryside at this time of the year will surely fill your nostrils with the wonderfully subtle aroma of wild garlic. We can’t pick enough around our farm, which is a real luxury. It’s usually found in woodland spots where it can thrive in the moist conditions. Wild garlic is usually favoured for its lush scented leaves rather than the bulb like its more traditional friend. Look for clean, undamaged leaves with that unmistakable smell. As they grow in the wild, be sure to wash them thoroughly before eating and eat at once. Like it’s scent, wild garlic is much more subtle in flavour too than traditional garlic which presents a much more delicate taste. The leaves work well in salads with other leaves and make for great soups. My favourite way of eating them is substituting the leaves in for basil in a rich green wild garlic pesto.
April Each month Tom Bowles from Hartley Farm brings you all you need to know about the season's best produce.
One of the first fruits of your labours in the veggie patch each spring. Radishes tend to pop out of the soil fairly soon after planting. The small bulbs can pack a real peppery punch which are sure to spice up any salad. Part of the mustard family, the wonderful crunch of a fresh radish also provides a third dimension to your plate which makes it hard to believe why this little chap isn’t loved a bit more. If you have opted not to grow them be sure to buy plump, firm bulbs that are bright in colour and unblemished, never wilted. They will store in a fridge for a few days but trim the leaves before hand and plunge them into icy water before serving to reinvigorate them. My favourite way to eat them is very thinly sliced and served with lots of coriander as a garnish to a simple stir-fry.
So treasured are these spring and early summer potatoes that they have their very own protected “designation of origin”. Early season crops are naturally smaller and more tender than potatoes that you’d find towards the end of the season, usually around June. They’re more waxy than other varieties and don’t perish as easily which makes them a firm but flavoursome addition to summer salads. Try to buy unwashed potatoes for you to scrub yourself as these are sure to have more flavour and goodness left intact. Keep them in a dark, cool spot if you wish to store them, and keep them away from plastic bags as this doesn’t do them any favours. Like all early season salads they’re best eaten fresh from the ground. The simple addition of mint, course sea salt and a bit of butter is all they need!
WILD GARLIC, TOASTED ALMOND AND GREEN OLIVE PESTO (Serves 6)
In a blender, place a handful of chopped wild garlic leaves, 1 clove of garlic, 20g of flat leaf parsley, 50g of slowly roasted almonds, 10 green olives, 50g of grated parmesan and 100ml of cold pressed olive oil. Blend to your liking, making sure not to warm the pesto. Place in an air tight jar and refrigerate to stop discolouration. Great with pasta or fish.
SPINACH AND SMOKED TROUT RISOTTO (Serves 4 as a main course)
Firstly prepare one litre of hot fish stock and keep it on a low heat. Heat 40g of butter in a sauce pan and add 2 finely chopped onions, cook gently without colour, then add 300g of Arborio rice. Stir until the grains become transparent. Slowly add the stock one ladle at a time, wait for the liquid to be absorbed before adding more (when all the liquid has been added to the risotto, it should have a creamy moist consistency with a little bite). Add 100g of baby spinach leaves and 100g of flaked smoked trout fillet. Allow the spinach to wilt then remove from the heat and mix in 80g of grated parmesan and a handful of chopped dill. Serve immediately.
We all know that eating with the seasons makes for healthier bodies and tastier dishes. Each month Stuart Ash, head chef at Woods Restaurant, gives you a few ideas on how to cook up the fantastic ingredients that are abundant at this time of year.
JERSEY ROYALS WITH SUNDRIED TOMATOES, PANCETTA AND OREGANO
SEARED SCALLOPS WITH RED RADISH, AVRUGA AND CORIANDER SALAD
(Serves 4 as a starter)
Preheat the oven to 220째C, place 800g of jersey royals in a shallow baking tray with 20ml of olive oil, rock salt and cracked black pepper and toss until coated. Bake for about 20 mins or until nearly cooked, occasionally turning the potatoes. Mix in 150g of pancetta lardons and continue to cook for five minutes. Remove from the oven, mix in 100g of roughly chopped sundried tomatoes and a handful of chopped oregano leaves, place in a bowl and serve.
Cut 12 large scallops from their shells, removing roe, all the membrane and the beige frilly edge, sear the scallops on both sides in a hot oiled frying pan until golden brown and season with salt. Place in a hot oven (220째C) to cook for approximately 3 minutes (depending on size). After cooking, allow the scallops to rest for about 2 minutes. Meanwhile take 12 large radishes cut into thin slices discarding tops and tails and place in a bowl with 20g of avruga (herring roe) and a handful of chopped coriander leaves. Dress the salad with the juice of half a lime and the equivalent of olive oil, add a little salt and pepper and gently mix, divide the salad between four plates and arrange the scallops on top.
fab foodie reads
fab foodie reads For bookworms who love nothing more than cooking up a feast for family and friends, our monthly selection of new releases is enough to keep anyone entertained!
APPLES FOR JAM TESSA KIROS
HOW TO EAT IN ADAM BYATT
Murdoch Books, £17.99
Bantam Press, £25
Tessa Kiros’ third book leads us into a world where kitchens are filled with the smells of roasts, garlic and lemon, and where ice creams are flavoured with fresh fruit. Her ethos is not about adhering to a strict set of rules and following a recipe to the letter. If it suits you to add some ingredients of your own to her pumpkin soup, then you should do it. Organised by colour, each chapter offers a vibrant selection of recipes ranging from angel hair pasta with zucchini, mint and feta to pomegranate sorbet and rosehip semolina puddings. Tessa’s approach is highly personal and she approaches food with spontaneity and a sense of informal celebration.
Chef proprietor of the awardwinning restaurant Trinity in South London, Adam Byatt offers his unique take on countless classic dishes that are worth staying in for. How to Eat In is packed with over one hundred recipes – some very simple and achievable in minutes, others more sophisticated and ideal for special occasions. With all the flavour worthy of a restaurant, these dishes are accessible enough to share at home with family and friends. From maple-glazed pork belly with black olive mash to black fig tart with mascarpone, How to Eat In is the perfect cookbook for stylish modern living, destined to become a firm favourite with food lovers everywhere. These recipes are stunning, delicious and best of all, very simple to make!
GOURMET FOOD FOR A FIVER JASON ATHERTON
PHIL VICKERY’S FAVOURITE FOOD PHIL VICKERY
Quadrille Publishing, £14.99
Octopus Publishing, £14.99
Fed up with the credit crunch and doing everything on the cheap? Well here’s a book to brighten up your evening meals at home and give you some of the delicious gourmet food you’ve been missing – and all for less than £5 a head for a two-course meal! Jason Atherton, Michelin-starred chef and proprietor of Maze, brings inexpensive, accessible gourmet food into the home kitchen. His creative style and mastery of unique flavours makes his cooking exciting, delicious and highly original. Prepared from seasonal ingredients in their prime, the recipes are enticing, fun to make and delectable to eat – perfect for entertaining friends and family or for a glamorous night in.
In this exciting new book, Ready Steady Cook favourite Phil Vickery takes us through muddy fields, wild seas, fish-stocked rivers and abundant orchards of Britain and Ireland, seeking out our best food, the farmers who grow it and the producers who turn it into everything from Stilton to smoked salmon. Introducing us to some of the people who catch our fish, grow our veg and farm our meat, Phil offers his own favourite 130 recipes using their produce. Top food photographer Steve Lee travelled with him, and from 3000 stills, the pair have created an extraordinary collection of recipes, stories and photographs. With a chapter on every region of Britain, Phil Vickery’s Favourite Food explores the very best foods that the country has to offer.
Blue Stone Forget a swanky new BBQ from your nearest retail chain. Check out this all-weather outdoor woodburning oven by Bluestone! With many exciting projects under its belt, the company strives to make outdoor living a reality. Tel: 01934 876355 Visit: www.bluestonewater.com
flavour THIS MONTHâ€™S MUST DO, BUY & SEE...
s e oL v
Handmade and styled using only the finest Belgian chocolate, these glamorous shoes and bags are almost (if the chocolate wasnâ€™t so delicious) too good to eat! These bespoke goodies are made to order and sold in department stores across the country. Clifton Cakes 3 Glentworth Road Clifton, Bristol BS8 4TB Tel: 0117 9277693 Visit: www.chocchic.co.uk
The Pear Tree
Sleek, curvaceous and immensely practical, the H2Onya, is a stainless steel reusable bottle. It is tough, toxin and BPA free and available in five different sizes, from 350ml to 1200ml in a range of colours.
Looking for a little R and R before the chaotic summer season begins? The Pear Tree, a delightful country pub set in gorgeous grounds, creates the perfect opportunity. The 2 AA rosette restaurant provides a seasonal menu with locally-sourced produce prepared by an experienced team of chefs, and, if you don’t fancy the drive home, they offer cosy accommodation with eight beautifully designed, luxurious bedrooms. A set lunch menu is available Monday-Saturday £12.50 for two courses and £15.50 for three.
Tel: 01225 709131 Visit: www.maypolehotels.com
The Bell at Skenfrith
Hamptons It's a very busy and exciting time for Hamptons Delicatessen who have recently opened a second shop in Chipping Sodbury. The new website will soon be live with information about both the stores and all the delicious food they stock - watch this space!
A fully restored former 17th Century coaching inn on the banks of the River Monnow, The Bell has eleven individually decorated bedrooms and is one of Wales’ finest restaurants with rooms. Whether you are looking for a peaceful few days in the country, a romantic escape or walks in some wild, unspoiled Welsh countryside, then this is the place for you. The Bell at Skenfrith Skenfrith Monmouthshire NP7 8UH Tel: 01600 750235
Tel: 01454 854745 Visit: www.thehamptonsdeli.co.uk
WIN! A CASE OF CIDER FROM THE ORCHARD PIG!
On Sunday 2nd May 2010 West Bradley Orchards near Glastonbury is continuing its tradition of opening to the public at the height of the apple blossom season. The orchards are also the home of The Orchard Pig, makers of specialty apple juices and ciders, who will welcome visitors for a day of exploration and enjoyment. With a pig roast, tractor rides, a tour of the 50 orchards acres, a mouth watering cider and juice bar as well as much more, visitors are guaranteed a day of festivity for the whole family. To celebrate Apple Blossom Day, The Orchard Pig is offering one lucky flavour reader the chance to win a case of cider from the farm. To enter, email: firstname.lastname@example.org stating your name, address, phone number and where you got your copy of the magazine, or write to us at the usual address. Good luck!
Tel: 01458 851222 Visit: www.orchardpig.co.uk
GUILBERT’S This month Rebecca Gooch pays a visit to a Bristol business that has been quietly and artfully preserving their ancient confectionery expertise in the city centre for 100 years…
You may not have heard of Guilbert’s, but chances are you’ll have eaten their artisan, entirely handmade delicacies without realising it, as they also produce chocolates for luxury labels such as Fortnum and Mason.
Guilbert's 6 Leonard Lane Bristol BS1 1EA
Amazingly, hardly anything has changed at Guilbert’s since a young Swiss-Belgian chocolatier called Piers Guilbert came to Bristol, fell in love with a local girl and suffragette called Olive, got married and opened his first chocolate-making shop at 40 Park Street in 1910.
Tel: 01761 451122 Visit: www.guilberts.com
The shop is now in Leonard Lane, and although the candles under the chocolate
bath have been replaced by a light bulb, and an electric mixer is used instead of hand-mixing - everything else is handmade in precisely the same way today as when Piers started his business, using the same preservative-free, natural ingredients and time-honoured recipes, such as the ‘Plain Exotic Spice Bar’ made with chilli, aniseed and cinnamon. Although ‘chilli chocolate’ may now be hotly on-trend, Guilbert’s has been making it for a century, using the same cherished recipe dating back to 1631. But while the chocolates stay deliciously unchanged, to mark the company’s centenary this year, Guilbert’s is celebrating with a stylish new look, after teaming-up
with a cutting-edge design team based in the North Somerset countryside. “The story is fantastic, and the chocolate is even better,” says Sakina Buoy, who, along with husband Roger joined forces last year with Guilbert’s owners, Wendy and Alan White - a couple who met while working at Guilbert’s where Alan started out as a teenage apprentice chocolatier and Wendy joined soon after as a dipper, which she still does to this day. “My husband is a Bristol boy and is an absolute aficionado of rose and violet creams, so everywhere we go if he sees some we have to buy them,” explains Sakina, who with Roger runs the
award-winning Somerset Toiletry Company. “Just over a year ago we found some in a shop called Heritage in Thornbury, so of course had to buy some to try, and also to send to friends and family around the world. Being proud of his Bristol roots, he’s always looking to send them something that’s made here – but after Bristol Blue Glass, there isn’t much!” “When he tried them he was blown away, they were the best he’d ever tasted, so fantastic that he decided to call the people who made them and tell them so.” One conversation led to another and from being fans, the couple became partners, after realising that their packaging and
design skills could bring Guilbert’s a whole new lease of life. “We thought, this year marks 100 years of Guilbert’s, so we’ve repackaged the range in a way that reflects its amazing heritage. Everything is made just the way it was way back then. We are so proud that this wonderful chocolate is being made in Bristol – and it’s time everybody realised it!”
Guilbert's will be exhibiting at The Taste of the West Trade Show in Exeter in April and at Speciality Fine Food Fair, Olympia in September. 13
Spain is a country you can fall in love with right away. It has beautiful mountains and coastlines, exciting cities full of amazing architecture, warm, lovely people and great weather...
And to top it all off, it has a perfect mixture of modern convenience and old-world charm. This definitely comes across in its food culture: artisan producers all over the country still use traditional methods to make their world-class cured hams, chorizo sausages, cheeses, oils and wines. Cutting-edge Spanish chefs like Ferran Adrià of El Bulli (voted best restaurant in the world for the third year running) are pushing Spanish food to a whole new level. You only have to look at the northern town of San Sebastián, which has more Michelinstarred restaurants per capita than any other town in the world, to find proof that Spanish cooking is in a very good place.
Jamie Oliver's ‘Jamie Does’ is available from all good bookshops from April 2010. Published by Penguin. RRP £26 14
Spain’s location and history have given it a really rich collection of genius and exciting dishes. As a gateway from North Africa to the Mediterranean, Spain was where many ingredients that were making their way from one country to another stopped off and over time became incorporated in the cooking. The Greeks introduced olives and olive oil, and the Moors – Arabs from North Africa – who ruled Spain for 500 years really shaped the direction of modern Spanish food by bringing fantastic stuff like rice, fruits, nuts and spices such as saffron, nutmeg and cinnamon with them. Another big injection of ingredients came in the late 1400s from the newly discovered Americas. Suddenly, all sorts of wonderful things like tomatoes, beans, potatoes, chocolate and vanilla started turning up and the flavours went up another few notches! The more I learnt about the history of Spain on this trip, the more I started spotting those different influences all around me: in the incredible plates of paella, the kicks of herbs and spices in the cured sausages,
the little cups of gazpacho, the candied fruits and pastries in the sweet shops… there are so many wonderful surprises in Spanish cooking. If the number of Spanish restaurants and tapas bars in Britain is anything to go by, Spanish food is on the up in popularity. So I do find it bizarre that when so many Brits travel to Spain they turn their nose up at the wonderful local grub and go in search of the same old bangers and mash they’d find back home. What a missed opportunity! The trick to discovering the ‘real’ Spain is to jump in a car and keep driving until there’s not a fish and chip shop in sight. I decided to spend most of my trip finding out what the mountains of Andalucia had to offer. I headed north from Málaga to the beautiful old town of Ronda, birthplace of modern bullfighting and home to the Puente Nuevo, the jaw-dropping bridge that joins the mountains on either side of the El Tajo gorge. It’s a spectacular place and turned out to be a great base for travelling around the smaller villages and towns of the area. Like most of Spain, this part of Andalucia is blessed with plenty of sunshine, so although the land itself is quite rocky and steep, all the classic sunshine crops like olives, grapes and tomatoes grow in abundance. There don’t seem to be quite as many big supermarkets as there might be in Britain, but I put that down to the fact that a lot of people – even in towns – still grow their own onions and veg in whatever patch of land they have access to. There are also plenty of smaller suppliers to fill the gap in the market, so the locals are never short of good food.
MY FAVOURITE PAELLA Serves 4-6 Ingredients • Olive oil • 2 raw chorizo sausages (approximately 250g in total), thickly sliced • 300g pork belly, skin removed, the best quality you can afford, cut into 1cm pieces. • 1 green pepper, deseeded and roughly chopped • 1 red pepper, deseeded and roughly chopped • 5 cloves of garlic, peeled and roughly chopped • 1 onion, peeled and roughly chopped • A small bunch of fresh flat-leaf parsley, leaves picked and roughly chopped, stalks finely chopped • Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper • A good pinch of saffron • 400g clams or mussels, scrubbed clean and debearded • 300g paella rice • 200g jarred red peppers in oil, drained and torn into pieces • 1 x 400g tin of chopped tomatoes • 1 litre chicken or vegetable stock, preferably organic • 12 large prawns, shells on • 150g squid, cleaned and finely sliced • 150g green beans, sliced very thinly at an angle • 1 lemon, cut into wedges
As a young boy, the idea of meat and fish together in one dish never made sense to me. But once I tried paella the combination of textures and smoky flavours completely won me over. It’s one harmonious, exciting, stomach-pleasing smasher of a dish. Some locals say you don’t add chorizo, but because I love it, I’m adding it here. You can pick up a proper paella pan (like the one in the picture) at most department stores, but a larger shallow pan about 30cm across will also work a treat. 1 Heat a large wide-based pan over a medium heat and add a lug of olive oil, the sliced chorizo and the pork belly. Fry for around 10 minutes, stirring occasionally. As soon as the chorizo starts taking on colour and the fat is beginning to cook out of it, add the chopped peppers, garlic, onion and parsley stalks along with a good pinch of salt and pepper and the saffron. Fry gently for another ten minutes, or until the vegetables have begun to soften. Meanwhile pick through the shellfish and get rid of any clams or mussels that aren’t tightly closed. 2 Add the rice and jarred peppers and keep stirring for a few minutes until the rice is coated in all the
lovely flavours, then pour in the tinned tomatoes and 800ml of stock, seasoning again with salt and pepper. Bring everything to the boil, then turn down to a medium to low heat and stir constantly for about 15 minutes. This combination of flavours will be absolutely beautiful, but you’ve got to help the dish along by doing your job and making sure each grain of rice gets the same amount of love. So every now and then, stir from the outside of the pan into the middle so you get a sort of pile of rice in the centre, making sure nothing is sticking to the bottom. Flatten the pile out with your spoon, then start the whole process again. 3 After 15 minutes the rice should be cooked, but still have a bit of a bite, so add the mussels or clams and the prawns. You may want to add an extra splash of stock here if the rice looks a bit dry. Keep stirring, and as the clams and mussels start to open and the prawns begin to turn pink, add your squid and green beans and cook for a further 5 minutes or so. Discard any clams or mussels that don’t open. Stir in the chopped parsley leaves and the juice from half your lemon wedges, and bring to the table with the remaining lemon wedges on the side.
the park As the validity of Michelin Guide is called into question for the first time since its inception, flavour paid a visit to Lucknam Park to see whether there is still a place for tradition.
CHEF HYWEL JONES
Spurred on by good food, good company and a good supply of even better wine, I recently found myself engaged in a post dinner debate about the British nation as collective force for change, no less. A friend offered the time old cliché that, unlike our hot-blooded continental cousins, us Brits aren’t capable of more than an emphatic ‘tut’ when things don’t go our way. I couldn’t have disagreed more, because if anything positive can be taken from the recent expenses scandal or the widespread criticism of overpaid bankers, it’s that we as a nation are very quick to question those in power at the first sign of foul play. So it has finally come to be with the food industry’s revered Michelin guide, which in light of a recent BBC documentary entitled ‘The Madness of Perfection’ is the latest superstructure to come under some serious public scrutiny. Many feel that as well as being a potentially outmoded institution, it drives chefs to the point of obsessive distraction, making them lose sight of the simple enjoyment which should be taken from feeding people. It was with this polemic in mind that I approached the mile-long drive of Lucknam Park, a 5 star Country House Hotel located just outside Bath. Boasting an idyllic 500-acre estate, a stunning spa complex, opulent décor throughout and an unquestionable level of service, it’s not difficult to see why it’s regarded as the very epitome of English gentility. The jewel in Lucknam’s crown is undoubtedly The Park Restaurant, headed up by executive chef Hywel Jones who is responsible for earning its Michelin star, a star that has just been re-awarded for the fifth consecutive year. I was keen to brave the sensitive subject of the Michelin guide with Hywel, and after a deliciously sinful cream tea amidst the grandeur of the hotel’s Drawing Room, was informed that ‘Chef’ was available at my convenience.
Lucknam Park Hotel & Spa Colerne Chippenham Wiltshire SN14 8AZ Tel: 01225 742777 Visit: www.lucknampark.co.uk 16
Outside the celebrity world, chefs tend to be an introverted bunch who feel most comfortable behind closed kitchen doors, yet Hywel has an incredibly natural way about him; he talks warmly to waiting staff who clearly respond to him with respect rather than fear. Here is a man whose entire
brigade followed him without question from one prestigious London restaurant to another; no mean feat in such transient circles. “Any chef who says he doesn’t care about Michelin is lying,” he says bluntly. “Whichever way you cut it, it’s the highest benchmark in our trade and something we all aspire to.” For someone who has worked as hard as Hywel, it’s not surprising that he wants to defend what represents the culmination of his life’s achievements to date. It’s also highly unlikely that when Hywel worked closely under Marco PierreWhite, that he was the jaded Michelin critic he is now. It’s difficult to be anything but wholeheartedly impressed by the food being produced in Lucknam’s kitchen. Take just as an example my loin of Andrew Morgan’s Brecon venison, whose delicate flavour was at once enhanced by the sweetness of pumpkin and sage risotto fritters and then duly tempered by the bitterness of a sloe gin and dark chocolate sauce. Or my iced honeycomb parfait, banana crumble, banana and chocolate sorbet, which deconstructed the happy marriage of flavours in a banoffee pie with a fine dining twist. The flawless presentation of each dish in the tasting menu, the unmistakable quality of every ingredient on the plate and the thoughtful way in which each course led into the next was to some degree to be expected. Yet what struck me most about the meal was the profound understanding of how flavours were matched so that they might bring the very best out of one another. And despite all the other flourishes, this is what enables a chef to achieve excellence at any level. “The only time it becomes complicated with Michelin cooking is when egos come into play,” Hywel explains, “as long as you never forget that it’s the customer you’re cooking for, you’ll always keep things in the right perspective.” I’m still undecided about the whole Michelin debate, but if there is one ambassador it should be proud of it is Hywel. He is truly an asset to Lucknam Park and indeed the South West, so for those wanting to experience first class food in a first class hotel, you now know where to find it.
The jewel in Lucknamâ€™s crown is undoubtedly The Park Restaurant, headed up by executive chef Hywel Jones who is responsible for earning its Michelin star, a star that has just been re-awarded for the fifth consecutive year.
columnist martin blunos
IRON CHEF UK... ROAST RUMP OF SPICED LAMB
As promised, more about the new TV series that I’ve recently been filming... ‘Iron Chef UK’ will be hitting your HD screens at the end of the month. Based on the successful American show, which is in turn based on the Japanese original, Iron Chef is like a culinary football match with the pizzazz of gladiators and the production values of X-factor. The kitchen where battle commences is called the ‘stadium’. The competitors wear white and we, the mean and moody dark knights ready to take on all challengers, wear black. We have a referee known as the chairman who, I’d like to add, doesn’t need to get that involved as we play so fairly! The brilliant Olly Smith is the pitch-side reporter and there’s also a professional pundit, Nick Nairn, giving chop-by-chop updates on all the juicy bits of action, from dispatching a lobster to (in my case) the tip of a finger. Doesn’t sound much like a food show does it but hey people this is TV. You need the lights, music, action, jeopardy, and some great food. After all, that’s entertainment. It’s certainly been great fun even if it isn’t all glamour; during a post-filming Q&A one older lady - after we’d discussed the nutritional value of a baby beetroot - asked for my autograph and upon signing her programme, she thanked and then asked me who I was! If nothing else, amusing moments like these keep my feet on the ground and able to do what I love most - create tasty recipes to share with one and all….
2 rumps of lamb 1tbsp coriander seeds 1tbsp cumin seeds ½ tbsp black pepper corns Silver of dried red chilli Salt Rapeseed oil Method: 1 Bone and trim the lamb rumps. Score the fat and set aside. 2 In a dry pan toast the seeds, corns and sliver of chilli for 2 minutes until they release their aroma and crack. 3 Put in a coffee grinder or pestle and mortar and blitz until powdery. 4 When cool rub into the prepared rumps. 5 Heat oil in a shallow pan and sear the rumps on all sides. Turn onto the fat and put in a pre-heated oven (200 °c/Gas Mark 6) for 8-10 minutes. 6 Remove, cover loosely with foil and allow to rest in a warm place for at least 10 minutes before serving.
cafe grounded As neighborhood café culture continues to thrive in Bristol, this month flavour introduces you to our new favourite stop-off… It’s worth reminding ourselves once in a while about the very privileged position we are in by living in the South West. By appreciating and supporting independents, our foodie lifestyle goes from strength to strength and more little gems continue to pop up. This is exactly what happened with Toby Holbrook’s business Café Grounded. Never one to miss an opportunity and thanks to the local support he received from his first premise on Church Road in Redfield, Toby snapped up the chance for Café Grounded take two. With an eye for design and the tools to realise his vision, Toby got stuck into the renovation of a rather beautiful and charming space positioned on Bedminster Parade, Bristol. Manager Hannah explains: “Grounded went down a storm in Redfield. Toby really does have a talent in seeking out the niche areas and styles to make his business fit in. He has real passion for what he does and on this site he’s emulated the same vibe that people so much loved in Redfield.” Grounded supports local suppliers, produce is either organic or fairtrade where possible and seasonality is a big consideration amongst the well-knitted team. “We try and cater for everyone – from the elder generation to mums and students,” she says “We welcome those who fancy popping in for an hour with a book and want to chill, or those that fancy a glass after work. There’s plenty of room here to get what you want from your own Café Grounded experience.”
Beautiful oak floors, warm reds and exposed brickwork team well with the recycled wooden tables, old school chairs and worn leather couches. Recycled doors make up panels on the bar as well as shelving the extensive drinks range. Towards the latter half of the week, you can enjoy later opening times and music. Jazz, folk and maybe a bit of acoustic will accompany your food. “All the performers are local so it is a great opportunity for them and helps us out too. It’s not too loud for those customers that wish to enjoy their meal or drink and still want to have a chat.” So give yourselves a pat on the back, buy another drink or cheeky dessert and keep up the good work, because by supporting the worthy, we won’t be hearing the last of the very places that keep our food culture in Bristol so vibrant.
Café Grounded 66-68 Bedminster Parade Bristol BS3 4HL Tel: 01179 231000 Visit: www.cafegrounded.co.uk
aio restaurant At a time when most of us are beginning to plan our summer holidays, this month flavour discovers a taste of the exotic that can be found on our very doorstep… Although we couldn’t be accused of not making up lost time, the British nation’s love affair with food, in my humble opinion, has been a relatively recent one. Yet as far back as The Romans - known to tactically vomit during feasts in order to make room for more - Italians have had a burning passion for simple, rustic food that is paralleled by very few other countries around the world. No one is prouder to fly the Italian flag in Bath than Mauro Matta and Salvo Cuomo, a duo who hail from Sardinia and Naples respectively, and whose15 combined years experience in the city’s most popular restaurants has most recently seen them start up their first solo venture, Aió. Aió, a well-known Sardinian phrase which roughly translates as ‘come and join us’, should give prospective diners a feel for what the restaurant is all about: the enjoyment of good food in the company of those you care most about.
Aió 7 Edgar Buildings George Street Bath BA1 2EE Tel: 01225 443900 Visit: www.aiorestaurant.co.uk 22
"We first became friends because we share the same love of entertaining” Mauro explains, “ and we enjoy nothing more than seeing people come together socially over dinner and wine - especially when it’s to experience the food we grew up eating.” The menu at Aió focuses heavily around a traditional open grill, something that the pair feels best showcases the fresh, simple flavours of their native cuisine.
To start, fresh anchovies served on toasted Pugliese bread with grilled radicchio and Pecorino shavings (£6.95) did exactly that. Nothing complicated happened here, and like so much Italian cooking, the quality of the produce being used was left to speak for itself. Salvo is particularly keen to emphasise the influence that North Africa has had on Mediterranean food, and these aromatic flavours are a prominent feature on the menu. The Fregola Sarda (£11.95) for example, a traditional Sardinian dish of giant cous cous relies on a delicate balance of spices for its spicy tomato sauce, which in this case was delicate enough not to overpower the fuller flavours of the fresh clams, mussels, and prawns that accompanied it. Finally a dessert of Cannoli Siciliani (£5.35), a pastry tube filled with ricotta, candied orange served with pistachio ice cream and flaked almonds is most definitely recommended for those with a sweet tooth. Adults: be careful in ordering this dangerously moreish offering to your little ones, as it’s guaranteed to become a regular request! The warmth of the colours throughout the restaurant is matched only by that of its owners. Nothing else can be said of Aió other than it is everything you would expect it to be, and if passion counts for anything in the restaurant industry, then this pair will be offering customers an authentic taste of home for years to come.
Aió, a well-known Sardinian phrase which roughly translates as ‘come and join us’, should give prospective diners a feel for what the restaurant is all about
Welcome to Spring Dining at The Royal Crescent TWO COURSE LUNCH £15.50 per person AFTERNOON TEA £22.50 per person AL FRESCO DINING As the sun shines FINE DINING IN THE EVENING FOR A SPECIAL TREAT Take an afternoon cruise on the canal in our wonderful Vintage Thames River Launch from April onwards. Available for lunch, afternoon tea and Champagne cruises. Quote ‘Flavour’ when making your reservation
spring lamb Norton St. Philip Rare Breed Lamb
6 Serves 4
Luke Richards is head chef at The Royal Crescent Hotel’s Dower House Restaurant. Spring and lamb are the perfect seasonal combination. This recipe demonstrates how delicious a slow roasted shoulder of lamb can be accompanied by the sticky juices from the pan to ensure that the flavours are natural and so speak for themselves. Norton St. Philip lamb is a rare local breed that enjoys a good lifestyle ensuring a full flavour from the first spring lamb. The dish is best served with wilted Savoy cabbage, parsnip crisps and plenty of lively conversation over Sunday lunch. Our menu at the Dower House changes with the seasons and we’re very excited about the flavours coming through over the next few months such as local English rhubarb, asparagus and spring cabbages. We look forward to welcoming you to spring and summer dining at the Crescent soon.
The Dower House Restaurant at the Royal York Crescent Hotel 16 Royal Crescent Bath BA1 2LS
Ingredients 1 x best end of lamb 500g shoulder of lamb 2 lamb kidneys 100g smoked pancetta 50g duck fat 4 medium sliced parsnips 1 Savoy cabbage 4 banana shallots 1 carrot 2 sticks of celery 3 cloves of garlic 1 bay leaf 1 pint of lamb stock ½ pint red wine ½ pint milk 100ml double cream Olive oil Sprig of thyme Seasoning Method 1 When buying the lamb ask the butcher to bone out the shoulder and French trim the best end to leave only four cutlet bones, halve the kidneys and remove any fat. 2 Heat a roasting tray with a little olive oil, place the lamb shoulder in the tray and place in the oven to seal. Once browned all over take out of the oven. Add the roughly chopped carrot, celery, one shallot and one clove of garlic, red wine and lamb stock, cover with foil and return to the oven at 140°C for 4 hours. 3 Once cooked take out the lamb, allow to cook then pick the meat into small pieces. 4 Stuff the meat into 4 small ovenproof moulds about an inch tall.
Reduce down the stock juices in the pan over the hob until you have a sticky sauce consistency. Peel the parsnips and cut into 4 discs to form the fondants, peel some slices of parsnips and set aside for parsnip crisps, remaining parsnip chop into small dice. Dice the remaining shallot and one clove of garlic then bring to the boil with the milk. Simmer for 10 minutes then strain and mix the milk with the cream until smooth and then season to taste. Shred the Savoy cabbage, blanch in boiling water for 1 minute, remove from water and rinse in cold water. Chop last shallot and pancetta and fry in olive oil with the cabbage, set to one side. One hour before serving pan fry the parsnip crisps and set to one side. Poach the parsnip fondants in butter and water. Pan fry the best ends and cook in the oven for 8 minutes on 180°C. Allow to rest, warm the shoulder in the moulds in the oven, pan fry the kidneys in olive oil. Finally assemble the dish on a bed of Savoy cabbage, topped with parsnip fondant add the lamb and garnish with the parsnip crisps and then dress with the warmed white sauce.
Tel: 01225 823 333 Visit: www.royalcrescent.co.uk 25
Walking, eating, & staying...
Exmoor Exmoor 2010 Visitor Guide The Exmoor 2010 visitor guide offers a wonderful introduction to Exmoor and West Somerset. If the breathtaking photographs are anything to go by, then it is easy to understand what the locals are so passionate and proud of. With a National Park, an Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty and spectacular coastline, Exmoor and West Somerset have many secrets to share and are waiting for you to discover it. For a free brochure call 01398 324599 Visit www.exmoorwalkingfestival.co.uk
North Devon and Exmoor Walking Festival April 29 - May 7
EXPLORE THE WONDERS OF THE SOUTH WEST THIS SPRING WITH THE 10TH NORTH DEVON AND EXMOOR WALKING FESTIVAL.
Festival organisers Active Exmoor have teamed up with the North Devon Area of Outstanding Beauty, which is celebrating its 50th anniversary, to provide 84 exceptional walks. There are outings to suit everyone, from hardened hikers looking for all day adventures through to shorter walks for sometime strollers looking to discover a little local magic. Bryan Cath, festival organiser, said: “Exmoor and North Devon have some of the west’s most stunning scenery and wildlife, and this is our biggest and best festival yet.”
a welcome return to the action-packed agenda, along with the popular photographic walks led by two professional photographers. These walks provide a great chance to experience how the professionals capture coastal scenes at Hartland Quay and the landscapes at Exmoor’s highest point near Dunkery Beacon. Some of this year’s outings link in with public transport timetables, so visitors can come to the area without cars and enjoy some linear and circular walks.
History, nature and literature buffs can indulge in special themed walks while gourmets can enjoy great local and homemade produce. 9 walks offer delicious farmhouse lunches (2 walks include the lunch in the walk’s price), and 15 of the walks have a plentiful supply of cream teas!
Mike Bishop from Active Exmoor said: “The festival will attract hundreds of visitors and we’ve already had bookings from Germany and Belgium. Without the support from local business like Bideford’s Farm & Cottage Holidays the festival would not be possible. We estimate that it will bring in over £150,000 to the local economy this year.”
Festival favourites such as the Tarka Trail and day trips to discover the unique island of Lundy make
To find out more and to book your walks Visit www.exmoorwalkingfestival.co.uk
Streamcombe.co.uk the gourmet bed & breakfast
Luxury accommodation and contemporary dining in a converted stone barn annexe close to Dulverton and Exmoor National Park. The best local, seasonal and wild ingredients feature in our tempting, modern menus. You also have the opportunity to combine a stay at Streamcombe with some time spent honing your culinary skills with in-house cookery courses.
Dulverton - Exmoor - Somerset
Little Brendon In a secluded rural location, this luxury home offers ensuite accommodation and home cooking of the highest quality. Enjoy locally sourced meat and home-grown vegetables and salads. A fantastic place to stay for walking on Exmoor...
Little Brendon Hill Farm Wheddon Cross Somerset TA24 7BG Telephone: 01643 841556 www.exmoorheaven.co.uk
Luxury North Devon Hotel Accommodation
Northcote Manor is an independent, cherished country house hotel set in twenty acres of mature woodlands, lawns and gardens overlooking the Taw River Valley. Visitors can enjoy roaring log fires after a brisk stroll through the grounds in the winter and a warm sun terrace with a long, cool drink after a meander around the fruit orchards in summer.
Burrington - Umberleigh - Devon - EX37 9LZ
Telephone 01769 560501 - email@example.com - www.northcotemanor.co.uk 30
Highcliffe House Highcliffe House is an award winning luxury guest house offering bed and breakfast, with stunning sea views overlooking the North Devon coastline. Itâ€™s boutique styled, providing elegant and romantic guest accommodation within Exmoor National Park. Highcliffe House has recently won Best Breakfast Award by www.visitbritain.com
Highcliffe House Sinai Hill Lynton Devon EX35 6AR Tel: 01598 752235 Visit: www.highcliffehouse.co.uk
The Royal Oak
A 12th Century farmhouse and dairy with contemporary comforts, The Royal Oak is set in the beautiful village of Winsford in the heart of the Exmoor National Park. The Oak offers relaxed comfort, inspiring food & wine, local ales, & warm, exceptional service. If you fancy a weekend retreat, a candle lit dinner, a well earned sportsmanâ€™s lunch or a quiet pint of Exmoor Ale then you will always be well catered for. The Royal Oak Winsford Exmoor National Park Somerset TA24 7JE Tel: 01643 851 455 Visit: www.royaloakexmoor.co.uk
must visit restaurants
T S U M
RESTAURANTS The Bell Inn, Frome
Bridge House, Beaminster
The Bathy Priory, Bath
Enjoy Egyptian cotton sheets, cosy log fires, breathtaking walks along the famous Jurassic Coast and awardwinning cuisine. The 13th Century House with its ancient timbers and inglenook fireplace provide traditional comforts as well as lifeâ€™s modern necessities. Diners can eat in the main restaurant or in the less formal, fun atmosphere of the new brasserie.
The Bath Priory's light and airy restaurant overlooks the beautiful, manicured gardens and the modern European cuisine is superb. Menus are created by Executive Chef Michael Caines MBE and Head Chef, Sam Moody. The restaurant is open to residents and non-residents alike and in the warmer months light lunches can be enjoyed on the sun terrace.
Must try: Warm salad of Dorset wood pigeon with lardons, Blue Vinney and pickled walnuts.
Must try: Slow roast fillet of Hinton Estate beef with horseradish mash and red wine jus.
Tel: 01308 862200 Visit: www.bridge-house.co.uk
Tel: 01225 331922 Visit: www.thebathpriory.co.uk
Goodfellows Seafood Restaurant, Wells Patrons of this well-loved restaurant can choose quiet and private dining upstairs or all the excitement of theatre-in-the-round downstairs, with the focus on a central, open kitchen where Adam and his team prepare fish freshly caught inland or off the coasts of Devon and Cornwall. You can choose from the frequently changing market menu or opt for the six-course tasting menu which showcases five of the most popular dishes plus dessert. All are cooked to order by the
The Bell Inn is a handsome free house pub on the outskirts of the pretty village of Rode in Somerset, just 5 miles from Frome and 10 miles from the historic city of Bath. The Bell is set in a characterful Grade II listed building. From late morning until last orders The Bell is at your service, whether it be for a late morning coffee, light lunch or 3 course dinner. Must try: Homemade chicken, ham and leek pie with potato croquettes and sugar snap peas.
Tel: 01373 830356 Visit: www.flatcappers.co.uk
team, to original recipes with a modern European template. Textures are light, flavours intense, everything on the plate designed to complement the natural taste of the fish. Adam has already achieved two red AA rosettes and has been named on three occasions in The Timesâ€™ Top 10 Restaurants. Must try: Lettuce and oyster soup with scallop ravioli
Tel: 01749 673866 Visit: www.goodfellowswells.co.uk
Whether it’s close to home or a little further afield, a newly opened venture or well-seasoned eaterie, the flavour team is always on the lookout for a gastro gourmet’s idea of heaven. This month we bring you eight of our current favourites throughout the region and hope that after paying them a visit, you’ll agree…
The Somerset Arms, Maiden Bradley This idyllic country retreat has established itself in just 18 months as a foodie destination on the borders of Somerset and Wiltshire. Crowned ‘UK Food Pub Of The Year’ at the end of 2009, the pub-withrooms’ acclaimed restaurant uses a wealth of local produce (including veg and herbs from their veg patch) to create proper pub
A little piece of France can be found within one of Bath’s most charming and popular independent restaurants. No.5 are committed to providing an authentic French dining experience with the finest of French cuisine. Using only the highest quality, freshly prepared and locally sourced ingredients, coupled with excellent service and a superb wine menu, this restaurant will quickly become an old favourite.
Find o more in ut review our ne month! xt
food with a twist. Chef and owner Rachel Seed has created a menu that includes hearty British staples as well as a range of dishes influenced by her time spent living in Spain. Real ale, local produce and a warm welcome, what more could you ask for? Must try: Monkfish, butter bean & chorizo stew.
Tel: 01985 844207 Visit: www.thesomersetarms.co.uk
The Riverside Restaurant, West Bay, Bridport
No. 5 Restaurant, Bath
must visit restaurants
Dorset’s long established and famed seafood restaurant this year celebrates 50 years in the same [Watson] family. Fresh fish and shellfish from local waters have always been paramount to the Riverside and everything is prepared for you at your time of order. Meat and vegetarian dishes, along with a full à la carte menu are always available in a friendly and informal atmosphere. Must try: Roast Lyme Bay skate with razor clams and crayfish, caper and red onion butter.
Tel: 01308 422011 Visit: www.thefishrestaurantwestbay.co.uk
Bell’s Diner, Bristol Well-respected restaurateur Chris Wicks took over Bell’s Diner nearly a decade ago and the restaurant is now firmly established at the forefront of the Bristol dining scene. Bell’s Diner has been showered with accolades and was voted the Best Restaurant in the South West by the Observer’s Food Monthly magazine in 2004 and 2006. Housed in a former grocery shop in the bohemian Montpelier district near the city centre, Bell’s offers cutting edge food and a stunning wine list in an intimate, relaxed environment. Must try: English goats' cheese in a beetroot wrapper with pickled vegetables, candied walnuts and a pickled foam.
Tel: 01179 240357 Visit: www.bellsdiner.com
Must try: Braised belly of pork with crisp pancetta, black pudding, apple purée and cider apple fondant.
Tel: 01225 444499 Visit: www.no5restaurant.co.uk
> flavour real food
real food festival T
he Real Food Festival 2010 is back for the third year and will again take place in London‘s Earls Court 7-10 May 2010. The Real Food Festival, is much, much more than a just a food event, or farmers’ market it’s packed with events for the whole family, including some very friendly livestock and provides a unique platform for hundreds of smaller producers for whom attendance at such shows is normally too costly and unrealistic. The festival selects the best small producers it can find and subsidises their attendance, giving them a fabulous opportunity to grow their businesses and offering visitors a one to one introduction to Britain’s real food heroes. This is increasingly important as recognition grows that ‘business as usual’ is not an option as far as food production is concerned and that the major issues of climate change, population growth, water scarcity and peak oil mean that Food Security is now firmly on the agenda at the highest governmental levels. The Real Food Festival is addressing these issues head-on by suggesting an alternative to the current, industrialised systems of agriculture, food manufacture and distribution. With an existing food system that has evolved to be a generator of profits rather than a system to feed people, the Real Food Festival promotes a different approach that aims to feed people good, nutritionally-dense food and drink that has been produced in a sustainable and ethical way. There is a growing desire to learn more about the provenance of our food and The Real Food Festival is the perfect place to connect with over 400 producers of some of the most wonderful food and drink you will find anywhere. Tapping in to this alternative system of more localised food production and by increasing our consumption of more traditional and nutritionally-dense food has a host of benefits ranging from health, through to benefits for the environment, animal welfare, bio-diversity and the simple basic pleasure of enjoying delicious wholesome food. Their simple idea is to re-connect people back to where their food comes from and to promote the idea of buying directly from the people who actually produce our food. 34
new this year A visit to the Real Food Festival could change your eating habits forever. Highlights of this year’s show include:
the real food market Come and meet over 400 producers of the some of the best food and drink you will find anywhere. Buying direct from the people who produce your food can prove more cost-effective than you might think and you and your family will enjoy better, healthier food. At the same time, when you buy direct you ensure that producers are getting a fair reward for their work and that your money stays within local communities instead of feeding faceless institutional shareholders all over the world.
top chefs in action As usual there’s an exciting array of chefs including Raymond Blanc, Oliver Rowe, Willie Harcourt-Cooze, Thomasina Miers, Giorgio Locatelli, Cyrus Todiwala, Jun Tanaka, and Ashley Palmer-Watts and new to this year’s festival are Carlo Cracco, Henry Harris and Vineet Bhatia. All of the chefs give their time for free, because each and every one of them embraces the core philosophy of supporting small producers.
riverford organic’s field kitchen The Field Kitchen is Riverford Organic’s award-winning restaurant on their farm and this year they are bringing it to the Real Food Festival so visitors can come and
> flavour real food
enjoy a generous feast of their freshly picked organic produce. They promise gutsy, no-nonsense food, simply cooked from the best ingredients and with reviews such as "The lunch of my life, 9/10" from Giles Coren, and "I knew it would be good, but not that good" from Gordon Ramsay, you can expect a real treat.
the real food festival mad hatter’s tea party Tregothnan, the Cornish Tea Garden have teamed up with the Rare Tea Company to create something truly sensational at the heart of the Festival. A Cornish garden will be re-created at the centre of the Festival from the grass under foot to bowers and arches of Cornish blooms. With the help of the celebrated jellymongers Bompass and Parr they will be staging a tea party fit for Alice. Visitors will be able to purchase a boxed cream-tea with their choice of infusions from the wonderful array offered by Tregothnan and Rare Tea Co. They will then be invited to either take this to a discreet table or join the Mad Hatter’s tea party where an elaborate table will be set.
chocolate unwrapped Chocolate Unwrapped is a dedicated chocolate show which takes place as part of Chocolate Week each October. They will be bringing 15 of their favourite chocolate companies, from the very best of the UK’s chocolatiers, the pick of some international chocolatiers and exciting new chocolate companies that you won’t have experienced before. At the October event exhibitors included Artisan du Chocolat, Sir Hans Sloane, Melt, paul.a.young, Rococo, Chococo, Paul Wayne Gregory, Chocolate by Trish, Lauden, Galler, Gorvett and Stone, DeAngelis, Ooh La La, Hotel Chocolat, Choc Chick and Thorntons.
growing food Increasingly we are getting more and more interested in growing our own food. There has been a phenomenal explosion of interest among the public for homegrown produce and healthy eating and this area within the show has been designed to help you with tips and knowledge to get started. Offering practical demonstrations on composting, planting seeds, digging up root crops, feeding worms and much, much more. Learn how to plant seeds, try it for yourself and take them away with you to grow at home. For more information about the Real Food Festival visit: www.realfoodfestival.co.uk
The Real Food Festival takes place in London’s Earls Court from 7-10 May. Please visit www.realfoodfestival.co.uk for more details.
> flavour real food
at the real food festival... orchard pig
heal farm fine foods
Life in our Somerset Orchards is pressing for apples, but not for the “Old Spot” hogs that call it home. Our awardwinning ciders and fruit juices are made from whole crushed apples and we never use concentrates, artificial flavourings or colourings. This all takes us rather a long time, fuss our pigs cannot understand, preferring to munch the apples where they fall!
Heal Farm Foods supply fine foods across the UK. Located deep in the North Devon countryside, an extensive and delicious selection of award-winning meat, poultry, game, pies and desserts are available. By carefully selecting fine cuts from traditional breeds, which produce "real" meat, you really can taste the difference.
T: 01458 851222 W: www.orchardpig.co.uk
T: 01769 574341 W: www.healfarm.co.uk
the real boar company
The Real Boar Company’s cured products are innovative and delicious, proving that the British can compete more than favourably in the charcuterie stakes! The boars are ethically farmed in 20 acres of woodland and grasses at the edge of the Cotswolds. Left to mature for up to 18 months ensures the meat has a rich, old-fashioned flavour and is low in cholesterol and saturated fats. A range of game and pork salamis and chorizos are on the menu here. The products are stocked in leading retailers such as Harvey Nichols, Daylesford and Jamie Oliver’s Italian chain, as well as 18 Michelin starred restaurants.
Mendip Moments make their ice cream by using their own milk and cream from their pedigree dairy heard of Holstein cows who graze on lush pastures overlooking the Somerset levels and Glastonbury Tor. Mendip Moment ice creams contains only natural ingredients and have no artificial flavours, colours or preservatives. Mendip offers an indulgent range of award-winning ice creams and a selection of excellent quality sorbets using water from their own Mendip spring. Stand No. 86.
T: 01249 782861 W: www.therealboar.co.uk
T: 01749 679400 W: www.mendipmoments.co.uk
> flavour real food
the bath pig company
Tim French and Matthew ‘Mash’ Chiles are the two directors of The Bath Pig Company who have spent over a year experimenting with various spices, casings and curing salt mixes along with different meat to fat ratios to come up with the perfect chorizo. The artisan skills used by smaller Spanish chorizo producers have been adopted by The Bath Pig Company who believe they can deliver British charcuterie that is tastier, more stylish and of similar price to that which is imported from lower welfare European suppliers.
Hambleden Herbs is a long established organic brand based in Wiltshire with a reputation for high quality products and efficient, friendly service. Their products have won 31 awards over the years for both their spices and teas. They also hold a firm belief that their organic products are better for you because of the way they are grown and treated after harvesting. This guarantees a delicious final product. T: 01980 630721 W: www.hambledenherbs.com
T: 07545 019873 W: www.thebathpig.com
All of Yarty Valley’s cordials are made by hand using old family recipes, not forgetting a few modern twists. Yarty Valley change their cordial flavours to match the season and the fruit available. With their strict policy of only using the finest fruit available and nothing from concentrate, Yarty Valley ensures that with every drop the highest standards are maintained. The only tool used is a 12-year-old Magimix to create what has come to be recognised as a truly artisan drink.
Rookbeare Farm lies in its own unspoilt valley in the heart of Devon where they make fabulous sorbets and beautiful ice creams. All their ingredients, Jersey milk, double cream and free-range eggs - are fresh, local and carefully selected for quality. What’s more, in keeping with the aim to create a pure, clean taste they use no emulsifiers, stabilisers or preservatives. You can buy their products at Waitrose, Ocado, Whole Foods Market, good farm shops and delis throughout the country, or better still, meet them in person on stand 148 and try their delicious lime daiquiri or passionfruit bellini!
T: 01363 866424 W: www.rookbearefarm.co.uk
long shelf life
As part of a new series, Helen Aurelius-Haddock takes a closer look at the culinary classics that should be adorning every cook’s bookshelf...
LONG SHELF LIFE... It was not too long ago that the very title of this book would have brought on sniggers and howls of derision from the inner junta of the foodie world. ‘English’ was never an adjective to entice a discerning diner through a restaurant door, and Jane Grigson knew that. In writing this book she was swimming against the tide as post-war British food was greatly overlooked in international eating circles up to that point in time. There were some amongst us that felt that British food had no true identity other than that adhering to the image of an overcooked roast and two veg dinner followed up by a glutinous stodgy pudding laced with school dinner custard. Although not a book dealing with the British Isles as an entity, Jane Grigson has attempted to encapsulate the essence of our national cooking identity in this no-nonsense book. In her introduction, she seems to get to the nub of the identity issue very early on by saying "English cooking,both historically and in the mouth,is a great deal more varied and delectable than our masochistic temper in this matter allows" fighting talk indeed for the sceptics. She defends the assertion by adding that English food is distinct, as its cooking has its roots in the domestic kitchens of the nation, and not in the fine dining establishments as seen for example in France. It is therefore different from the usual restaurant fare.
Her format follows the traditional route: Recipes classified into the usual categories, meat, poultry, game, bread, cakes, biscuits, so no real departure from the recipe book gold standard of its era. It’s unlikely to produce any true inspiration for an elegant dinner party, a crown roast of lamb is as classy as it gets. However, if you are puzzling over boiling a ham for a special occasion or wanting to make a Yorkshire pud that rises sky-high,
It may be that this book may not appeal to the multi-cultural tastes of many younger, modern cooks, but if you want conclusive proof that we did have a culinary identity before hand dived scallops, gastropub steak and ale pie and chicken tikka masala, then buy this book and cook your way through it. It's a revelation, albeit a very understated one.
English cooking, both historically and in the mouth, is a great deal more varied and delectable than our masochistic temper in this matter allows. Jane Grigson this is the book to have by your side. It has a wealth of recipes that have been handed down in domestic kitchens for centuries and they have been faithfully reproduced by their author to reflect our nation's core dishes. Only a few weeks ago I had a hankering to make Lardy cake and it was here that I found how to do it, it was delicious and it will be made again and again. Summer pudding, so often a front-page item on the myriad of food magazines when in season is here, as are Bakewell tart, oxtail soup and shepherd's pie.
A student of Bristol University back in the ‘70s, Helen has since exchanged her life in the West Country for the sunnier climes of Western France. You can follow her culinary musings across the Channel on her blog: www.haddockinthekitchen.wordpress.com
mind, body and soul
mind body & soul... We're always being told the right and wrong things to eat so this month, we thought weâ€™d offer you a couple of our favourite feel good foods right now - bon appetit!
guilt free pleasure Dedicated to celebrating the healthier attributes of the nation's favourite indulgence, Feeding Your Imagination is fast becoming one of the most innovative chocolate producers in the UK Launched by prestigious celebrity chef, spiritual healer and therapist Paul Da-Costa-Greaves, the man behind the company who produces a range of twelve uplifting flavours, each with its own health promoting property. Blending 100% organic & fairtrade chocolate with a range of health promoting ingredients, such as geranium rose, bergamot, cinnamon, ginger and grapefruit, black pepper, cardamom, peppermint, chilli, nutmeg, rose petal, goji berries, acai and green tea. Customers can choose there mood from twelve of the different flavours that promise to do everything from boosting your libido, smile and sleep, to improving any fatigue or indigestion. Arch House Deli who with Paul will be running a pink Champagne and chocolate tasting evening on Thursday April 29th where you can enjoy, nibble and lick Paul's mood enhancing indulgence along with a little healing thrown in!
Further details available directly from Arch House Deli. Tel: 01179 741166
mind, body and soul
somerset gold Andy Fussel's golden oils continue to grow in popularity, thanks to their clean, fresh taste and glowing health benefits. The British alternative to olive oil, his extra virgin rapeseed oil couldn't be much better nutritionally. It contains generous servings of the essential fatty acids Omega 3 and 6, lower bad saturated fats than olive oil and high amounts of good monounsaturated fats. It's also a good source of vitamin E. Fussels Fine Foods rapeseed oil also boasts a much higher smoking point than olive oil. This makes it ideal for frying, baking and roasting as well as a great base for marinades and dressings. Its subtle taste enhances, rather than masks the flavour of other ingredients. The success of this award-winning oil inspired Andy to produce another home grown variety: from sunflowers. His extra virgin sunflower oil also provides an excellent source of omega 6. "The quality of this oil is superb nothing like the mass produced stuff you can buy. It tastes just like summer!" enthuses Andy.
Andy Fussel's cold-pressed extra virgin rapeseed and sunflower oils are grown, pressed and bottled on his farm in Rode, North Somerset.
Fussels Fine Foods Church Farm Rode, Nr Frome Somerset BA11 6PW Tel: 01373 831286 Visit: www.fusselsfinefoods.co.uk
Jamie Oliver’s televised expose of school dinners opened our eyes to the situation behind some canteen doors. In an age of ‘you are what you eat’, the shocking revelations sparked a change for the better. This month flavour pays a visit to three local schools to witness first hand the benefits of healthy eating for our children.
King Edward’s Pre-Prep and Nursery King Edward’s Pre-Prep and Nursery Weston Lane Bath BA1 4AQ Tel: 01225 421681 Visit: www.kesbath.com
With wellies and waterproof trousers being a part of the school uniform, the first steps a King Edward’s child makes are taken in a school that places just as much emphasis on being outside than in. Head caterer Tracy Mortimer enthuses about the emphasis the school places on a healthy, active lifestyle and the encouragement it gives to every child to learn about the process of food production with the help of some well-designed vegetable patches and a potting shed. The formality of eating in a stark dining hall with plastic cutlery and self-service trays is a thing of the past here as children sit down to a laid table and jugs of water. The food is placed in the centre of the tables and under the watchful eyes of their teacher, the children are allowed to serve themselves. Tracy explains “A lot of the children are unable to eat as a family when they get home due to
parents’ busy schedules, so we think it’s important to emulate that family environment ourselves.”
A lot of the children are unable to eat as a family when they get home due to parents’ busy schedules Children aren’t allowed to bring in their own lunches to discourage picky eaters and the element of choice is minimised as to not overwhelm the children with food decisions at an age where it isn’t wholly necessary. “The children can chose from the extensive salad bar if they aren’t happy with what they’re eating, but we’ve found this approach has been very successful. Apart from the allergy intolerances which we cater for, all the children enjoy what they are served up.”
The importance of a food lifestyle is emphasised throughout the school. The children make regular trips to local farms and are encouraged to grow their own salad boxes and sell them in the annual ‘May plant sale’. Healthy eating is taught through other areas of the curriculum and each year group has its own vegetable patch in the garden to which they make regular weekly trips. Most recently, Tracy has teamed up with parent Richard Bertinet from The Bertinet Kitchen Cookery School to provide an after-school cooking club for the students in the very near future. Richard Bertinet has already hosted workshops and two food awareness projects and the children jump at the opportunity to get their fingers dirty in the kitchen. The food policy at King Edward’s extends beyond what is on the child’s plate but encompasses everything from food production to the social enjoyment of eating.
What the catering team says: Have the main changes for healthy eating in schools been recent ones? There has definitely been a larger emphasis on its importance in the last ten years. The government has started changing things and certain celebrity campaigns, like Jamie Oliver’s School Dinners has brought about a larger awareness with parents. In some cases, this is the children’s main meal of the day, so it has to be good. What’s your personal opinion about the importance of healthy eating? As a mother, it’s natural to want to give your child the best food to eat. It’s about getting the balance right and not forcing anything upon them. At King Edward’s we try to eradicate fussy eaters and peer pressure by not
allowing the children to bring in their own lunch boxes and making the choice of food simple. Do you think the children are more receptive to healthier food?
highly important. A lot of the parents have their own allotments so they are aware of eating fresh, seasonal and local.
I’ve often found that children have to have something at least three times before they like it! Of course we can’t work miracles, the children still like pizza for example which I will make as an occasional treat, but it’s all produced from scratch. What would you say about the parents’ support of the healthy eating targets you employ? All of the parents are interested and the majority regards it as
What the students say: I love the food Mrs Mortimer gives us. I help to cook at home. We grow our own tomatoes, lettuce and carrots. I would like to be a chef and a farmer when I grow up so I can eat all of the leftovers. But no chilies – I hate them! Ben, aged 5 I think casserole and cous cous is really yummy but beetroot juice is disgusting! We have a farm at home and I like to help out with the animals. I would like to be a farmer but I don’t want to clean out the horses. Yuk! Olivia, aged 5 I like to visit the farms, those are my favourite lessons. I like eating at school, the food is good. Sophie, aged 5 43
The Royal High Junior School The Royal High Junior School Hope House Lansdown Road BA1 5ES Tel: 01225 422931 Visit: www.royalhighbath.co.uk
Maintaining a high standard within every aspect of a child’s education is paramount to The Royal High School in Bath, who believe firmly in the credo that a healthy body leads to a healthy mind. Their healthy eating policy has seen the school walk away with a Healthy Schools Award as well as a Healthy Early Years Award, keeping the school on the tip of its toes in providing the best healthy service it can. Regarded as a mother figure within the school, head caterer Ruth Patton gets ready to pass on her expertise and move into retirement. “We have a small but hard working team. It’s been a pleasure to work in the school for nearly 14 years.” Ruth follows the government guidelines for healthy food in schools and devises the menu herself. A Healthy School’s coordinator also makes regular visits to advise the school on the menu and a nutritionist who has anaylsed the menus to check the balance is right for the children. The school has a weekly Gardening Enrichment Club for pupils aged 8-11 who have grown simple items like cress, beetroot and potatoes.
They also learn about cuttings and growing from seeds. The children harvest apples from the school’s trees in summer and during the autumn months, the nursery pupils make apple turnovers with the harvested fruit to take home. The nursery and reception students cook every week at school and the older pupils have the chance to attend a Cookery Club. The school’s IT portal is updated with popular videos of cookery demonstrations carried out by the Lunch Club of Year 7 and 8 students which has proved a success in creating awareness around the school. Ruth will be sadly missed. Her fresh bread and homemade touch to the food leaves a lot to live up to. Prospective pupils often comment on the delicious hot lunches when they visit, especially if they are used to sandwiches for their lunch. “The challenge is to make the food taste as good being cooked in large quantities as it would if you had cooked it at home,” she says “We are catering for a wide variety of tastes and we always encourage the children to have a small portion of new choices to avoid them feeling overwhelmed by anything different.”
We are catering for a wide variety of tastes and we always encourage the children to have a small portion of new choices to avoid them feeling overwhelmed by anything different
What the catering team says: Would you agree that celebrity campaigns and TV documentaries have made a difference to healthy eating in schools? Jamie Oliver is the obvious figure that everyone thinks about with his enthusiasm for food and his TV campaigns. We know that many of his concerns about processed food are not an issue for our school as we have always promoted “cooking from scratch” where possible. What is your personal opinion about healthy food? Healthy eating is important but it’s a case of educating the children from a young age and
getting the balance right. We want all the girls to be interested in trying new things and to develop a healthy relationship with food. Pupils understand that it’s all about balance and that they need the right kind of fuel for the active lives they lead. What wider benefits are there to the food you offer pupils? We know that our pupils have good concentration levels and are usually very attentive in lessons. The benefit of the new initiatives in school food has been a chance to celebrate all the good things that we already do here and also to see how we can make the school lunch experience even better. fresh, seasonal and local.
What the students say: I like vegetables, they make me strong! Daisy, aged 5 My mum and me have an allotment and we grow lots of vegetable at home. Rosie, aged 11 We know what food is healthy but we are allowed to bring cakes to school to share with our friends on our birthdays. Alice, aged 10
Sidcot School, North Somerset Sidcot School Oakridge Lane Winscombe North Somerset BS25 1PD Tel: 01934 843102 Visit: www.sidcot.org.uk
Sidcot School is at the forefront of highlighting the importance of modern food production and sustainability. The catering team holds a wealth of experience in the food industry and consciously makes continuous efforts to reduce waste and highlight the importance of balanced diets. With a new GCSE level Sidcot Assessed Course ‘From Plough to Plate’ being introduced to the curriculum in September of this year, Sidcot provides students with a varied and hands-on introduction to the academic and practical elements of real food production, both in the UK and abroad. Sidcot’s beautiful and bountiful surroundings provide the perfect opportunity for improving environmental awareness. This opportunity hasn’t gone unnoticed by Yeo Valley, an organic farm and dairy
business based in Somerset, who are in negotiations with Sidcot to farm some of the school’s 160 acre plot of land. Sidcot will provide educational support and introduce a new generation into the benefits of organic farming and sustainable living. Sue Crake and Trish Wilkins who have been working at Sidcot for 34 years and 7 years respectively are loyal deputies to catering manager Hans Bless. Both happily hung up their chef’s whites in order to enter the catering kitchen at Sidcot. Sue says, “The food is fresh, top quality and locally sourced. It’s nothing less than what you would expect to find in a restaurant.” She adds: “We use organic fruit and veg where possible as well as organic milk. There are always fresh, homemade soups on every day and
we use three local butchers.” Trish continues: “Food production has changed, it was healthy, then went through a tricky stage in the ‘70s and ‘80s and now we’re getting back to basics once again.” The focus here is to get the students involved in food production and have responsibility over their decisions. Food is an interactive tool within the school. A charity day named ‘Disaster Fund Lunch’ has been introduced once a term to raise money for national and international events. The children sacrifice their lunch for a bowl of soup and bread and the money saved goes towards the chosen charity. For after school activities, the children can choose to improve their cookery skills, get involved with the gardening clubs and are always welcome to help out with our very own chickens!
We use organic fruit and veg where possible as well as organic milk. There are always fresh, homemade soups on every day and we use three local butchers 46
What the catering team says: What are the main challenges of mass catering?
How far do the students’ opinions count?
Sue: “I find it harder to cater for 3 or 4 people than I do for 600. When you first start it seems daunting but if you have the right equipment and space then it’s fine. After experience you learn what the children roughly do and don’t like and that way you can reduce waste. I devise a large proportion of the menu myself and order the quantities. It’s like second nature now.”
Trish: “The catering manager Hans meets regularly with students from the Student Council to discuss menu choices and special events that require catering. As a day and boarding school, Sidcot provides breakfast, lunch and dinner each and everyday, food is therefore a key consideration for most students, so it is important we listen to what they want.”
How closely regulated are the meals?
Trish “The menus are regulated internally. We change them regularly based on what’s in season and we try to keep the children and staff from getting bored by cooking the same things.”
What the students say: I think it helps having the student council. It gives us a voice for what we want. The food here is good and there’s always an option to eat healthily. Hatty, aged 17 I’m lucky as my mum cooks healthy food at home and I play a lot of sport anyway. I haven’t got any complaints about the food here though, the salmon is generally everyone’s favourite. Steve, aged 16 It’s good to be in the gardening club and the student council. I like gardening here and help Dad out when we get home. But my little sister is a better cook than me! Daisy, aged 9.
> flavour bart
Bake with Bart If some of your earliest cooking memories consist of licking the sugary dough mixture off the back of Granny’s spoon, or lavishly sprinkling hundreds and thousands onto fairy cakes, then your inner child will be very excited to hear about Bart Spices’ new Home Baking range, which launches at the beginning of this month. Commenting on the new range, Bart Spices managing director Matthew Shaw said “Our long-standing baking products such as baking powder, bicarbonate of soda and Fairtrade vanilla sugar have become so popular that we’re expanding the range to include sugar balls, jelly diamonds and mini marshmallows.”
M att he w Sh aw s MD of Ba rt Sp ice
Matthew continues: “We’ve always prided ourselves on looking at new ways to make cooking more fun, getting children involved in the kitchen has seen a huge revival in recent years, so we want our customers to know they can count on us to keep the kitchen cupboard stocked with the right ingredients.”
To celebrate the launch, Bart Spices are offering customers a 25% online discount and the chance to order a FREE set of recipe postcards, some of which are brought to life by online video demonstrations. As well as being free from artificial colours and flavours, the new range comes in colourful new packaging, which will encourage little ones to reach on tipped toes for the nearest apron and give parents the perfect opportunity to recreate their fondest childhood moments at the same time.
To find out more visit: www.bartspices.com
> flavour supermarket
> flavour supermarket
As a parliamentary bill for a new supermarket ombudsman passes its way through the courts, flavour takes a look at the action being taken to protect our suppliers and producers and what this could mean for us as consumers... What is an ombudsman? In this case, a supermarket ombudsman would act as an independent regulating body within the grocery market sector. It’s designed to police unfair abuses of market power by larger supermarket chains, which can have damaging effects for farmers, suppliers and consumers. An ombudsman is designed to curtail the excessive power of retailers who are able to dictate market conditions and force suppliers to accept conditions and terms that are to their detriment. How is an ombudsman going to help? The Competition Commission is an independent public body that conducts frequent investigations into the regulation of large industries. It requires retailers to include the Groceries Supply Code of Practice in their supply agreements but it does not place a duty for those retailers to comply. It is thought that due to the current climate of fear and the high dependency level of suppliers on large retailers, this form of justice is rendered relatively useless. The Commission has now recommended the government to impose an ombudsman since supermarkets have at times, failed to voluntarily adopt the scheme. What are the benefits to me, the consumer? If an ombudsman effectively enforces the Groceries Supply Code of Practice, there will be a number of consumer benefits: • The choice of products will be preserved for the consumer as small suppliers and products will not be driven from the market through anti-competitive practices. • The choice of retailers will be preserved and/or enhanced. Small retailers will not be driven from the market through due to anticompetitive practices of larger retailers. New retailers will be encouraged to enter the market also. • All suppliers will be better able to plan their businesses and yield efficiencies. They would be able to invest in innovation, new products and product quality, therefore improving choice and competition for the consumer.
What are the damaging effects of supermarkets? Promotions and special offers are often conducted at the expense of the suppliers. Several practices set out in the Competitions Commission’s report show that supermarkets are extracting profits from suppliers and in these recessionary times, are posting record profits. With control over the food supply chain, supermarkets can dictate their terms of business and shift the burden of risk from themselves onto their suppliers. For example, farmers are forced at times to bear the cost of unsold produce and are often not paid a fair price. It’s not only suppliers and producers that are at the hands of big chains; the environment is also made to suffer. Produce can clock up to thousands of food miles, and large amounts of food packaging and wastage make a significant contribution to landfill sites too. Surely an ombudsman would increase prices and add cost to the supply chain? An improvement in the supply chain causes fairer competition, which brings about more choice and lower prices to the consumer. If there isn’t an ombudsman however, then monitoring and enforcement will be undertaken by the Office of Fair Trading, the cost of which will be picked up by the taxpayers. Does this affect the developing world? Yes. The impact reaches beyond UK shores. A number of development organisations such as ActionAid UK, the Fairtrade Foundation and Traidcraft have argued for a number of years that what is relevant to UK suppliers is just as relevant to suppliers from developing countries. The worry is that not only can supermarkets force down prices, but that they can also breach certain terms and conditions by changing agreements that cut into suppliers’ profits.
WHAT THE EXPERTS SAY... Andrew George MP has been working tirelessly for over ten years in leading calls for a supermarket ombudsman. Mr. George chairs the Grocery Market Action Group which brings together suppliers’ organisations and academic experts including Friends of the Earth, Traidcraft, the National Farmers’ Union and the British Brand Group, as well as many others. “After ten years and five reports, it is crucial that the campaign keeps up the pressure on the government to follow the advice of its own Competition Commission and create an ombudsman without further delay.” www.andrewgeorge.org.uk
Rob Ward, Director of the Honest Labelling Campaign and one of the UK’s foremost experts in food provenance, created his website to expose the truth behind misleading supermarket labels. The website is an inclusive and anonymous tool for shoppers and food producers to work together to expose misleading food products. “We have to nurture these people, they represent the fabric of our rural society and when they are gone, they will be gone for good.” www.honestlabelling.com
Sam Allen has been working for leading organic charity The Soil Association for a number of years. In her spare time Sam has been heading up the ‘NO Tesco in Stokes Croft’ campaign. The project has been fighting against the opening of another Tesco store, which would jeopardise the future of the existing independent retailers who make up a large part of the area’s character. “Food often travels long distances while creating large quantities of packaging and food waste. Supermarkets devastate local economies - the money they make goes straight to shareholders. Their short term gain is our long term loss.” www.notescoinstokescroft.org.uk 51
dirty girl diary
Known for giving the big two to the big four, Rebecca Sullivan is a staunch soldier for the green revolution who worked on the launch of both the Real Food Festival in London and Slow Food Nation in San Francisco. Picking up her London life six years ago, Rebecca recently moved to a smallholding in the Cotswolds to embark on various foodie adventures such as digging trout ponds, building smokehouses, installing beehives and making jam for her community-supported agriculture project ‘Dirty Girl Kitchen’. With her finger firmly on the pulse, each month Rebecca gives recommendations that no foodie should be without...
GOT A SPARE £10,000 LYING AROUND? BETTER GET IN QUICK! HERE’S ONE WAY TO NOT LOSE YOUR COOKING SKILLS ‘Forgotten Skills of Cooking’ reconnects readers with the cooking skills of previous generations that are in danger of being lost, and covers everything from dairy and hens to bread and preserving. A guide to traditional cookery skills has over 700 recipes, including chapters such as 'Dairy', 'Fish', 'Bread' and 'Preserving' and explains processes such as smoking mackerel, curing bacon and making yogurt and butter. It also includes ideas on how to use those forgotten cuts of meat, baking bread and cakes and even eating food from the wild. Available from www.amazon.co.uk
WHERE’S THE CHEESE GONNA ROLL NOW? It was a sad day in Gloucestershire when the annual cheese-rolling event at Cooper’s Hill was cancelled due to health and safety concerns, not because organisers fear that those taking part will hurt themselves, but because the competition has become too popular and is attracting
unmanageable crowds. The organisers said: "The attendance at the event has far outgrown the location where it has traditionally been held for several hundred years. Last year, more than 15,000 people tried to attend, which is more than three times the capacity of the site." It has long been regarded as one of the most curious – and hazardous – of English springtime pastimes. Competitors chase a large round of cheese down a steep hill in Gloucestershire, risking ridicule and broken limbs. The committee have assured me they are doing all within their power to find better ways of controlling the crowds, stop the roads from getting clogged up and make sure that ambulances can get through when, almost inevitably, a competitor is injured so that event can get back on the calendar.
The world's oldest malt whisky went on sale with a price tag of up to £10,000 a bottle. The Mortlach 70-year-old Speyside was sampled by a select group of tasters in a ceremony at Edinburgh Castle recently.
Only 54 full-size bottles, costing £10,000 each, and 162 smaller bottles, at £2,500, are available. The whisky has been released under Gordon and MacPhail's Generations brand. It was filled into its cask on 15 October 1938 at the order of John Urquhart, the grandfather of the firm's joint managing directors, David and Michael Urquhart. The Urquharts described it as a malt ‘without comparison’. Available from www.masterofmalt.com
> flavour the
This month flavour calls into to The Albion to discover why it still remains a firm Clifton favourite after so many years.
the albion Someone recently asked me what warrants a review in a magazine. A good question, to which there’s really no definitive answer. There are of course the obvious reasons - a new opening, an anniversary, an award, a new appointment in the kitchen, to name but a few. This does however pose the question as to whether a restaurant needs to change in some way to become newsworthy, what about those, like our beloved Bridget Jones, who possess the X factor ‘exactly as they are’? The Albion in Clifton - a Grade II listed building dating back to the 17th Century is regarded by many as one such establishment. Completely refurbished back in 2005, it now boasts tastefully sympathetic fixtures and fittings: think open log fires, lots of light wood furniture and flagstone floors. The place is always bustling and for those who prefer the idea of a more intimate meal, there’s a quieter dining area upstairs as well as private dining rooms for larger parties if required. The Albion’s former head chef Jake Platt played an integral part in putting it on the map by championing forgotten regional delicacies such as Bath Chaps (the lower portion of a pig’s cheek). It might now be commonplace to see more unusual cuts of meat like this on a gastropub’s menu, but Platt undoubtedly instigated the renaissance in Bristol. The Albion Boyce's Avenue Bristol BS8 4AA Tel: 01179 733522 Visit: www.thealbionclifton.co.uk 54
Clarke Oldfield has now taken the reigns at The Albion and has quite wisely kept his menus very similar in a bid to retain what people have come to love about The Albion so much: bold dishes made up of the very best local fare on offer.
Here’s a tip for you: if you’re ever torn between two dishes, let the person serving you decide; chances are they know the menu much better than you. So, as tempting as the quail and chestnut terrine with crab apple jelly sounded, I was reliably informed that the squid, morcilla and almond aioli (£7.50) was even better again. It’s very difficult to go wrong when pairing pork and seafood, and although it might be more common to see chorizo in a dish like this, the rich Spanish blood sausage used here took it to dizzy new heights. Having seen it sail past my table, I was disappointed not be able to try the dry aged single rib of Aberdeen Angus, oxtail and chips as it was a sharing dish. I opted instead for the Dover sole and brown shrimp (£19.00). Described by Mr. Ramsay as ‘The Rolls-Royce of the fish world’, it’s difficult not to fall instantly in love with its light and sweet taste; be prepared nonetheless to navigate your way through plenty of little bones! Finally a tart tatin with Somerset apple brandy and vanilla custard (£6.25) restored my faith in a French classic after a bad experience on the F-word final some months previously. The apples used here were given sufficient time to caramelise, their sweet juices being absorbed by some expertly crafted puff pastry. The wait was longer than the 15 minutes stated on the menu, but on balance, totally worth it. As a closing thought, The Albion’s food prices, although by no means extortionate, make it a regular haunt only for those lucky enough to have a permanent BS8 address. For the rest of us it remains a place to go on special occasions, when its well-appointed menu never fails to disappoint the more adventurous diner.
What people have come to love about The Albion so much are the bold dishes made up of the very best local fare on offer...
> flavour cycle
BIKE! This month we swapped walking boots for helmets and spoke to the Cycling City project about one of Bristolâ€™s many popular cycling routes...
About the Path Escape the traffic and explore this wonderful 13-mile off-road route that links the cities of Bristol and Bath. The Bristol & Bath Railway Path is a fully tarmaced, easily accessible route for walkers, cyclists and disabled people. Whether you fancy a leisurely stroll with friends, an encounter with wildlife or a refreshing journey to work, the Path has something to offer everyone. Longer journeys or round trips can be created by following one of the many trails that cross the route and you can join the Path wherever you like. Attractions along the way include The Dramway Railway, a renovated Mill set in woodland as well as a forest park. You could also pick up a trail that follows sculptures created by local artists to reflect the character of the path itself. So what are you waiting for? Put on your walking shoes or get on your bike and enjoy the Bristol & Bath Railway Path! For more information visit: www.bristolbathrailwaypath.org.uk
More traffic free paths are being built thanks to Greater Bristol's Cycling City project. New routes can be found at www.betterbybike.info/completed-schemes Details of other routes can be found at www.betterbybike.info/leisure-rides
> flavour cycle
NEED HELP TO GET STARTED? As part of Greater Bristol's Cycling City project, local councils are offering cycle training lessons to all residents. Visit www.betterbybike.info/cycle-training or call 01179 222877 to book.
ON THE BEATEN TRACK... Porto Lounge This wonderful café/bar is a great stop off point for anyone looking to take a quick breakfast stop. The bar serves all day breakfasts as well as great coffees and cake. Porto Lounge is located just off the cycle path after Staple Hill Tunnel. Porto Lounge 765 Fishponds Road, Fishponds, Bristol. BS16 3BS Tel: 01179 024567
Avon Valley Railway and Café This is a wonderful little café and railway museum. The Buffet Café serves homemade cakes, lunches and other tasty treats daily between 10am – 5.15 everyday. So a great coffee break for the discerning cyclist. Avon Valley Railway Company Limited Bitton Station, Bath Road, BS30 6HD Tel: 01179 325538
Bird in Hand The 'Bird in Hand' is just off the cycle path. This is a perfect stop for a refreshing and rewarding drink. You will find the unique atmosphere of a traditional English country pub and the warm friendly welcome that always goes with it! Bird in Hand High Street, Saltford Bristol BS31 3EJ. Tel: 01225 873335
Marlborough Tavern This is a Flavour favourite and the perfect place to finish. At The Marlborough Tavern you’ll find a warm welcome, freshly prepared home cooked food and a friendly service. Perfectly located in a beautiful spot near to the centre of Bath, just around the corner from The Royal Crescent. The Marlborough Tavern 35 Marlborough Buildings, Bath, BA1 2LY Tel: 01225 423731
Donâ€™t forget to check our website for more information on events coming up this year!
Winsley, Bradford on Avon BA15 2JB [t] 01225 864948 www.hartley-farm.co.uk
Chef, food writer, author and mother Siân Blunos is passionate about children’s health and their eating habits, and believes that expanding your knowledge of food can only help benefit your child.
WARM MANGO ORANGE AND CARDAMOM PUREE A real taste of the Orient – this is a lovely accompaniment to rice pudding, ice cream or over a fresh fruit salad.
ripe mango (approximately 12oz/400g) when peeled and destoned • Juice 1 large orange • 1 cardamom pod Method Peel and destone mango, chop into even sized pieces and place in a pan with the orange juice and cardamom pod. Cover with a lid and cook gently for about 8 minutes, depending on the ripeness of the mango. Leave to cool, remove cardamom pod and blitz.
FRUIT Every part of an orange, including the rind, has nutritional value. Its juice has become an indispensable part of our daily breakfast, being held up as a fresh and perfectly nutritious way to start a day. Oranges are loaded with vitamin C, are rich in vitamins A and B and also contain minerals like iron, sodium, potassium, magnesium, phosphorus, copper and sulphur. Exposure to air reduces the amount of vitamin C so it’s advisable to consume oranges soon after they’re cut. Orange juice should be kept in the refrigerator to preserve its vitamin C content. Needless to say, the health benefits for our little ones are endless. Vitamin C boosts the immune system of the body and Vitamin B6 helps in the production of haemoglobin beta-carotene, which attributes to the orange colour of the fruit and helps in fighting illness and protecting our cells from damage. While calcium helps in bone health, magnesium helps in maintaining the blood pressure. Potassium is good for the health of the cardiovascular system and folic acid helps in brain development.
Apart from the vitamins and minerals, oranges contain more than 170 phytonutrients, natural compounds found in plants and vegetables that help in maintaining good health. As well as containing a good amount of fibre, they aid digestion, and mum will be glad to hear that they’re even reputed to make your skin glow! Just be aware that even fresh juice contains natural fruit sugars that can be acidic on children’s teeth so you may wish to dilute it.
COOKING FOR COCO Like most busy mothers, Siân wanted to feed her baby well, but didn't have a lot of free time on her hands. Her solution was to develop recipes using a wide variety of fresh, available foods, which could be batch-cooked and used to stock the freezer. Now, she always has a range of delicious dishes on hand, and you can too. With a little care and planning you can give even the youngest of children the experience of good, fresh food, which is tasty and nutritious.
To order a personally signed copy of Cooking for Coco for only £8.50 (including postage), RRP £9.99, email firstname.lastname@example.org
Recipes taken from Cooking for Coco by kind permission of Carroll and Brown Publishers Limited.
Style & Innovation = Eco kitchens
19 Zetland Road Redland Bristol BS6 7AH Tel: 01179 098 090
Spaces you'll love to live in...
Nordic Ware www.nordicware.com 01213 538384
Giant Cupcake Pan The Giant Cupcake pan is brilliant a gift for anyone who loves baking. The Cupcake pan is very versatile and can be used for birthdays, parties or for someone especial.
Butterfly Cake Pan The Butterfly Cake Pan is one of their more recent additions and can be used to create a spectacular Butterfly birthday cake, or just as interestingly, a beautiful jelly!
Mini Heart Pan
The Mini Heart Pan, which is perfect for that special romantic summer picnic or even for a more innovative dinner part.
The Castle Bundt is a wonderful bake pan for a birthday cake for a fun party
Nordicware (creator of the world famous Bundt® Pan) back in 1946 have sold over 70 million pans worldwide and the figure continues to grow especially in the UK where they are now widely distributed in many department stores and most good cookshops around the country. Nordicware say that ‘anything that can be baked or ‘set’ into shape can be used in their cast aluminium non-stick Bundt pans’, so let your imagination run wild and go for it! There are over 70 different shapes available like a Giant Cupcake, 3-D Snowman, Castle, Stadium, Pirate Ship, Christmas Tree, Tractor, Trains, Igloo, Rose, Daisy, Caterpillar, Garden Bugs and Cathedral to name but a few! Call Nordicware on 01213 538384 to find out where your nearest stockist is!
chef profile Name: Lee Evans Head chef at: The Wheatsheaf, Combe Hay Originally from: Herefordshire
My earliest food memories are mainly associated with my nan. We would go to the market in Ross-on-Wye and taste the cheese to take home for lunch, which normally consisted of freshly made bread, cheddar and onions from the garden. My nan always had whole rabbits and buckets of fresh water eels in her pantry – she was a really keen cake maker too. I knew I wanted to make a career out of food from a very early age; I never really wanted to do anything else. I had my first set of knives at the age of 14 but had to leave them in the Head of Year’s office until my catering lesson at school. It wasn’t until I started my first job with Stuart McLeod at Castle House in Hereford that I realised fine dining and Michelin style cooking was where I wanted to be. After spending my whole career in Country House Hotels such as the Bath Priory and Holbeck Ghyll in the lakes, I wanted to move into an area of the industry where I could concentrate solely on the food in a more informal setting. I met the owners Adele and Ian Barton and all our goals were set on the same target
so it seemed like a natural choice. Three years on, the rest is history. The menus are devised so as not to alienate members of the public. We have fine dining dishes on the same menu as steak and chips or a fish pie. Seasonality is a big thing at the Wheatsheaf too; I hate for instance, seeing asparagus on menus in January, where is the logic in that? We only use the freshest ingredients possible here. For example, the fishmongers phone me up in the morning from the day boats to see what I want and it’s with me later that night. At The Wheatsheaf we aim to serve Michelin quality food in a relaxed, comfortable and friendly environment. Who says that if you want good food you have to put a shirt and tie on and not a pair of shorts? You’ll get quality service, an extensive wine list and amazing food at reasonable prices. Quality doesn’t have to break the bank but I do believe you get what you pay for, as in all walks of life. We have our own chickens and ducks laying delicious eggs and a kitchen garden which provides when it can. At the moment we have great wild garlic coming through the hedgerows, as well as wild plums, sloes and elderflower during the seasons. We have a Bramley apple tree
that provides a large harvest each year, and we’re growing many types of summer berries too. When game season is in, Ian the owner goes hunting and provides me with partridge and pheasant. I hate cooking for other chefs! I know how fussy and picky chefs are when eating other people’s food. I like to keep it simple when I get home, as I spend all day cooking I’m quite happy with beans on toast, fajitas or a fish finger sandwich! I can eventually see myself running my own successful busy restaurant. I would love a Michelin star but if it comes, it comes. It is secondary to having happy customers and bums on seats. The knowledge that my team and myself are producing quality food and enjoy doing it is definitely enough for me.
The Wheatsheaf Combe Hay BA2 7EG Tel: 01225 833504 Visit: www.wheatsheafcombehay.co.uk
Same-Same But Different
Placed in the heart of Bath’s charming café culture, sits Same-Same, a café that’s known for being just that little bit different. Owners Rob Indge and Toni Waterfall met and fell for each other at Same-Same, so the decision to buy the lease when it came on the market was a natural one. Four-and-a-half years later, the pair are deservedly proud of their achievements. Rob gained a passion for food whilst living in the South of France and was keen to change the menu after the takeover. “We wanted to create an interesting, skilful menu consisting of dishes you may not think to cook at home.” The delicious tapas menu ensures a friendly and relaxed style of eating that the couple and customers have come to love so much, with every dish being designed to inspire. Everything at Same-Same, from their spicy ketchup recipe, to sourdough bread, meatballs, cakes, dressings and ice creams is made on the premises. As well as a gourmet sandwich menu at lunchtime, they now have a huge blackboard displaying their main courses and tapas options, ensuring that dishes change regularly and with the seasons. Current mains include Jerusalem artichoke risotto with chicken ragout, macaroni cheese with portobello mushrooms and hazelnut pesto, and home-cured salmon kedgeree with poached egg. Certainly a lunchtime menu with a difference. Toni says, “If putting in a 60-hour week has one advantage, it’s the fact that I know all my regular customers, who only have to give me a simple nod to place their usual order”. The pair seem to have attracted a cult following with the breakfast crowd and have a fan base consisting of everyone from yummy mummies to businessmen; students to the more mature diner. Now with Christophe Pelaud - formerly the head sommelier of Lucknam Park - running the front of house, Toni and Rob are excited about what the future holds. “We love how the place has evolved and hope it continues to do so. It amazes us how supportive the locals have been throughout the recession and, fingers crossed, we will be here for a long time to come.” Same-Same But Different 7A Princes Buildings Bath BA1 2ED Tel: 01225 466856
The New Flavour of Bath...
Coffee, Fantastic Food & Great Wines New Lounge Restaurant situated between the Royal Crescent and The Circus. A Bistro feel during the day, serving Home-made Soups, Quality Salads and a range of Sandwiches on Speciality Breads. Transforming in the evening to a Chic Restaurant offering the Best in Contemporary British Cuisine, Cooked to Perfection by our Award Winning Chefs. Our Attentive Staff create a Relaxed Atmosphere and make it the ideal setting for any Occasion. bookings/enquiries/menus Limeloungebath.co.uk Telephone: 01225421251 11 Margarets Buildings, Off Brock St, Bath, BA1 2LP
TO CELEBRATE THE LAUNCH OF OUR NEW SPRING MENU WE ARE OFFERING 2-4-1 ON ALL MAIN MEALS MON-THURS AFTER 5PM
> flavour reader
THE PUMP HOUSE BY LUCY SHEPHERD, BRISTOL The day before my sister was due for a visit recently I rang my favourite eaterie, The Pump House. “Do you serve cream teas?” I asked. “No,” came the reply from Chef Proprieter, Toby Gritten, “but just say when you want to come, and we’ll make them for you.” This, without pause for thought. And make them he did. The next day, after a lengthy stroll in Ashton Court, we rolled up at the Pump House, ravenous. There awaited the cream tea of a lifetime: fresh, fruity melt-in-the-mouth scones, out-of-this-world, homemade strawberry jam and lashings of local clotted cream all served alongside piping hot tea. Two happy sisters sat, smiled and then tucked in.
relaxed surroundings,” says Toby. The inside is comfortable, roomy and welcoming. In summer you can sit out on the terrace by the docks. What more could you want? Go there. Soon. I guarantee you will want to return with a friend, with a family, on your own, with a group – or with a sibling! And guess what? The Pump House has now added cream teas to the already magnificent range of edible choices on offer on the daily menu. I think my sister is likely to be back for another visit soon.
So, what’s so unusual about that? First, that The Pump House is primarily a pub and restaurant, not a café. Second, the alacrity with which Toby took up the challenge of producing something new. Both as pub and restaurant, The Pump House, in my book, scores 10/10 for a carefully chosen range of ales, wines and tangy fruit juices combined with fantastic food that is innovative in style, excellent in taste and very reasonably in price. “We use the best locally sourced ingredients to produce modern British food served in
The Pumphouse Hotwells Bristol BS8 4PZ Tel: 0117 927 2229 Visit: www.the-pumphouse.com
Tell us about your favourite place to eat by writing to us at the usual address or emailing email@example.com We'll even give you one year's free subscription for your troubles! 67
Alasia RESTAURANT The Alasia is a fantastic family friendly restaurant tucked away in Weston-Super-Mare’s district of Grove Village making it the perfect stop-over for pre-theatre dining. Their menu offers wonderfully cooked meals using fresh and seasonal ingredients, plus the Alasia team understand gluten free and diary free diets, making it ideal for those who find it hard going out to eat. The lavish decor of this comfortable and charming restaurant is unfussy and tasteful, complimenting the outstanding food served and service given here. There is also an extensive wine list to complement the food.
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Walk in for a relaxed brunch of Gloucester Old Spot sausages, or lunch with warm Chorizo and Asparagus salad, or a Mezze Platter with a glass of wine. If you have time to spare, settle on the couch with coffee in one hand and a newspaper in the other, or alternatively commune
with your laptop as The Alasia provides WiFi to customers. Don’t forget to take a look at the scrummy dessert board as their cakes and treats are sinfully gorgeous. An exotic evening à la carte features Angus Aberdeen Rump with Cracked Black Pepper Ice Cream, The Alasia Tuna Niçoise salad, Honey-Glazed Roast Lamb Shank and more. You might want to end your meal with one of their home made cheesecakes or an Italian coffee dessert. The globe-trotting wine list presents an interesting choice of handpicked wines that go well with the food. Whenever there is a celebration, such as a birthday, anniversary, or even wedding dinner party, owner and manager Michãela and her team will always help to make it very special.
The Alasia Restaurant 4 West Street Grove Village Weston-Super-Mare BS23 1JT Tel: 01934 621471 www.thealasia.co.uk Find us on Facebook – The Alasia
> flavour ask
Ask a chef onnie Faulkner is the owner-chef of Ronnie's Restaurant in Thornbury. Ron has had a distinguished career working in some of the most prestigious kitchens in the UK and Europe, for celebrated chefs such as Anton Mosimann and Ed Baines. Cooking for national and foreign royalty and dignitaries honed Ronnie's skill and further reinforced his lifelong commitment to food. His menus showcase the best local produce, earning the restaurant its title as the Good Food Guide’s 'Restaurant of the Year’. Ronnie’s is based in Thornbury and is open Tuesday-Sunday. Lunches and coffees are available from 10am-3pm and evening meals are available from 6.30pm-11pm. The restaurant is closed on Monday.
R Ronnie Faulkner
Q. My eldest daughter has recently turned vegetarian and rather than cooking a separate meal for her, do you have any ideas for side dishes that can easily be turned into a veggie meal on their own? Julie Wilky, Wells
A. The first dish that springs to mind is the cliché, lentils. I recently had lunch at the Lido in Bristol and opted for the roasted brill, spinach, puy lentils and salsa verde. It was delicious; a piece of perfectly cooked fish that could easily be substituted with grilled haloumi, the challenge is to change the way a dish is constructed.
Q. I want to build up a good store cupboard to reduce my weekly shopping spend, what should I stock up on? Andrea Donnelly, Clifton A. A store cupboard is almost deeply personal, and will depend very much on what you enjoy cooking and eating. I am a grazer and lover of charcuterie, so I always have a couple of jars of pickles, some chutneys and mustards in the cupboard. You'll also always find good quality pasta and virgin olive oil in my cupboard to. I love pasta and it’s a great way to use up leftovers.
Q. Is it better to serve red or white wine with pork? Simon Senton, Clevedon
A. Matching food and wine is more of an art than an exact science. The sauce the dish is served with will have the greatest influence on the best wine to serve. Some sauces will make the dish much richer so the wine will need to be heavier and structured to stand up to the weight of the dish. While a lighter sauce or dressing that enhance the delicate, softer flavours of a dish will benefit from the acidity, fruit and mineral tones of a wine. Try pairing a pork hock terrine with white bean purée with a Gavi Castellari Bergaglio Gavi di Tassarolo Fornaci 2008 Piemonte, £10.95 from Great Western Wines.
If you have a culinary query for Ronnie, write to us at the usual address or email firstname.lastname@example.org
Q. Can you recommend a bread recipe which is relatively quick and easy? Polly Hurst, Bath Bread making is a timely process, but well worth it. Most of the time is spent letting the dough rise or prove, which can happen while you get on with something else. One of my favourite breads to make and eat is focaccia. The bread should be eaten on the day it is made and is enriched with olive oil. It's also very versatile and can be topped with anything from rock salt and rosemary to roasted peppers and feta cheese. Alternatively cheat and buy a good loaf of bread from an artisan baker and pop it in the oven for about 8 minutes. It will taste like it’s just been baked, delicious.
Ronnies - Tel: 01454 411137 www.ronnies-restaurant.co.uk 69
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OUR NOW CALL FLAV 9188
directory 9 77 TEL: 0117
Welcome to the flavour directory. Updated monthly, this directory is your essential guide to featured businesses, organisations and producers in Bristol, Bath and the surrounding areas. For our more comprehensive online directory, visit www.flavourmagazine.com BALMORAL HOTEL
BETTER FOOD CO.
Friendly, family-run hotel, restaurant and bar in the heart of Weston-super-Mare. Full à la carte menu served daily.
A passion for offering the most wonderful range of herbs, spices and coconut products allows you to recreate and enjoy wonderful dishes from every corner of the world in your own home.
Bristol's truly local award-winning organic supermarket, cafe, grower and veg box delivery service.
Bart Spices Tel: 0117 977 3474 Visit: www.bartspices.com
Better Food Co. The Proving House, Sevier Street, St Werburghs, Bristol BS2 9QS. Tel: 0117 935 1725 Visit: www.betterfood.co.uk
BELTANE BED & BREAKFAST
BRISTOL SWEET MART
We’re within walking distance of Wells, next to beautiful open countryside. We have spacious guest rooms, king size beds with crisp white linen and delicious, freshly cooked breakfasts!
The shop sits in the heart of an ethnically vibrant community. Specialists in spices, ethnic foods, frozen halal and seafoods. New in store is the lovely deli selling chilled and hot food.
“More than just great food!” Lunch and evening dining, Tues to Sat 12.003.00 and 18.30-22.00, Sun 12.00-15.00 and Weds breakfast 8.30-11.00.
Beltane Bed and Breakfast Dulcote, Wells, Somerset BA5 3NU Tel: 01749 671040 / 07801 654252 Visit: www.beltanebandb.co.uk
Bristol Sweet Mart St. Marks Road, Eston, Bristol BS5 6JH Tel: 01179 512257
Bistro 507 507 Bath Road, Salford, Bristol BS31 3HQ Tel: 01225 873108
For orchard fresh Thatchers cider visit our Myrtle Farm Cider Shop, Monday-Saturday 9am-6pm, Sunday and bank holidays 10am-1pm.
Friendly, vegan, vegetarian community cafe. Enjoy fresh homemade sandwiches and light meals as well as organic beers, wines and ciders.
Our delicious cupcakes are made from the finest ingredients and delightfully finished by hand.
Balmoral Hotel 66 Walliscote Rd, Weston-s-Mare BS23 1ED Tel: 01934 633033 Visit:wwwwbalmoralhotelandstottiesbar.co.uk
Thatchers Cider Shop Myrtle Farm, Sandford, Somerset BS25 5RA Tel: 01934 822862 Visit: www.thatcherscider.co.uk
Jackie Wallis provides interesting menus, first class service and event coordination for weddings, celebrations and special occasions throughout the West Country. Country Catering Marina Cottage, Alston Sutton, Upper Weare Nr. Axbridge. Somerset BS26 2LS Tel: 01934 732189 Visit: www.countrycatering.me.uk
Cafe Kino Kingsdown, 3 Ninetree Hill, Bristol. BS1 3SB Tel: 0117 9249 200
Country Cupcakes Tel: 07801 280910 Email: email@example.com Visit: www.countrycupcakes.com
A gracious, luxury country house hotel near Bath and one of the loveliest country house hotels in the west.
18th Century Georgian manor house, situated in 71 acres of beautiful woodland, gardens and deer park.
Homewood Park Abbey Lane, Hinton Charterhouse, Bath Tel: 01225 723731 Visit: www.homewoodpark.co.uk
Hunstrete House Pensford, Nr. Bath, Somerset BS39 4NS Tel: 01761 490490 Visit: www.hunstretehouse.co.uk
Family run Italian deli and cafe just off Cheltenham's promenade - salads, pastas, speciality sandwiches and cakes made fresh every day.
LUCKNAM PARK HOTEL & SPA
MARK'S GLOUCESTER OLD SPOTS
Experience fine dining in The Park under the direction of Michelin Star chef Hywel Jones or enjoy all day dining in the stylish and contemporary Brasserie.
Locally reared, free range, finest quality pedigree pork delivered straight to your door.
Fabulous homemade food for all occasions. Private & corporate caterers who use only the very best ingredients. Let us make your event extra special!
Lucknam Park Colerne, Chippenham, Wiltshire SN14 8AZ Tel: 01225 742777 Visit: www.lucknampark.co.uk
The Cribbs Herd: Mark's Gloucester Old Spots Tel: 07836 661 640 Visit: www.marksgloucesteroldspots.co.uk
La Scala Tel: 01242 580800 Visit: www.lascaladeli.com
Nibbled Catering Tel: 01225 851072 Visit: www.nibbledcatering.co.uk
DAVID FELCE FISHMONGER
HARVEST NATURAL FOODS
Eclectic flavours, the Firehouse offers a menu with a delicious twist served in a warm and rustic atmosphere.
Passionate about providing ethically sourced, earth-friendly and affordable products for your shopping basket.
Firehouse Rotisserie (Bristol/Bath) Anchor Square, Harbourside, Bristol 2 John Street, Bath BA1 2JL Visit: www.firehouserotisserie.co.uk
Having worked in the wet fish business for twenty years, David now specialises in smoked fish using his own preparation methods and kiln. David Felce Fishmonger Water Lane Farm, Humphrey's End, Stroud, Glos GL66EW Tel: 07973662458 / 01453750806 Visit: www.davidfelce.co.uk
CHEDDAR WATER LTD
The perfect place to enjoy cocktails, world wines & beers, delicious prime dry-aged steaks and fresh seafood.
A family business, established in 1959, growing white and chemical free Portabellini brown mushrooms. We sell at Stroud, Gloucester, Cirencester, Cheltenham and Thornbury and Bristol farmers' markets.
Cheddar Natural Spring Water naturally filtered through land certified by the Soil Association as Organic.
Hudson Steakhouse Bar & Grill 14 London Street, Top of Walcot Street, Bath Tel: 01225 332 323 Visit: www.hudsonsbars.com
Melmirk Ltd Tel: 01451 850502
Harvest Natural Foods 37 Walcot Street, Bath BA1 5BN Tel: 01225 465519 Visit: www.harvest-bath.coop
Cheddar Water Ltd Upper Draycott Road, Cheddar BS27 3YL Tel: 01934 740452 Visit: www.cheddarwater.com
RIVERSIDE GARDEN CENTRE CAFE
We've been baking in Somerset since 1925, creating beautiful artisan loaves using traditional methods, real ingredients and family recipes.
Riverford Organic Vegetable Boxes are now available for home delivery in North Somerset, Bristol, Bath and surrounding areas.
Open daily with plenty of indoor and outdoor seating. Food/drink is suitable for vegetarians and is organic, fairtrade and mostly locally sourced.
Pullins Baker Tel: 01934 832135 Visit: www.pullinsbakers.co.uk
Riverford Organic Vegetable Boxes Order today, Tel: 0845 600 3211 Visit: www.riverford.co.uk
Riverside Garden Centre Cafe Clift House, Southville, Bristol BS3 1RX Tel: 01179 667535
STON EASTON PARK
THE BATH PRIORY
In the heart of Thornbury, Ronnie’s offers lovingly prepared food and exceptional service in a fresh and stylish setting.
A superb mansion set in one of the West Country's most romantic estates, exuding elegance, warmth and comfort.
Michelin-starred and 3 AA Rosette awardwinning restaurant where you can enjoy lunch or dinner with a view.
Ronnie's Restaurant 11 St. Mary Street, Thornbury, Bristol BS35 2AB Tel: 01454 411137 Visit:www.ronnies-restaurant.co.uk
Ston Easton Park Ston Easton, Somerset BA3 4DF Tel: 01761 241631 Visit: www.stoneaston.co.uk
The Bath Priory Weston Road, Bath BA1 2XT Tel: 01225 331922 Visit: www.thebathpriory.co.uk
THE CHOCOLATE TART
THE PONY & TRAP
THE FOLK HOUSE CAFÉ & BAR
Chocolate workshops for 'people who love chocolate'! Great on your own or in a party. Gift vouchers available.
Visit us at our 200-year-old country cottage pub/restaurant for a memorable dining experience.
The Folk House Café & Bar produces delicious, fresh and affordable food using organic, local and seasonal ingredients.
The Chocolate Tart The Old Malthouse, Congresbury BS49 5BD Tel: 01934 876881 Visit: www.thechocolatetart.co.uk
The Pony & Trap Knowle Hill, Newton, Chew Magna BS40 8TQ Tel: 01275 332627 Visit: www.theponyandtrap.co.uk
The Folk House Café & Bar 40a Park Street, Bristol, BS1 5JG Tel: 0117 908 5035 Visit: www.bristolfolkhouse.co.uk
THE STAR INN
Offering a range of our own cheese, Gorwydd Caerphilly, made on the family farm in West Wales, and our other favourite cheeses from small producers. Trethowan's Dairy The Glass Arcade, St Nicholas Mkt, Bristol Tel: 0117 9020332 Visit: www.trethowansdairy.co.uk
The 16th Century pub is one of only two pubs in the city to make the main listings in the 2004 Good Pub Guide.
We produce the finest products using locally sourced and homegrown fruit and vegetables. Also are available Jackie’s Country Larder preserves and Chutneys. Cotswolds88 Hotel Kemps Lane, Painswick, Glous GL6 6YB Tel: 01452 813688 Visit: www.cotswolds88hotel.com
The Star Inn 23 The Vineyards, Bath BA1 5NA Tel: 01225 425 072 Visit: www.star-inn-bath.co.uk
ourmanyflavours At flavour magazine, our passion for food is also matched with a passion for great design. Our in-house team can now offer a full graphics service including: • logo & rebrand • letterheads & business cards • posters & flyers • advertisements • leaflets & brochures • websites We also offer complete printing solutions...
Whatever you require, contact us for a chat. Great design will get your business noticed... Tel: 01179 779188 - firstname.lastname@example.org
The Blue Bowl Inn Country Pub & Restaurant Good food, well kept ales and a warm welcome!
The Blue Bowl Inn, Bristol Rd, West Harptree BS40 6HJ
Tel. 01761 221269 www.thebluebowl.co.uk
food for thought
As we struggle to feed a rapidly increasing global population, Nathan Budd looks this month at why sustainable eating is fast becoming the only menu option... Around 70,000 BC the world’s population is thought to have stabilised at about one million. The rationale being that until the development of agriculture, this was pretty much all that hunting and foraging could sustain. With advancements in medicines and vaccines, life expectancy has increased significantly and more critically, child mortality rates have fallen drastically. The world’s population is now close to 7 billion and current UN projections suggest it will be brushing up against 9 billion by 2050. Whatever your views on this situation, it’s a lot of mouths to feed and not a lot of time to come up with more effective ways of doing so. Food has the potential to become a commodity craved and fought over, in much the same way as oil is today.
YOU ARE 1 IN
In the UK, we eat more food than we produce, fact. So when countries that sell us that food need it for themselves, it simply won’t be available. Money means nothing when the survival instinct kicks in. It’s the reason the UK Government speaks so seriously on the subject of food security. At some point, we may have to feed ourselves and the best place to start is making sure we metaphorically finish what we have on our plates. The UK produces an estimated 8.3 million tonnes of household food waste each year, with food services and the restaurant trade contributing a staggering 3 million tonnes to that figure. While most of this valuable resource could have been eaten, much of it ends up in landfill. As a result, it is also one of the major contributors to greenhouse gases in the UK. So while this is economically foolish, it is also environmentally damaging. More critically, it’s simply not sustainable.
Sustainability is a term increasingly banded about as a catch all for any thoughts, desire, or actions surrounding food resources and the environment. At a very basic level it’s the principle of taking less from the environment than is needed to sustain it. It is the practice of living within our available capacity as human beings, in order to endure. In short, if we eat all the fish in the sea, there will be no more fish. Sustainable food practices also take this one step further. They encourage local production and distribution; aim to make nutritious food available, accessible and affordable to all; and encourage a humane approach to farmers, food workers and the consumer through fair prices and terms. Really, it’s what you would expect from any producer, shop, restaurant or supplier. It’s what many of us in the South West have been doing for years, but recently an organisation has sought to formalise this approach, creating a badge of honour for the restaurant trade. The Sustainable Restaurant Association (SRA) was launched on March 1st. Its aim is to make it easier for restaurants to take positive sustainable actions, to change not only the food eaten in restaurants, but also the way it’s sourced, transported and created. The SRA’s approach to sustainability is underpinned by three core disciplines: Sourcing, the Environment and Society. So far one restaurant in the South West has signed-up, Mitch Tonks’ The Rockfish Bar & Grill, but others can be viewed on the association’s site using the map feature provided. There are a great many restaurants in your local area already doing things the right way. They may not have the budget, the requirement, or even the interest to promote this through the SRA, but they’re still there. Any restaurant offering local, seasonal produce, treating staff fairly, even ensuring minimal wastage through changing menus, a strong specials board and more diverse cuts of meat and offal, deserves your support. You’re one in 7 billion; and believe it or not, you can make a real difference.
Published on Apr 7, 2010
A regional monthly food title bringing you all the latest news, reviews and interviews from the South-West - not to mention some mouth-water...