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CRUMBS Cotswolds NO.49 DECEMBER 2016

A little slice of foodie heaven


Why do geese fly south for winter?

fOrGeT TurKeY! We’re gOing Old schOOl

CE 9 DE N O .4


Because it’s too far to walk!

16 R 20

e s GOO y t h G I m L A this Christmas!




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THE FINAL COUNTDOWN MINCE PIES on the shelves, the John Lewis advert on the telly, Santas popping up everywhere you look, and an everincreasing level of freneticism – it can only mean one thing. Yes, the big C-Day is nearly upon us. Here at Crumbs towers we’re well and truly in the Christmas spirit, and this issue is full of festive foodie fun. This being the case, if you fancy a change from the trad Crimbo lunch this year, we’ve got a veritable banquet of fresher ideas – including goose, which is, not coincidentally, our Hero Ingredient this issue. During the course of our research into these long-necked, fat-bottomed birds, we unearthed some pretty interesting facts, as well as gathered some cooking tips for you, in case it’s your chosen poultry this December 25. And, if not, maybe we’ll change your mind! There’s no doubt that for most of us this is the busiest time of the year, but if the stress of the festive shenanigans does all become a bit too much (holiday season? Yeah, right!), then don’t worry: we’re here to help, with a cocktail for all occasions. From sparkly numbers to brighten your morning, to sweet indulgences for when you can’t squeeze in even one more chocolate, we’ve got it covered. This might be the last Crumbs of the year, but it’s been my first as editor, so before you go I’d like to say a big thank you for making me feel so welcome, and wish you a very merry Christmas, and a fabulous New Year. I look forward to raising a glass – or a fork – with you in 2017!

Emma Dance Editor




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Table of Contents













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32 Jesse Smith Butchers give a prime rib a jolly good roasting 34 Kathy Slack shows why salmon and gin are actually the perfect partners

8 HERO INGREDIENT Have a gander at goose 10 OPENINGS ETC New foodie happenings, and dates for our diaries 13 ASK THE EXPERT Talking gelato with Dolcetti’s Rob Gibson 20 TRIO Where to party properly this New Year’s Eve

KITCHEN ARMOURY 39 CRUMBS COOKS WITH Getting our spice on with Tyga in Cheltenham 44 THE WANT LIST Mix those drink in style with beautiful barware


Amazing recipes from the region’s top kitchens


28 Cod, prosciutto and clams from Bisley House Cafe 30 Katriona MacGregor shares a healthy but hearty mushroom pilaf

49 AN ALTERNATIVE XMAS Ditch traditional turkey and try something different 55 COCKTAIL HOUR Fabulous festive cocktails for all occasions

MediaClash, Circus Mews House, Circus Mews, Bath BA1 2PW; 01225 475800 large version

© All rights reserved. May not be reproduced without written permission of MediaClash. MediaClash reserves the right to reject any material and to edit such prior to publication. Opinions are those of individual authors. Printed on paper from a well-managed source. Inks are vegetable-based; printer is certified to ISO 14001 environmental management. This month new ed Emma has mostly been rushing around the Cotswolds eating and drinking as much as possible – and trying not to get too lost down too many of those country lanes…



New & notable restaurants, cafés, bars 60 Charingworth Manor 62 Sunday lunch pop-up at No 38 The Park 64 Purslane PLUS

66 LITTLE BLACK BOOK Favourite local spots from the girls at Not Just Bouquets


TiME tO hit thE BOttLE (of SaUce)

THE LATEST IN this winter’s flurry of new openings is The Bottle of Sauce on the corner of Clarence and Ambrose Streets in Cheltenham. It’s the most recent launch by the Dodo Pub Co., which already has a couple of trendily-named boozers in Oxford – The Rusty Bicycle and The Rickety Press – but this is their first foray into Cheltenham. They’ve spent a cool £500k on transforming the old Quaich here, creating a super-snazzy bar area with vibrant petrol blue leather seating and a polished concrete bar, plus a cosy snug, a games room, and a canteen area. (This will be used for dining by day, and dancing by night!) There’s a terrace too, but it’s gonna be a good few months before the weather’s warm enough to really make the most of it. The menu’s stuffed with burgers, pizzas and wings (salads too, if you’re feeling virtuous), and we predict that the weekend brunches, with the option of a bottomless Bloody Mary, will go down a storm. ✱




Hero Ingredients “Christmas is coming, the goose is getting fat,” runs the rhyme, and everyone knows that before turkey (that American import, fatter by far than even the most corpulent goose), there were these hissing, honking fellows. Or were there?

EVERYONE THINKS OF GOOSE as being the Dickensian Christmas staple, but it turns out turkey came in far earlier than many believe – we’ve been properly farming them in Norfolk since the early 1800s – and they slowly started to replace goose from the Victorian era on. Though a perfectly serviceable goose was enjoyed at the mid-point of Charlie D’s A Christmas Carol (1843), by the end a reformed Scrooge was sending Bob Cratchitt a giant prize turkey as a gift – at the time, a more exotic and expensive bird. And goose had other rivals too – beef, boar, even peacock – though yes, for many it was the default setting. Certainly, the Victorians marched Christmas geese all the way from East Anglia to London in flocks 1,000 strong, the few unlucky ones we didn’t eat being pushed, alive, up chimneys as a bargain form of chimney sweep. Indeed, it’s almost as if geese were designed to be eaten at Christmas, as they hatch in the spring (their first eggs are often laid on Valentine’s Day!) and are


tender and ready at eight or nine months old. They’re perfect, then? Not quite. You see, though geese look big enough when they’re waddling towards you hissing – they can be notoriously bad tempered birds – but they’re also supergreasy, pretty expensive, and have way less meat on them than you were thinking. Of course, the fat is actually more blessing than curse. It sits just under the skin, rather than in the flesh, and if left to itself will actually baste your bird as it cooks, keeping things nice and moist. And as a cooking medium, it’s worth its weight in gold – being particularly brilliant for roast potatoes. (Forget the golden egg – this is the treasure geese really exude.) Goose crackling is crisp and salty; goose skin golden and delicious; goose stock brilliant for soups and cassoulet; and goose liver amazing when fried, or in a gorgeous pâté. Indeed, all the various bits and bobs that come with a goose are almost better than the bird itself. (That goose fat was once considered an aphrodisiac is just a seasonal bonus.) Beyond their kitchen utility, there’s much to love about a goose. Their honking is actually a language of sorts, and they’re top-notch long distance aviators, millions of them flying the 4,000 miles from the Arctic to the Gulf of Mexico twice a year. They’re monogamous too, living in permanent pairs, and are quite sensitive critters. If a partner dies they’ll stand guard in mourning, a plaintive period that can last for months – and if two long-lost geese are reunited, they’ll dance and sing together in happy unison. As watchdogs they’re famously effective, being loud and extremely sensitive to unexpected movement. Fourth century geese once warned Rome about an attack by the Gauls – though this flock had actually been kept on Capitoline Hill as sexual talismans, not watchdogs – and in the Vietnam War they were homed on airfields, keeping the planes safe at night. Though they can

be aggressive, sweet natured geese are known too, and Lord Byron, the Romantic poet, was so taken with the ones he bought for Christmas he could rarely bring himself to kill them, ending up with four pet geese before too long. There are three basic breeds of goose – grey geese (of which domestic geese are a spin-off), white geese, and black geese, such as the Canada goose – plus assorted shelducks and similar that we also call ‘geese’, but which aren’t, really. The domestic goose has long been bred for size, and now stands more upright (due to a large, fatty rear) than a wild beast; for the same reason, it’s effectively flightless too. Though they come in various plumages, most have been bred to be white, as that looks best when plucked. We domesticated them fairly late – around 3000BC, five thousand years after cattle and pigs – and as with so much, it’s the Romans who spread ’em across Europe, with the French especially keen. Quickly forgiving their betrayal on the Capitoline Hill, they leapt upon the culinary qualities of goose fat with unusual glee, and then innovated with foie gras – though, perhaps, that’s been a drawn-out form of revenge. Cooking tips? Well, opinions vary – but five hours at 120C, turning the temperature up to 220C for the last half hour, sounds about right – though some say, often in a hushed voice, that goose actually lends itself better to cutting up and getting the confit treatment (slow cooking in the French style). One good tip is not to go for the biggest bird, but rather a medium-weight of about 4kg (and certainly no bigger than 5kg), which will give a better meat to bone ratio. A decent goose should feed four or five, no more. (You’re serving a coach trip? Get two.) We said they’re expensive before, but it’s not hard to see why. Geese are intensive to raise – the goslings need a lot of TLC, and (as they like to sleep outside) keeping them safe from foxes ain’t easy – and the best are naturally local, free range and organic. (This said, it’s hard to totally ignore the bargain Eastern European versions available at the likes of Lidl. But you didn’t hear it from us…)


COOK YOUR GOOSE! Before you even think about cooking your goose, take it out of the fridge and leave it to stand for two hours. Bringing it to room temperature will help it cook more evenly. To stuff or not to stuff, that is the question. If you do decide to stuff, then your best bet is to go for the neck rather than the cavity. (But, if not, an apple or peeled onion in the cavity will add to the flavour.) A goose is ruined by overcooking (and nobody wants that), so as individual oven temperatures vary, your best bet is to test the bird twothirds to three-quarters into the cooking time. Prick the breast and thigh and, if the juices run clear, then the job’s a good ’un and you should take it out of the oven to rest. If it’s still pink, then pop it back in for the remaining cooking time, then test again. When you’re ready to carve, begin with a leg. Hold it by the end knuckle, cut close to the body, and twist off. To carve the breast meat, start from the outside, working towards the breast bone in the middle.



We already know that the Cotswolds produces some of the best and most downright delicious produce ever to tickle a tastebud, but it’s always good to see the fact being recognised and celebrated. Cotswold Taste, “the new marque for food and drink produced to a high standard in the Cotswolds,” launched last month, and already has a growing number of members from across the food chain, including producers, suppliers, retailers and hospitality outlets, as well as supporting businesses and organisations – both large and small. Look out for the label when you’re next doing the shopping! ✱


Boutique B&B No 38 The Park is throwing open its doors for a special series of Sunday lunches. The first took place on 13 November (read all about it on p62 this issue), but don’t worry if you missed it as there’re two more to go – one on 11 December, and another on 8 January. The feasting begins – as all Sunday lunches should – with a Bloody Mary, followed by three delicious courses. Tickets cost £35, and children under 10 eat free. ✱


It’s a big Crumbs ‘welcome back’ to The Tavern in Cheltenham. The neighbourhood favourite reopened on 24 November, bringing a menu made up of firm favourites as well some gobsmackingly delicious new plates. We’re loving the sound of the homemade ‘Hog’ and ‘Chilli Cheese’ burgers, and the alcohollaced sinful shakes, but it’s the ‘Sundae Service’ – which allows you to create your own bespoke sundae, and even draw a picture of it so it can be recreated in the kitchen – that’s really been capturing our imaginations. ✱



Round of applause please for the team at Sudbury House Hotel’s Magnolia Brasserie, which has just been awarded two AA red rosettes. Being given the coveted accolade is always a big deal, but it’s an extra special coup for head chef Ben Bullen, as the Magnolia Brasserie is his first venture heading up a kitchen. The brasserie opened two years ago, and Ben has put his own stamp on the menu, using the kitchen’s feature wood-burning stove to give the food “a unique and very different flavour.” Congrats to the team. ✱


Hotly anticipated Wilder in Nailsworth is now open. The sibling of the ever-popular Wild Garlic, Wilder is showcasing the talents of Chef Patron (and hob-god extraordinaire) Matthew Beardshall, who will be writing and preparing the daily-changing eightcourse tasting menu, featuring the best produce from the daily markets as well as a few surprises… We can’t wait to see what he’s got up his sleeve! Wilder is open Wednesday-Saturdays, evenings only. ✱ Follow them on Twitter @DineWilder

A wintery one pot wonder from @fullcolour


Well-deserved congratulations to the team at Marshfield Bakery, which has been named the SME Manufacturer of the Year at Insider Magazine’s Made in the South West Awards. The bakery’s Managing Director, Chris Smith, said: “We are delighted and pleased to have been given this award! It represents hard work from our fantastic people – not just managers and directors, but everyone involved.” Pass the cakes! ✱

Pan-fried pigeon breast with blackberries, beetroot and walnuts @mattboulton12

In the diary... (10 & 17 Dec) WINTER AFTERNOON TEA Get cosy this winter with a special seasonal afternoon tea at The Lygon Arms in Broadway. Enjoy festive treats, and even a visit from the man of the moment – Father Christmas. £20 for adults, £15 for children. ✱

Ballotine of ray wing stuffed with cod and spinach mousse, samphire, garden peas, smoked pomme purée, fish bone and saffron velouté with mussels @martin_sherriff

(20-23 Dec) CHRISTMAS COOKERY Daylesford Cookery School is running a variety of festive classes for children, teenagers, or the whole family. £75 per person per class. ✱ (27 Jan) ROSS & ROSS BURNS NIGHT POP-UP Celebrate the life and poems of Robert Burns at a Burns’ Night supper at the Cotswold Distillery. Tickets cost £35. ✱


Raw Matcha chocolate from @cococaravan

Fresh, local produce cooked with style, imagination and flair... Our meat is supplied by Jesse Smith butchers and we pride ourselves on our fresh fish and seafood, delivered daily from Cornwall.

The Stableyard, Black Jack St Cirencester GL7 2AA 01285 641497 | ab


Ask the Expert There’s few that know more about Italy’s icy treat, gelato, than Rob Gibson from Dolcetti in Cirencester. He’s made bespoke flavours for celebrities – and even had his desserts served to royalty. Sweet!



First things first, Rob. What actually is the difference between an ice cream and a gelato? The biggest difference is that gelato contains much less air than conventional ice cream. It makes it denser, and it feels smoother. Gelato is actually legislated in Europe, so it has to meet particular criteria to call itself ‘gelato’ – for example, it has to contain at least 5% fat. And what about sorbet? Where does that fit in? Sorbet is the English word for the Italian sorbetto. Simply put, it’s fruit and ice. We actually sent our sorbet to Exeter University, so they could look at the size of the ice crystals. We produce very small ice crystals, which gives it a much smoother mouth feel. How do you manage to make your ice crystals so tiny, then? It’s all to do with the way we blend our sugars – and the fact that we use scientific instruments. All our equipment is Italian, too. Apart from the science stuff, what do you think sets Dolcetti’s gelato and sorbet apart from other frozen desserts on the market? It’s our attention to detail, and the fact that we won’t compromise on quality. We do everything ourselves – we collect raw milk from a farm on a daily basis and pasteurise it ourselves, and we blend the sugars and natural flavours ourselves too. All the fruit that we use is real, and we use real rum, brandy and Irish cream. Nothing we make has any artificial colourings, flavourings, whey powder or bulking agents. We produce on a batch principle too, which means that we make small amounts at a time, so every batch is unique, and everything that goes into it is completely traceable. The other thing that makes us special is our ‘Cow to Cone in a Day’ motto. We make the gelato the day that we pick up the milk, so it goes from milk to ice cream in less than 24 hours. All of this does mean that we are more expensive than a lot of the big brands – but what we are offering is a real quality treat, and people appreciate that.

Where do most of your ingredients come from, then? The most important ingredient for us is the milk, and that comes from a local, family-run pedigree Holstein herd. It’s a small herd, but the great thing about it is that the farmer, his wife and his son know every cow. They only milk twice a day, so it’s very natural – it’s not forced milking, and they give their cows the maximum amount of fresh air and green grass that the weather permits. It’s harder work to farm that way, but the result is that they have happy cows. Happy cows make nice milk, and nice milk makes good gelato! Our fruit, meanwhile, comes from family-run fruit farms in Somerset, Hereford and southern India, and our coffee is from Rave just next door. I always try to work with like-minded businesses, and working with small businesses there’s mutual support. Right, let’s talk flavours. Since we started three-and-a-half years ago, we’ve made more than 100 different flavours. But we hold 24 on counter, and have others that are available to the trade. There’s 50 available at any one time, and we change them seasonally. Any special treats for Christmas? We’re making 15 flavours for Christmas this year: chestnut, Christmas pudding,


amaretto liqueur, samba (chocolate rum and raisin), snowflake (white chocolate), maple pecan, gingerbread, jewel chocolate (chocolate with fruit), lemon meringue, Irish cream, toffee fudge, gianduia (that’s chocolate hazelnut, a bit like a Ferrero Rocher) and a blackberry and apple sorbet. We also have some special ice cream cakes that we produce for Christmas. Ice cream cakes? Tell us more! There’s no actual cake in our ice cream cakes – they’re made of layers of our gelato or sorbet instead. There’s a range that we always have in stock, but we have some special festive ones too. For example, there’s a bombe cake which is a dome chocolate gelato lined with cherries soaked in liqueur, and a Christmas tree in mint choc chip which is covered in chocolate and then decorated with edible decorations. We have little individual tartuffo, too – a Christmas tree with a liqueur cherry in the middle, and stars with the Christmas pudding flavour. The beauty of an ice cream cake is that is can be consumed over a longer period. You can cut off a slice and put it back in the freezer and it will last, whereas a real cake will only last a few days. The cakes are really popular with the trade, of course, because they’re unusual and have a high value to the

Dolcetti uses only the freshest milk for their gelato. It goes from cow to cone in a day!

customer, but are very quick and easy for a restaurant to serve. Sounds delicious! What’s the most unusual flavour you’ve ever made? We were asked by Honda to make a green tea gelato for a special event. We’ve made a spiced pumpkin flavour for a local celebrity, and once we made an avocado sorbet. We’ve played around with things like Gorgonzola, too. The most important thing for us, though, is that it has to be commercially viable. On TV shows like MasterChef you see people making all kinds of crazy flavours, and that’s fine for a very small batch, but there’s no point in us making a great deal of some flavour that nobody will buy. Have you ever had any disasters? Oh yes, of course. But I just put them out of my mind and move on. If we make a batch and it tastes awful, no-one other than us will ever see it! We made a pink Champagne sorbet once and, although it tasted great, actually producing it was a complete nightmare! I think I got drunk on the fumes because they were so strong. Because it’s a high alcohol content it’s difficult to freeze, and there was no body to it either, so we had to add fruit fibre. There’s certain flavours we won’t ever make. We won’t make liquorice because

it just permeates everything, and we won’t touch anything with pineapple, because the enzymes in the fruit break down the sugars, so the shelf life is really short. And we can’t use bananas, because they go brown too quickly. We got around the discolouration with the avocadoes by adding lemon juice, but we couldn’t do that with banana because it wouldn’t taste good. We also don’t do anything like cookies and cream, because we would need to use some kind of preservative to retain the crunch, and that’s something we just won’t do. It sounds like you’re constantly developing new products. What’s the most recent innovation? One of the new products we’ve developed this year is a vegan ice cream, made using coconut milk. We’ve done it in a couple of flavours, including stracciatella and tutti frutti. Do you cater to dietary requirements? We’ve developed a gluten-free cone, which is quite unusual. And we never use ground nuts in our recipes – we use tree nuts such as pistachios, cashews, chestnuts and walnuts, but not peanuts. So, are people are getting more adventurous in the flavours they like? When people come to us for the first time, they will typically go for something


simple like vanilla or chocolate or mint choc chip. But we find the more they come back, the more adventurous they become – and, also, the more demanding they become! People come back asking for their favourite flavours, but we can’t carry everything all the time! Finally, then, what’s next for Dolcetti? We are currently in the process of launching a new website and rebranding, and we plan on using the the next three or four months to really push the business forward – our factory is going to double in size. We always welcome people who want to walk-in and enjoy our gelato here in the parlour, but wholesale is the sector that’s growing best for us, so that's what we’ll be concentrating on even more next year. We’re doing more and more public events too, and that’s something we want to develop. We supplied the VIP/Royal Pavilion at the Royal Air Tattoo earlier in the year, for instance, which was a real honour – so more like that, please!

✱ Visit the Dolcetti factory and parlour at Unit 2, Stirling Works, Love Lane, Cirencester GL7 1YG;


In the Larder






sWeeTS aND TReaTS If ever there’s a time to over-indulge, it’s Christmas…

1 FUDGE IT Cotswold Fudge Co Baileys Butter Fudge, £2.59/150g Every batch of fudge created by the Cotswold Fudge Co is boiled, beaten and blended by hand in their kitchen in Kingham, and we think you can really taste the love that’s gone into the preparation! We’re totally won over by the Baileys Butter Fudge variety. It’s crumbly, creamy and the hint of Baileys gives a little warming cuddle with every mouthful. It’s available from more than 130 stockists, including delis, garden centres and farm shops across the Cotswolds, and online from the Cotswold Fudge Co. ✱ 2 ROCKIN’ ROBIN Lick the Spoon Chocolate Robin Snowglobe, £7.95

deliciously decadent – but, with no refined sugars, dairy or additives, you can tuck-in guilt free. And what’s more, you don’t need to worry about food miles either, as it’s made right here in the Cotswolds – in Stroud, in fact. And there’s loads of varieties available, from orange lassi blonde chocolate, to solid bars of raw dark. (We’re working our way through the whole collection.) Find it in Made in Stroud in Stroud, Green Spirit in Nailsworth and The Green Shop, Bisley. ✱

This little fella might almost be too cute to eat – if he wasn’t so damn delicious! He’s just one of Lick the Spoon’s gorgeous festive creations, and is made from smooth and creamy milk chocolate. It’s the sort of thing you buy for someone else, then can’t bear to give away (or is that just us?). Available from the fab Gloucester Services. ✱ 3 RAW TALENT Coco Caravan Date & Caramel Bar, £4.50/75g Raw, organic, vegan – Coco Caravan have achieved the seemingly impossible and produced chocolate with none of the naughty, but all of the nice! With a proper cocoa hit from the dark chocolate, indulgent caramel and sweet, sticky dates, it tastes

4 BOX CLEVER Cotswold Chocolate Company Box of Chocolates, £19.95 for 24 As Forrest Gump famously said, “Life is like a box of chocolates.” But if only life was as consistently


sweet and delicious as this selection from the Cotswold Chocolate Company! Pick yours up at Cotswold Chocolate Company shops in Stow on the Wold and Broadway. ✱ cotswoldchocolate 5 SPROUTS, BUT NOT AS YOU KNOW THEM Choconchoc Chocolate Sprouts, £9.99 You’re not going to have any trouble getting the kids to eat these sprouts! (In fact, the main issue might be getting them to stop.) Made from the creamiest of white chocolate, each mouthful is pure delight. And that’s not a description of sprouts you often hear – even of ones paired with bacon! Available from Cotswold Trading in Broadway. ✱


New Kid kid on on the the Block block New chefs – Lisa Mansell and Kirsty Greenup – when working as a kitchen porter at Silky Oaks. They took me under their wings, and started teaching me the basics. Both had worked in great restaurants in Sydney, which motivated me to get a ticket to the city. Lisa arranged for me to work at the Bather’s Pavilion at Balmoral Beach, where I completed my four year apprenticeship. And what would you say was the toughest job you’ve tackled so far? Cooking a seven-course dinner in Singapore for 110 people, using only Australian ingredients! Everything was flown in from Australia, which was very ambitious – but a big success. Proudest career achievement?  Organising and cooking at Soho House Festival, for 10,000 people.

FEELING LUCKY Say hi to Ronnie Bonnetti. He’s only executive chef for The Lucky Onion group

When did you begin cooking? It was back in 1994, at a place called Silky Oaks Echo Lodge in Daintree Rainforest, North Queensland, Australia. Exotic! So, what’re your fondest foodie memories from your childhood? Catching and eating fresh mud crabs. What first inspired you to cook professionally, then?  I was inspired by two brilliant female

Where might we know you from? In the UK, River Café London, and as Executive Chef at Babington House Somerset and Soho House Group, plus Executive Chef at Soho Farm House and Pizza East & Chicken Shop. How would you best describe your style of cooking? British and Mediterranean: it’s all relaxed, fresh and honest.   And what attracted you to The Lucky Onion, then? I have always been very impressed with their food offering, as they work with some really brilliant local producers. But what’s exciting about this role is that I get to work across all the menus with all of the teams. That includes Cheltenham hotels No. 131 and No. 38 The Park, the recently re-opened The Tavern, and Cotswolds pubs The Wheatsheaf Inn, The Chequers and The Wild Duck. Each menu is different, and I’m looking forward to the variety. How many of you are there in the various kitchen teams? The numbers vary at each restaurant, but there are about 55 across all Lucky


Onion kitchens. I’m really looking forward to getting to know all of them in due course. How have you approached the menu? All of The Lucky Onion properties use the very best local and seasonal produce, but each menu is unique. Working on the new menu at The Tavern, which re-opened at the end of November, has been very exciting. We wanted to create a menu that combines old favourites and delicious new plates. Which other local restaurants do you like to eat in?  One that springs to mind is The Kingham Plough in Kingham. What makes the local foodie scene so great, then?  The restaurants in the Cotswolds and the surrounding areas really make the most of the area’s fantastic local farmers and artisan producers, and they tend to use the very best meat, seasonal vegetables, and other produce. What are your favourite ingredients at the moment?  Game birds, wild mushrooms, fennel and chard. Which piece of kitchen equipment couldn’t you live without?  A knife, and my mortar and pestle. What and where was the best meal you’ve eaten?  Very difficult! If I have to choose, though, I’ll go for La Tagliata Monte Pertuso on the Amalfi coast in Italy. Everything is grown and cooked by the family. Favourite cookery book? Probably The Cooks Companion by Stephanie Alexander. Finally, what’s your current favourite flavour combination? Beef in red wine, with soft polenta, carrots and gremolata. ✱

festivetime maytime ••

BOOK YOUR CHRISTMAS PARTY NOW! 2 courses £17.50 • 3 courses £21.50

CELEBRATE NEW YEAR’S EVE WITH US We have live music at 10pm from Matt Belmont and fizz for all at midnight! Food served 6pm-9.30pm. Carriages at 2am. Book now to avoid disappointment. FESTIVE OPENING TIMES DEC: 24TH 11am-11pm •• 25TH CLOSED 26TH 11am-4pm •• 27TH-30TH 11am-11pm 31ST 11am-2am (Party Time) JAN: 1ST 11am-4pm 2ND onwards open as normal 11am-11pm

The Old Passage The seafood restaurant beside the River Severn Situated on the banks of the Severn overlooking the Forest of Dean and the pretty town of Newnham on Severn. You’ll feel like you’ve been transported to another world, even though we’re only be 20 minutes from J13 on the M5. Enjoy our delicious oysters and lobsters, that are almost always available from our own holding tanks, or choose the freshest fish which is delivered daily from Devon and Cornwall, or why not try our amazing fish and chips?

Lunch 12noon to 2.00pm, Dinner 7.00pm to 9.00pm Passage Road, Arlingham, Gloucestershire, GL2 7JR T: 01452 740547 • W: • E:



PARTY HEARTY From gorging to grooving, these Cotswolds venues will really make sure your New Year’s Eve goes with a bang… COTSWOLD HOUSE HOTEL, Chipping Campden Chipping Campden’s newest kid on the block, Cotswold House Hotel, is planning a night to remember this year – and everyone’s invited! Anyone seeking an elegant celebration filled with fine food will adore the Champagne and canapé reception, followed by a sumptuous five-course dinner in the formal Dining Room. Dishes include oyster risotto, braised veal shin and dark chocolate tart. If you prefer to just let your hair down and get in the groove, however, there’s something for you too, with dancing but a beat away in the Montrose Suite. This party will also begin with a Champagne and canapé reception, followed by a smaller three-course meal – and then the dancing will kick off, with music from popular local band Kinky Farnham.

Both events are open to non-residents, but if you want to extend the celebrations and make a night (or two!) of it, special New Year’s Eve packages are available. ✱

THE COTSWOLD ARMS, Burford The party is kicking off early at The Cotswold Arms in Burford with a New Year’s Eve Eve party (that’s 30 December, to you and me!). There will be live music and a free buffet, and you can test your ball skills with a game of beer pong. On the night itself, enjoy a glass of bubbly on arrival before diving into a decadent dinner, with dishes including whiskeylaced chicken liver parfait, honey roasted fig and balsamic salad, pan-seared duck, chicken breast filled with cranberry and ricotta, and a selection of individual desserts, followed by cheese and biscuits and coffee and petit fours, and all accompanied by live acoustic music. Get your invitation for just £35. ✱

THE VAULT, Nailsworth The New Year’s festivities at The Vault will be a celebration of the best of good ol’ Blighty. As party-goers count down to midnight, a big screen will show retrostyle images of Big Ben and music videos


Ain’t no brewer like a Cotswolds brewer! Local beers will be on tap during the celebrations at The Cotswold Arms. Pint, anyone?

from favourite homegrown artists – think Bowie, think Amy Winehouse, think Madness. (You get the picture.) The Vault’s chefs will be creating a delicious menu with a unique take on a celebratory banquet, with a buffet laden with Brit-inspired dishes, all with the punchy flavours and fun presentation that the guys here are known for. Expect to feast on the likes of dates filled with clementine mousse wrapped in smoked streaky bacon, Cotswold venison and chicken liver terrine with asparagus and red peppers, smoked local trout fish cakes with watercress, mini Yorkshire puddings with roast beef and horse radish, and more mini Yorkshire puddings with local wild mushroom confit. Yum! ✱

We invite you to Cotswold House Hotel and Spa to

share in the warmth and spirit of Christmas

Cotswold House has had a make-over, and now has a fine dining restaurant as well as an informal Bistro. This December we are open for festive dining and winter afternoon teas throughout the month. We are also open to non-residents for Christmas Day Lunch and our Black Tie New Year’s Eve Dinner in the Montrose Suite, with live music from local band Kinky Farnham. For full details about what’s on at Cotswold House Hotel and Spa this Christmas please visit our website and download a Christmas Brochure. The Square, Chipping Campden, GL55 6AN | Tel: 01386 840330 |

The Cotswold Arms comes alive on NEW YEAR’S EVE EVE!


Find it tough to get a babysitter on NYE? Working? LIVE MUSIC WITH



Games (including beer pong!) and complimentary buffet. Ideal for parents who will be at home on New Year’s Eve. and for those who are working on the big night. Come along and join us for an alternate celebration! 46 High Street, Burford, Oxfordshire OX18 4QF • Tel: 01993 82 22 27 • Email:


Kitchen Library The freshest, most inspirational cookbooks of the month

“An appetising prospect” The Guardian

yashim cooks


jason goodwin

THE ITALIAN BAKER Melissa Forti Quadrille, £20

With her tattoos, black hair and angular fringe, Romeborn Melissa Forti looks more indie rock queen than chef – but this self-taught baker runs the Melissa Tea Room and Cakes in Sarzana, a small town located between Cinque Terre and Tuscany. Forti’s debut cookbook combines historic regional Italian recipes with recipes inherited from her family, plus a few ideas collected on her global travels. There are around 100 recipes in the book, accompanied by some enticing photography from Danny Bernardini. Not a baker afraid to use lots of butter, she shows the reader how to make a range of cakes and biscuits, from classics like torta Caprese (flourless chocolate cake) and lingue di gatto (cat’s tongue cookies) to the more decadent winter snowball cookies and cream cheese-filled bundt cake.


Kei Lum Chan and Diora Fong Chan Phaidon, £29.95

Compiled by husband and wife food writers Kei Lum Chan and Diora Fong Chan, this vast work looks at the culinary history and food culture of China, with notes on each region. The recipes themselves celebrate popular staples – think chicken in black bean sauce and sweet and sour spare ribs – as well as lesser-known regional dishes like oyster pancakes and Laiwan-style congee. The book also includes dishes for special occasions, such as Chinese New Year, and a chapter with recipes from some of the best Chinese chefs around the world. Gilt-edged, more than 700 pages long, and featuring more than 650 recipes from 30 regions of China, this book is as definitive as it can surely get when it comes to Chinese recipe compendiums.

PERSEPOLIS Sally Butcher Pavilion, £25

With more and more people reducing their meat intake in favour of plant-based alternatives, there is an increased appetite for new ways to brighten vegetable dishes. Since opening a vegetarian café within her Peckham shop Persepolis, Sally Butcher has seen an explosion of interest in her Middle Eastern-style vegetarian dishes. Inspired by the food Butcher serves up daily to her loyal customers, the book looks at exciting new ways of cooking without meat or fish. Featuring everything from brilliant breakfast recipes like Tunisian egg and herb tagine, to hearty dinners such as Afghan quince and split pea hotpot, this cookbook is a winning celebration of the vegetable. With 150 new recipes – including lots of vegan dishes – Persepolis is a fresh and vibrant look at international vegetarian cuisine.


YASHIM COOKS ISTANBUL Jason Goodwin Argonaut, £25

Dorset-based crime writer Jason Goodwin is best known for his award-winning mystery novels featuring Yashim the detective’s adventures in Ottoman Istanbul. Goodwin has taken his love of Turkey further with this cookbook, which combines traditional, easyto-follow Turkish recipes and family dishes – like Greek fisherman’s stew, pumpkin soup and aubergine chicken wraps – with feasts such as spiced stuffed mackerel, lamb shanks with quince and roast goose with apple sauce. Other appetising recipes include pan-fried nettles with cumin; fiery eggs and peppers; and chicken with walnut and pomegranate. Recipes are interspersed with illustrations, colour photography and extracts from the Yashim novels, so the overall package contains both authentic recipes and history, delivered with a true sense of place.


FORTNUM & MASON THE COOKBOOK Tom Parker Bowles 4th Estate, £30

London’s iconic Fortnum & Mason is a store that has fuelled the tide of British history for over 300 years, and fed the appetites of kings and queens, maharajahs and czars, emperors, dukes and Hollywood divas alike. Unbelievably, this is the shop’s first ever cookbook – and who better to write the story than respected food writer and bon viveur Tom Parker Bowles? The book details the store’s famous recipes, including Welsh rarebit, Chocolossus Sundae and marmalade tea bread. It also contains beautifully crafted essays on its finest traditions, including afternoon tea and cocktails. With recipes for chicken chasseur, fish pie, coronation chicken sandwiches, and treacle tart, this accessible recipe book appeals to the modern cook, but never forgets the past or the store’s rich history.



(SERVES 6-8)



300g crushed biscuits 150g butter, melted 400g creamed labneh (or cream cheese)  100g caster sugar  200g ground nibbed pistachios 1 level tsp ground cardamom  2 eggs, whisked  175ml double cream  4 tbsp rose water  200g rose Turkish delight

– Grease a 25cm springform cake tin with butter. Mix the cookie crumbs with the melted butter and press the mixture into the bottom of the cake tin. – Pop it in the fridge to chill while you make the topping.  – Preheat the oven to 160C/325F/gas mark 3.  – Beat the labneh with the sugar, then slowly work in the nuts, cardamom, eggs, cream and rose water. Finely dice the Turkish delight and stir it through the mix. – Pile it all into the cake tin on top of the chilled base and bake in the centre of the oven for around 1½ hours, or until the

For the topping: 100g labneh or mascarpone 1 tbsp icing sugar  75g rose Turkish delight 50g nibbed pistachios 


top is set and lightly golden. Allow to cool before carefully ejecting from the mould. – For the topping, beat the labneh together with the icing sugar and spread it lightly over your cooled creation. Again, finely dice the Turkish delight and sprinkle over the top with the nibbed nuts. Marvel at how very jolly it looks. Chill well before cutting into portions. TIP: Almonds make for a slightly cheaper dessert, but they are not nearly as pretty.


Golden Pheasant Inn in the heart of Burford

An 18th century inn where you can relax and enjoy the atmosphere, imbibe great ales, sample the home cooked food, and stay for just a while or for the night.


available 2.30pm-5pm, Monday-Saturday

A traditional country inn overlooking the Coln Valley 15 stunning rooms Cosy bar and restaurant serving great food Local ales, as well as ciders and lagers on tap Selection of high-quality wines and spirits Outside terrace and dining

“Tranquil village pub with a good menu � THE NEW INN, COLN ST ALDWYNS

01285 750651

91 High Street, Burford, Oxfordshire OX18 4QA

01993 823223


These fun guys make for a wonderfully warming pilaf (see p30)

Highlights THANK COD!

Simple, sustainable seafood that packs a punch Page 28


Jesse Smith Butchers help you beef up your roast Page 32



Slice me thinly and soak me in gin Page 34



DAYS to cure salmon Scandi style (p34)


fIShy dIShY

This little recipe from Rorie Scott is surprisingly simple to prepare, but packs a punch when it comes to flavour


Rorie Scott and his wife Ania opened Bisley House in 2013, transforming the once backstreet boozer into one of Stroud’s best places to eat. It has even been recommended by The Michelin Guide for three consecutive years. Rorie says: “We’re proud to work with great seasonal British produce when we can. Inded, this dish is a celebration of British sustainable seafood, but with a continental twist. You’ll need a good fishmonger – we use New Wave Seafood – to get some of these ingredients together, but the cooking itself is very simple, and the outcome is always delicious.”


100g Palourde clams a couple of sprigs of thyme 2 cod fillets, ideally with the skin off grated zest of one lemon sliced Prosciutto (1 slice per cod portion should be enough) 1 shallot, sliced 1 clove of garlic, crushed 1 glass of white wine 100ml double cream  small bunch of parsley, finely chopped small nob of butter 100g samphire



– Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/ gas mark 4. – Line an oven tray with baking parchment. – Rinse the clams and disregard any that do not close up when they are tapped. Store in the bottom drawer of the fridge, under a damp cloth. – Pull the leaves off the thyme and sprinkle over the cod on both sides, along with the grated lemon zest, freshly ground black pepper and a little salt.


– Wrap the Prosciutto around the fish fillet and place on the lined oven tray with the end of the ham to the underside, so it holds tight as it cooks. – Cook for 10 minutes, or until the ham is crisp and the fish is cooked through. – Fry the shallots in olive oil to soften. Add the garlic at the end to prevent it from burning. – Add the wine and the clams, and cover with a lid. – Leave for 1-2 minutes then, when all the clams are open, remove the lid and add the double cream. – Bring to a gentle simmer and let the sauce thicken for a minute. Do not leave for too long, or the clams will over cook. – Add cracked black pepper, parsley and taste before adding any additional salt, as the clams should season the sauce nicely. – Plate up your clams, placing them in the centre of the bowl with the cod on top. – Wipe the pan that you used to cook the clams and return to the heat. Melt the butter in the pan with a splash of oil, and then add the samphire for just 1 minute. Serving suggestion: Enjoy with a glass of white wine, and some good bread to mop up the sauce. ✱

KeepinG OUt the C Old We always love the recipes from local gal Katriona MacGregor, and this comforting pilaf is no exception. It’s the perfect supper dish for a chilly evening. Brrrr!




This is a mild, aromatic pilaf with plenty of contrasting flavours and textures. You can use any combination of mushroom or rice types, depending on your own preference and what you can find when you go shopping. The more variety the better, making the finished dish interesting, colourful and aromatic. INGREDIENTS

50g dried mushrooms (porcini, cep or shitake) 2 tbsp rapeseed oil 6 black peppercorns 5 green cardamom pods 1 tsp cumin seeds 1 tsp yellow mustard seeds 1 onion, chopped 2 garlic cloves, crushed 200g/7oz/ ¾ cup fresh mushrooms, sliced 300g/10oz/1 ¼ cup wild basmati rice (or a mixture of wild, brown and red carmargue rice) 50g pistachios, roughly chopped 300ml/10fl oz/1 ¼ cup stock (vegetable or chicken) handful freshly chopped parsley ½ lemon, juice only


– Begin by soaking the dried mushrooms. Tip them into a small bowl and pour over enough boiling water to cover them. – While the mushrooms are soaking, heat the rapeseed oil in a large casserole or frying pan, to which you can later fit a lid. – Once the oil is hot, add the peppercorns, cardamom pods, cumin and mustard seeds and fry for 2-3 minutes until the spices release lots of aroma, and start to sizzle and pop. – Add the onion and garlic to the pan, and fry for 2 minutes. – Drain the soaked mushrooms, reserving the liquid, and slice. Add them to the onion pan, along with the sliced fresh mushrooms. Stir well, adding more oil if needed, and sweat for 8-10 minutes. – Stir in the rice and half of the pistachios, and then pour over the mushroom liquor and hot stock. Season with salt and pepper, cover with a lid and cook on a low heat for 12-15 minutes. – Remove the lid, taste to check the rice is tender, and then add the lemon juice, parsley and more seasoning, if needed. – Serve topped with the remaining chopped pistachios, a little parsley and perhaps with a drizzle of sour cream or yoghurt.

✱ This delicious recipe is taken from Healthy Speedy Suppers by Katriona MacGregor (hardback, £16.99), published by Nourish Books; photography by Andrew Crowley



BeeF uP

This meaty recipe from Jesse Smith Butchers in Cirencester lets the beef do the talking….

Jesse Smith Butchers is renowned for the quality of its meat, and the new farm shop on Cirencester’s Love Lane Industrial Estate effortlessly combines the best of tradition with modern techniques, bringing you cuts of meat with the most incredible flavour. They choose farmers whose cattle is pasture fed, to allow the cows to grow slowly and naturally, resulting in meat that is unrivalled in flavour and texture, the way nature intended. Their dry aging chamber, lined with semi-transparent pink Himalayan salt blocks, not only looks beautiful, but also helps make everything even more delicious. Roast beef is a great alternative to a traditional Christmas turkey, or makes for an ace Boxing Day treat, and choosing a dry aged joint adds something special. ✱ JESSE SMITH FARM SHOP AND COFFEE HOUSE, Unit 13A, 19 Love Lane, Cirencester GL7 1YG;


For the roast: 2.5-3kg fore-rib of beef on the bone 4 onions, or 6 shallots if preferred, peeled and sliced 1 bunch of thyme For the jus: 1 bottle of Pinot Noir ½ cup of chopped shallots 4 tbsp unsalted butter 2¼ cups of beef broth METHOD

For the roast: – Preheat the oven to 220C/425F/ gas mark 7. – Sprinkle the beef fat with salt and pepper. – Place the onion in a layer in the centre of a roasting tin (unpeeled, as the onion skin gives colour to the juices) and add a few sprigs of the thyme. Place the beef on top. – Roast, uncovered, for 20 minutes, then lower the heat to 190C/375F/gas mark 5. – Cover the joint with foil and roast for 15 minutes per 500g, plus an extra 15-25 minutes if you prefer your beef medium to well done.


– Remove the beef from the oven, transferring to a serving dish and covering with foil to keep warm, and rest for 20-30 minutes. For the jus: (Make the jus while the meat is roasting) – Skim off and discard any remaining fat from pan juices. Add 1 cup of wine and deglaze the pan by boiling it over a high heat for 1 minute. – Cook shallots in 1 tablespoon of butter with a good pinch of salt in a heavy saucepan over a medium heat, stirring for 4 or 5 minutes until golden. – Add wine mixture, along with the remaining wine in the bottle, and boil over high heat until mixture is reduced, about 10 minutes. – Add broth and continue to boil over high heat until the mixture is reduced to your desired consistency. – Strain mixture through a sieve into another saucepan and whisk in remaining 3 tablespoons butter (cut into pieces) until incorporated. – Season sauce with salt and pepper. Cook’s tip: This needs roast potatoes. Also try parsnips mashed with butter, a little cream and nutmeg. Braised white celery would be good, as would crisply cooked green cabbage. Or try roasted squash – roast chunks in olive oil with slices of red pepper, thyme sprigs and a little dried red chilli flakes.



K a O S P U IT

athy Slack K y b r e m d-up swim This sauce et the party started‌ is sure to g


Kathy Slack is a familiar face in these parts. She writes the food blog Gluts & Gluttony, of course, but she’s also a private chef, cook book author and supper club host, who offers private and in-home cookery classes. Many of us like fish at Crimbo to break up all those big birds and red meat, and Kathy’s no different. “I love a bit of salmon, especially,” she says, “and this gin-soaked version is rather special!”



8-10 juniper berries pinch of lavender 75g fine salt 75g caster sugar 1/2 grapefruit, zested 1 lime, zested a decent slug of a really good gin (I like Cotswolds Distillery gin) 250g salmon fillet, boneless, skin on METHOD

– Grind the juniper and lavender in a pestle and mortar. Add the salt, sugar, grapefruit and lime, and mix well. – Pour in a slug of gin and stir. Do this bit by bit, until you achieve a thick sauce – make sure it doesn’t get too thin, though, or it won’t cling to the fish. – Pour the curing mixture over the salmon. Wrap tightly in cling film and foil. – Leave in the fridge for anywhere between one and three days. (The longer you leave it, the stronger the cure – and the more leathery the salmon, so don’t go beyond three days unless you’re feeling particularly Scandinavian.) – When ready, remove the wrapping, rinse thoroughly and pat dry. Kathy’s serving suggestion: I like to serve it simply sliced and unadorned. However, it is beautiful on blinis with crème fraîche, too.





• Arrive at your leisure and use the Spa 6 facilities from 12 noon • Check in to your room from 3pm onwards • Spa is available to use from 12 noon. • Relax in the bar where Tea, Coffee and Scones will be served from 3pm • Enjoy a Kir Royale and Canape Reception from 7pm • Celebrate with a five course gala dinner followed by live entertainment and a disco • Wake up on New Year’s Day and join us for a Buck’s Fizz Brunch served in our Brasserie Restaurant with a beautiful Lakeside setting.

£195 per person

Based on 2 people sharing a standard double/twin room


• Arrive at your leisure and check in to your room from 3pm onwards • Spa is available to use from 3pm onwards. (Children’s swim times apply). • Relax in the lounge bar where Tea, Coffee and Scones will be served from 3pm and followed by a disco. • Celebrate with dinner in the Brasserie followed by a disco until 12:30am • Wake up on New Year’s Day and join us for a Buck’s Fizz Brunch served in our Brasserie Restaurant with a beautiful Lakeside setting.

£145 per adult

Based on 2 people sharing a standard double/twin room 0-4 years: FREE, 5-12 years: £20 per night per child. For children over 12 please speak to our reservations team for prices.

To find out more or to book please call our reservations team on

01285 864444




LA DOLCE VITA With the emphasis on the ‘vita’ bit – it means ‘life’, naturally – these sturdy, powerful Vitamix blenders, says Matt Bielby, are one CoolBrands fixture that deserves the accolade… Actually, I’m totally unconvinced by that CoolBrands list thing they do. Aston Martin always wins, and why? Because James Bond drives one. Cool to Alan Partridge perhaps, but not to the rest of the world. I think you’re being a little unfair to Aston Martin, but I know what you mean. Making a list that begins Apple, Glastonbury, Netflix, Aston Martin, Nike, Instagram and Spotify, as this year’s does, is hardly rocket science – more the work of an afternoon in the pub with a copy of GQ. What makes HarleyDavidson or Ray-Ban (two of their other Top 20 brands) cool? Nothing, except cod nostalgia and big marketing budgets. (Ray-Ban, for instance, is just one branch of an octopus-like, generically-named Italian eyewear empire called Luxottica that also owns Oakley, Persol, Oliver Peoples and just about every other sunglasses brand you can think of. Successful, sure – but hardly cool in any meaningful sense.) I’ve a horrible feeling you’re getting a bit off-topic here. What’s this got to do with blenders? Everything! Nothing! You see, appliance maker Vitamix is also a CoolBrands fixture – most recently for 2016/17 – but these guys deserve it. Why? Well, part of the reason is that they’ve been appealing to both professional chefs and keen home cooks for decades now. Since the company began – as a retail outfit



in early ’20s Ohio, their first blenders being launched in 1937 – they’ve been fixtures in kitchens across America and, increasingly, in the UK too. And the foodie celebs love them. (Deliciously Ella, for one, is very much a fan.) That blender you’re touting here looks handsome, but a bit retro too... That’s part of the Vitamix look. This one’s from their top-end range – the G-series – which comes in two forms, the Pro 300 (in red, cream or black), or the stainless steel Pro 750. They each have a low profile two-litre container (so they’ll easily store away in most kitchens), and superpowerful motors with pulse features, aircraft-grade stainless steel blades, hard-wearing metal drive systems and variable speed controls, letting you finetune each texture. Powerful, you say? How powerful? 2.2 horsepower, or about the same as an old Seagull outboard motor – which is more than enough for mashing up avocados to make guacamole. They sound good, I have to say. Sort of honest and sturdy. They’re both those things, but – in their own way – cutting edge too. They’re so strong, each one comes with at least a five-year warranty, and the fact that they remain a privately owned family company is also in their favour. It’s been run by the Barnard clan ever since health evangelist and travelling salesman William Grover Barnard developed the first VitaMix – the hyphen was later dropped – after all, which gives them an authenticity that the Luxotticas of this world can only dream of. ✱ The Vitamix Pro 300 is £499, the Pro 750 £650; find them at Lakeland in Cheltenham, and Steamer Trading in Cirencester;




TRADITIONAL ARTISAN ITALIAN GELATO HANDMADE IN THE COTSWOLDS WHAT OUR CUSTOMERS SAY... “Gorgeous ice cream you want to keep eating!!!” “I love the innovation of this company... Rob is the Gelato Wizard!”– Dave Carter, Local Chef



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HOWARD ARMS Following our extensive refurbishment we are proud to announce that The Howard Arms is once again open for business!

Lynwood & Co is an amazing new café now open in the heart of Lechlade, the inspiration of Robert Broadbent and his wife Kats. ‘We are committed to providing Lechlade and surrounding villages a place where people can meet and enjoy amazing coffee, homemade cakes, in house artisan bread and a menu driven by seasonality.’ Open 8am - 4pm Mon-Fri, 8am-4pm Sat, 8am-2pm Sun (Brunch) Lynwood & Co, Apsley House, Market Square, Lechlade, Glouscestershire GL7 3AD 01367 253 707

The Howard Arms, Lower Green, Ilmington, Nr Shipton-on-Stour, Warwickshire CV36 4LT

01608 682 226


Crumbs cooks with

SPICe up YOUr LIFE Cheltenham couple Matt and Steph Griffiths take us on a passage to India at their restored townhouse Words by EMMA DANCE Photos by KIRSTIE YOUNG


( crumbs cooks with )



’m desperately willing my stomach not to start growling, at least not loudly enough for anyone else to hear. It might only be 11.30am, but breakfast seems like a dim and distant memory and the heady aroma of Indian spices that’s filling the kitchen in Matt and Steph Griffiths’ Cheltenham townhouse is almost making me drool. Matt is the man behind Tyga, a company that produces Indian meal kits to be delivered through the letterbox. He’s not the man behind the AGA this morning, however. That’s Shahin Ahmed, the chef who creates the recipes that go in the boxes that get sent out. The premise behind Tyga is simple – to solve a problem that will be all too familiar to almost anyone who cooks. Picture the scene. You decide that you want to try out a new recipe because you’re having people round for dinner/ you want to try to recreate that dish you ate the other night/you’re bored of cooking the same thing day after day (delete as appropriate). Eventually you decide on a dish, only to realise that it’s demanding half a dozen herbs and spices – none of which you have in your cupboard already. So then you’re faced with the choices of a) missing out an ingredient altogether, b) improvising and swapping it for something that you do have (that may or may not be a bit like it), or c) hitting the shops to hunt them out, only to discover that the thing you need half a teaspoon of is only available in enormous quantities. We’ve all been there, right? Tyga kits offer another option, however, by providing you with four recipes (two mains and two sides) and all the herbs and spices measured out in exactly the right quantities. All you have to buy is the fresh ingredients, such as the meat and vegetables. No stress and no waste. Winner. The recipe testing all takes place in Matt and Steph’s home, in the very kitchen in which we are sitting, and creating the monthly kits is very much a group effort, according to Steph. “We have Tyga Tuesdays,” she says. “Shahin comes round and cooks, and as he does it I write down the recipes, then we all taste it.” That includes the kids (when they’re at home) and Harvey the cock-a-poodle, who’s been a curry enthusiast since an escapade as a puppy in which he devoured the leftovers of a previous

night’s Indian feast, miraculously with no ill effects! Tyga’s only been in business officially since April (although they began testing the waters at markets in Cheltenham last Christmas), but the first seeds of an idea were planted around three years ago. Matt had part-sold his technology company and, finding himself with more time on his hands, was looking for a new project to keep the boredom at bay. “I have always been passionate about Indian food,” says Matt. “And the subscription idea just kept coming back to me, because it combined my interest and experience with food [Matt used to work at Kraft] with technology. “I was watching Rick Stein’s India, and he said that the reason that the food over there tastes so good is that the spices are so fresh. When I was at Kraft we were looking at the precursor to the Nespresso type of machines, and it was all about keeping the coffee fresh. It struck me that exactly the same thing applied to spices.” And so the idea for Tyga was born. Matt and Steph first met Shahin around five years ago, when he was chef in their favourite Indian restaurant. The couple were frequent customers, and Matt would often quiz Shahin about the dishes and ask advice on how to recreate them at home. So when they needed someone to create authentic recipes for Tyga, Shahin was the obvious choice. As Matt, Steph and I chat, Shahin is busy beavering away preparing a feast of dishes, all of which have made an appearance in one of Tyga’s boxes. Don’t expect your standard Indian restaurant dishes, though – all the recipes are authentic, home-style meals. First to be prepared today is a venison Gosht, a masala dish which uses tangy spices such as chilli, fennel, mustard and nigella seeds to balance the richness of the meat. It needs to cook slowly for at least an hour, so Shahin works quickly, swiftly slicing and dicing and gently frying the spices, ensuring the flavours are balanced to perfection. Once that’s happily simmering away, Shahin turns his attention to the side dishes of mushroom bhaji and Bombay roast potatoes. “There’s a lot of vegetarian food in India,” he says. “We have two types of vegetarian dishes. Bhaji is a dry curry which is served as a side dish, and then we have those with a sauce which are main dishes.”


So, I ask Shahin, what’s the secret to preparing great Indian food, apart from using fresh spices? “Don’t burn the spices,” he tells me. “If you burn the spices, you get nothing from it. You need a slow heat.” He gestures to the spices slowly frying away, waiting for mushrooms to be added. “You need to taste the spices first, before you add the other ingredients.” Learning the flavour nuances is something that only comes with years of practice, but the Tyga team have tried to offer as much guidance as possible, even going so far as to produce YouTube videos to accompany the recipes so you can check that everything at least looks how it is supposed to at every stage of the preparation. The videos are all filmed in Matt and Steph’s kitchen. With its sweeping expanses of gleaming marble and antique chandelier, it’s the perfect setting, and the kind of room that gives you serious kitchen envy. Creating their gorgeous home, however, was a real labour of love that took many years, and a great deal of patience, to complete. When Matt and Steph first bought it, the building had been divided into flats, so the couple had to set about stripping it right back and rebuilding to return it to its former glory. Only one of the original ceiling moulds remained, so it was painstakingly copied so it could be reproduced

( crumbs cooks with )

and then installed in the other rooms, while a smaller, less ornate version was also created to be used downstairs in the lower-ceilinged rooms. Perhaps the biggest element of the project, however, was restoring the stone staircase. At some point in the building’s history the ends of the stone stairs that run the full height of the house had been cut off, and it took a stonemason working just about every weekend for nine months to bring them back to their original condition. “The stone staircase was almost our breaking point,” says Steph. “We knew that restoring the house would be tough, but I don’t think we realised how tough. There’s nothing quite like stone dust – it gets everywhere, and we were living in the house almost the whole time the work was going on. Still, it was worth it.” Indeed, this home is very much at the heart of Tyga. Not only is it the development kitchen and video studio, but when they started out all the photography also took place here. “And last year, when we got our first batch of pots, there hadn’t been time to label them all when they were produced, so we had to do that all here too,” says Matt. “We had 12,000 pots that all needed labelling. We got the kids involved sticking on the labels and, upstairs in the front room, my Dad was putting the leaflets in the boxes.” Despite the last minute panic, selling at the markets proved a success, and a flurry of positive feedback gave Matt the confidence to launch to a wider audience. Now, Tyga’s boxes are available directly on subscription and also from Yumbles (a food-focused curated market place) and Not on the High Street.

“We always had confidence in the ingredients,” says Matt. “But people still have to cook it themselves. We don’t want it to be too complicated but, at the same time, we don’t want it to be too prescriptive either. The feedback that we have is that it just takes the hassle out, but you can still ‘chef’ by playing around with it and swapping ingredients.” Although the recipes are kept as authentic as possible, some alterations have been made to take into account the availability of produce. For example, some of the river fish that would be typically eaten in India simply cannot be found in the UK, so Matt and Shahin will try several different alternatives until they settle on the one that works best. And it works the other way, too. Today’s Gosht dish would traditionally be made with lamb, but to take into account the UK’s growing love affair with venison, and the seasonality, Matt and Shahin have chosen to use it instead. The final dish on the menu today is Malabar prawns, and Shahin takes just minutes to work his magic. Once the plump, pink prawns have been suitably caressed by the golden spices, we’re ready to eat. As I carry a loaded plate to the table, my attention is drawn to huge painting on the wall depicting an Indian market. Steph notices me looking. “We commissioned it from Louise Millin Inchley, a local artist,” she tells me. “We wanted something that really captured the atmosphere of the markets. We use bits of it on our leaflets, too.” Whether it’s a Tuesday or not, is seems that Tyga is always going to be at the heart of this kitchen. ✱



(SERVES 4) 4 cloves garlic thumb-sized portion of ginger (equal amount to the garlic) 3 tbsp vegetable oil 2 medium onions, finely diced 2 tsp turmeric 1 tsp mustard seeds 10 small curry leaves (roughly 10 small) 2 tsp ground coriander 2 tsp ground Kashmiri chilli (less if you prefer a milder flavor) 170g cherry tomatoes, chopped 2 tbsp desiccated coconut ½ tsp tamarind concentrated paste 450g raw peeled king prawns (600g if frozen) rice (to serve) NB. Tyga Indian Meal Kits provide all of the herbs and spices for this recipe in ready-blended, perfectly portioned pots.   – Blend your garlic and ginger to make a paste. – Put rice on to cook. For the perfect rice, add ½ pint of rice to ½ pint of cold water. Cover and bring to the boil, then turn heat down to simmer – still covered – for 3 minutes. Then remove from the heat and leave rice covered for 45 minutes. – In a large pan over a high heat, add the vegetable oil and add the ginger and garlic paste. – Add the finely diced onions and fry on a high heat, stirring continuously so they don’t burn, for 5 minutes. (If any of the ingredients stick to the base of the pan, add a splash of water.) – Add 1 tsp turmeric and the mustard seeds (Tyga Masala No 10, if using the kit) and the curry leaves. Stir for two minutes. – Add 2 tsp of coriander and 1 tsp of turmeric (Tyga Masala No 7, if using the kit) and the Kashmiri Chilli (½ tsp mild, 1 tsp medium, 2 tsp hot) and 3 tbsp water. Stir for one minute. – Add a further 100ml of water, along with the tomatoes and a good pinch of salt. Bring to the boil. – Once boiling, turn heat down to a simmer and cover for 3 minutes. – Stir in the desiccated coconut and tamarind concentrated paste (Tyga Masala No 11, if using kit) and the king prawns and cover for 3 minutes. – Uncover and stir ’til prawns are cooked through. – Serve with your rice.

Burns Night Supper with Glenrothes 25 JANUARY 2017

Burns Night at Whatley Manor with The Glenrothes Single Speyside Malt Scotch Whisky Celebrate Burns night in style. Enjoy carefully selected whiskies from The Glenrothes Single Speyside Malt Scotch Whisky. Piper Stan John entertains guests on arrival with traditional Scottish music and will recite a Scottish poem or two including the Selkirk Grace. Johnny Roberts, commercial director at Fields Morris & Verdin, a Berry Bros & Rudd company, will give guests an insight into the magical world of The Glenrothes craftsmanship before the delicious ‘Burns Night Supper’.

Arrive from 6.30pm for the Glenrothes whisky cocktail & canapés reception, followed by the ‘Burns Supper’ served in ‘The Dining Room’. The dress code is black tie or traditional Scottish attire.

£99 includes the Glenrothes reception, a four-course set menu, selection of the finest whiskies by The Glenrothes, coffee and shortbread. Call Events on 01666 834 026 or email Stay overnight with our special Burns Night room rate starting from £99 per person including breakfast and use of Aquarias Spa.

The Inn at Fossebridge A very warm welcome awaits at The Inn, with stunning Christmas decorations, thousands of fairy lights, roaring log fires and that delicious smell of mulled wine as you enter through the ancient door.

FESTIVE FAYRE Available Monday to Saturday for lunch and dinner, from Friday 2nd December to Saturday 24th December 2 courses £19.50 per person • 3 courses £25.50 per person Includes coffee/tea and baby mince pies

4 dates to choose from: Friday 16th December, Saturday 17th December, Thursday 22nd December OR Friday 23rd December

Two beautiful rooms with no room hire charge Perfect for family gatherings and celebrations

7pm Start • £59 Per Person


(payable at time of booking)

Ticket includes: Canapés & bubbles on arrival, turkey dinner with wine, cheese & port, DJ & dancing        


A glass of champagne on arrival, 4-course lunch plus coffee and mince pies £75.00 per person, £35.00 per child aged 5 to 10 (under 5’s complimentary)

Dress Code: Formal Free coach to and from Cheltenham Town Hall & The Hollow Bottom  01451 850392  The Hollow Bottom Guiting Power Cheltenham Gloucestershire GL54 5UX

For further enquiries and to book please call 01285 720721 or email us on


1 CHAMPAGNE TOWER £89.99 Is there anything more lavish than a Champagne tower? Impress your guests with a cascade of the sparkly stuff with this set of 10 Champagne coupe glasses designed to stack into an iconic waterfall of fizz. Perfect! From Steamer Trading in Cirencester. ✱


2 COCKTAIL JIGGER AND SPOON SET £23 Give your cocktails a totally tropical taste with this palm tree and pineapple cocktail jigger and spoon set, in metallic rose gold and gold. Pick yours up from Oliver Bonas in Oxford. ✱


THE WANT LIST Raise a glass in style with these best barware buys




3 BAR CRAFT 5-PIECE COCKTAIL TOOL SET £17.60 Making a killer cocktail isn’t just about chucking some ingredients together and shaking, don’tcha know? Mix like a pro with this sleeklydesigned stainless steel set of bar tools. From Lakeland in Cheltenham. ✱ 4 CHIRINGUITO COCKTAIL SHAKER £115 Make like Tom Cruise and create some mixology magic with this cocktail shaker by Ron Arad for Alessi. With it’s stainless steel polished mirror finish and chic design, it’s just too stylish to keep locked up in a cupboard for long. From the Cheltenham Kitchener. ✱ 5 CULINARY CONCEPTS PALACE LARGE CHAMPAGNE BATH £119.95 When one bottle just isn’t enough (and your fridge is stuffed with all the ingredients for your Crimbo feast), what you need is a Champagne bath. Imagine this silver-plated number filled with bottles of bubbly – impressive, no? From Cotswold Trading in Broadway. ✱


delicious diner


Al Fresco Dining @ Magnolia Brasserie

NEW FOR 2016 Festive Afternoon Teas from £20 per person Boxing Day Bubbly Brunch from £15 per person

Open Monday to Sunday

For more details of our Christmas programme please call: Breakfast • Lunch •01367 Afternoon 241272Tea Picnic • Dinner  01367 241272

  56 London Street, Faringdon, Oxfordshire SN7 7AA

Situated in the heart of Frampton Industrial estate, formerly the home of Cadbury’s, Mrs Massey’s can be found in the original changing rooms which have been transformed into a contemporary diner offering breakfasts, coffees, lunches and afternoon tea – all cooked freshly to order using local ingredients.

Unit 5 - 7 // Frampton Industrial Estate // Bridge Road Frampton on Severn // Gloucestershire // GL2 7HE 01452 740016 //


Award-winning English wine Visit our Gloucestershire vineyard for Tours & Tasting, Restaurant & Rooms or visit our Hampshire location an ideal location for Weddings & Events. GLOUCESTERSHIRE • HAMPSHIRE Newent Gloucestershire GL18 1LS T: 01531 890223 | | E:

Food Fanatics Food Hall

Christmas is approaching, time to plan We can help you find the right ingredient, the perfect gift or even create a beautiful hamper full of goodies. OPEN EVERY DAY • 12 North Street, Winchcombe, Gloucestershire GL54 5LH

01242 604466


NEW COMPANIES, AMAZING INNOVATIONS, CAMPAIGNS WORTH FIGHTING FOR, AND PEOPLE THAT MATTER That’s a Chamois, that is. Like the look of him? There’s more where he came from...


Ditch the turkey, and try something new for C-Day dinner Page 49


Enough festive cocktails to keep glasses charged ’til NYE Page 55




COCKTAIL RECIPES to boost the festive fun

Bookings being taken for Christmas


The Little Italian Bistro A warm welcome awaits you in our family run hotel, situated in the picturesque Cotswolds.

& Cotswold Teahouse Burford House Hotel 99, High Street Burford Reservations: (01993) 823151

The Swan Inn High Street | Moreton-in-Marsh Gloucestershire | GL56 0LL

Fall in love with Italian food all over again!

01608 650711

E-mail: Web: 12 Gloucester Street, Cirencester, Gloucestershire GL7 2DG

Where you can always be assured of a warm welcome...

Family run country pub situated in the village of Andoversford.

Delightful 16th century independent hotel packed full of Cotswold charm. Locally renowned for it’s great food, warm hospitality & attentive service

Character Rooms Bar open all-day Listed in Good Beer Guide Modern British menu Restaurant open lunch & dinner Ample free parking Weddings & Special Occasions

Bookings or enquiries 01285 659711

Find fine dining inspired dishes mixed with pub classic, all expertly cooked and presented, using locally sourced beef and pork. Great selection of cask ales and fine wines.

Call for a reservation: 01242 821426 email:




GOOSE: Once upon a time, before

2 whole pheasants (ask your butcher to bone them for you) 8 rashers streaky bacon knob of butter (for frying) 1 sprig of thyme 1 onion, diced 500ml veg etable oil 1 carrot, peeled and chopped 1 leek, chopped 1 litre of water 250ml red wine 15g red current jelly

turkey came into town, goose was the poultry of choice for the festive season – so if you want to try something different, while still making a nod towards tradition, this could be your bird. Ben White, Business Manager at Coombe Farm Organic, is a big fan. He says: “The gem with roast goose is the fat. Instead of having to use a lot of butter or fat on your turkey, the goose provides this for you! Afterwards, the goose fat should be poured into a cup or jug and stored in the fridge. It makes for the most outstanding roast potatoes you will ever eat!”

PHEASANT: If your Christmas gathering is small, then a turkey may just simply be too big! In which case, a smaller bird – such as a pheasant – could be the answer. Richard Whiting, head chef at Fostons Ash Inn near Stroud, has created this super-yummy recipe. The confit legs and the sauce take a while, but they can be cooked in advance and reheated when needed.


For the confit legs: – Preheat the oven to 150C/300F/ gas mark 2. – Pour the oil into a deep roasting tray or dish and add the thyme, carrot, onion and leek. – Immerse the legs in the mixture and cover with tin foil. – Cook for 4 hours. – Once cooked, remove legs and reheat when required.

For the sauce: – Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/ gas mark 4. – Roast the pheasant carcass until browned (around 30 minutes), and drain any surplus fat. – Put the bones in a saucepan and cover with 1 litre of water, then simmer for 4 hours. – Sieve and put the liquid to one side to set. – Once set, remove surplus fat and put back into the pan. – Add red wine and redcurrant jelly and place on a medium/high heat, and simmer ’til it has reduced by two thirds. – Strain and serve. For the pheasant breasts: – Remove all sinew from the fillet using a small knife. – Place the bacon between two layers of cling film and roll out with a rolling pin. – Wrap the pieces of bacon around the breast. – Melt butter in a pan until it’s warm and sizzling. – Place the breasts in the pan and cook for 3 minutes, then turn over and cook for a further two minutes.

LeT’S TwIsT... Try one of these tasty standins for traditional turkey and trimmings this tinseltime…


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BRILL: At a time of year when the

eating never seems to stop, fish can make a lighter alternative. Sally Pearce, owner of the Old Passage seafood restaurant in Arlingham, is a great advocate of a bit of festive fish, and loves this recipe for pan-roasted brill with calf's tongue, created by chef Jon Lane. “It’s warming, seasonal, and simple to prepare!” she says.


1 large butternut squash 50g cooked calf’s tongue 500ml beef stock 100ml red wine double cream (to taste) 50g silver skin onions knob of unsalted butter 20g baby capers lemon juice (to taste) 1 bunch tarragon, chopped 100g purple sprouting 2 portions of brill, skinned 50g girolle mushrooms – Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/ gas mark 4. – Dice 50g of the butternut squash and set aside, leaving the rest of it in the skin, and remove the seeds. – Chop cooked tongue into half centimetre pieces. – Chop the tarragon. – Deeply score the butternut squash in the skin and rub in oil, salt and pepper. – Roast the squash in the oven until the flesh is soft and has a good roasted colour (around 20 minutes). Remove from the oven and leave to cool. – Put the beef stock and red wine in a pan over a medium/high heat and reduce until it reaches a sticky consistency, then remove from the heat and set aside. – When the butternut squash has cooled slightly, remove the flesh from the skin and blitz in a food processor. – When smooth, add a little cream, salt and pepper to taste, then pass through a sieve to make a purée. – Put the silverskin onions in a pan and fry with a little oil and butter. When they start to colour add the diced butternut squash, tongue and girolles. – Once the squash is al dente, add the

capers, a squeeze of lemon juice to taste, the reduced beef stock and red wine and the tarragon to create a sauce of light consistency, and then set aside and keep warm. – Blanch the purple sprouting and make sure it is dry before rolling in butter, salt and pepper. Set aside and keep warm. – Heat a non-stick pan with a little oil until it is very hot. – Season the brill with salt and pepper and place skin side down in the pan. – Add a knob of butter and, after 3-4 minutes, turn the heat down to medium until the fish is golden brown. – Turn the fish over and cook for a further 2-3 minutes, ’til cooked through. – To plate, put a large tablespoon of purée on the plate and swipe with a spoon. Place the purple sprouting on the purée, then the fish on top of that, then spoon the tongue mix around the fish with some of the sauce.


Rich and comforting, a bit of beef might be just what you’re looking for this season. The beauty of this recipe from Daniel Penescu, head chef of The Britannia in Nailsworth, is that once it’s in the oven it can be left to do its thing for a few hours, so the cook won’t have to miss out on all the fun.



1kg featherblade of beef 2 medium shallots, chopped 2 celery sticks, chopped 2 carrots, chopped 4 garlic cloves, finely chopped 300ml red wine 700ml beef stock 1 bunch thyme 2 tbsp tomato paste 1 tbsp English mustard – Preheat the oven to 160C/320F/ gas mark 2/3. – Season the beef very well with salt and pepper. – Heat a large heavy-based fry pan and sear the meat for 3-4 minutes on both sides, until brown. – Transfer the beef to a deep casserole dish. – Fry the shallots, garlic and celery until brown, then add red wine, beef stock (enough to cover the meat), thyme, English mustard and tomato purée, and bring to boil. – Pour the mix into the casserole, then cover and put in the oven for 3-4 hours.


the slightly sweet flavor of Jerusalem artichoke makes a great alternative to cauliflower. They’re bang in season at this time of year too, which makes us love them even more. Richard Whiting from Fostons Ash Inn suggests serving with his pheasant dish, and who are we to argue? 10 Jerusalem artichokes, peeled and diced 2 cloves of garlic, finely chopped 500ml double cream 1 onion, diced 250g plain flour 125g unsalted butter 100g gruyere cheese, grated salt and black pepper for seasoning – Preheat oven to 180C/350F/ gas mark 4. – Put artichokes, garlic and cream in a pan, season with salt and pepper, then simmer for around 20 minutes until the artichokes are tender. – Once cooked, place the mix in a roasting tray and allow to cook. – For the crumble, blend the flour and the butter until it forms a breadcrumb consistency. – Sprinkle the breadcrumbs over the artichoke mixture and top with the gruyere cheese. – Put in oven and bake for 20 minutes, or until breadcrumbs are golden brown.


King scallops! What a festive treat, and what an eye catcher on your Christmas table! The folks at Coombe Farm Organic suggest serving them quickly pan-fried (just a minute on each side in a pan with sizzling hot butter). Season with a sprinkle of sea salt and some chilli flakes and serve with basil-pine nut-pesto and a small slice of toasted ciabatta. Delish!


it meaty, with sausage meat and bacon lardons! This combination is a great alternative, as it provides the full flavour of pigs in blankets but in a “stuffing version.” The folks at Coombe Farm Organic recommend stuffing the neck end of the bird rather than the cavity.


love a Christmas pud, it’s not exactly the lightest option to follow the biggest meal of the year. If you fancy a lighter alternative, then this jelly recipe, created by the folks at Three Choirs Vineyard, might just hit the spot.



325ml Classic Cuvée 300g caster sugar 6 leaves gelatine, soaked in cold water to soften and drained 4 tangerines, peeled and segmented 200ml coconut milk – Dissolve the sugar in the Classic Cuvée over a gentle heat, remove from heat and add the gelatine. – Separate the tangerine segments between 4 Champagne flutes, pour equal quantities of jelly into each flute and place in fridge until set. – Warm coconut milk over a gentle heat, remove from heat and whisk with a hand blender until foamy, then spoon on top of the jellies and serve.

( adverti sing feature )



5 2



THE DRINKS CABINET presented by The Craft Drink Co.


he season’s festivities call for special drinks to enjoy in a gathering of friends, a celebration with family or even as a gift to loved ones. As well as bubbles, liqueurs and spirits, at this time of year a number of us are looking for equally delicious alternatives to alcohol. Whatever the tipple of your choice, here is a superb selection to get the party started.

1 Capreolus Distillery – Garden Tiger Dry Gin A blend of 34 botanicals of immense quality, examples of which include fresh Sicilian blood orange zest and lime blossom, this dry gin is produced in very small batches of only 200 bottles, which are finished with traditionally printed letterpress labels. Luxurious and incredibly complex, this was recently selected as ‘Winner of Spirit of the Year 2017’ by a major online drinks retailer. 2 Cotswolds Distillery – Cotswolds Cream Liqueur This tasty treat is made by combining the distillery’s new make spirit for their single malt whisky with fresh cream, the marriage of which produces a wonderfully rich and luscious liqueur (we think it’s the best of its

kind!) Serve chilled over ice, with ice cream or in coffee. 3 Frobishers – Sloe and Raspberry Cordial Frobishers is the proud maker of some of the UK's best juices and has recently taken on a range of cordials from Five Valleys Cordials. The sloe and raspberry cordial is packed full with tart sloes and sweet raspberries, then made smooth and rich with a hint of vanilla. Drink it with hot water for a delicious winter warmer. 4 Gosnells – London Mead Gosnells employ traditional brewing methods and blend carefully sourced citrus blossom honey with water to create a new style of mead that is very different from typical meads. It is light, crisp and refreshing with a slight fizz, delicate floral and citrus notes, making special occasions sparkle! 5 Sixteen Ridges – Sparkling Pinot Noir Rosé This is an award winning delicate sparkling blush made exclusively from Pinot Noir, in the traditional (Champagne) method, with secondary fermentation in the bottle, and two years lees age prior to disgorging. A


sumptuous, rich palate of strawberry, cherry, redcurrant and raspberry makes this the perfect Christmas aperitif! 6 White Heron – British Cassis British Cassis is artisanally produced using the finest Herefordshire blackcurrants. It contains 95% pressed fruit juice, a little champagne yeast and just the right amount of British sugar to sweeten. The result is a fresh and luxurious taste that lets the blackcurrants sing! This delicious liqueur makes a great gift and perfectly complements still or sparkling white wine or can be used in cocktails with gin, vodka or vermouth.

The Craft Drink Co. is a speciality craft drinks distributor, supplying independent businesses with exceptional craft drinks sourced from makers across The Cotswolds and Central England region. For more information, please visit:

B R E A K FA S T • L U N C H • D I N N E R • D R I N K S

Somewhere Else, 65 Castle Street, Cirencester GL7 1QD 01285643199 | SE_Cirencester |

SECirencester |





To help your C-Day celebrations go with a bang – or, we should say, with a fizz – some of our favourite Cotswolds cocktail connoisseurs (try saying that after you’ve had a few!) have shared some of their best festive recipes. Time to get your mix on! CHRISTMAS EVE

It’s dark and chilly outside, but inside the fire is lit, carols are playing and the family have all arrived ready to celebrate the big day tomorrow. There’s only one thing that could improve this idyllic picture – yes, a warming cocktail!


37.5ml Williams Sloe and Mulberry Gin homemade mulled wine (see recipe below) orange slice, to garnish – Build all ingredients into a tempered glass, or a warmed wine glass. – Serve warm. – Garnish with slice of fresh orange.

To make the mulled wine: (SERVES 6-8)

1 bottle decent quality red wine (Merlot preferred) 2 cinnamon sticks 1 tbsp clove 2 whole stars of star anise ½ orange (sliced) ½ lemon (sliced) 100g sugar 3 dashes Angostura bitters – Add all ingredients to a pan and gently warm (do not boil). – Allow to infuse over a low heat for 10-15 minutes. – Take off heat and allow to cool. – Strain liquid through a fine strainer and use.

50ml pear nectar (see below) apple slice (to garnish) cinnamon stick (to garnish) – Add Willy’s Cider to a pan over a medium heat, along with pear nectar, a cinnamon stick and star anise (this can be made in advanced and stored in bottles for speed of service. if preferred). – Add Original Potato Vodka to the bottom of a tempered glass and top with pear and cider infusion. – Garnish with a fresh apple slice and cinnamon stick. For the pear nectar:

By Chase Distillery

5 whole pears 25ml lemon juice 25ml sugar syrup 25ml water


50ml William’s Elegant Gin/ Chase Naked Vodka 200ml Willy’s Cider



If ever any morning warranted a touch of sparkle, then it’s Christmas morning!


By Shakespeare Distillery (SERVES 1)




– Simmer for around 20 minutes on a low heat. – Add mixture to a food processer and purée until smooth. – Bottle and store in the fridge.

– Core whole pears and add to a pan on a low heat with fresh lemon juice, sugar syrup and water.


1 measure (25ml) Shakespeare Distillery Mulberry Gin either Champagne or Prosecco, to taste – Add one measure of Mulberry Gin to a Champagne flute. – Top-up with either chilled Champagne or Prosecco. ✱

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25ml Chambord 2 blackberries 12.5ml fresh lemon juice 1 teaspoon sugar syrup Champagne or Prosecco, to taste blackcurrant, to garnish lemon twist, to garnish – Muddle together the Chambord, blackberries, lemon juice and sugar syrup. – Double strain into a Champagne flute. – Top up with Champagne or Prosecco. – Garnish with a blackcurrant and lemon twist. ✱


By Cotswold Distillery (serves 1) 1 clove 20ml Cotswolds Distillery 1616 Barreled Aged Gin 20ml fresh orange juice bar spoon of honey bar spoon of marmalade dash of orange bitters Champagne, to taste orange peel, to garnish

– Muddle clove in Boston tin. – Add other ingredients with ice and shake. – Fine strain into a Champagne flute and top up with Champagne. – Gently stir, garnish with orange peel and serve. ✱


Get those digestive juices flowing with a pre-lunch drink! (It’s also a great excuse for the cook to take a quick break before the final flurry of activity in the kitchen.)


By Capreolus Distillery (SERVES 1)

25ml Garden Tiger dry gin 25ml Genepi 100ml cloudy apple juice 1 fresh sage leaf (to garnish) – Fill a large wine glass with lots of ice. – Add the Garden Tiger, Genepi and top with the apple juice. – Float a sage leaf upon the surface. ✱


50ml Cognac 25ml lemon juice 25 ml honey 25ml mulled wine dash of Christmas bitters cinnamon stick, to garnish – Shake the Cognac, lemon juice and honey over ice and strain into Champagne flute. – Pour mulled wine over bar spoon. – Top with Christmas bitters. – Flame off cinnamon stick and place over top of glass. ✱


You’ve been scoffing Christmas treats all day, and you’re so full you couldn’t possibly fit in even one more chocolate – we all know that feeling, right? So when you can’t take another bite, why not try a deliciously decadent cocktail? Go on, you know you want to...

37.5ml Chase Marmalade Vodka 10ml gingerbread syrup 12.5ml Crème De Cacao White 20ml single cream nutmeg or cinnamon, for dusting mini gingerbread man, to garnish – Add all ingredients to a shaker and shake with cubed ice. – Double strain into a chilled martini/coupe glass. – Dust with either nutmeg or cinnamon. – Garnish with a mini gingerbread man. ✱


50ml salted caramel vodka 35ml Irish cream 35ml Amaretto 50ml cream salted caramel, to garnish

8 GINGERBREAD MAN By Chase Distillery

– Pour all ingredients into a tumbler. – Finish with an additional dribble of salted caramel.






de use promo co S A M SX B M CRU on checkout


Sea food, eat food. (Well, what else would we do with it?)


Chowing down (and getting our heads down) at Charingworth Manor Page 60

THAT SUNDAY FEELING Don’t miss the Sunday lunch pop-up at No 38 The Park! Page 62



Purslane’s lunch menu’s too good to rush Page 64



PUDS in one lunch (each, that is!)

Af ters

( G O O D R E S TA U R A N T S )

CHARINGWORTH MANOR You cannot fail to be won over by the charm of Charingworth Manor, says Emma Dance


( feature )


he warm, welcoming glow of Charingworth Manor was just visible from the road – a happy beacon on a dark and chilly evening, guiding us up the long sweeping driveway to our home for the night. Dating back 700 years, this stone manor house oozes history from every corner and crevice, and any modernisation over the centuries has been done sympathetically, with the addition of plenty of 20th (and 21st) centry comfort, while still retaining a sense of the building’s heritage. This balance of old and new seems to be reflected in the restaurant’s menu too, with classic dishes and flavours sitting alongside some much more contemporary plates. My beetroot starter definitely erred on the side of the modern, with vibrant cubes and slices of red and yellow beetroot crowned by a quenelle

of sorbet and flanked by a dome of blue cheese mousse. The contrasting textures of earthy beetroot, enlivened by just a hint of vinegar sharpness from pickling and the icy sweetness of the sorbet, was a delight. The blue cheese flavour in the mousse was subtle, though – I would have liked a stronger boot of tangy saltiness to contrast with the beetroot – and it sadly lacked in lightness, resembling instead an overset pannacotta. My companion’s rather more classic pan-fried pigeon breast with parsnip purée, beetroot, port dressing and game chips was more of a success, however. The pigeon was rich and gamey (I would have preferred it rarer, but it was perfect for him), the purée smooth, and the game chips added a welcome crunch. I had high hopes for my saddle of rabbit with wild mushroom and tarragon mousse, parma ham, fig tart tatin and parsnips crisps, but sadly it didn’t eat quite as well as it read. Don’t get me wrong – there was plenty to enjoy, and I cleared my plate – and the rabbit, which can be easy to overcook, was moist and the Parma ham that enrobed it was well crisped. The mousse, however, was once again a weak link. Flavour-wise it delivered, but the texture, although not unpleasant, was heavy and far from fluffy. The tart tatin was fine – nothing more. The pastry was crisp and the fig itself sweet, but there was none of the sticky caramelisation that defines a good tart tatin. Across the table my companion was less disappointed. His roast rump of lamb with dauphinoise potatoes, mint jus, steamed samphire and peas proved that you don’t have to throw a whole host of fancy techniques at a dish to


produce something eminently eatable. Classic won out again. My dessert was almost as simple as they come, a pistachio crème brulée with pistachio tuille, and was the better for it. A delicate burnt sugar crust gave way under the slightest tap of the spoon to reveal a smooth, creamy custard with just a hint of nutty pistachio. The tuille was thick – more of a biscuit in truth – and more chewy than crisp, but as only a minor player it didn’t detract. My companion’s lemon mousse, with lemon curd, lemon zest honeycomb and lemon and vodka sorbet, was pretty, but perhaps we should have learnt from the dishes that had gone before, as though there could be no complaint about the zinginess of the lemon, the mousse lacked aeration and the honeycomb welded itself to his teeth. There’s no arguing with the appeal of Charingworth Manor; the rooms are cosy, the grounds picturesque, the staff friendly and welcoming and there’s even a swimming pool. The thing is, when you have something so beautiful you don’t have to try to convince people that you have something special, and I feel like that’s something that the kitchen could learn from. The best dishes of the night were the most simple, the ones that just let the ingredients speak for themselves (and indeed, our breakfast the next morning was faultless). With a lighter touch and a little more focus on showcasing the ingredients, the food here could go from the merely good to great. ✱ CHARINGWORTH MANOR, Chipping Campden, Gloucestershire GL55 6NS; 01386 593555;


( P O P - U P R E S TA U R A N T )

SUNDAY LUNCH AT NO 38 THE PARK Don’t miss the opportunity to dive into one of the most indulgent Sunday lunches you might ever eat, says Emma Dance


omforting, nostalgic and quintessentially British, there’s something so cosy and special about a proper Sunday lunch. But, I have two roast-related problems. Firstly, much as I love eating one I just can’t quite muster the same level of enthusiasm for cooking one. In our postage-stamp sized kitchen, with about three-square-centimetres of workspace and a single oven, trying to juggle the necessary plethora of cooking temperatures and times, so that everything emerges all at once, hot and not undercooked or burnt to a crisp, seems tougher than The Krypton Factor (especially once you throw a glass of wine – or two – into the mix). The obvious solution, then, is to go out for lunch, right? And there’s my second problem. Everyone loves the Sunday lunch of their childhood, and no roast I’ve ever eaten, in any pub or restaurant anywhere in the country, has quite delivered the same culinary cuddle that I get from the one cooked by my Dad. Until, that is, we went along to the first of three special pop-up Sunday lunches being held at boutique B&B No 38 The Park, in Cheltenham. Any meal that begins with the question. “Would you like your Bloody Mary in the lounge or at your table?” has already won a bucket-load of Brownie

points from me. (Parents – take note.) We opt for the lounge, and within moments we’re sipping on a cocktail with enough kick to boot even the most persistent of hangovers far into the middle distance. Our starter comes in the form of sweet, slippery oysters (Portland Pearls, I’m told) and thick, luxurious slices of smoked salmon accessorised with jewels of beetroot and horseradish cream. Every lunch pop-up stars a different meat for the main event, and when we visit it’s lamb in the limelight (it’ll be beef in December and suckling pig in January). It comes piled high on a board, crowned by Yorkshire puddings (it might not be traditional, but who doesn’t love a Yorkie?), and is followed by a supporting cast of side dishes – goose fat potatoes, roast carrots, buttered green beans, broccoli, roast heritage beetroot and cauliflower cheese. Finding space for it all on our compact table for two proves something of a challenge, but it’s still easier than trying to get all of that cooked at home, and with a bit of rearranging it all fits – just. The lamb is pink – possibly too pink for some, but for me it’s perfect, and butter soft. A little bit more colour on the outside might have made it a little more visually appealing, but I’ve no complaints about how it tastes. The accompaniments aren’t complex, but


then it’s a Sunday lunch – they don’t need to be, and the sheer volume and variety has got to be a challenge, especially when you consider that No 38 isn’t a full time restaurant. Full marks to the chefs, then, because every element is bang on the money. By the time we’ve cleared the table we’re obviously stuffed, but somehow we find room for dessert. I say dessert, but actually it should be desserts plural. There’s rich, fudgy chocolate brownie with the smoothest of vanilla ice cream, slices of sticky toffee pudding – light, and not too sweet – with clotted cream, and a jar of hedgerow Eton mess which is a swirl of tangy fruit, soft cream and sweet, crunchy meringue. The tangible tightening of my waistband is telling me to stop eating, but it’s just too delicious and I keep having “just one more mouthful.” Eventually we admit defeat, and begin our slow roll homeward. My only complaint? That there’s only two more chances to indulge. But that’s good news for you, Dad – I’ll be back around yours soon. And there’s plenty of time to get practicing those Bloody Marys, too… ✱ No 38 THE PARK, 38 Evesham Road, Cheltenham GL52 2AH; 01232 822929; The next Sunday lunches here take place on 11 December and 8 January

Af ters

( L O V E LY L U N C H E S )


Af ters

Emma Dance enjoys a lazy lunch at Purslane in Cheltenham


t’s Tuesday lunchtime, and it’s cold and it’s drizzling. It’s the sort of day that makes you want to hunker down inside and hide from the elements. It’s definitely not the sort of day that inspires you to say, “Hey, let’s go out to lunch.” At least, that’s what I thought. It seems, though, that plenty of people disagree with me, because when we arrive at Purslane it’s buzzing, and nearly all the tables are full. I shouldn’t really have been surprised, given the rave reviews this neighbourhood restaurant has garnered since it opened back in 2012 – not to mention the fact that chef patron Gareth Fulford was recently named Chef of the Year at the Taste of Gloucestershire Food and Farming Awards. And when I take a look at the lunchtime set menu, it all becomes even more clear. At £14 for two courses and £17 for three, it’s an absolute bargain. The menu is small: there’s one starter, two mains and one dessert, so you’re not exactly spoilt for choice. But that’s how they manage to keep the prices down. And if you’re on the clock (nipping out for a working lunch, perhaps), then

it helps that making a decision takes practically no time at all. We order some bread to start – it’s extra (£4), but it turns out to be well worth the investment. Warm slices of soft spelt and honey sourdough and hunks of dense, treacly sodabread come served with salty taramasalta and umami-rich seaweed butter. It’s wickedly moreish, and would actually be enough on it’s own for a usual Tuesday al desko feed. But this isn’t a normal Tuesday, and it’s all the better for it. A starter of Beauvale pannacotta, coal roasted beetroots and malt crumb looks delicate, but punches above its weight when it comes to flavours – the salty tang of the Beauvale blue cheese the perfect foil for the sweet, earthy beetroot. Purslane is known for its seafood, so of course there’s a fishy dish on the menu – Cornish haddock, heritage potatoes, St Austell mussels and purple sprouting – but my husband’s eyeing up that option, so on this occasion I give in and let him order it. When it arrives it looks even better than it sounds, with a piece of soft, flaky fish topped by a golden pile of crispy potato strands and


flanked by three of the biggest mussels I’ve ever seen. I beg a mussel, and its meaty sweetness doesn’t disappoint. My confit guinea fowl leg, celeriac, mushrooms, chestnuts, pancetta and curly kale maybe doesn’t look quite so pretty, but that couldn’t possibly matter less, because as soon as I take a bite I’m wrapped in the warm embrace of rich autumnal flavours. Fish might be the speciality here, but these chefs sure ain’t one-trick ponies. Dessert is a quince and hazelnut tarte fine. The glistening slices of quince are sharp, the pastry almost savoury while the accompanying mascarpone sorbet and nuggets of crunchy honeycomb complete the flavour picture. We’re told that the whole menu can be served and eaten in an hour, but to gobble it down at such pace feels like it would be doing it a disservice. Dishes this good deserve to be savoured over a long, leisurely lunch. And that’s exactly what we did. ✱ PURSLANE, 16 Rodney Road, Cheltenham GL50 1JJ; 01242 321639;

( feature )


Little black book Toni Ryder and Ann Paisley of Not Just Bouquets, one of the Cotswolds’ leading florist and events companies, reveal where they like to eat. (And it doesn’t hurt that Toni is events manager at Cotswold Taste, too!) BEST BREAKFAST? Vera’s Kitchen in

Lechlade is always cosy and friendly.

BEST BREW? Jacks Coffee Shop in

Cirencester is a great place to get a decent cup of coffee and some amazing homemade cakes.


Now add this little lot to your contacts book Vera’s Kitchen, Lechlade GL7 3AP; Jacks Coffee Shop, Cirencester GL7 2AA; 01285 640888 The Organic Farmshop, Cirencester GL7 5HF; Chamberlain Wines, Poulton GL7 5DH; The Village Pub, Barnsley GL7 5EF; The Marlborough Arms, Cirencester GL7 1QW; 01285 651474 Cotswold Plough Hotel, Clanfield OX18 2RB; Whatley Manor, Malmesbury, Wiltshire SN16 0RB; Jolly Nice Café, Frampton Mansell, Nr. Stroud GL6 8HZ; Ellenborough Park, Cheltenham, GL52 3NJ; Restaurant 56, Faringdon SN7 7AA; The Cotswold Kitchen, Cirencester GL7 7AL; The Kingham Plough, Kingham, Chipping Norton OX7 6YD; Weighbridge Inn, Longfords, Minchinhampton GL6 9AL;, The Plough Inn, Kelmscott, Oxfordshire GL7 3HG; Colosseo, Fairford GL7 4AH; Three Ways House Hotel, Chipping Campden GL55 6SB; Pippin Doughnuts;


has to be the Organic Farm Shop in Cirencester, because so much of what they sell is grown, reared and produced on the farm. BEST WINE MERCHANT? Chamberlain Wines has a great range of wines and spirits, and we rely on their knowledge and expertise when needing something for that special event. They also do fantastic tasting evenings. SUNDAY LUNCH? The Village Pub,

Barnsley, is a lovely place to get a great Sunday lunch.

QUICK PINT? The Marlborough Arms in Cirencester has an exceptional range of beers to choose from, and a great atmosphere too. CHEEKY COCKTAIL? The Gin Pantry at The Cotswold Plough Hotel, Clanfield always has the most amazing selection of gins and mixers. POSH NOSH? The tasting menu with

matching wines at the Dining Room at Whatley Manor in Malmesbury is such a sophisticated and indulgent treat.

HIDDEN GEM? Restaurant 56 at

Sudbury House Hotel in Faringdon, because of the amazing food and the excellent service we receive – along with the great ambience.

ONE TO WATCH? The Cotswold

Kitchen, Cirencester. They offer the most delicious food and bespoke menus that are modern, colourful and full of local produce. This is a friendly company that will, in our experience, exceed every expectation.

WITH FRIENDS? The relaxed atmosphere, coupled with great food made from locally sourced ingredients, at The Kingham Plough in Kingham is second to none. COMFORT FOOD? The pies at the Weighbridge Inn, Minchinhampton are comfort food at its best – and we love that they use local ingredients. WITH THE FAMILY? The Plough Inn at Kelmscott is one of our family favourites! It is nestled next to the River Thames, and has rustic interiors, friendly service, and wonderful food. CHILD FRIENDLY? Nothing is too much trouble at Colosseo Ristorante in Fairford when it comes to their guests, both young and old. They have great food, and the kids love their pizza. SOMETHING SWEET? It has to be Three Ways House, Chipping Campden – home of the Pudding Club!

FOOD ON THE GO? Jolly Nice Café near Stroud is a brilliant place to grab a quick burger, or perhaps some local farm produce.

TOP STREET FOOD? We love Pippin Doughnuts. We usually hunt them down at Stroud Farmers Market.



love soaking up the sunshine at Ellenborough Park in Cheltenham.


Festive Menu LITTLE PLATES FROM AROUND THE WORLD (prices per person, with two people sharing the feast!)

Christmas Cocktail

LUNCH – £15pp


choose 3 dishes for 2 to share


• Spanish sharing platter- Manchego cheese, charcuterie, pan tomaca • Japanese tempura vegetables with wasabi • Basque-style baked crab • Norwegian smoked venison with ruby port ragout with blackberries and puff pastry • English turkey with stuffing and Cumberland sauce • A trio of traditional Christmas Puddings

EVENING OPTION 2 – £35pp Option one with a Christmas cocktail & Amuse-bouche to start

EVENING OPTION 3 – £45pp Option two with cheese, biscuits & festive coffee to follow.

Come and join us for a cocktail or two... is our Christmas Cocktail Special and available throughout December

Casino Royale 27TH DECEMBER

Feeling lucky? Play Black Jack and Roulette at our special casino for the night – and enjoy gourmet pleasures designed by our chefs

New Year’s Eve

A VERY BRITISH CELEBRATION In contrast to our multi-cultural menu for December we will be screening British Music Videos and serving delicious food.

Waterloo House • Nailsworth • GL6 0AQ • 01453 833666

Crumbs Cotswolds – issue 49  
Crumbs Cotswolds – issue 49