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CRUMBS COTSWOLDS NO.60 NOvember 2017

WE WISH IT COULD BE

S MA T IS H C R THAT WAY WE COULD GO TO EVERY EVENT IN OUR

EVERY DAY!

ULTIMATE YULETIDE GUIDE!

A little slice of foodie heaven Did Noah like quince?

No, he preferred pairs!

NO.60 NOvember 2017

THE HANNMADE TALE

GLASS HALNOFT WEITMH THEPTY?

HAPPERLEY

EVER AFT E R

CRUMBS XMAS TRUST YOUR ‚ ET IN B FOOD! DRINKs CA „KNOFAWRMEYORURS! ‚PRMEOETVENTHEANCE

CRUMBS COOKS WITH TV’s JUDI TH

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quinCe and the revOlUtiOn It’s a funny old thing, the quince. (And not just because of the way it looks.) Once holding an almost mythical status, it seemed to have fallen out of favour for the longest time (bar, of course, with a certain Owl and Pussycat, for whom it’s been a perennial favourite). Except, that is, until very recently, as there seems to be a minor revolution going on, with interest in quince on the up. I’d urge you to leap aboard this slowly-growing bandwagon. For, although the quince may have a socially awkward exterior, put in a bit of effort and you’ll find an elegant, fascinating (and rather delicious) heart lurking within. And on the subject of ‘lurking within’, you’ll find all kinds of lovely foodie features tucked away in this issue. We get the lowdown on just how you go about catering for tens of thousands from Robert Goves of Relish; find out more about Gloucestershire’s new food provenance initiative, Happerley; and pay a visit to the home of Tomorrow’s World presenter-turnedherb expert Judith Hann, to talk about her latest book. (It’s all about herbs, not clunky ’70s robots – natch.) We’ve also got a bunch of seasonal recipes for you to have a go at, a round-up of ace Christmas events happening across the Cotswolds, and advice on must-try drinks this season. In fact, just as it’s hard to believe the quince is as delicious as it is, I’m still getting my head around how much good stuff we’ve packed into this issue. Enjoy!

Emma Dance Editor emma.dance@mediaclash.co.uk Crumbs is now an app! Search ‘Crumbs’, or go to crumbsmag.com

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Table of Contents

NO.60 NOVEMBER 2017

crumbsmag.com

EDITOR

EMMA DANCE emma.dance@mediaclash.co.uk DEVELOPMENT EDITOR

MATT BIELBY matt.bielby@mediaclash.co.uk ONLINE EDITOR

DAN IZZARD dan.izzard@mediaclash.co.uk ART DIRECTOR

TREVOR GILHAM DESIGN

VICKY MITCHARD ADVERTISING MANAGER

DANIELLE MORRIS danielle.morris@mediaclash.co.uk PRODUCTION AND DISTRIBUTION MANAGER

SARAH KINGSTON sarah.kingston@mediaclash.co.uk DEPUTY PRODUCTION MANAGER

KIRSTIE HOWE kirstie.howe@mediaclash.co.uk PRODUCTION DESIGNER

GEMMA SCRINE gemma.scrine@mediaclash.co.uk CHIEF EXECUTIVE

JANE INGHAM jane.ingham@mediaclash.co.uk CHIEF EXECUTIVE

GREG INGHAM greg.ingham@mediaclash.co.uk

large version

MediaClash, Circus Mews House, Circus Mews, Bath BA1 2PW; 01225 475800 www.mediaclash.co.uk 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 we have mostly been getting very excited about the launch of our shiny new website. It's looking pretty awesome – even if we do say so ourselves!

STARTERS 8 HERO INGREDIENT The myth and magic of the mighty quince 11 OPENINGS ETC So much food, so little time... 14 ASK THE EXPERT Just how do you cater for 30,000 people? Rob Goves of Relish tells all

CHEF!

AMAZING RECIPES FROM THE REGION’S TOP KITCHENS

24 Roast monkfish with salt baked beetroot, braised carrots, smoked salmon, Romanesco and orange, by Jon Lane 26 Vegan spiced pumpkin mousse, by Celia Duplock

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28 Chicken and spiced lentils with leek, watercress and garlic yoghurt, by Riverford ADDITIONAL RECIPES

9 Quince membrillo, by Mary Cadogan 19 Clafoutis with pears, by Rose Prince

MAINS 45 CHEERS! Raise a glass to these top Crimbo tipples 52 FOOD CHAIN What it means to eat Happerley

31 Chard and goats’ cheese spelt pizza, by Kathy Slack

55 DATE NIGHT Ace seasonal happenings across the Cotswolds

39 Tomato and rocket tart, by Judith Hann

AFTERS

KITCHEN ARMOURY 35 CRUMBS COOKS WITH TV’s Judith Hann ‘herbs’ (ahem) her enthusiasm 40 THE WANT LIST Because life is what you bake of it

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NEW & NOTABLE RESTAURANTS, CAFÉS, BARS

60 Restaurant 56 62 The Rectory Hotel 64 The Mousetrap Inn PLUS

66 LITTLE BLACK BOOK Nick Deverell-Smith shares his top spots to chill


INNOVATIONS, REVELATIONS AND TASTY AMUSE-BOUCHES

FAILURE TO LUNCh THE SOIL ASSOCIATION’S Out to Lunch league table, which ranks children’s food in some of the UK’s most popular restaurants, is back. Working with an army of ‘secret diner’ parents at 25 high street chains, the Out to Lunch campaign has exposed some shockingly poor practices at a number of popular family eateries. Restaurants have a very important role to play in influencing what children think good food looks and tastes like. This year, the campaign found everything from grossly oversized puddings to children’s meals actually being made with additives linked to hyperactivity. “A survey by the Soil Association earlier this year found that 75% of UK parents say they are worried by the portion size of children’s puddings when they eat out,” says their Rob Percival. “It’s surprising, then, to find so many chains ignoring parental concerns by dishing up super-sized calorific meals, which undermine national efforts to tackle childhood obesity.” Out to Lunch is keen to transform children’s food and, indeed, some high street chains have made huge improvements since the campaign launched in 2013. Many restaurants are now prioritising child health and investing in healthier and more creative meal options. Thirteen chains now serve a portion of vegetables or salad with every meal, for instance, up from just six in 2013. And twelve chains now include organic ingredients on the menu, up from six in 2015. To see the full results of this year’s Out to Lunch campaign, including reviews by secret diners, visit: soilassociation.org/our-campaigns/out-to-lunch/

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S T A R T E R S

qUINce IT WAS THE GIFT THAT STARTED THE TROJAN WAR; THE MAGICAL FRUIT THAT KEEPS LOKI LOOKING YOUNG. AND, LUCKILY, THE TASTE LIVES UP TO THE MYTHS…

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here’s the occasional foodstuff that we enjoy as much for what they look and smell like as for the way they taste. So it once was with the pineapple – an 18th century status symbol that could cost the equivalent of £5,000 a fruit, and were regularly rented as don’t-eat-it! party centrepieces – and, more recently, something similar could be said of the quince. Okay, so they’re not quite as expensive, but it’s true that many of us enjoy their almost Medieval looks and soft scent as much as we do the idea of eating the things – not least because they’re tough and sour in their natural state, and so one of the few fruit it’s no fun to chew on raw. The quince is an offshoot cousin to apples and pears – indeed, the various cultivars tend to look like big, lumpy, yellow versions of same – and has been growing easily on small fruit trees in English gardens since 1275, though many you’ll see on the supermarket shelves will have been imported from Turkey, Iran and around.

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The Romans used to love a quince, and they’ve been eating them with honey or – occasionally and weirdly – leeks in the Med since time immemorial. In Plutarch, it’s said that an ancient Greek bride would gnaw at a quince before entering her husband’s bed, to freshen her kiss like a primitive Mentos, and, even today, a Middle Eastern grocer is often the most reliable place to get them. So yes, quinces are immensely hard and bitter uncooked, but they make up for it with their dramatic (if somewhat irregular and knobbly) looks, long life – these things virtually never rot in the fruit bowl – and gorgeous, heady perfume, especially strong if left on a sunny windowsill. Though in season from October through December, they last such a long time – at least a month – that we’ll still be eating them in early spring. Okay, so every quince needs cooking – but then so does every potato. And, when heated, they soon enough soften to a bright pinky- orange, with an almost jelly-like consistency. But what to do with them? The obvious thing, of course, is that we can make sauces and purées. The famous membrillo (a quince paste) is often served with firm cheeses in Spain, and they make terrific jams, chutneys and marmalades too. (Each quince contains a ton of pectin, which makes them perfect for this.) Whatever preserve you go for – we’re tempted by marmalade, since the word actually originally meant ‘quince jam’ – it’ll be amazing with something like blue cheese. But there’s more to the quince than that. For a start, they can be used in many dishes where we’d otherwise have apple or pear, sometimes in tandem with these fruit. Quince is great roasted with pork, ham, lamb or duck, and – somewhat sweet-and-sour – it goes brilliantly with game, too. And poached quince works equally well in a pud with other winter fruit, or in crumbles and tarts. Just one quince, mixed with a bunch of apples, adds something special to an apple pie. (A word of warning: you’ll have to cook the quince for longer than its pomme pals.) Even at the end of a meal quince comes into its own, as a brandy or dessert wine. And, next morning, you can have quince for breakfast too, perhaps with yoghurt where you might otherwise scoff stewed plumbs. Try adding cloves, lemon, honey or cinnamon – all go brilliantly with quince. How to prepare them? Well, first off, many are covered in a downy fuzz that needs to be washed off, and you have to be careful when cutting them raw, as they’re so tough-yet-spongy we’re always afraid the knife might slip. Poaching the cut-up slices should only take 15 minutes or so; baking a little less than an hour. (That said, the longer you cook them the deeper red they’ll go, and you can leave them bubbling away all afternoon quite happily.) All-in-all, then, quince are undeniably a bit of work, and it’s easy to go though life rarely touching the things – but what a shame that would be. They’re not just delicious, but have a history unmatched by other fruit. When ancient classics reference an ‘apple’ – such as the one Paris offered to Aphrodite to win Helen of Troy – they probably really mean a quince, which we’ve been eating for far longer; ditto Eve’s temptation in the Garden of Eden. It was probably quinces that kept the Norse gods young – and when Hercules stole ‘golden apples’, guess what? Heck, even the Owl and the Pussycat loved these things, dining happily on “mince and slices of quince.” And if it was good enough for them...

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qUINCE MEMBRILLO RECIPE BY MARY CADOGAN

This seasonal Spanish confection is traditionally served with nutty Manchego cheese, but I find it goes well with any cheese, especially a good mature Somerset Cheddar. Put it on the cheeseboard with a few walnuts and dates and let your guests decide. MAKES AROUND 1.5KG, OR 5 X 300ML JARS METHOD 1 Peel, core and chop the quinces and put in a large pan, with water to cover. 2 Split the vanilla pod down its length and add to the pan with the lemon peel. Bring to the boil, then reduce the heat, cover and cook gently for 30-40 mins, until the quince pieces are tender. 3 Drain the water from the quince and discard the vanilla pod (this can be dried and added to a jar of sugar to infuse). Blitz the quince in a food processor until smooth, then weigh the pulp. 4 Tip the pulp into the rinsed out pan and add an equal weight of sugar and the lemon juice. Bring gently to the boil, stirring to dissolve the sugar, then increase the heat to moderate and cook for 1-1½ hours, stirring regularly, until you have a thick gloopy orange pulp. The paste needs to be so thick that it leaves a trail when you draw the wooden spoon over the base of the pan. 5 Meanwhile, select some small straight-sided jars (such as small kilner jars). Wash in hot soapy water, then put in the oven at 160C/320F/gas mark 3 for 10 mins (without the rubber seals) to sterilize them. Brush the insides of the jars with a little glycerine or vegetable oil. Alternatively, you could line a 20cm square shallow tin with baking parchment. 6 Fill the jars or spread the paste over the tin. Add the rubber seals to the lids and seal the tops. If using a tin, leave until cold, then cut into usefully sized pieces and wrap in cling film or foil. The jars will keep for up to a year, the wrapped pieces for 2 months in the fridge. The membrillo in the jars can be tipped out onto the cheeseboard and cut into thin slices. Mary Cadogan is a food writer based near Wells in Somerset. For information about her cookery workshops, go to marycadogan.co.uk

INGREDIENTS 2kg quinces 1 vanilla pod 2 strips lemon peel 3 tbsp lemon juice granulated sugar

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S T A R T E R S

NEW FACES There are a couple of new chefs joining the team at The Calcot Collection. Richard Davies (who you might remember from his time at The Manor House in Castle Combe) is now executive chef at Calcot Manor, while Jamie McCallum is heading up the kitchens at The Painswick. Both come with impressive pedigrees, so we’re expecting to see great things developing in their kitchens… calcotcollection.co.uk

LET’S GET DIGITAL We’ve got some pretty big news coming from Crumbs HQ – our shiny new website is now live! There’s all the stuff that we had before (just packaged up better, so it’s easier to navigate and find what you’re looking for), as well as a bunch of extra features and new content for your delight and delectation. The address is still the same (crumbsmag.com), so head on over, take a look – and tell us what you think!

CURRYING FLAVOUR We are more than a little bit excited about the news that Cinnamon Kitchen is opening in Oxford. It’s the first non-London site for The Cinnamon Collection, which is headed up by exec chef Vivek Singh and is known for its modern Indian cuisine with creative British twists. Expect dishes like chukka-spiced Hereford beef rump steak with masala chips, and chargrilled sea bass in a banana leaf – as well as an element of theatre thanks to desserts flambéed table-side. Cinnamon Kitchen is set to open on November 1 as part of the new Westgate Oxford shopping centre. We. Cannot. Wait. thecinnamoncollection.com

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S T A R T E R S

the

instA FEED

Some beautiful blackberries heralding the arrival of autumn, as captured by @cerys_ashworth_photos

SIMPLY THE BEST Huge congrats to The Bell at Ramsbury, which has beaten off the competition from more than 2,000 pubs across the country to win the coveted AA Best Pub in England award for 2017/18. “To receive this award is an amazing achievement,” says GM Matt Saxton. “This is a trying time for the catering industry, and I’m incredibly proud of how my team has shone through it all. This achievement is testament to the hard work everyone puts in to make The Bell so special. We are not just a country pub serving our local community, but a small window to our great Estate. We have the opportunity to harvest what’s made right here, and get to have our say on the growing of the vegetables, the rearing of livestock and creation of new recipes. This ranges from the botanicals that go into our gin, to the charcuterie and smoked products the smokehouse is developing.”  thebellramsbury.com

MEGA BITES Cheltenham fave The Tavern has changed up its menu for autumn. Since it relaunched at the end of last year, The Tavern’s been known for its ace dirty burgers and, thankfully, they’ve not gone anywhere. But joining them on the menu are some more (dare we say?) sophisticated dishes – many being things that have appeared as a special over the past few months and proved popular enough to earn a permanent slot. We’re talking starters of bavette tartare with Arlington egg yolk, or spicy pork and fennel meatballs, while over in the mains section you’ll find Hereford beef short rib with borlotti beans, girolles and salsa verde, and Loch Duart salmon, shitake, ginger and Asian greens. Lush!

theluckyonion.com

Inspired by The Great British Bake Off, @cheltenhamfoodie has made these rather delish looking brownies…

IN THE DIARY...

HEAD HUNTING There are two new head chefs at Farncombe Estates. Earlier this year Martin Burge (ex-Whatley Manor) took up the post of Culinary Director, overseeing all the foodie offerings across the properties. Joining him is Sam Bowser, who will be heading up the kitchens at Dormy House, and Matt Weedon, who will be looking after the same at Foxhill Manor. Sam’s already made his mark, launching a new dining experience at Dormy House’s The Garden Room with three interchangeable tasting menus, which can be mixed and matched to create a personalised dining experience. dormyhouse.co.uk; foxhillmanor.com

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(28 October) DIDCOT FOOD FESTIVAL Don’t miss this fine example of a foodie fiesta, taking place at Didcot Civic Hall. The lipstick-tastic Candice Brown (winner of last year’s Great British Bake Off) will be opening the event, and there will be a tantalizing array of street food, plus live music and a children’s cooking area, as well as a Chef’s Theatre which, throughout the day, will host numerous chefs and cooks who have appeared on Great British British Bake Off, MasterChef and Great British Menu. Tickets cost £4, and children go free. didcotevents.co.uk (28 October) HALLOWEEN CHILLI FEST See if you can handle the heat of the chilli eating contest at Toke’s Food and Drink in Chipping Campden. Contestants will be challenged to eat their way through ten different chillies without a drink, with a cash prize up for grabs. Entry costs £5. tokesfoodanddrink.co.uk


christmas••party 2 courses for £19.50 3 courses for £24.50

BOOK NOW!

ADD A GLASS OF PROSECCO ON ARRIVAL FOR £4 PER PERSON Starters SOUP, crusty bread CHICKEN LIVER PARFAIT, mandarin jelly, toasted brioche SMOKED SALMON, beetroot, horseradish cream, orange, watercress GAME TERRINE, apple & pear chutney, crusty bread CAMEMBERT, FIG & ONION TART, dressed leaves Mains ROAST TURKEY PARCEL, streaky bacon wrapped chipolatas, roast roots & potatoes, sautéed Brussel sprout tops, gravy BRAISED SHIN OF BEEF, celeriac mash, roasted shallots, wild mushrooms SADDLE OF VENISON, braised red cabbage, streaky bacon & potato croquette, jus* PAN-FRIED HAKE, wilted spinach, gnocchi, butternut puree, sage butter PAN-FRIED MACKEREL, chorizo-braised leeks, shallot crisps NUT ROAST, roast roots & potatoes, sautéed Brussel sprout tops, gravy Desserts CHRISTMAS PUDDING, brandy sauce CHOCOLATE CHIP BREAD & BUTTER PUDDING, crème anglaise MULLED FRUITS, cinnamon ice cream PASSION FRUIT CHEESECAKE, raspberry puree HOME MADE ICE CREAM or Sorbet FINEST ARTISAN CHEESES, grapes, biscuits* Available for tables of 8 or more, available lunch and dinner Monday-Sunday throughout December excluding Sunday lunch. We require a non-refundable deposit of £10 per head and a pre-order for each table. *Supplement of £2.50 for Venison main *Supplement of £3.00 for Cheese


S T A R T E R S

Ask the Expert

PUMP UP The VOLUme

IF YOU’RE ALREADY GETTING IN A FLAP ABOUT PREPARING CHRISTMAS DINNER FOR THE FAM, SPARE A THOUGHT FOR ROBERT GOVES OF RELISH EVENT CATERING…

F

or most people, the thought of cooking for more than about a dozen guests would be enough to bring on a minor meltdown. Imagine, then, catering for 100 times that many people. And what about 300 times that many? Pretty terrifying, right? But for Rob Goves, co-owner and head chef at Relish, catering for thousands – and sometimes even tens of thousands – of people is all in a day’s work. This Cirencester-based catering company creates bespoke menus for anything from an intimate dinner á deux to opulent weddings, plus pop-ups with celebrity chefs and huge public events like Badminton Horse Trials. “One day just the other week we were creating a sushi lunch for just two people, and at the same time a hot and cold buffet for 200,” Rob says. “But even that was quite small. Just a few months ago we built a field kitchen at Badminton that fed 20-30,000 people over the course of the event. We’ve got a big team now, and all the kit ready to go, so there’s not much we can’t do. I like to think that it’s not chaotic, exactly – it’s just managed madness!”

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Catering on these sorts of scales might seem daunting enough, but to add to the challenge Rob and his team create bespoke menus for every single event, ensuring that each client’s culinary dreams become a reality. And the sorts of things that Relish can achieve are really quite special. Rob starts flicking through pictures of some of his recent events, and lands on those from a 21st birthday party in Kent, where Relish provided everything from canapés and a full-on dinner to late night snacks and breakfast the next morning for a few hundred guests. Amongst the many dishes were trays of mini desserts for each table, each one laced with dry ice and giving off the aroma of a different sweet (think cola bottles, pear drops, and so on). And then there’s another event – this time at London Fashion Week – where Relish was commissioned by Heineken to produce a range of different flavoured crackers and caviar to match their beers. “I don’t think we’ve ever told anyone there was something we couldn’t do,” says Rob. “But we sometimes do have to manage people’s expectations. Occasionally ideas are just not practical if you’re

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on a very large scale, so in a situation like that we’ll come up with some alternative ideas and steer the client in another direction. “Often, though, people will ask us what they should do, so everywhere I go I collect ideas. The aroma of sweets on the dessert platter, for example, is a variation on something that Heston Blumenthal does. And the other day we did a whole bowl food party, which was inspired by this restaurant in Washington DC called Rose’s Luxury. We were on holiday there and heard about this place, so went along and the queue was massive. We put our name down, then two hours later got a call and went and had dinner – and it was fabulous. Naturally, I took some of their ideas and brought them back with me! We might be based in a small town, but if you go to cool places and talk to cool people then there’s absolutely no reason why you can’t be ahead of the game. And, actually, we have to be – because we’re competing with caterers in London.” So, what food trends is Rob currently seeing? “People still ask for the molecular gastronomy thing,” he says. “But really, I think that’s had its day. Now, it’s much more about wild food. People like to see some theatre too, and want a narrative. And they are much more interested in the provenance of what they are eating than they used to be.” Although Rob makes it all sound very easy, there are invariably problems working in a business where no two days are the same. “Staffing is probably our biggest challenge,” he says. “We are very lucky because we have a strong core team now, and work with some great agencies, but on a busy weekend we might need 500 staff. Ensuring that every single one of them knows exactly what they are doing and what is expected is hard, and that’s not even taking into account the fact that they might need transportation or accommodation too. Luckily, my business partner and the founder of Relish, Philippa Sawyer, is fantastic at the operational side of things. They say no-one should manage more than 20 people, but she could manage 200 and make it look easy. She’s an amazing person. “The other challenge is in ensuring consistency. If we’re doing a dinner for 1,200 people, every plate needs to be exactly the same, yet it shouldn’t feel as if it’s mass catering. Instead, it should feel as if the dish has been created just for you, and that’s not easy. Think about scrambled eggs – making gorgeous eggs for a few people is not a problem, but making them for 3,000 is very difficult. It takes a very skilled chef to be able to deliver such volumes to a high standard, and we are fortunate to work with chefs who can do this.” Although catering is Relish’s core business, they also have an inn at Wotton Basset called Sally Pussey’s, which is run with Arkell’s Brewery (and so doesn’t operate under the Relish brand), and a café at the Cotswold Water Park. “We’ve had the café under licence for five years already,” says Rob. “But we’ve just signed a 10 year lease on it. Business has more than doubled since we first came here, and although I would like to take the credit for that it’s largely due to the fact that the lakes and the

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From car launches and other large scale dos to fabulous parties and celebrity pop-up restaurants, there are very few events Rob Goves and his team at Relish can’t cater for

water park is such a growing area. Now we’ve got a bit of tenure we’re going to refurbish the café. We’re putting in a barista counter with our partner Café Direct, which will have a hatch to serve people outside too – we think it will be very popular with dog walkers. And the café will also be able to double up as an event space in the evenings. It’s in a fantastic position overlooking the lakes, and it’s a green site with solar panels on the roof, and rainwater harvesting. We’re hoping that we’ll be able to generate around half of the electricity that we use.” Although the business is growing and growing, Rob still makes sure he spends quality time in the kitchen, and with his family. “I try to be in there cooking at least a couple of days a week,” he says. “The great thing about working in catering is that it gives me a creative outlet, but I can manage my time much better than I could when working in a restaurant. Back then, I was often doing a hundred hour week. My wife and I are starting a family and, honestly, she’d leave me if I said I was going back to restaurant work full-time. Maybe one day I’d like to have my own restaurant, but certainly not yet.” And hey, it’s not as if Rob doesn’t have his hands full now, is it? relishevent.co.uk

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S T A R T E R S

Ask the Events Planner Who knows the menu best? Who makes the greatest impact on your experience? Who knows the venue Front-of-house and the menu inside out? Who knows how to make your is your friend! party go with a bang? The events manager is your friend!

Hey, Jo! So, tell us how long you’ve worked here? I’ve been here for 18 months now. Before this, I split my time between London and the Cotswolds, while running my own PR company. And what sort of events do you arrange at Cotswold Airport, then? We’ve done everything from Formula One testing on the live runway to hosting film crews for TV programmes. We’ve also had open air cinema events, music concerts, automotive launches and private parties on a special Boeing 747 events plane… It’s fair to say that no two days are ever the same! What’s the best part of your job? Oh, that’s easy: being able to eat breakfast each day from our on-site restaurant, AV8. I have a bacon and egg bap every morning – they are irresistible! And what’s the most challenging part of your role? Naturally, working on a live operational airfield brings with it all sorts of additional considerations and procedures that need to be integrated into all our plans, on top of the usual health and safety issues you’d have at other locations. It means things can get a little bit tricky sometimes! What skills have you learnt since coming here? It’s not really related to the job, but I am learning to fly. Being here, it just seemed like the thing to do!

cOme FLy with me

What’s the most unusual event you’ve organised? The launch of Vauxhall’s latest car was pretty interesting. We installed the car actually inside our Boeing 747 events plane by lifting it in through the side of the plane via the viewing window. Since that worked, we will be doing the same again this month with another car brand.

SAY HELLO TO JO WELCH, EVENTS AND PR MANAGER AT COTSWOLD AIRPORT

What do you think makes great customer service? For me, it’s quite simple – it’s about having the attitude that nothing is ever a problem. I spend a lot of time with clients, and am on call for them 24/7 when they are on build, live and de-rig days. Finally, what makes Cotswold Airport events special? There is no other venue quite like it, especially as we have this amazing Boeing 747 events plane that can be used for anything from corporate launches to private parties and weddings. And as I said, we also have our unique on-site restaurant, AV8, situated right next to the runway. People can watch the world fly by, whilst enjoying gorgeous locally-sourced food.

THIS COULD BE YOU! Contact Emma.Dance@mediaclash.co.uk

cotswoldairport.com

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Cotswold Grange Hotel, Cheltenham, GL52 2QH Telephone: 01242 515 119 www.cotswoldgrangehotel.com


B O O K

O F

T H E

M O N T H

THERE’S DINNER PARTY INSPO APLENTY IN THE VOLUMES THAT MARK TAYLOR’S BEEN DEVOURING THIS MONTH…

DINNER & PARTY Rose Prince Seven Dials, £25

With so many cookbooks trying to reinvent the culinary wheel, how refreshing to find one that concentrates on practical and simple dishes for the family without relying on smoke and mirrors. There is nothing cutting edge or flashy about Rose Prince’s Dinner & Party, but then this award-winning food writer has been around for the past two decades and practicality and commonsense have always come before fads and trends. Prince’s sound stance on entertaining is that the cook shouldn’t be banished to the kitchen during a dinner party and the trick is to prepare as much as possible in advance. With a useful seasonal menu planner for guidance, the book is packed with classics (coq au vin, cassoulet, chocolate mousse) but also deliciously modern ideas like lemon risotto with rocket, and fishcakes with lemongrass and coriander.

CLAFOUTIS WITH PEARS   SERVES 6-8

The lightest baked creamy custard with soft fruit. I make clafoutis with pears, apricots, plums or figs but very rarely, although faithful to its origins, with cherries – because I am lazy about pitting (stoning) small fruit. Make the clafoutis an hour before serving. It only takes 20 minutes to prepare and can be made with slightly unripe fruit, which softens during cooking. INGREDIENTS

30g butter, for greasing 120g caster sugar, plus extra for dusting 100ml whole milk 150ml whipping cream ½ vanilla pod, seeds only (or ¼ tsp vanilla extract) 4 eggs 20g plain flour 500g perfectly ripe pears, cut lengthways into eighths

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METHOD

1 Preheat the oven to 190C/375F/gas mark 5. 2 Butter an ovenproof metal pan or ceramic dish and then dust it with caster sugar. Put the milk, cream and vanilla in a saucepan and heat to boiling point, then remove from the heat. 3 Put the eggs in a bowl with the sugar and whisk them together. Add the flour and whisk until smooth, then pour the milk mixture in slowly, whisking all the time. 4 Scatter the pears over the base of the pan – you can arrange them neatly in a circle, if you wish. Pour the batter around them, not over the top, and then put the pan in the oven and bake for 20-25 minutes until the custard has puffed and coloured gold in places. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 1 hour. Dust with caster sugar and serve. TIP You can also make it ‘boozy’, soaking the fruit in a tablespoon of corresponding liqueur – Poire Williams for the pears, plum brandy for plums, and so on.


S T A R T E R S

A N D I N A: T H E HEART OF PERUVIAN FOOD Martin Morales Quadrille, £27

The follow-up to Martin Morales’ debut, Ceviche, Andina explores the innovative dishes, ingredients and food culture of the relatively unknown Andes region of Peru, an area where so-called ‘superfoods’ like avocado and quinoa are essential in traditional dishes. Recipes from the key areas of La Libertad, Ayacucho, Cusco, Arequipa, Puno, Hauncayo and Cajamarca give a taste of the sheer variety and scope of the indigenous dishes. With sections including breakfasts, snacks, ceviche, salads, protein-packed stews, grills and roasts, soups, desserts, and drinks, Andina is a vibrant and tantalising glimpse into a cuisine full of fresh flavours and colours, with over 120 original recipes including pumpkin casserole; tuna, pickled pineapple and black quinoa ceviche; and confit figs with vanilla cream.

KAUKASIS: THE COOKBOOK Olia Hercules Mitchell Beazley, £25

Ukraine-born Olia Hercules won the Fortnum & Mason Debut Food Book Award 2016 for her groundbreaking debut book, Mamushka, and the former Ottolenghi chef is sure to pick up further accolades with this wonderful follow-up. A personal culinary journey through Georgia, Azerbaijan and beyond, this beautifully illustrated and evocative book features more than 100 recipes for earthy and, sometimes, surprising dishes from her travels. Each has a fascinating story attached, the author having met the home cooks of the Caucasus area bridging Europe and Asia. Divided into amusingly named chapters (among them ‘roots, shoots, leaves and all’ and ‘beasts from land, sea and air’), dishes worth bookmarking include cauliflower steak gratin; quince stuffed with lamb and caramelised shallots; and the decadent recipe for Armenian brandy profiteroles.

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SWEET

FEASTS

Yotam Ottolenghi and Helen Goh Ebury Press, £27

Sabrina Ghayour Mitchell Beazley, £20

A new release from Yotam Ottolenghi is always cause for celebration, and his longawaited baking and desserts book is the one his legions of fans have been holding out for. They won’t be disappointed. A collaboration with Helen Goh, who has worked with Ottolenghi for the past ten years, this book features over 110 recipes for cakes, tarts, puddings, cheesecakes and ice cream. Lavishly illustrated with photographs by award-winning New York team Peden + Munk, this is a book that is sure to end up on as many coffee tables as kitchen counters. From blackberry and star anise friands and flourless chocolate layer cake to Middle Eastern Millionaire’s Shortbread and coconut, almond and blueberry cake, this is a classic book that truly hits the sweet spot.

Sabrina Ghayour has become one of the leading voices on Middle Eastern food thanks to her best-selling books Persiana and Sirocco. In her third book, Feasts, Ghayour shows how to create dishes for every occasion, from quick-fix weekday evenings to weekend feasts and large gatherings. With her usual emphasis on simple ingredients and punchy flavours, the book features tailored menus and dozens of recipes for celebrations. Among the highlights are lamb, plum and preserved lemon stew; smoked mackerel and quinoa salad with charred asparagus and cannellini beans; and white chocolate, cardamom and macadamia squares. Ghayour set the bar pretty high with her first two books, but Feasts happily surpasses them both when it comes to inspiration for home cooks.

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01453 751 328 bisleyhousecafe.co.uk


CH E F ! WHAT TO MAKE AND HOW TO MAKE IT, DIRECT FROM OUR FAVOURITE FOODIES

Carrots are almost like little people, we sometimes feel. (No? Just us?)

H I G H L I G H T S

GO FISH!

Marvellous monkfish makes a delish dish Page 24

SQUASH IT IN Giving thanks with a pumpkin mousse Page 26

BIRD IS THE WORD

Quick and tasty one pot wonder Page 28

P L U S

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COLOURS OF CHARD

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C H E F !

FISh NIGhT

FOR AN ALTERNATIVE CHRISTMAS FEAST, TRY THIS FISH DISH FROM JON LANE

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Jon Lane has been head chef at The Old Passage in Arlingham for almost a year, having been sous chef there for three years before that. It means he’s slowly but surely put his stamp on the menu. The Old Passage, situated right on the banks of the River Severn, specialises in fresh seafood and shellfish, with a daily delivery from Cornwall. Most of their fish is caught by day boats, and the restaurant even has its own salt water tank for holding lobsters and oysters. This recipe would be an ideal dish for Christmas, and could either be plated or served en famille.

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ROAST MONKFISH WITH SALT BAKED BEETROOT, BRAISED CARROTS, SMOKED SALMON, ROMANESCO AND ORANGE SERVES 4

INGREDIENTS For the orange sauce: 1.9l orange juice 100g cranberries (cut in half) For the salt baked beetroot: 4 raw beetroot 400g salt 2 egg whites 250g plain flour 125ml water 2 sprigs rosemary For the braised carrots: 20 bunched carrots 250g unsalted butter 150g sugar 3 tsp salt 4 star anise 1 clove 100ml orange juice 400ml water For the smoked salmon, Romanesco and orange: 100g chopped smoked salmon 1 large Romanesco, cut into florets 1 large orange 100g butter For the monkfish: 2 thick fillets, approx. 350g each 2 tbs olive oil METHOD For the orange sauce (this can be made the day before): 1 Put the orange juice into a pan and reduce to 200ml. Pass through a sieve and put to one side. 2 When sauce is at room temperature, add the cranberries. For the salt baked beetroot: 1 Preheat the oven to 170C/325F/gas mark 3. 2 Make a pastry by combining the flour, salt, egg whites and rosemary in a food processor. 3 Slowly add the water and blitz until combined. The dough should be firm, but not too sticky. 4 Place the dough in a bowl, cover with cling film and leave to rest for a couple of hours. 5 Scrub the beetroot, but do not peel. 6 Once the pastry has rested, remove from the bowl and divide into 4 equal portions. 7 Wrap each beetroot in the pastry, ensuring it is evenly covered with no holes, then bake on parchment for 60-90 minutes. Remove from the oven and leave to cool for 30 minutes. Once cool, crack open the pastry and remove the beetroot. 8 Peel the beetroot then cut into wedges. When you are ready to serve, drizzle with olive oil. For the braised carrots: 1 Place all the ingredients in a pan. Bring to the boil, then reduce to a simmer.

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2 Cook for about 45 minutes, or until the liquor is a nice glaze. (This could be done the day before.) 3 When ready to serve, put the pan on a high heat so the the sugar starts to caramelize. 4 Remove from the heat, and place the carrots on a serving dish, spooning some of the caramel over the top. For the smoked salmon, Romanesco and orange: 1 Bring a large pan of water to the boil. 2 Peel the orange and cut into segments, removing seeds and as much pith as possible. Squeeze the juice from the remainder of the orange and set aside. 3 Place the butter in a frying pan, melt, and then add the smoked salmon and fry until lightly coloured and crisp. 4 Blanch the Romanesco in the boiling water, drain well and combine with the smoked salmon, orange segments and juice. Season well with black pepper – it should not require salt. For the monkfish: 1 Preheat the oven to 200C/400F/gas mark 6. 2 Season the fish well with salt and pepper and leave for 10-15 minutes. 3 Heat the olive oil in a large oven-proof frying pan. 4 Pat the fish dry with kitchen paper and add to the pan with the hot oil, carefully lying the fish away from you. 5 Cook the fish for 3-5minutes on each side. When evenly browned, place the pan in the oven and cook for a further 8-10 minutes. 6 Remove from the pan and rest for 5 minutes. 7 Cut into thick slices and serve on warm plates, drizzling with the orange reduction. theoldpassage.com

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C H E F !

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ThERE’S A MOUSSE LOOSE…

CELIA DUPLOCK’S GONE STATESIDE FOR HER INSPIRATION FOR THIS SEASONAL DESSERT

PREPARED BY MACROBIOTIC COOK AND COUNSELLOR CELIA DUPLOCK

VEGAN SPICED PUMPKIN MOUSSE SERVES 3-4

It’s autumn again, and the shops and markets are full of pumpkins and seasonal squashes of all shapes and sizes, writes Celia Duplock. Squashes are great for soups, warm salads and stews, but are not so widely used in desserts. However, their rich, mellow flavour lends itself well to sweet dishes and reduces the need for added sugar. This recipe provides a light, healthy alternative to the traditional pumpkin pie that is eaten throughout the United States at Thanksgiving. It’s very easy and quick to make, and is sweetened with apple juice and a little maple syrup. You can use any kind of seasonal squash, and adjust the amount of maple syrup depending on how sweet it is. Pumpkin and butternut squash both have a mild, mellow flavour, whereas the Potimarron and Crown Prince varieties can be much sweeter. Squashes are full of vitamins and minerals, including magnesium, potassium, calcium and iron. They are also a good source of B-complex vitamins and omega-3 fatty acids. Including squash in your diet on a regular basis can also help to satisfy sweet cravings, when combined with other complex carbohydrates such as beans and whole grains. This recipe is packed with goodness and is rather high in protein, making it deliciously satisfying. Tofu is an excellent, low fat source of vegan protein and pecan nuts are packed with minerals, vitamins, healthy fats and antioxidants. This is a surprisingly rich dessert, but for a more indulgent flavour, blend with a little oat cream before serving. Celia is running a Fermentation Workshop at the Organic Farm Shop in Cirencester on November 1. Celia also offers macrobiotic consultations, food coaching, menu planning and cooking lessons for individuals in their own homes or for small groups by appointment. For further information, please visit cotswold-macrobiotics.com. To contact Celia, please telephone 07831 342214 or email enquiries@cotswold-macrobiotics.com

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INGREDIENTS 250g pumpkin or seasonal squash, peeled and cubed 200ml apple juice 1 tbsp freshly squeezed root ginger juice 300g silken tofu 1 tbsp agar flakes 1 small pinch of salt ½ tsp cinnamon plus ½ tsp for garnishing ½ tsp nutmeg 1 tbsp maple syrup 50g toasted pecan halves METHOD 1 Preheat the oven to 150C/300F/gas mark 2. 2 Peel, chop and steam the pumpkin until soft. 3 Grate the ginger root and squeeze out the juice into a small saucepan, discarding the pulp. 4 Pour the apple juice into a pan with the salt, spices and maple syrup and sprinkle the agar flakes over the cold liquid. 5 Bring the juice to the boil, stirring occasionally until the flakes are completely dissolved. 6 Drain the tofu and add it to the pan and simmer for a further 5 minutes. 7 Allow to cool a little, then pour the mixture into a liquidizer. Add the steamed pumpkin and blend until smooth. 8 Adjust sweetness, adding more maple syrup if required. 9 Pour into a bowl and set aside in the refrigerator for 4-6 hours, or until set. 10 Meanwhile, toast the pecan nuts for 8 minutes in the oven, taking care not to burn them. 11 When ready to serve, blend the mousse to a cream with a stick blender and transfer to individual serving dishes. 12 Sprinkle with chopped, toasted pecan nuts and cinnamon and serve cold.

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C H E F !

ONE POT WONdER

QUICK, SIMPLE AND DELICIOUS; THIS RECIPE FROM RIVERFORD TICKS ALL THE BOXES

1 tin dark green lentils, rinsed and drained 50g watercress salt and pepper

The lovely folks at Riverford have shared this recipe for a simple one-pot dish, ideal for a quick supper on a chilly autumn evening. The spicing is apparent but not excessive; it is the peppery watercress and pungent yoghurt that brings it all together at the end. Add the garlic into your yoghurt little by little, depending on your tolerance for the raw taste.

METHOD 1 Mix the garlic into the yoghurt to taste. Add the dried mint and lemon zest too. Season with salt and pepper. 2 Season the chicken with salt and pepper. Add it to the leeks and turn up the heat. Fry for 3-4 minutes until both the chicken and leeks have lightly coloured. 3 Add the spices and bouillon powder to the pan. Fry for 1 more minute, stirring constantly to avoid the spices sticking. 4 Tip the lentils into the pan. Fill the empty lentil tin ⅔ full with water and add that, too. Bring to a very gentle simmer and cook for 6 minutes. 5 Remove the chicken and lentils from the heat and stir the watercress into the pan. Leave it for 2 minutes to allow the watercress to wilt. Taste, and adjust the seasoning to your liking. 6 Serve the chicken and lentils in bowls. Serve with a generous blob of yoghurt and a fat wedge of lemon for squeezing.

CHICKEN AND SPICED LENTILS WITH LEEK, WATERCRESS AND GARLIC YOGHURT SERVES 2

INGREDIENTS oil for frying (sunflower or light olive) 1 large or 2 smaller leeks, halved lengthways, chopped into angled 1cm pieces 1 garlic clove, finely chopped 120g yogurt ½ tsp dried mint 1 lemon, finely zested 250g diced chicken breast ½ tbsp ground cumin 1 tsp turmeric ½ tsp ground cinnamon 1 tsp bouillon powder

Cooks notes Make sure you keep a good eye on your leeks for the first 8 minutes. You don’t want them to take on any colour at this stage, as you are turning the heat up at a later stage. A splash or two of water in the pan will help. If they colour too early they’ll burn later, and a burnt leek is a bitter leek. riverford.co.uk

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01242 870538 | Colesbourne Park, Nr. Cheltenham, GL53 9NP


C H E F !

Veg Out

A NEW LEAF

BLOGGER, PRIVATE CHEF AND KEEN KITCHEN GARDENER KATHY SLACK TELLS YOU WHAT TO GROW AND HOW TO COOK IT. THIS MONTH, SHE’S FEELING CHEERFUL ABOUT CHARD…

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c

hard. Honestly, if you grow nothing else, grow chard. It is bullet-proof, prolific, long lasting, beautiful and, most importantly of all, tasty. Sow anytime between March and August in shallow drills, thin the seedlings to around 20cm apart and wait. Just wait. Untroubled by slugs, snails, gales or hail, chard will rocket skyward in a matter of weeks. Once established, you will have leaves to pick all year round. In fact, by the end of summer, when it gets really enormous – and believe me, it does get extraordinarily big – you can cut it back to the ground and it will re-shoot in the spring. The most important thing is to keep picking. Unchecked, chard will grow and grow. Once, after a two week holiday, I came back to find chard leaves big enough to wrap my springer spaniel in (he wasn’t impressed). By this stage they are a bit leathery and not nearly as tasty. Often called ‘leaf beet’ on seed packets, chard comes in all sorts of colours – green in leaf, but pink, orange, red, yellow or white in stem. I grow Rainbow which, predictably, is a mix of 4 or 5 differently coloured varieties. Brightly coloured types are, I think, to be favoured over the standard white stemmed varieties, which look a bit like a pak choi and taste almost as bland. They grow fabulously well in pots and, because you harvest them as ‘cut and come again’ leaves, they are perfect for small spaces. Just plant one seedling in the middle of a 30cm diameter pot and keep it well watered. So you’ve grown it. Now for the eating. Unlike spinach, it doesn’t wilt down to nothing quite so dramatically, so a couple of large plants will keep a family in chard for most of the year. You don’t need to go loopy and plant a whole 4m row (yes, I have done that – it’s just so pretty). There is, as I have found, only so much chard you can eat. The stems need a little more cooking than the leaves, so I either blanch or wilt stems for a minute or two in a pan before adding the leaves, or I just shred the whole lot very finely and it will cook all at once without issue. Serve it wilted with a good knob of butter. Its earthy flavours also go beautifully with a good salty cheese. But I love chard best on pizza… Kathy is a private cook, supper club host and cookery teacher. She writes the food blog Gluts & Gluttony about the gluts she gets from her veg patch and the ensuing gluttony in the kitchen. You can sign up to the blog at glutsandgluttony. com or follow her on Twitter and Instagram @gluts_gluttony for more seasonal recipes.

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CHARD AND GOATS’ CHEESE SPELT PIZZA MAKES 2 PIZZAS

INGREDIENTS 125g wholemeal spelt flour, plus extra for dusting 125g white bread flour 5g salt 3g dried, quick action yeast large handful of chard 100g goats’ cheese with rind olive oil a few rosemary leaves METHOD 1 Pre-heat the oven to 250C/475F/gas mark 9. 2 Mix the flours, yeast and salt together in a large bowl or stand mixer with the dough hook attached. Add 170ml lukewarm water and knead together for 5-8 minutes to form a smooth dough. Cover and leave to prove for 1 hour. 3 Meanwhile, slice the goats’ cheese and wash the chard leaves. With the water still clinging to them, pop the leaves in a frying pan with a few rosemary leaves and wilt gently for 4-5 minutes, then drain off any excess water. Season well. 4 When the dough is risen, divide it in two and dust the surface of 2 non-stick baking trays with spelt flour. Pat each lump of the dough into a flat disk on the trays, making sure the dough is an even thickness. 5 Now for the topping. Drizzle a little olive oil on each pizza base then top with the wilted chard, slices of goats’ cheese and a little more olive oil. 6 Bake in the oven for 8 minutes or until the crusts are crisp, then serve immediately.

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Choose your weapons

wraPPer’s deLIGhT

MATT BIELBY CAN’T HELP WAXING LYRICAL OVER THESE NIFTY NEW BEESWAX WRAPS. IN FACT, HE RATHER THINKS THEY’RE THE BEE’S KNEES… What are these, posh napkins? We’ve fallen quite a way from the fancy kit you’re usually trying to push on this page, haven’t we? Well, yes – and no. You see, this month’s object of desire might not cost much, and might not have lots of chrome and fancy functions, but in its own way it’s just as exciting. And, most likely, you’ll use it a lot more often, too. What we have here is no more or less than an eco-friendly alternative to cling film and tinfoil. Made from 100 percent cotton, which is coated in pine resin, jojoba oil and beeswax, the whole idea is that each wrap is reusable and biodegradable.

or something. If you want to imagine them doing it, they say they make up crazy songs to sing as they do so...

So no-more throwing away a stretch of cling film after a single use? (And no more nicking my hands on those metal teeth you get along the side of the pack either?) Hopefully not! Even better, this stuff is made somewhat locally, by Stroud crafting pals Carly and Fran. They source their beeswax from a friendly local beekeeper, then make them all by hand, probably on a kitchen table

And the point is? The point is, these wraps do most of the jobs cling film will do, but in a more natural way. Beeswax and pine resin have natural antibacterial and anti-fungal properties, and the use of cotton means your food gets to breathe, too. Meanwhile, the pine resin gives the wraps a natural adhesive, the warmth from your hands creating a strong seal on

The whole look is a bit Cath Kidston, isn’t it? It is, though a little funkier, I’d say. And although you can’t specifically pick from the many different patterns they do, their selections are designed to appeal to different types: bright colours in the children’s lunch pack set, slightly edgier patterns in the teenager’s pack, serious hanky-style solid block colours and restrained dots in the pack designed for men, and so on.

bowls and dishes. The best thing, though, is you don’t throw them away afterwards, but instead wash ’em in cold water and soap, then they’re ready to go again. I like it, except I have one worry. You said cheap, didn’t you…? A single large beeswax wrap (about 40x40cm, big enough to cover a casserole dish) will set you back a tenner; packs of four smaller wraps (for sealing jars and wrapping sandwiches) are £20; and then there are packs for kitchen use, the most expensive being the family pack (two large, four medium, four small) at £60. Since each wrap will last a year, and a roll of cling film is a quid or so, these things probably won’t save you money – but they’ll not cost you much, either. And, as they’re cooler, and way more eco-friendly, they’re a no-brainer, I reckon.

Bees Wax Wraps can be bought online at beeswaxwraps.co.uk

THIS MONTH • HERBAL REFRESHMENT • BAKING BONANZA • WHAT A TART

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C R U M B S

C O O K S

W I T H

PLant fOOd

WE COULDN’T RESIST AN INVITATION TO CHAT TO JUDITH HANN ABOUT HER HERB-TASTIC NEW BOOK…

WORDS: EMMA DANCE PHOTOGRAPHY: KIRSTIE YOUNG

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C R U M B S

C O O K S

W I T H

s

he’s probably best known for her 20-year stint presenting Tomorrow’s World, but these days Judith Hann’s more likely to be found cooking up a canapé or tending her extensive herb garden than testing out the latest technology. In fact, she’s now building up something of a reputation as an herb aficionado, and has just released a book on the subject – Herbs: Delicious Recipes and Growing Tips for All Seasons. It might seem like a bit of a leap from robots to rosemary, but less so when you consider that Judith’s science-y career is actually rooted in fauna and flora, beginning with a degree in Zoology with Botany. And her love of the outdoors is clearly apparent at her home near Lechlade, which is surrounded by immaculate gardens, including her herb garden where she grows more than 150 varieties. Judith’s love affair with herbs actually began back when she lived in London. “I used to go to Southall a lot,” she says, “and started to cook Indian food. All the Indian food shops used to sell wonderful huge bunches of herbs, and I’d buy them to use in a particular dish – but then would have a lot left over, so I’d invent recipes to use them up. “We only had a very small garden then, and it had rather poor soil because it was dominated by a large tree, so growing anything was very difficult. But I did manage to cultivate a few things in pots. So, when we moved from London, I decided that wherever we lived had to have space for a herb garden!” And Judith certainly got her way, although a lot of hard work went into transforming a former farm into the gorgeous home which she shares with her husband, former BBC news executive John Exelby. “When we came there were no gardens and the buildings were derelict,” she says. “But it did mean that, because we were doing everything from scratch, I could create vistas. If you take on someone else’s gardens you tend not to change all the paths and so on.” She disappears from the room momentarily, and then reappears clutching a bundle of papers and photographs chronicling the transformation.

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“I plotted out the herb garden using squared paper,” she says, pulling the original plans from the reams. “Then I gave it to the people who were building all the edges. It hasn’t changed since it was built and, actually, some of the herbs are even the same plants that I planted 20 years ago.” With so many herbs available it’s only natural, then, that they play starring roles in Judith’s cooking, and over the years she’s built up a huge repertoire. It’s these recipes that feature in her book. “I got married in 1964, and at that point I decided that if I was going to have to cook for the rest of my life I might as well take it seriously,” she says. “A lot of the recipes in the book are things that I first made in the ’60s, but have altered over the years.” While we’re chatting, Judith’s whipping up a few canapés for us, in the form of small rounds of bread, topped with home-made tapenade, a slice of tomato and an olive. “I love canapés,” she says. “All my family laugh at me – except for my eldest son, who we call The Canapé King! I just think a canapé is a really nice welcome for people. If you give someone a canapé they feel special.” Judith’s incredibly warm and welcoming, and I get the impression that no-one who’s ever visited has ever left hungry. As she busies herself preparing another dish from her book – a tomato and rocket tart [find the recipe over the page] – she regales us with a tale of when she helped a passer-by who was experiencing an herb emergency.

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“One day I was in the garden and a 4x4 pulled up in the drive,” she says. “I didn’t recognise it, and then a man got out. He said that he was on his way to Cornwall with his family, and had ordered some lobsters for when he got there. The recipe he wanted to cook involved chervil, but he couldn’t find any. He’d been to the greengrocer, who had told him that I might have some – so I gave him two big bags full! “Chervil is almost impossible to buy in shops as cut herbs, like many of my favourites such as sorrel and lovage. They are not difficult to grow, though, and you don’t have to have a lot of space. I think people are getting more interested in cooking, and watching more cooking programmes on TV where they’re seeing chefs using a wider variety of herbs, so I really wanted the book to be accessible to everyone.” Although the recipes in Herbs look mighty impressive, for the most part they are deceptively simple – like the tart that Judith’s assembled and popped in the oven in what feels like a matter of minutes. “I just devised this recipe when I started making a lot of pesto,” she says. (Judith’s a huge fan of pesto, and regularly makes variations using different herbs.) “Everyone in the family really likes it, but one of my daughters-inlaw particularly enjoys it, so I always make it when she visits. You can vary it with different types of pesto, and sometimes I make it with herb cheese by adding the same herb I’ve used in the pesto to the cream cheese.” The preparations pause for a moment, as Judith hunts for her favourite knife. “I do everything with this knife,” she says, showing us a small, well-used knife with a serrated blade. “I’m lost without it. Although, when I was one of ‘Rick Stein’s Food Heroes’ for his TV show, he came here and I cooked for him – and when he saw this knife, he said, ‘No-one should have a knife like that!’ I still use it, though!” As we wait for the tart to finish baking, Judith shows us her book, which had dropped through her letterbox just a few days earlier. “It’s thrilling to see it in print,” she says.

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C R U M B S

C O O K S

W I T H

TOMATO AND ROCKET TART SERVES 4

INGREDIENTS For the tart: a little olive oil, for greasing 375g pack of ready-rolled puff pastry 200g soft cream cheese 450g tomatoes, sliced 1 recipe quantity of Classic Pesto made with rocket/arugula (see below) sea salt and freshly ground black pepper mixed green salad, including rocket/arugula, to serve For the pesto: 2 handfuls of rocket/arugula 1 garlic clove 3 tbsp pine nuts, toasted 100ml extra virgin olive oil 4 tbsp freshly grated Parmesan cheese 4 tbsp freshly grated pecorino freshly ground black pepper

TAMIN JONES

“All the herbs pictured on the cover were actually picked from my garden.” It’s not Judith’s first book, however; far from it. She’s already written numerous volumes on science, medicine, health, and even one on food. This one, though, required a slightly different approach… “The actual writing of the words wasn’t very different,” she says. “But the style of the publisher, and doing the recipes, was new. I got sent a whole book on style, full of phrases I couldn’t use! When I cook, I do a lot of it by eye and instinct, but of course that doesn’t work for recipes – not to mention the fact that I cook on an old AGA, so everything had to be worked out for electric and gas!” The result, though, is a beautiful anthology of herbs, divided by seasons and peppered with anecdotes. “It’s quite surreal seeing your recipes cooked by someone else,” says Judith, as she removes the now perfectly golden tart from the AGA. “In the book they’ve made this recipe using different coloured tomatoes, and it looks lovely. “I actually have an idea for another book now too, but when I mentioned it to my husband, he said, ‘Please, no!’ So we’ll see…”

METHOD For the pesto: 1 Start by blending the rocket/arugula with the garlic and then the toasted pine nuts – they thicken the pesto and add to the richness. 2 Very slowly add the olive oil until it’s all well blended, and finally stir in the grated cheese. Season with pepper. For the tart: 1 Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/gas mark 4, and lightly oil a 30 x 40cm (12 x 16in) baking sheet. 2 Place the pastry on the baking sheet and use a knife to score a line round the pastry about 1cm (½in) from the edge without cutting the pastry all the way through to the baking sheet. 3 Spread the cheese over the surface, making sure that you get it right up to the line you have just cut in the pastry. 4 Arrange the sliced tomatoes on top of the cheese, then season with salt and pepper. 5 Bake in the oven for 20-30 minutes until the pastry is golden and the tomatoes cooked. 6 Spread the pesto over the tart while it is still very hot, so that it starts to melt into the tomatoes. 7 Serve with a mixed green salad – including rocket/arugula leaves, of course.

Herbs by Judith Hann is published by Nourish Books, and costs £20; nourishbooks.com

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K I T C H E N

A R M O U R Y

The Want List

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IN THE WORDS OF NOEL AND SANDI – ON YOUR MARKS, GET SET, BAKE!

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1 ALESSI PROGIOTTI COOKIE CUTTERS £29.50 Six iconic products from super-stylish kitchen brand Alessi’s back catalogue have been turned into cookie cutters. Available from Ma Cuisine in Swindon or online. alessi.com 2 NESTING ROUND CAKE AND BISCUIT STORAGE TINS £25.99 These colourful tins will keep your baked goods as fresh as the day they came out of the oven. (Well, for a few days, at least!) Available from Lakeland in Cheltenham. lakeland.co.uk 3 JOSEPHJOSEPH WHISKLE £10 This is a properly ingenious little contraption – a whisk with a built-in bowl scraper. Not only does it mean that you can scrape all those stuckto-the-side bits into the bowl as you go, but it means that there’s now only one thing to wash up, instead of two. Ideal! Get yours from House of Fraser in Cheltenham. josephjoseph.com 4 TALA FLOUR SIFTER £12.49 Banish lumps in your flour forever with this sifter. Press the trigger handle repeatedly and the spokes work against the fine-meshed base to agitate and aerate the flour, which is ideal for things that need to be fluff y. Pick up yours from Steamer Trading in Broadway. steamer.co.uk 5 WRENDALE MEASURING SPOONS £26 Hannah Dale, the creative genius behind Wrendale Designs, is inspired by the animals she sees in the countryside. Here, each measuring spoon features a different feathered friends. Ain’t they tweet? You can get yours from Wild at Heart in Moretonin-Marsh or Box of Delights in Broadway or Bourton-on-the-Water. wrendaledesigns.co.uk

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M AI N S TOP CULINARY CAUSES, FAB FOOD DESTINATIONS & PEOPLE THAT MATTER

WE’LL DRINK TO THAT!

O V E R

T H E

P A G E

All the liquid refreshment you need this Crimbo Page 45

PROVENANCE PIONEERS

Great British Bake Off, eat your heart out!

What it means to eat Happerley Page 52

THE MAIN EVENT(S)

Your Christmas diary – sorted Page 55

INCLUDING

19 TASTY TIPPLES

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THE

ROSE TREE RESTAURANT

A beautiful grade II listed cottage set in the picturesque village of Bourtonon-the-Water on the river Windrush

FAMILY-RUN RESTAURANT • HONEST HOME-COOKED FOOD SEASONAL MENUS • LOCALLY SOURCED PRODUCE Lunch: Tuesday to Sunday 12 – 2.30pm (last orders) Dinner: Tuesday to Saturday 6 – 8.30pm (last orders) Whether it’s a big celebration, a family Sunday lunch, or simply a night out with friends, The Rose Tree provides the perfect setting, ambience and food.

Christmas Party Menu available from Tuesday 7th November Victoria St, Bourton-on-the-Water, Cheltenham GL54 2BX • 01451 820635 • www.therosetreeinbourton.co.uk


M A I N S

RaISe a GLaSS WHATEVER THE OCCASION, WE’VE GOT A DRINK FOR THAT…

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WHILE DECORATING THE TREE

You know that lovely smell of Christmas tree? Well, now you can drink something that tastes just like it (well, kind of). South Stoke’s Twisting Spirits has created what might be a UK first – a Douglas Fir gin! Pour, add a splash of tonic, look out for floating baubles, and let the merriment commence. 7 Twisting Spirits Douglas Fir Gin, £39, from Childrey Stores in Wantage or twistingspirits.co.uk

WITH FRIENDS

The only danger with bringing out the Sibling Gin when guests drop by is that they might become difficult to get rid of. Distilled in Cheltenham by four siblings (all under 30), the botanicals here are vapour infused to create a refined gin with flavours of juniper and citrus giving way, they say, to “a light peppery freshness and orange citrus, closing with a burst of fruity blueberries and vanilla smoothness.” Mix with tonic or drink neat: either way, it’s ace. 7 Sibling Gin, £24.95, from independent stockists or dover31.com

TO KICK OFF CHRISTMAS DINNER

For something a bit different, try a shot of Demijohn’s Grapefruitcello as a pre-Crimbo feast drink. It’s made in Gloucestershire, and is along the same lines as a limoncello (but with grapefruit instead of lemon, obvs). The blend of bitter and sweet is just the thing to get those digestive juices flowing! 7 Demijohn Grapefruitcello, £6.80/100ml, from Demijohn in Oxford or demijohn.co.uk

AS AN APERITIF

All the drinks in the FAIR range are Fair Trade certified, and they’re all really rather good. Since gin seems to (still) be having a bit of a moment, may we suggest FAIR Gin as an awesome aperitif? The juniper berries used here are sourced from Uzbekistan, where agriculture is the main form of income, so by buying FAIR you’ll be helping farmers to live above the poverty line. 7 FAIR Gin, £33.50, from Harvey Nichols in Bristol or fair-drinks.com

WITH A SHELLFISH STARTER

Full-bodied, highly aromatic, with intense elderflower and lychee fruits and a distinctive clean yet persistent finish, Woodchester Valley Vineyard’s Orpheus Bacchus is just what you need to accompany fish and shellfish dishes. Imagine: a Crimbo-day crab starter matched with this little number – perfection. (Oh, and did we mention it’s made right here in the Cotswolds?) 7 Woodchester Valley Vineyard Orpheus Bacchus, £13.99, available online at woodchestervalleyvineyard.co.uk, Woodchester Village Shop and Post Office, or from the cellar door

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M A I N S

AFTER DINNER

Swap your usual post-dinner coffee for a Chase Espresso Vodka this Yuletide. Delectable Chase vodka and rich, roasted coffee beans have come together to deliver a drink that delivers an intense burst of coffee with a smooth chocolatey finish. Sit back, savour, and enjoy. 7 Chase Espresso Vodka, £40, from williamschase.co.uk

ANYTIME

The wondrous thing about fizz is that it works at just about any time of the day. From brunch to bedtime, there’s always an excuse to pop that cork. Nyetimber’s Classic Cuvée is one of the finest examples of English sparkles out there and is just as good, if not better, than any Champers you’ll lay your hands on. Make sure you stock up this Christmas! 7 Nyetimber Classic Cuvée, £34.99, from Waitrose

WITH THE COLD BUFFET

A rich, bittersweet medium cider with a bold tannin grip, soon giving way to a long indulgent, toffee apple finish, Cotswold Cider Co’s Sideburns is an ace match with ham (or any cold meat, really). They say, “It’s a supreme refresher!” We say, “Get some now!” 7 Sideburns, £2.50, cotswoldciderco.com

WITH YOUR CHRISTMAS TURKEY

The Three Choirs Siegeberre is a rich, aromatic wine, with powerful spice on the nose and lychee and grapefruit on the palate making it a divine match for your festive bird. Who said the English can’t make good wine? 7 Three Choirs Siegeberre, £12.99, available from their Newent vineyard or three-choirs-vineyards.co.uk

PRE PARTY

WITH DECADENT PUDS

Two varieties of quince are used to make Daylesford Organic’s Quince Liqueur, and the result is something really rather delish. The date and fig aromas make it ideal to pair with rich puds (like maybe Christmas pud, for example), and it’s simply splendid with cheese, too. 7 Daylesford Organic Quince Liqueur, £20, daylesford.com

A night of partying needs proper preparation, and not just of the primping and preening variety, either. The Kineta matcha tea drink is a fabulous fusion of raw pressed fruit and stone-ground matcha powder, giving you slow release energy over many hours, as well as a healthy dose of antioxidants. Just what you need before a night on the town! 7 Kineta matcha tea drinks, £2.29, daylesford.com

WHEN YOU CAN’T EAT ANOTHER MOUTHFUL

We all know the feeling – you’ve overindulged and even your pudding stomach has failed you. No need to miss out though cos Demijohn’s chocolate orange liqueur is basically a dessert in a glass. Winner. 7Demijohn Chocolate Orange Liqueur, £4.80/100ml, from Demijohn in Oxford or demijohn.co.uk

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M A I N S

WHEN YOU’RE THE DESIGNATED DRIVER

Staying alcohol-free can be a bit trying when the only soft drinks on offer are unspeakably boring. Luscombe’s Damascene Rose Bubbly, however, is anything but. The satisfying tang of delicate rose petals married with Muscat grape is instantly refreshing, with a hint of Sicilian lemon on the palate for a zingy lift. A sophisticated soft alternative to Champagne, if ever we saw one. 7 Luscombe Damascene Rose Bubbly, £2.20/32cl. Get yours from Burford Garden Company in Burford or Wootton Stores in Woodstock

IF YOU’RE AN ESPRESSO AFICIONADO

Use British Cassis to add flair to your fizz, jazz up your gin, or give a kick to your cocktail with some local flavour. (It’s made not far away in Herefordshire, don’t cha know!) This rich, blackcurrant liqueur is also pretty lush drizzled over desserts, or quaffed neat with some cheese. (Basically, there are loads of ways to enjoy it!) 7 British Cassis, £19.99, available from Waitrose and The Cheese Works in Cheltenham, and at Gloucester Services

Cold brew is the latest thing in coffee, and the peeps at Conker have taken it one step further with this coffee liqueur. By brewing the liqueur cold, none of the acidic, bitter elements of the bean are extracted, thereby creating a heady and hearty concoction that’s as wonderfully dark as it is delicious. And if the party starts to flag, then it will deliver just the caffeine kick that’s needed! 7 Conker Cold Brew, £30, from Harvey Nichols or conkerspirit.co.uk

THE MORNING AFTER THE NIGHT BEFORE

TO TOAST IN THE NEW YEAR

IN A COCKTAIL

There are some mornings when it seems like you’ll need a miracle to get through the day. Step forward Little Miracles. Made using acai and carefully selected Panax ginseng in its purest form, then blended with organic tea and superfruit juices, they’re the perfect pick-me-up. (Y’know, just in case you need it…) 7 Little Miracles, £1.39, from Ocado

New Year’s Eve is no ordinary night, and Lyme Bay Blanc de Noirs is no ordinary sparkling wine! Made with 100% Pinot Noir grapes, its strong red fruit character gives the wine strawberry and cherry notes as well as a rich copper hue. Cheers! 7 Lyme Bay Blanc de Noirs, £24.50, from lymebaywinery.co.uk

CURLED UP BY THE FIRE

Stroud Brewery’s Ding Dong is a rich mulled porter which balances sweet, spicy aromas with kola nut taste, making it the ideal match for a crackling fire and roasted chestnuts. In previous years Ding Dong has sold out pretty sharpish, so you’ll need to act a bit quick if you want to lay your hands on some! 7 Stroud Brewery Ding Dong, £3, from stroudbrewery.co.uk

ON A BRACING COUNTRY WALK

Sherry is no longer just for grandma! The spirit is seeing something of a renaissance, and there’s a pretty fantastic example being created right here in the Cotswolds at The Cotswolds Distillery. Spirited Sherry is a delightful blend of the distillery’s new-make single malt spirit and fine Spanish sherries. It’s ace after dinner, or pop some in a hip flask and sip it during a bracing walk in the fresh air. 7 Spirited Sherry, £29.95, from cotswoldsdistillery.com

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A Vineyard & Winery Tour in the Beautiful Cotswolds Book a tour at our Woodchester vineyard and winery and enjoy a tutored tasting with an experienced member of our team for an insight into the fascinating world of winemaking. Please visit our website for more details. You can also visit our Cellar Door in South Woodchester for a taste of our award winning wines. Our Cellar Door is open Tuesday to Saturday 10am - 6pm. Postcode GL5 5EY. See our website for more details.

info@woodchestervalleyvineyard.co.uk

Woodchester Valley Vineyard is a family owned vineyard and winery established by the Shiner family in 2007. A boutique estate across three vineyard sites in Woodchester, Amberley and Doverow specialising in award winning white, rosĂŠ and sparkling wines from vineyards planted in the Cotswolds Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty.

www.woodchestervalleyvineyard.co.uk


( advertising feature )

GOLD AND DELICIOUS At long last, the Cotswolds Distillery’s highly anticipated Single Malt Whisky has been released!

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ade entirely from local barley, the spirit has been maturing in casks for three years and is now ready to be enjoyed. Rich and fruity, with hints of butterscotch, red fruits and a touch of warm spice – it has a smoothness and depth that belie its young age. Dan Szor (founder and CEO of the Cotswolds Distillery) said “Our Single Malt is the culmination of years of hard work, combining over five decades of ‘grain to glass’ production knowledge from internationally-renowned experts with the region’s best-in-class ingredients. We’ve managed to produce something truly remarkable, and we couldn’t be prouder of what we’ve achieved.” The distillery runs three tours a day, seven days a week. So, if you’d like to see the whole production process in action, meet the distilling team and taste all the delicious products they make, go to cotswoldsdistillery.com/tours to book a ticket. This delicious single malt whisky will be available to taste and buy from the distillery from October 8, while stocks last. Please call 01608 238 533 to check availability. The Cotswold Distilling Company Ltd, Phillips Field, Whichford Road, Stourton, Shipston on Stour, Warwickshire, CV36 5HG Tel: 01608 238 533 Email: info@cotswoldsdistillery.com cotswoldsdistillery.com

NORTH COTSWOLD CAMRA PUB OF THE YEAR, 2017 (RUNNER UP) Character Pub with stone walls and flagstone floors Casual Dining – Excellent food served all day Passionate about well kept ales Famous Inn located on the Fosse Way (A429) Stunning riverside garden – Al Fresco dining 9 beautiful en-suite bedrooms and two holiday cottages

01285 720721 Fossebridge | Cheltenham | GL54 3JS reservations@innatfossebridge.co.uk

www.fossebridgeinn.co.uk


( adve rtising feature )

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THE DRINKS CABINET presented by The Craft Drink Co.

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he autumn and winter seasons are an inspiring time for drink-making. Hot on the heels of harvest come fruits that are only ripe after first frosts, such as sloes. Cinnamon, clove and other warming extracts are especially welcomed in the colder seasons. A nip of sloe gin from a hipflask whilst on a country walk can be an inviting remedy for icy fingertips, just as an evening fireside tipple can warm the cockles. This midwinter need not be bleak with these autumnal and wintery warmers. Glowing cheeks don’t just come from cold weather, after all…

1 The Sweet Potato Spirit Co., Toffee Apple Moonshine For their Moonshine, The Sweet Potato Spirit Co. use only the best sweet potatoes. Their rich orange flesh gives a silky smoothness to this spirit that bolsters a heady mix of vanilla spice, warm peach, and apricot skins with a smack of golden caramel to finish. This is blended to create a decadent toffee apple concoction reminiscent of warm crème brûlée. Crisp apple on the nose descends into rich caramel and a lingering sweet stone fruit finish on the palate. 2 Bensons, Mulled Apple & Cinnamon Juice Bensons only use locally sourced produce, helping their Red Tractor accredited British orchards thrive and lowering their carbon output. Their Mulled Apple & Cinnamon Juice is a refreshingly surprising way to serve apple juice; hot and with a warming twist of

cinnamon. Crafted from seasonal British apples pressed whole then infused with cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg & cloves, this is a perfect autumn warmer. 3 Williams Chase, Aged Sloe & Mulberry Gin Handpicked fresh from Herefordshire hedgerows, sloe berries are marinated in Chase’s bespoke gin blend, with a selection of botanicals that draw out the rich fruit flavour. Finally, tart mulberries are added, giving a unique and rare taste. A sticky mouthfeel with a clean tartness around the edges gives way to deep berry notes with an aftertaste of figs, chopped dates, prune and redcurrant jelly. A gloriously warming tipple. 4 Stroud Brewery, Schwarzwälder One taste of this rich, sweet stout porter will transport you to the deepest darkest Black Forest. This brew is conditioned on sour cherries and sticky dark molasses, whilst dark roasted malts add a hint of chocolate to the palate. It pours an inky black with a malty cappuccino head, and as with all products from Stroud Brewery, it only uses 100% Certified Organic ingredients. 5 Foxdenton, Christmas Liqueur Foxdenton Estates is a family firm that specialises in small-scale production of English fruit liqueurs. Using traditional wild fruits like sloe and damson, yet also raspberries and rhubarb, their aim is to make a good local English drink based on

traditional recipes, using gin as the base. Their Christmas Liqueur is made every winter from Foxdenton fruit gins and is blended with Christmas spices and a hint of ginger for a truly Christmassy feel. 6 Saxby’s Cider, Mulled Cider When heated gently, the appley characteristic of this cider really shines through, whilst the rich, spicy aromas of cardamom, cinnamon and star anise come to the fore. However, it is also delicious cold when added to Prosecco for a perfectly Christmassy punch. 7 Box Steam Brewery, Bauble This festive brew is a fine, full-bodied golden ale with a clean, refreshing bittersweet taste and a light, fruity cinnamon aroma that is ultimately evocative of the yuletide season. Though its name might suggest otherwise, this ale is more likely to be found under our Christmas tree than hanging from it!

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: craftdrink.co.uk


M A I N S

LIES, dAMNEd LIES EMMA DANCE FINDS OUT MORE ABOUT HAPPERLEY, THE ORGANISATION THAT’S PUTTING FOOD PROVENANCE FRONT AND CENTRE

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o you know where your food is from? Like, actually know which farm the meat was raised on or the vegetables grown? You might think you do, but the shocking truth is that much of the labelling on food these days isn’t exactly what it seems. Take, for example, much of the meat sold in supermarkets labelled as ‘such-andsuch farm’. Maybe there’s a picture of a jolly farmer or a frolicking animal on the label, conjuring up images of a rural idyll where everything is raised with the highest ethical standards. But, in reality, all too often that farm is just a figment of a marketing department’s imagination. That ‘locally’ produced juice might be processed and bottled in the county, but delve a bit deeper and you might discover that the fruit has clocked up hundreds (if not thousands) of food miles. Of course, that isn’t always the case. There are plenty of real farms out there, and there’s lots of great stuff coming out of each of them. It’s just that, as a consumer, it can be hard to tell the difference.

Top left: Matthew Rhymer (left) and Clifford Freeman (right) with representatives of Gloucester Rugby Top right: Adam Henson and Eric Freeman Below: Eating Happerley

To find out more about Happerley, visit happerley.co.uk

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A N N A LY TH GO E P H OTO GRA PHY

M A I N S

Which is why Happerley happened. The brainchild of farmers Matthew Rymer and Clifford Freeman, Happerley was born at a farm in Apperley (see what they did there?) in Gloucestershire, and is aiming to bring transparency to the food industry, allowing consumers to easily discover every step in the food chain that has brought produce to their plate. “The food industry has become the Wild West of provenance,” says Matt. “There desperately needs to be a level playing field – a means by which the consumer is empowered to validate the provenance of their food, and know its story back to the farm. That’s what Happerley is all about. “The words ‘farm’, ‘fresh’ and ‘local’ are flagrantly abused on restaurant menus, but who ever checks them? I’ve heard of butchers buying chickens from Tesco on Friday and labelling them as free range to sell on his counter on Saturday; fish being bought at Iceland to be sold at a farmers’ market; fudge being imported from Eastern Europe and packaged as ‘Made in Devon’; and restaurants continuing to make claims that meat comes from a nearby farm, when

in reality the orders stopped months ago – and the list goes on. “The new generation of consumers, though, want to know the journey of their food. Sustainable production, food miles and animal welfare are gaining value. The consumer now seeks fact, not fiction.” Happerley works by asking farmers, producers, restaurants and retailers to sign up to the scheme, and – once on board – the business undergoes a thorough audit by Happerley, which then publishes their supply chain. They’re even working on a kind of electronic food passport which, through a QR code, will reveal every stage of the process, from the farm to the transportation to the processing. It’s provenance taken to a whole other level. And Matt believes that it’s something that consumers not only want, but are willing to pay for. “The provenance premium is becoming incredibly valuable, and I would say it’s the lifeline of a sustainable and profitable UK food industry,” he says. “It can and should benefit every player, from the farmer to the butcher to the food manufacturer to the consumer.”

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Happerley’s now got members across the country. The Mid-Counties Co-op has a ‘Best of Our Counties’ range, which bears the Happerley logo; the Royal Agricultural College in Cirencester has just signed up to become the first university in the UK to be a Happerley Provenance Champion (which means it will be publishing and certifying the provenance of its entire food supply chain through Happerley’s verification system); Gloucester Rugby has come on board with its mobile catering; and even Countryfile’s Adam Henson is lending his support to the venture. And it's not just small producers that are boarding the Happerley bandwagon, either. The team is also in talks with large meat businesses, and even one of the continent’s biggest fruit and vegetable wholesalers is keen to get involved, recognising that consumers are wising up and asking more and more questions about their food. “In an age where people can just go online and know everything that their friends are up to, they are demanding the same transparency in food,” says Matt. “We have all had enough of lies.”


The Inn for All Seasons, is a former 16th century coaching inn set in the heart of the Cotswolds. A warm and friendly hotel with a relaxed bar and a renowned restaurant offering the best of British and local produce including the freshest ďŹ sh sourced directly from Devon and Cornwall. The Inn offers comfortable en-suite accommodation, free parking & dogs are welcome.

The Inn for All Seasons | Little Barrington | Burford | Oxfordshire | OX18 4TN T: 01451 844324 | W: www.theinnforallseasons.co.uk THE INN IS NOW OPEN 7 DAYS PER WEEK FROM 8AM – 10PM


M A I N S

HOT DATES

THERE’S NO NEED FOR FESTIVE FOMO THANKS TO OUR GUIDE TO SOME OF THE CRACKING CHRISTMASSY EVENTS HAPPENING ACROSS THE COTSWOLDS

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M A I N S

PARTY TIME

If you don’t want to deal with all the hassle that goes with organising your own party this Crimbo, then an open party night could be the answer. All you need do is grab a few mates and head on down to one of the many ace venues hosting shindigs this season; the only advanced planning you’ll need to do is book your place. They’re getting in on the action early at AV8 at Cotswold Airport. The aeroplane-themed restaurant is usually only open during the day, but on November 8 and 15 there’s a chance to go there for an evening knees-up, including a Christmas menu and live music from covers band undisCOVERED. Tickets cost £19.95 for a two course meal or £24.95 for three. At Cirencester’s Corinium Hotel parties are happening every Friday and Saturday night from December 1-16, with prices from £32 for dinner and dancing. Dishes on offer include chicken and pork terrine, supreme of sea trout and profiteroles. And there’re some pretty sweet accommodation deals on offer too, if you want to stay over. There’s a range of dates available at Magnolia Brasserie at Sudbury House in Faringdon too (December 9, 15, 16, 22). The princely sum of £45 will get you a three course dinner, with dishes such as crayfish and smoked salmon ballotine, turkey roulade and steamed Christmas pudding, as well as a disco. And for one night only – on December 15, in fact – the Hare and Hounds in Westonbirt is offering a night of festive fun with a three course dinner and a disco for just £35 each. If you don’t want to drive home after, then there are rooms available too. Over Farm is offering a variation on the dinner and disco theme, with barn dance Christmas party nights on December 1, 2, 7 and 8. Several dates are already sold out, however, so you’ll need to act quickly to get in on the action. £25 will get you a welcome drink, pig roast, barn dance and disco – all in the farm’s glorious 160-year-old converted grain store – which sounds like a total bargain. Top: undisCOVERED will be providing the entertainment at AV8 Above left: Party at The Hare and Hounds Above right: Say cheese at The Old Stocks Left and below: Learn some new dishes

DOING IT FOR THE KIDS

Younger guests will love Sunday lunch at De Vere Cotswold Water Park during December, and not just because there’s a top festive carvery going on. (There’s a children’s buffet menu also on offer.) Probably more exciting for the little ones is the fact that the man himself, Santa Claus, will be in attendance, handing out a gift for every child – and, to top it all off, there’s a children’s disco taking place too. Cotswold Farm Park is really getting into the festive spirit this season. From November 25 until December 22 there are loads of Christmassy activities (as well as all the usual fun) for kids, including the chance to enrol in Elf Academy, visit Father Christmas in his grotto, and say hello to the animals of the nativity story.

FANTASTIC FEASTS

Christmas might not be all about the eating but, let’s face it, it’s a lot about the eating. If you’re looking for some inspiration for your Crimbo cheese board (or if you just like cheese!), then don’t miss an evening with the Cotswold Cheese Company at the Old Stocks Inn in Stow-on-the-Wold on November 24, from 7.30pm. You’ll be able to nibble on some lush local cheeses, and check out some wine pairing recommendations. The £35 ticket price includes plenty of cheese and wine, and everyone who comes along can get 10% off next time they shop at the Cotswold Cheese Company. No 38 The Park in Cheltenham is offering the ultimate Christmas feast for large groups. Groups of 20 or more can take over this elegant townhouse (for lunch or dinner) and dine

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on a traditional Christmas spread – think the likes of smoked salmon, turkey and trimmings and hot chocolate pudding – from £29 each for lunch or £39 for dinner. If you’re still not stuffed on Boxing Day, then you might want to take a trip to the Blue Boar in Witney for a bottomless brunch. Dishes include sweet potato and chorizo hash, toasted Belgian waffles and eggs Benedict, and there are bottomless DIY Bloody Marys, Prosecco and Mimosas. Each sitting is 1½ hours max, and it costs £25 per person.

GOOD SHOW

Combine some fine food with some fine music at Whatley Manor near Malmesbury on December 10. Start the evening with a Champagne and canapé reception, followed by a carol recital by the award-winning Noctis chamber choir. Then, afterwards, enjoy a three course meal in the newly refurbished Grey’s Brasserie. Tickets cost £99 per person.

TOTAL CLASS

Whether you want to learn to make a gorgeous Christmas wreath, stunning table decoration or just get some tips on how to prepare the ultimate Christmas feast, there’s sure to be a class for you on offer somewhere this Yuletide. The Christmas programme at Daylesford in Kingham begins in November, and there’s loads on offer all the way through until Christmas. There’s a series of ‘Effortless Christmas Entertaining’ workshops available, covering everything from canapés to puds (choose just one, or take part in them all). Alternatively, get the kids involved with a family cooking class or, if you’ve got the foodie side of things covered, join the kitchen garden team to make a wreath. Let the chefs at Thyme in Southrop add a little sparkle to your festive repertoire in the month before Christmas with their ‘12 Days of Christmas’ classes on November 25 and December 9. It’s a two-part course (although you can just take part in one of them, if you can’t make ’em both), and each class will focus on six recipes, described as ‘sweet and savoury, a little unusual and very special’. A full day course costs £185, but Crumbs readers can do both for £330 by quoting ‘Crumbs Christmas Feature’ when booking. Further festive classes include, Masterchef Masterclass: Festive Entertaining on November 18, The Instinctive Cook: Festive Dinner Party Menu on November 30, and Christmas Cocktails on December 16. WHERE TO BOOK • AV8, Cotswold Airport, Cirencester GL7 6BA; av8-cotswoldairport.co.uk • Corinium Hotel, 12 Gloucester Street, Cirencester GL7 2DG; coriniumhotel.com • Magnolia Brasserie, Sudbury House Hotel, 56 London Street, Faringdon SN7 7AA; sudburyhouse.co.uk • The Hare and Hounds, Bath Road, Westonbirt, Tetbury GL8 8QL; cotswold-inns-hotels.co.uk • Over Farm, Highnam, Gloucester GL2 8DB; overfarm.co.uk • De Vere Cotswold Water Park, Lake 6, Spine Road East, South Cerney GL7 5FP; phcompany.com/de-vere/ cotswold-water-park-hotel/

Above: Wreath making at Daylesford Left: Chamber choir Noctis will be performing some choice carols at Whatley Manor Below: For some serious Christmas feasting, No 38 The Park is your place

• Cotswold Farm Park, Guiting Power GL54 5UG; cotswoldfarmpark.co.uk • Old Stocks Inn, Stow-on-the-Wold GL54 1AF; oldstocksinn.com • No 38 The Park, 38 Evesham Road, Cheltenham GL52 2AH; theluckyonion.com • The Blue Boar, 28 Market Square, Witney OX28 6BH; blueboarwitney.co.uk • Whatley Manor, Easton Grey, Malmesbury SN16 0RB; whatleymanor.com • Daylesford Organic Farm, Daylesford, near Kingham GL56 0YG; daylesford.com • Thyme, Southrop Manor Estate, Gloucestershire GL7 3NX; thyme.co.uk

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A F T E RS NEW RESTAURANTS DEVOURED, NEW CAFÉS FREQUENTED, NEW BARS CRAWLED, AND THE TRUTH ABOUT WHAT WE THOUGHT OF THEM

H I G H L I G H T S

MAGIC EIGHT

An extravaganza of a tasting menu at Sudbury House Hotel Page 60

LAID BACK LUXURY

There’s a new look and a new menu at Crudwell’s The Rectory Hotel Page 62

CAUGHT IN A TRAP

Checking out the ravishingly refurbed Mousetrap Inn Page 64

I N C L U D I N G

A DYNAMIC DUO

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cooking up an epic eight-course feast

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( T E R R I F I C TA S T I N G M E N U S )

RESTAURANT 56 AT SUDBURY HOUSE EMMA DANCE GETS HER TASTEBUDS TICKLED BY THE TASTING MENU AT RESTAURANT 56

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I

’m often asked questions like, “What’s the best thing you’ve eaten this year?”, or “What’s your favourite restaurant?” And usually I’ll give a very noncommittal response; something like, “That’s like asking someone to choose a favourite child”, or “It really depends what sort of mood I’m in.” Because I don’t like to be drawn on these types of things for a couple of reasons. 1) Often I can barely remember what I ate yesterday, let alone three months ago, and 2) chefs like Andrew Scott and Nick Bennett (the duo who run the kitchen for Restaurant 56 at Sudbury House Hotel) make it so flippin’ hard to choose! Take, for example, the eight course tasting menu that they cooked me the other day. Just about any of the courses on it could be in the running for a ‘favourite dish’ title. It all started with a butternut squash tartlet with Driftwood goats’ cheese. Other tartlets with similar descriptions appear on menus around the country, but I’d lay money on this particular example being one of the finest. The pastry was impossibly


A F T E R S

thin and crisp (no hint of soggy bottoms here), and although the goats’ cheese may have been light in texture its deliciously salty tang delivered a proper punch of flavour. Butternut squash gave sweetness, but scattered among the soft cubes were delicately pickled morsels, which added a hint of sharpness and just the slightest crunch to complete the whole symphony of flavours and textures. The chicken liver parfait which came next was seriously fine. A glossy sphere contained a parfait that was silky and smooth, while the compressed melon and a melon-and-Madeira gel that came alongside brought just enough sweetness to balance the dish. The Cornish blue lobster ravioli which followed was stuffed so full of the delicious, sweet sea-meat it looked as if it were about to burst (of course, it didn’t; the team are far too skilled for such an error!) and the rich, creamy bisque which drenched it amplified the flavours of the sea. Blushing pink Creedy Carver duck was as soft as butter, but it was the bitter chicory, earthy beetroot, and plums that were both sweet and sour which shared the plate that really brought it alive. They’re a considerate bunch in the kitchens, so at this point they had factored in a bit of a break in the form of a ‘London Street Detox’, which – after four courses with skilfully matched wines – seemed like just what was needed. It turned out to be a berry-flavoured kombucha (a natural probiotic drink, loaded with antioxidants) which is fermented onsite, and was living

proof that something that tastes good can actually be good for you. The cheese course was a revelation – a kind of deconstructed cheesecake made using Brinkworth Blue cheese, digestive biscuits, shavings of white chocolate, and purée and gel made from Mirabelle plums. Every mouthful was a fairground of flavours, swinging between sweet and savoury with the occasional whisper of sharpness, and I loved it. Even with my shocking memory, this is a dish that I won’t be forgetting in a hurry! Pre-dessert (which is obvs just an excuse for two puds) was 56 Pimms Cup, but of course it wasn’t just a glass of the summer cocktail. It did, however, have all the flavours, with a light Pimms jelly encasing little pieces of fruit, cool freshness coming from a cucumber granita, and a cloud-like strawberry foam almost floating over it all. The whole shebang ended with a peach mousse, crowned with a brandy snap disc, honeycomb and quenelle of apricot sorbet. The light textures and fresh, fruity flavours

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were a perfectly well-judged end to such a luxurious feast. So you see, when I’m faced with meals like this, how could I ever possibly choose a favourite dish? #firstworldproblems

Restaurant 56, Sudbury House Hotel, 56 London Street, Faringdon SN7 7AA; restaurant56.co.uk


t (HIP HOTELS)

THE RECTORY HOTEL EMMA DANCE FINDS SOME LAID BACK LUXURY AT THIS COUNTRY HOUSE RETREAT

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he vibe at The Rectory Hotel is super-chilled and low key. It’s so super-chilled and low key, in fact, that apparently creating a sign saying something like, I don’t know, ‘The Rectory’ was either a bit too much like hard work or a bit too obvious. So instead, on the front wall, there’s just a symbol. Sure, it’s the same symbol that’s used on The Rectory’s website and marketing stuff – which is fine if you’ve paid attention to these things. Less fine if, like us, you’re more of the winging it disposition, and are relying on Google maps, which lost reception a few miles back. Still, Crudwell’s pretty tiny, and there’s only really one possible candidate for the hotel so, in true Robert Langdon style (y’know, him off The Da Vinci Code) we cracked the code and figured out where we were meant to be. Once inside, though, it’s just about impossible to hold onto any stress. Everyone is super-friendly and there are lots of squishy sofas and cosy corners where you can relax, so we quickly fell


A F T E R S

into The Rectory’s laid back pace of life. After installing ourselves in our bedroom overlooking the front lawn we headed to the bar for a pre-dinner drink, and we quaffed a cocktail while perusing the menu. It’s not the world’s biggest but it’s a very good one, with plenty to pique my interest. I was instantly drawn to the starter of clams with nduja sausage and seaweed butter and, when it arrived, it looked very promising, a towering bowlful of shells studded with little red flecks of sausage. A closer look, though, revealed that most of my clams had gone MIA in the kitchen and vacated their former homes. When I’d removed all the empties I did find a few more clams lurking underneath, but not enough to match the number of shells. The clams that had made it into my dish were well cooked, and there was good spice and smokiness from the nduja, but also – sadly – way too much salt, which overpowered the delicate sweetness of the seafood. Ham hock, with grilled runner beans and poached egg, however, was much more successful. He described the pink morsels of ham as “melty” (yep, that’s why he’s not writing this), while the egg was perfectly cooked with a golden cascade of yolk and just a hint of char from the beans, giving another dimension to the dish. My main of English veal with girolles, roast baby artichokes, peas and mint was just wonderful. The meat had been cooked perfectly, blushing pink and oh-so-soft, and the roasted artichokes were almost creamy

in texture. There was a delicate woodiness from the mushrooms, while the sweet freshness of peas and mint completed the flavour arpeggio. Across the table there was grilled lemon sole with Cornish crab, Jersey royals and broad beans. The cooking of the fish is spoton here, the flesh giving way at the merest suggestion of a fork, and there was saltiness from the brown crab meat and almostsweetness from the white. Some mouthfuls erred on the side of too salty, thanks to a fairly punchy bisque-like sauce, but for the most part this was more than munchable. The menu of puds is full of temptations (cardamom pannacotta or apple and maple syrup cheesecake, anyone?), but in the end I couldn’t resist Florentine doughnuts with Chantilly cream and strawberry jam. They were crisp on the outside and fluffy on the inside and, while it wasn’t a complex dish, totally delicious. White chocolate and tonka bean mousse with raspberry macaroon and rosewater demonstrated more skill, though, and was also executed well. Rosewater can be overpowering, but here all the flavours were carefully balanced to create something delicate and delicious. Sure, our experience at The Rectory Hotel wasn’t quite perfect, but overall it’s a pretty ace affair. And once you embrace the laid-back vibe, there’s no way a couple of minor niggles could ruin it. The Rectory Hotel, Crudwell, Malmesbury SN16 9EP; therectoryhotel.com

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A F T E R S

( R I G H T- O N R E F U R B S )

THE MOUSETRAP INN

E

THIS NEWLY REFURBISHED PUB IS HITTING ALL THE RIGHT NOTES, SAYS EMMA DANCE

ating at a pub is a bit like going to see a favourite band. And here’s why. When you go to a concert, you kind of know what you’re expecting. You know the sound, you like the sound – that’s why you’re there. And you want to hear old favourites and the big hits; if you don’t, then you feel a bit cheated. But you also want something a bit extra, something you haven’t heard before. Something to surprise you. It’s pretty much the same for a pub. When you go to a pub, you want that pub feel; you want it to be relaxed and

comfortable. (If you wanted formal dining then you’d go to a fancy restaurant – but that’s not why you’re here.) You want to see some proper pub grub on the menu. But, at the same time, when there’s something a bit different on offer too – an inventive dish or two, a few things you weren’t expecting – then that’s a very good thing. The Mousetrap Inn at Bourton-on-theWater has just been refurbed, and it’s doing that new-breed Cotswold pub thing very well – all Farrow and Ball tones, just-rusticenough wooden tables, and hip young staff – striking a good balance between cool and authentic to appeal to the out-of-towners

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without scaring off the locals. When we visited mid-week, there was a lively atmosphere with a mixture of drinkers and diners; the new look is clearly garnering a loyal fan base already. A look at the menu reveals an appealinglooking set list. There’s a mackerel mousse and some crab cakes, which look like fine opening acts, but instead we decide on a mini variety show of small plates. There are little slices of honey and mustard sausages, which on their own are perfectly good, but it’s the sweet tangy sauce, with just a hint of heat, which brings them alive. Crayfish tails are presented simply, but then there’s no


need to mess with the sweet, succulent pink morsels; halloumi fries are wonderfully more-ish; and a bowl of peppers, stuffed with cream cheese, completes our quartet. My main course of rump steak bacon chilli cheeseburger is an excellent reimagining of a classic favourite. The bacon is pleasingly crisp, there’s a hint of smoky char to the patty, and there’s a good hit of chilli heat, but not so much that it overpowers the flavour of the burger itself – it’s a proper crowdpleaser. While my dish is big and brash, husband’s monkfish tail with Dauphinoise potatoes, heritage carrots and a saffron vinaigrette is a more delicate affair. The new head chef is a fan of seafood cookery and this enthusiasm shows, since the cooking of the fish is perfect. It’s well seasoned, moist, and with all the fabulous firm, meaty texture which makes monkfish such a winner. The accompaniments are delivered just as well, creating clever little flavour harmonies within the dish. It’s not your usual pub offering, but it’s got all the makings of a big hit.

My dessert of green tea and jasmine delice with a gin and elderflower tonic sorbet is a delight. The grassy and floral notes make a gorgeous duet, both beautifully subtle and neither overshadowing the other or trying to steal the spotlight. It’s clever and modern and I’m an instant fan. It’s back to the big hits, though, for husband’s finale - a Bakewell slice with vanilla ice cream. It’s not a pud that needs to be messed with, and it’s been left alone to sing a song that’s been delighting diners for years. Naturally, it proves very popular. When a pub undergoes change there’s always the risk that it’ll lose its loyal fan base, but The Mousetrap is still delivering enough classic ‘pub’ to keep everyone happy, while coming up with some clever new material to keep people coming back for more. The Mousetrap Inn, Lansdowne, Bourton-on-the-Water GL54 2AR; themousetrapinn.co.uk

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L I T T L E

B L A C K

B O O K

NICK dEVERELL-SMITh

HE’S HEAD CHEF AND OWNER OF THE CHURCHILL ARMS AT PAXFORD. AND, ON THE RARE OCCASIONS HE HAS SOME TIME OFF, HERE’S WHERE HE LIKES TO CHILL

Best brew? Morris & Brown café at Broadway Tower is a really picturesque destination, and very relaxing. Broadway Tower is the highest castle in the Cotswolds and has views right over 15 counties. I can’t really think of anywhere better than their teashop for a good cup of tea.    Favourite grocery shop?  We source our veg for The Churchill Arms from Vegetable Matters farm shop in Ebrington. They sell locally grown, fresh, seasonal produce that has a real depth of flavour. It’s only about a mile down the road from the pub – we’re very lucky to have such a great farm shop on our doorstep.   Best wine merchant?  Milton Sandford: my wine supplier and, in my opinion, the best in the business. They’ve been supplying some of the UK’s top hotels, restaurants and pubs since 1990. Their wines are from all over the world, and they ensure that the highest-quality boutique wines are selected. 

Sunday lunch? The Waterside Inn in Bray. I love it because it’s in a beautiful location on the River Thames, and offers delicious food – and wine to match. Even though it has three Michelin stars, it is refreshingly unpretentious and relaxed.   Quick pint?  Has to be Sheep on Sheep Street in Stowon-the-Wold. It’s a local favourite, a great place to meet up for drinks, and they do a great pint!   Cheeky cocktail?  It’s not exactly local, but Chateau Marmont in West Hollywood oozes old Hollywood glamour. It’s great fun to watch the cocktails being created by the expert bartenders, and each one is executed perfectly.      With the family?  It has to be my mum’s house. This is where we all come together under one roof for family occasions.   

QUICK! ADD THIS LITTLE LOT TO YOUR CONTACTS BOOK… Morris & Brown, Broadway Tower, Broadway WR12 7LB; broadwaytower.co.uk Vegetable Matters, Taskers, May Lane, Ebrington GL55 6NJ; vegetablematters.co.uk Milton Sandford Wines, The Old Chalk Mine, Warren Row, Reading RG10 8QS; miltonsandfordwines.com The Waterside Inn, Ferry Road, Bray SL6 2AT; waterside-inn.co.uk Sheep on Sheep Street, Stow-on-the-Wold GL54 1AU; thesheepstow.co.uk Chateau Marmont Hotel, Hollywood; chateaumarmont.com Soho Farmhouse, Chipping Norton OX7 4JS; sohofarmhouse.com The Potting Shed, The Street, Crudwell SN16 9EW; thepottingshedpub.com Cinnamon Kitchen, Westgate, Oxford; cinnamon-kitchen.com The Ivy Montpellier Brasserie, Rotunda Terrace, Montpellier Street, Cheltenham GL50 1SH; theivycheltenhambrasserie.com

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With friends? Soho Farmhouse is located quite close to my pub, so it’s easy to get to when I have friends down for the weekend. It’s nice and relaxing, and a great place for a good catch up.   Comfort food?  Left over roast beef with chips and gravy – what else? Child friendly?  The Potting Shed in Crudwell offers amazing food in a really relaxed atmosphere. They’ve just recently come under new ownership, and the menu is now headed up by Antony Ely (ex-Lucky Onion), so it offers something for everyone. It’s a classic cosy country pub.  Best curry?  I love the innovative and modern way of cooking Indian food at the Cinnamon Club in Westminster, and the setting is rather majestic. It’s exciting that they are opening a sister restaurant, Cinnamon Kitchen, in Oxford this month.     Pre-theatre feed?  The Ivy is a timeless classic. It’s just been revamped, making it glitzier than ever before. The Covent Garden restaurant is right in the heart of theatreland, making it the perfect pit stop for some dinner before heading off to see a show. The Ivy Brasserie in Cheltenham is opening later this year, so I will be checking that out for sure! churchillarms.co


Crumbs Cotswold - Issue 60  
Crumbs Cotswold - Issue 60  
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