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Travel section plus more recipes

The tablet food magazine • ISSUE 27

Nell's Dairy

Fresh Guernsey milk from a vending machine

BlOk Party

Hand crafted kitchen knives

Conjuring up the past with Kevin Love, Head Chef at The Hinds Head, Bray

Eating Out

DishOOm FunDi Pizza

Spring food from

Rococo, What Katie Ate & The Fabulous Baker Brothers


Festival tickets ● Iceland ● Rose Bakery ● The Bowler ● Kerb Food

Yeo Valley's Deep Filled Nutmeg & Custard Tart P64

cnwd a great little food company 01269 833703 @cnwdfood

We make top quality traditional recipes from our kitchen in Carmarthenshire, west Wales. We use fresh, local ingredients to bring you the best from the west. We believe in celebrating being small but great. Here are our 5 simple steps. We We We We We

celebrate all things local source the best ingredients use traditional skills create innovative dishes cook with our heart and soul


Click here to connect online

Welcome Welcome to the very first tablet-only edition of Fork. Why have we decided to stop printing on paper? We believe it is the most logical progression for the magazine. Printing on vast amounts of paper was becoming costly and unsustainable. There is widespread waste in the magazine industry, millions of magazines are pulped every month and we decided to start saving a few trees and come to you via tablet Joanna Busk Editor

instead. It seems crazy not to. This change can only be a good thing for you the reader. By going digital we can make Fork cheaper to produce and cheaper for you. And you don’t have to worry about going out to get it or finding a stockist – Fork will come to you. Wherever you are. There’s also the added benefit that we can publish more stories, there’s no longer a limit to how many features or reviews we publish each issue… other than finding the time to write them all! We’re also really excited about the possibilities of working with interactive content, bringing you links on the page to video and radio and making the magazine come alive. Fork is exactly the same, but we think, in many ways better. We’ll still be exploring the world of food and bringing you intelligent food writing and food news, reviews, features and interviews, always with a focus on artisans, producers and with an eye on the rising stars of the food world. We’d like your feedback, so please tell us what you think and if there is anything you would like to see more of by sending an email to

Enjoy the read.

Joanna Busk, Editor

Editor Joanna Busk Art & Design Real Design & Media Ltd Tel 0117 929 0990 Contributors Katy Davidson, Martin Orbach, Laura Dixon, Maddie Culver-Goldstein, Cover Shot: Huw Jones Address Fork magazine, 9th Floor, Tower House Fairfax Street, Bristol BS1 3BN Phone 0117 929 0990 Email Website Published by: Fork Publishing 9th Floor, Tower House, Fairfax Street, Bristol BS1 3BN Tel: 0117 929 0990

58 Copyright: Unauthorised reproduction of this magazine, in whole or part, is prohibited without written permission of the publisher. Not to be resold, lent or hired out for more than the recommended retail price, or in part. Readers may photocopy diagrams, mail-order coupons and competition entry forms provided copies are for personal use only.


Contents Issue 27


Essentials 9

On the shelf Check out our most recent food finds

12 Bites Bite-sized food news and trends


Chef Kevin Love

16 Blog roll Four food blogs reviewed 17 Fork Loves A cool new thing

Eating Out 18 Country: The Hinds Head An interview with Chef Kevin Love, rising star of Heston's Empire 29 City: Dishoom We meet Shamil Thakrar, to discuss his Persian cafe in Shoreditch by way of Bombay


Nell's Dairy

Travel 37 Travel News A round-up of food and travel news 38 Rose Bakery The cult bakery in Paris gives Fork some of their favorite egg recipes 40 Iceland Laura Dixon travels to Iceland for Thorrablot


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 Subscribe today Treat yourself to a Fork subscription today! New

plus Travel section more recipes

magazine The tablet food 27 • ISSUE www.forkmagaz

Chef Love


past with Conjuring up the Chef at Kevin Love, Head , Bray The Hinds Head

Eating Out

DishOOm FunDi Pizza

Nell's Dairy

milk Fresh Guernsey ne g machi from a vendin

BlOk rty Pa Hand crafted

kitchen knives

CONTENTS Subscribe to Fork magazine page 8


"It takes around 9-10 hours to make each one; it takes 6 hours just for the blade" page 26 Bread & Butter pudding with maple glazed bacon page 68



Recipes 50 Rococo's Salted Caramel Ice-cream 52 The Bowler's Tuna & Ginger Balls Blok Knives Page 27

Iceland page 40

54 The Bowler's Wasabi Salmon & Sesame balls


56 Tom and Henry Herbert's Custard Creams

24 Producer profile Fresh Guernsey milk from a vending machine

58 Tom and Henry Herbert's Battenburg cake 60 Bread and Butter Pudding with Maple Glazed Bacon from Dorset Cereals

26 Fork talk Ben Edmonds, creator of Blok Knives

62 Sweetcorn Fritters from the Dorset Cereals

32 Deerstalking Katy Davidson goes stalking at the crack of dawn

64 Yeo Valley's Deep Filled Nutmeg & Custard Tart

44 Shelf life Our pick of the best new cookbooks 47 Dishcourse Martin Orbach on obesity and traffic lights 70 A day in the life Pullman train chef Mike Suggett

66 Yeo Valley's Blue Cheese and Leek Tart 68 Salsa Verde Pizza from What Katie Ate Blog roll page 16

70 Barbecued Ginger Ale Pork Ribs from What Katie Ate 7

Subscribe to



On the shelf

Our piCk Of the Latest prOduCts tO hit the sheLves

The drink

The chilli

The spice

Who would have thought a coconut water/ espresso combo would be so good? £1.29 at Waitrose. 

A smooth smoked chilli paste sourced and produced deep within the Mexican countryside. £4.99 online and from independent delis. 

An online range of products inspired by Yotam Ottolenghi’s larder including these beautiful dried rose petals. 

The chocolate

The snack

The cake

These assortments of handpicked dried fruits make the perfect healthy snack. From £1.50. 

A deliciously sweet, nutty pastry inspired by North African cuisine. Available online. 

Coco Cafe

Marou Chocolate

This fairtrade chocolate is handcrafted by two Frenchman who relocated to Vietnam to master the art of chocolatiering. £5.50. 

Gran Luchito

urban fruit


M’hencha 9

Is From People

WE KNOW 100%







Free Range


100% Outdoor Reared BRITISH PORK

All our meat and free range poultry is sourced from British farms with the highest welfare standards and all the fish used is MSC certified.

So you know you can put your trust in a pieminister pie!


The cherry

The curry mix

Wild sour cherry products from Southern Italy. The dessert wine is rather special.

These fresh pastes made to a traditional recipe and can be used for curries, stir fries and as a marinade. £3.90. 

Fentimans and Bloom gin have teamed up to create a G&T all ready to go, and in a lovely bottle too. £3.99 for 275 ml. 

The Sweet

The popcorn

The yoghurt

Sugar free sweets that taste good. Really! The pear drops are addictive. 

Pan-popped corn made the old-fashioned way. Try the ‘Hot and Smoky’ made with chipotle chilli peppers. £1.99 for 40g 

New flavour alert: Papaya and Coconut with a hint of lime. £2.39 for 500g. 




Old School Curry Paste


The G &T

Fentimans and Bloom

The Collective Dairy

To get your product reviewed, email Fork magazine at: for more information 11



SNippETS From THE WorlD oF FooD

What’s Up  1 Campari ice-cream.

2 Friands, preferably raspberry ones. 3 Almond milk –healthy and delicious too.

4 English Black Pudding.

What’s doWn  1 Tabasco ice-cream.

2 Pulled pork fatigue. Enough now. 3 Thick pizzas.

4 The price of Olive Oil - harvest down and the price going up.

  Dinner Dish

We love these pie dishes. Doesn’t everyone? Now shipping to Europe, Australia and USA.


Now open Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall has opened a brand new cookery school for professional cooks and aspiring chefs.


E  App watch Curate your own cookbook on Evernote Food. Free to download at App Store  

 Website

Workshop Coffee, an online dispensary now selling their freshly roasted coffee on-line 


❤ We love

The nitro ice-cream buggy. This genius construction can instantly make custom flavoured ice-cream for up to 2000 people 


Whats on   St Ives Food and Drink Festival 18-19 May Food demos, coastal foraging and lots of locally caught seafood at this coastal  

one of the most exciting collections of fine, natural wine artisans ever to come together in the capital  

  Gefiltefest 19 May The Jewish food festival.  

  Real Bread Week

  Grillstock

From 11-17 May The Real Bread Campaign is calling local loaf lovers to get their hands doughy to celebrate the delicious, all natural and genuinely fresh real thing.

Bristol – 11-12 May Manchester – 8-9 June A 2 day barbecue and music festival held over 2 weekends in Bristol and Manchester. Expect barbecue competition with international music artists, a barbecue academy, festival craft beer bars, live entertainment, chilli-eating and hot-wing competitions  

  Toast Festival

1st & 2nd June 2013 A weekend-long celebration of food and ideas bringing together chefs, restaurateurs, writers, entrepreneurs and producers to discuss and debate the big ideas behind what Londoners eat and drink.


  RAW – The Artisan Wine Fair 19-20 May RAW is a two-day celebration of some of the best wine talent in the world. Featuring over 200 growers, RAW is  

Reading list...

   The PoWer oF PosiTive drinking

CLeo RoCos Square Peg £9.99 Twelve steps to the liquid side of life from Cleo Rocos.

Wild Food

Biddy White LeMon O’Brien £25 Over 60 recipes from Nature’s Harvest, how to gather, cook & preserve.

CraFT Beer london

WiLL haWkes VeSPertine £10 An indispensible guide to craft beer pubs, bars and breweries in the capital. 13


et On the stre KERB works as a space – both physical and online – for Making Cities Taste Better. Petra Barran from Kerb Food recommends her street food finds from around the country.

Fundi Pizza

Fundi is going places. Only set up at the end of last year, these Oxford-based brothers are making great doughy waves in their home town. Charlie is the food nut and Rory the designer. Every element of the business is made, designed, built and created by them - so not only can you come and buy their pizza but you can also order your own bespoke pizza oven. This is our kind of stall: resourceful, well-sourced and made from scratch - and the pizza is Napoli-incredible.

ard d n a t s e h t g n setti The Sustainable Restaurant Association promotes British restaurants leading the way in in sustainability. meet one of their three-star rated members.

The Thali Cafe

The four Thali Cafés in Bristol are inspired by the owners’ travels to India and serve Indian street food sourced as locally and sustainably as possible. In a winning take-away concept they sell tiffin tins to their local communities who stop by to fill up and take them home for dinner. As well as serving up healthy and delicious thali platters and spicy chais and they have a total commitment to sourcing local, seasonal and high welfare produce and all the meat is free range or organic. As well as all of this, it works with local charities, uses eco-friendly cleaning products and has a comprehensive recycling policy. Thali Terrific!






the issue f O m il f r u O

While it's all very Well reading about food, it's sometimes even better Watching it, and there are more films about food than ever before. the fork team traWls through the Web every month to pick out the best films for our Website and this page is dedicated to our favourite.

If you've found a film we should watch, tell us about it at info@ 15


Blog roll Our regular rOund-up Of the best fOOd blOgs On the web WOrDs: MADDIE CULVER-GOLDSTIEN





Keiko Oikawa is a Japanese born food photographer and stylist based in the UK but takes inspiration for her recipes from her travels around the world. Recipes like salmon and prawn tortellini in a ginger prawn bisque and rose scented rhubarb jelly with pistachio mousse are stunning.

Viviane Perenyi emigrated to new Zealand from France in 2008 and her blog details her new life ‘down under’. Viviane’s passion for all that is natural gives seasonal ingredients centre stage in this elegant and simply presented blog with recipes like coconut milk sourdough pancakes and asparagus clafoutis.


Kelly Brisson is based in Ottowa, Canada and is a self-confessed food obsessive. Kelly’s cooking style is rustic, homely and irresistibly wholesome and the site is full of beautiful recipes like braised lemon, leek and pancetta beans on toast and southern style shakshouka.

Erin has dedicated her beautifully designed blog to the creation of gluten-free recipes such as strawberry lemonade popsicles and Momofuku’s pulled pork; proof that gluten-free doesn’t have to be boring. Look out for her first cookbook, featuring over 80 brand new recipes.


♥ Fork Loves ElEmEnt 29 Vodka

Made using only produce from British Farms, Element 29 is an artisan vodka that not only tastes great, but is also the world’s first green vodka. Tim Hope-Cobbold, the brains behind the idea grew tired of seeing thousands of bottles going to waste so he came up with a revolutionary idea. Packed specially for pubs and restaurants, the vodka comes in one silk-screened glass bottle and a 8.4L bag-ina-box reservoir made from recyclable material. This innovation reduces packaging by 95%, cuts transported weight by 45% and transported volume by 63% allowing him to create a premium vodka at a lower price. Genius.    17



Joanna Busk meets kevin Love, Head CHef of tHe Hinds Head in Bray and disCovers aLL is not wHat it seems at tHe miCHeLin starred puB WORDS: Joanna Busk PHOTOGRAPHY: Courtesy of tHe Hinds Head at Bray


Kevin FORK LOve TALK 19

kevin love

Chocolate Wine Slush Head Chef Kevin Love

He is calm and immaculate in his whites; I imagine chefs in Heston’s empire like things to be quite concise. “I have been thinking about how to describe what we do, and I think I can best describe it as technical simplicity” he says as we settle down to discuss his food, which is now firmly in the spotlight; The Hinds Head has just gained a Michelin star, adding to the one already awarded to Dinner by Heston Blumenthal and the three The Fat Duck has held since 2004. He warms to his theme “The veal chop is a very simple dish when you look at it but the technicality of it is not simple at all. First of all we get the best veal we can get our hands on which goes to the butcher to be French trimmed. It is then brined with salt and herbs and spices for 3 hours before being vac packed with duck fat and put in a sous vide water bath at 60 degrees for 40 minutes before being finished on the plancha where the fat catches fire and melts 20

Photography: © Huw Jones


he chef is sporting a new moustache and earnestly reading Dickens in a deep leather chair by a roaring fire. The table behind him is being cleared with the remains of lunch; a hash of snails, veal chop with cabbage & onion and reform sauce, followed by chocolate wine slush. It could be a scene from centuries ago, but look closer and all is not what it seems. Inside the copy of Great Expectations is a hip flask containing a brandy, rum and citrus punch. The moustache is for Movember 2012 and the chef is Kevin Love, head chef of The Hinds Head, Heston’s newly Michelin-starred pub in Bray. The pub is a former a royal hunting lodge nestling in a picture perfect Berkshire village. The oak panelling and roaring fires alone could make an American tourist swoon. Add some royal connections (Prince Philip held his stag night here) and it’s enough to induce a fainting fit. It does, however, sit somewhat in the shadows of its more famous siblings. When Dinner by Heston launched, the publicity machine spouted stories about how they were recreating historic British dishes with the help of food historians at Hampton Court Palace. What is perhaps less known is that Kevin also has access to their research. “We had some food historianscoduct research for the whole group. They went through old recipe books and put everything together into a big document we call the ‘mega doc’. Whenever we have an idea or an ingredient come in and we want a new dish, we reference the megadoc”.

kevin love

“I’ve been thinking about how to describe what we do, and I think I can best describe it as technical simplicity”

into the meat”. He goes on to explain that the reform sauce is made from 21 ingredients and based on an Alexis Sawyer (Head Chef of the Reform Club) recipe from the 1830’s. “We made one as per their recipe but it came out kind of sludgy so we took the recipe and the ingredients as a shopping list and came up with our own version. It contains egg, capers, shallots, garlic, redcurrant jelly, blanched lemon zest, ox tongue cubes (cooked in a 48 hour process) fresh herbs, smoked salt, sherry vinegar and Worcestershire sauce. And that’s why our food is different to everywhere else, it looks very simple on the plate, but the whole process from conception to delivery on the plate is a three-day process”. Damn, I wish I’d known this before I ate the veal chop for lunch, I might have paid more attention. He goes on to explain how making the oxtail and kidney pudding is also a 2-day process. It is cooked sous vide and held in a water bath so it relaxes and comes to the table at the correct temperature. “It

looks like a simple steamed suet pudding on the plate, but every little detail is minutely thought of, and is perfect as can be and if it’s not I don’t serve it.” Dishes are taken to the test kitchens and put through their paces by Heston and the other chefs, a process he seems very happy with “Working here I have unique access to world-class facilities for developing dishes. The team here in Bray is like being in a family where we share an ethos and work together on the development of ideas and concepts. I’ve never known anywhere like it. I love the fact I can research a dish, have the guys in the development kitchen run it through its paces to make sure every dish is the best it can be.” What this also means dear punter is that all three restaurants in the group use many of the same suppliers and techniques. If you can’t make it to The Fat Duck to try the famous snail porridge, Kevin’s snail dish is equally memorable. Love found the 16th

Veal Chop with Cabbage and Onion Sauce Reform 21

kevin love

The word pudding historically refers to a food that is contained in animal gut to hold it when cooking, like black pudding or sausages.

century recipe for his Hash of Snails dish in the mega doc, but it was originally made in a pot over a fire lined in bread. “We always create shopping lists from the ingredients in the original, so for this dish we use sourdough baguette, pistachio paste, vanilla, pickled walnuts, deep fried capers, chives and microherbs. Every ingredient used in the original recipe we have used, but in a better way” he explains before adding hastily “in our opinion”. He talks with pride about how happy he is to be here. “The interest for me came years ago when Heston’s first series came out. As a chef I was watching this guy doing seriously weird things on TV and thinking who is he? I went from wow this is interesting, to, I really want to go to Bray and check out what’s going on, to I really want to work there. It took me a good three years of knocking on the door”. He started as a sous chef and 3 months later he was head chef; which is a lesson to us all that perseverance pays off. He grins, “two and a half years later, here I am, I am loving it and we’ve just won a Michelin star. Every time I come into the car park I’m blown away; if you’re into food, there is nowhere like it on the planet” He adds with just a small sense of wonder, “There are 7 stars in less than a mile radius in this tiny village”. Puddings are where some real fun takes place on the menu. The word pudding historically refers to a food that is contained in animal gut to hold it when cooking, like black pudding or sausages. In the 17th century, cooks realized that they could make puddings by containing food in cloth bags or bowls: hence more sweet puddings. They invented the ‘Quaking Pudding’ which gained its name due to the fact it quakes and shakes like a jelly. A staple in recipe books throughout the 17th century, it slowly began to disappear from recipe collections. Where it might well have stayed were it not for historical rummaging by Heston’s gaggle of chefs in Bray. Heston’s team has refined the original recipe, tested it and retested it until they are satisfied it is perfect. Throughout the year the pudding evolves with the seasons incorporating different flavours including apple rhubarb and banana which work well with the pudding. Chocolate wine slush is equally fascinating. Chocolate wine first appeared on the English culinary scene in the 1660s, soon


after the arrival of chocolate itself, which was known during the reign of Charles II as “the Indian nectar.” Made by blending a fortified wine like Port with sugar and chocolate, doctors of the day thought that this luxurious combination was a powerful aphrodisiac, “provoking lust, increasing seed and adding to the vigour of procreation”. Roll on a few hundred years and Love serves it cold in an espresso cup with a gold dusted piece of millionaire’s shortbread on the side. The effect is a bit like a cold red wine slush puppy; which is nicer than it perhaps sounds. Throughout the year, Love puts special dishes on the menu, many of which are inspired by the past. In January, it is his special wassilaing dish inspired by the ancient tradition of blessing the apple trees “I’ve been trying to get a dish out of that for years; I knew there was a dish in there somewhere” he laughs before describing his dish of apples, cider and buttered toast. Which turns out to be brioche caramelised in a pan to make pan perdu, soaked in apple brandy with a vac pac, toasted in the pan with caramelised apples cooked in a water bath for 9 hours, fresh apple matchsticks, bramley apple ice-cream and apple syrup poured at the table. I finish by asking him the million-dollar question, is The Hind’s Head a pub or a restaurant? He answers carefully “We are open in the afternoon and you can come in for a drink. We have a drinking area and a regular stable of drinkers who I think have never eaten in here, so we are most definitely a pub. Albeit one that does Michelin quality food” before adding with a smile “with technical simplicity, of course!”. With that, Love and his new moustache disappear off to the kitchen to get on with the everyday business of conjuring up the past.

The Hinds Head, High Street, Bray, Berkshire, SL6 2AB Tel: 01628 626151  

Exciting things are happening at


producer profile

AdAm And CAroline Fleming don’t look like the kind oF people to stArt A revolution, but they might be onto something with their vending mAChines Full oF pure guernsey milk


WordS: JoAnnA busk

airy farmers Adam and Caroline Fleming were already farming sheep and Red Devon cattle when they went on holiday to Italy and stumbled upon a milk vending machine. By the time they got home, they had hatched a plan to buy some cows. A few trips to Switzerland later, and their new milk vending machine sits in the car park of The Kingham Plough. 24 hours a day, locals come and fill up with fresh milk from their Guernsey herd down the road. Pop the money in and a hatch opens, all ready to pour out fresh creamy Guernsey milk. As a way to cut out the supermarkets and supply the market direct, it is a clever one, and a thoroughly modern spin on the idea of a milkman. At £2 a litre, it isn’t a cheap option, but good food rarely is, and take a sip and you will understand the difference. It’s funny how people don’t balk at paying far more for a pint of bad quality lager. Adam pours me a glass and it tastes just like milk used to taste, I am whirled in an instant back to my childhood. It is unsurprisingly, very popular with children. One of the selling points is the freshness. Adam explains, “When you


go to a supermarket, you see a sell by date and you don’t really know when the milk came out of the cow. With us, it comes out of the cow and it’s in the machine either that day or the next”. Rather sweetly, as your milk is dispensed, a receipt pops out that says when the cow was milked, and when the milk was pasteurised. The milk is pure Guernsey, which Adam says you won’t find in the supermarket, “It’s such a small breed population you see. Guernsey milk is really different to any other. It takes the beta carotene from the clover and that gives it a more golden colour, plus it has three times the Omega 3 than other milk too, so it is good for you”. The milk is not homogenised but it is pasteurised. “We would love to sell raw milk but we can’t because of the TB in the area. We sell something as close to raw milk as we can. We pasteurise it – most pasteurising is flash heated to destroy the pathogens but actually in the process destroy a lot of the goodies. So what we do is we pasteurise very gently at just a high enough temperature but it keeps the flavour as much as possible

producer profile

The bottle is part of the appeal, with its cute retro styling it’s hard not to like the idea of popping off with your bottle for a refill. You could of course use anything, Caroline says “we have the bottles for sale in the machine which people do really like, but equally you could use old milk cartons or water bottles”. The lack of waste and absence of plastic packaging, added to the low food miles, suggest it is an incredibly sustainable business. It is a difficult time for farmers and they have had a disastrous year. Adam laments “Milk sells for less than water and that’s a crime too because it is a fantastic food. Milk, eggs and bread are the keys for life and people take it for granted that there is always milk in the supermarket, but actually by driving the price down at some point the production is going to be affected and imagine what would happen when you don’t have milk in the supermarkets. You can tell I’m quite passionate about it. There’s a whole litany of things about this industry that I think is crazy

The latest machine has been put in Adam Henson’s Country Park where Caroline tells me they witnessed someone crawl out of their tent on the campsite and wander over to the machine with with a bowl of coco pops.

Adam and Caroline Fleming

and I think is going to reverse. I think milk prices will go up because people will realise how important it is. Farmers have to make a living”. Siting the machine in the car park of one of Gloucestershire’s top gastro pubs is a canny move. If the customers here won’t go for it, frankly, who would. Inside the pub, head chef Emily Watkins is waving their flag enthusiastically. “The reason we use it is because it tastes delicious and it’s creamy and it has a proper flavour to it. We can make a traditional milk desert, like a proper homemade blancmange because that’s what proper old fashioned desserts should be made with. The way they are making it keeps all those lovely flavours in there”. The trio of creamy ice creams she delivers to the table underline her point. A new machine has been put in Adam Henson’s Country Park where Caroline tells me they witnessed someone crawl out of their tent on the campsite and wander over to the machine with with a bowl of coco pops. “It’s taking control yourself and it’s the closest you can get to milking a cow without actually milking a cow which I think people like”. So who is Nell? It turns out it is their daughter, who has allowed them to use her name on condition she doesn’t have to have anything to do with it. I suspect if this takes off, she may change her mind. It is perhaps not a revolution, but an ingenious take on an old tradition, and I for one, hope that a milk vending machine on my city streets will not be far off. I would rather give my money to the Flemings than to a supermarket.   39


Fork Talk

Madeleine Culver-Goldstien talks to Ben Edmonds, creator of Blok Knives Why did you start making knives? I got rid of our television a couple of years ago and I got into making things then. I saw a YouTube video on how to make a knife and thought it looked fun so I got hold of some cheap metal and filed it by hand. It took around 40-50 hours as I didn’t have any equipment but I really enjoyed it. I started teaching myself and before I knew it I was making knives. What’s the most challenging thing about it? You can burn or cut yourself if you’re not careful, which can be really painful. I’ve had some pretty close shaves so I always wear a leather apron and a mask when I’m working. It can


also be emotionally painful if you take it too far - you can burn through and ruin the blade after 6 hours work so the key thing is patience and really wanting to do it. You won’t get into this trade unless you love it, and you won’t know if you really want to do it until you try it. So how long does it take to make a knife? It takes a whole day to make each knife. I’m very particular about perfecting the designs so I always start by making a test to see if it works. When I’ve nailed the design it then takes around 9-10 hours to make each one - it takes 6 hours just for the blade. The wood and metal starts off in blocks, which are then hand ground


into blades and handles. I don’t have a machine that makes them all the same so although I try to make them all similar they’re all slightly different because I make them by eye. What are they made from? The stainless steel comes from America, as I can’t get the same quality here at the moment. The metal for my new carbon steel range comes from Sheffield and the English Byre oak for the handles is sourced locally. The quality of the materials I use is very important and I strive to make knives that will last a lifetime. We’ve been making and using knives for centuries and it seems to be a dying trade so it’s nice to think of my knives being loved and used and passed down. What do you love about working with metal? I love the sparks and the smell. It’s brilliant to see chunks of metal and wood transformed into a knife - to see raw materials turned into something beautiful is really satisfying. As far as I’m aware there isn’t anyone else in the UK making knives by hand so it’s good to know that I’m keeping the trade alive. The first time I saw someone smile when they used one of my knives I immediately wanted to see it again. What do other people think about what you do? Initially my family thought I was crazy and couldn’t understand why I was doing it but now they think it’s great. I’m known as ‘the knife man’ in my hometown now, which is pretty cool. People come up to me and say ‘hey, you’re the knife man!’ I get a lot of questions about it. I suppose people are fascinated by it because it’s such an unheard of trade. Where does the name come from? I just thought of chopping block then took the ‘c’ away to make it a bit quirky. I wanted everything to be clean and simple. The inspiration came from knowing what I like in a knife. I tried out a

few before I started making my own and created my own design based on a combination of the one I liked best and a woodwork knife that my Dad bought from France when I was a kid. People ask me how they compare to the Japanese market and I tell them they are designed how I like them. They won’t suit everyone but every single person who’s tried them for the first time has been impressed with how sharp they are. Do you cook a lot? My wife is a cook and the last thing she wants to do when she gets in is make dinner so I cook quite a lot at home. I like chopping and get through a lot of fruit and vegetables when I test my knives. I’ve learned a few different cuts to see how each knife works best. I’m going to have a food blog soon that my wife will run - really I just want to get people chopping! What’s next then? Blok is me – the knives are hand made by me and at the moment it’s a lifestyle choice. It’s not about the money so as long as I can make a living that’s fine. I’m trying to get the trade going again and I want to share my skills so I might take on an apprentice or start teaching some knife skills classes in the future but at the moment I’m happy with the way it is. I’m not looking for a big company to buy into my designs or anything. It’s the hand finish that I like and I won’t compromise on quality.

 27



BomBay SurpriSe Fork Meets shaMil thakrar, the Man bringing the traditional persian caFes oF boMbay to london. WORDS: Joanna bUsk


nter the bathroom at Dishoom, and you’ll find a water tap in every cubicle, as is the Indian custom. Don’t be alarmed; authentic as they look, they are purely decorative. This detail alone suggests this is not your average curry joint, but then so does the in-house Indian bakery sending out bacon naan rolls, the Permit Room bar serving Bombay Coladas and Chilli Martinis and a newly kitted out restaurant that looks like a Indian café landed in Shoreditch by way of The Wolseley. Dishoom is the sound effect made by punches thrown in old Bollywood films (an Indian kapow! if you like) and it is also a

Shamil Thakrar 29


Paneer Tikka


couple of Indian restaurants in London, the second of which has recently opened in an old Securicor office building in the beating heart of Shoreditch. Owner Shamil Thakrar is sitting in a corner when I arrive and orders us chai and an Indian breakfast. A parade of plates arrives; the famed bacon naan (with chilli jam and cream cheese), Akuri (spicy scrambled eggs) and Bun Maska, a buttery toasted roll for dipping into chai. All this time we’ve been going out for a curry in the evening when actually, breakfast turns out to be an excellent time for an Indian. Shamil agrees, “Indian food is so underserved in this country. Britain has such a long relationship with India, going back to the 17th century. When you say to someone you are doing Indian, before you have even finished your sentence, you are one of four things; Bollywood, cricket, the Raj or curry and you can’t be anything else. That long relationship is so familiar and complacent, so I set out to challenge that.” The newest incarnation of Dishoom is modelled on the traditional Persian cafes of Bombay. Opened early last century by Iranian immigrants, they have all but disappeared as todays’ generation


Dishoom has a big menu that rolls from breakfast, through salaDs, rolls, to small plates, grills anD curries.

Masala Prawns

turn their backs on the family business to become doctors and lawyers instead. Where there were 400, only 20 survive; their faded glamour hinting at a history of colourful characters, while they resolutely fight the oncoming tide of KFC’s and Starbucks. Step in Shamil who explains, “In India there is a huge appetite for modernity. The cool new restaurants are all doing international cuisine. These beautiful cafes are rapidly being replaced by plastic chains. They are dying and it is tragic. We went with our architects and took 2,500 photographs, and went round every single café eating and documenting everything.” Thakrar is not from Bombay; but he is of Indian descent and has family in the city. A management consultant with an MBA who was hanging around in Bombay deciding what to do next, he decided that he wanted to challenge the stereotype of Indian food in England. “Bombay is different from the India people imagine. It’s very monochromatic with Gothic and Art Deco influences and extremely urban; it was all built by the British. The food is very different too. The idea of the curry house is a British tradition, there is no such recognizable stereotype in India.” Dishoom has a big menu that runs from breakfast, through salads, rolls, to small plates, grills and curries. It is effectively, a greatest hits of Bombay cuisine. He is particularly proud of the lamb raan; soft flaky meat from an overnight braised whole leg of lamb in chilli and ginger, garlic and lime stuffed in a bun. “In the morning we grill to finish it and then stick it in a bun. It is a dish descended from Alexander the Great, and was served at his daughters wedding feast. It is a very refined dish in India and only served at huge banquets, but we’ve taken it and put it in a bun. It’s great fun having the freedom to play around with dishes.” Shakril describes the cafes they have copied so enthusiastically. His favourite, Bademiya, is a street stall behind the Taj Hotel, opened by Mohammed Yaseen in 1940. It opens at 8pm and is full by 8.02 serving up fast food Bombay-style; one roti is made every 30 seconds. The streets are full of people eating seekh kebab and roti off bonnets, a place where the chattering classes of Bombay mix with rickshaw drivers. Down the road Mr Boman Kohinoor runs the Brittania café in an old British building and potters around like a wise turtle, serving everyone from a menu that hasn’t changed for years. Dishoom’s Head Chef Naved Nasir was the Executive chef of Bukhara, one of India’s great fine dining restaurants. Shakril admits “He thought Dishoom was a stupid thing to call a

restaurant but he loved the idea of taking classic Bombay street food and being proud of it, because no one does that in India, it’s kind of uncool.” What does he think the people of Bombay would make if this place I wonder? “Funnily enough we have been asked to open one in Bombay, and assured it would be very popular, but I’m kind of wary of that because the layers of irony just kill me. These places were originally a homage to European cafes. The Iranis left from persecution, and came to India in 1890’s. Their masters were European and they were an educated bunch so they were taking European cafes to Bombay, and now we’re taking them back”. At this point we become so lost in a post-modern fog that we turn instead back to England. It turns out Indian people really get Dishoom, so he thinks Birmingham or Bradford would work pretty well as locations for more Dishooms, although any future restaurants would have a different reference point. He laughs and says he likes the idea of doing Mad Men goes to Bombay. He seems genuinely thrilled that his restaurants are full of Indians. “We celebrate Diwali in the restaurant. As a culture we love stories of monkey gods, demons and goddesses. Our storyteller comes and tells stories for children and we have face painting and give out baby chais.” They celebrate Eid and Christmas too, “I loved it that at Eid, we had Muslims, Christians and Hindus all having their hands painted and eating Islamic food and celebrating together, that felt so right for me”. He sees it that he is continuing the democratic tradition of the Bombay cafes. “They used to be a place where you could go regardless of caste or creed and a hooker could go and have a cup of tea and sit next to a businessman and no one would mind. It was pretty unusual in 1950’s India.” He shows me around the building and the level of detail is astonishing. He whips out his i-pad and shows me pictures of the cafes they visited in Bombay and the details they have painstakingly replicated, even down to the peeling wallpaper and the whirring fans. The black and white photos on the wall really are of Shamil’s ancestors and the poem inscribed on the window is copied from a Bombay cafe. The lunch crowd is arriving and Shamil finishes by saying, “People love coming here for lunch and I’m really proud that we are challenging the tradition of the evening curry house. When I think of Dishoom, I think of beautiful ladies with a Bellini and small plates of Indian food. It works so well on a marble table in nice surroundings”. It does indeed, and it helps that there’s indoor plumbing too. Mr Kohinoor would be impressed.


 7 Boundary Street, London E2 7JE 31



Sniper Vector Pack


Deerstalking is an ancient traDition usually seen as a male preserve. katy DaviDson steps out into the Dawn to face a personal challenge. WORDS: Katy DaviDson


eer stalking is one of the subtlest and most considered forms of hunting there is. It requires unerring patience and an ability to remain calm and focused for long periods of time in sometimes harsh and demanding conditions. Knowledge, skill and precision are essential skills for the hunter; it is not an activity for the trigger-happy or the gung ho chancer. If killing can be a spiritual and meditative activity, then deerstalking is it. Now termed a ‘sport’, it is rooted in an archaic existence; Neolithic man was the original deerstalker, connected to nature in an immediate, vital relationship. Stalking deer was undertaken with great reverence; a combination of the effort and dedication required to bring down such a large and well-evolved flight animal alongside the importance of the successful kill for the sustenance of the hunter placed the deer in the realms of the mythical. The symbolism of fertility, rebirth and immortality associated with deer is reflected in the ritual of eating the heart whilst out


in the field. A heavy carcass far from home would be ‘gralloched’ (gutted) where it fell and bled hanging from a tree to prevent spoiling. The pluck, which includes the heart, liver and kidneys would be eaten on site. The heart was the prize piece of this meal, partly due to the need for replenishment after a long and arduous stalk but also laced with intonations of its fabled potency and symbolism. The tradition of this meal continues and is known as the ‘Deer Stalkers Breakfast’. As fundamental sections of the food culture landscape in Britain seem to be making a long slow arc back to these archaic roots, game meat is no longer the preserve of the gilded classes with their own country estates. More and more people are taking up guns to take on the responsibility for the death of animals they intend to eat. Recent government figures show that not only are the six species of deer living wild or feral in the UK more prevalent than they have ever been, but there are an estimated 680,000 active deer stalking gun days every year, based on the


k1 om 33


number of people shooting on each stalk. This ultimate act of facing our food is a welcome step away from the prevailing clinical and detached attitude towards meat which bolsters an unsustainable and unethical industry through an out of sight, out mind, selective ignorance. Even if you buy all your meat from an organic, local farm shop it might be worth asking yourself ‘Would I be prepared to kill this animal?’ This challenging reality may either leave you a confirmed vegetarian or give you a deeper respect for what has to happen to get meat on your plate. My personal challenge is that I will not eat anything that I am not prepared to kill. A decision which I believe gives me unequivocal justification for what I have on my plate. I have been slowly working my way up the food chain, starting with fish and then on to game birds.

A Personal Challenge The next step will be to shoot a deer which is not a decision I have taken lightly. Alongside studying for my deer management qualification: the training manual alone totals over three hundred pages of information covering areas such as legislation, ethics, ecology, biology and safety. On a cold and windy Monday morning in a Cornish valley I meet Ken Evans of Hendra Barns, at his keeper’s cottage. A builder by trade, Ken has spent the last twenty-five years gradually renovating empty barns and managing the land around him to create an authentic country retreat where guests take part in shooting and game cookery breaks. The deerstalking at Hendra Barns revolves around the management of a wild herd of indigenous Roe deer. Deer management is not an excuse for shooting deer; it involves vast amounts of investment, hours of work and a dedication to biodiversity. In 2004 the shooting fraternity spent £8 million alone on purchasing trees for planting. Culling sick, injured and old deer as well as managing population helps protect farmland, maintain robust herds and contribute a healthy, sustainable and ethical source of meat to a burgeoning market. I arrive in eerie darkness and see the inviting lights of activity in the keeper’s cottage, nestled sturdily amongst wind-


We head out quietly into the crepuscular light emerging as the harbinger of daWn. whipped trees. As we chat through the essentials of stalking over a steaming mug of coffee, surrounded by camouflage gear, guns and muddy wellies, Ken explains how he is keen to extricate himself permanently from working as a builder, “Game management is not so much a sport for me but a way of life. I love being out in nature and want to do it all the time”. We head out quietly into the crepuscular light emerging as the harbinger of dawn. Descending into a peaceful and misty valley, I’ve primed myself for the experience and tread as lightly as I can, keeping my breathing and heart rate as calm as possible. Our progress is slow, punctuated by Ken raising his binoculars to track the edges of fields and woodlands and wide swings in our route to keep the wind in our faces, our scent away from the deer. Ken turns to me and whispers, “Can you smell that fox?” I try very hard, taking heavy draughts

of air, but have to confess I can’t. I spot deer prints, or ‘slots’ as they’re known, in the mud and point them out to Ken. He observes that they are recent as they have not been obscured by pheasants tramping on them. We press on with the unavoidable squelch of mud sounding cacophonous to my finely tuned ears. As we reach the crest of a hill, a fleeting dash of white whistles by. It turns out to be the only sight of deer we get that morning and after a committed two hours of silent and steady work, we return to the cottage. I’m not disappointed; the act of stalking in the silence of beautiful landscape is reward enough for now and the deer have outsmarted us today. Some things do not, and should not come too easily. ➳ ➳ ➳ Twitter: @sweetvenery


Kabuto Noodles are a delicious combination of authentic Asian flavours and quality ingredients, prepared with the skill, dedication and discipline of a Samurai warrior. On sale in Waitrose, Ocado, Sainsbury’s and good quality Independents across the UK.


Travel 


The Book

Katie & Giancarlo Caldesi bring us tastes and tales from regional Italy in their new book.

  www.

Gourmet Events Food Camp Sweden

A farm in the far north. A lake. A forest. If you want to eat it, you have to make it first. Make cheese, smoke fish, find herbs, pickle fruit. June 14-19.

  www.

  Wish you were here?

Dinner overlooking the rooftops of Istanbul? Yes please. The terrace at Frankie overlooks the city. Chef Symeon Triantafyllou merges Turkish, Mediterranean and Aegean influences to create a menu featuring wine leaves soup; rice dolma and yoghurt mousse.  

Le Strade della Mozzarella 6-8 May Yes, there really is a whole festival dedicated to Mozzarella.

 www. Slow Fish

9-12 May The sixth Slow Fish returns to Genoa with a 4 day event raising awareness of the issues facing our marine environment. On the docks overlooking the sea, market stalls display fresh and preserved fish, oils, spices, salt, seaweed and other fishy things.

  www.

Noosa International Food and Wine Festival May 16 - 19 Australia’s glamorous gourmet beach retreat hosts a festival with beachfront seafood lunches of oysters and prawns, as well as tours of spice farms, vineyards and farmers markets.

  www. 37


Past Glorie 38

t es


Iceland’s annual food festIval raIds the larder of the past and reInforces the IcelandIc IdentIty wIth a rather strange and sometImes completely unpalatable array of food WORdS: laura dIxon phOtOgRaphy:

magine the scene: it’s late January in Iceland, the sun shines a pale wintry light for around half an hour at midday before dipping down behind the jagged volcanic mountains on the horizon, and you’re wrapped up in a scarf, hat, long johns and just about everything else you own, because on a good day temperatures reach around -2˚C. But instead of warming soup, a baked potato or a hearty stew, you’ll be sinking your teeth into seal flipper, ram’s testicles, fermented Greenland shark and boiled sheep’s head for tea. The obvious reaction seems to be: what, no polar bear? This is Þorrablót. Its true origins are lost in the mists of time, according to Árni Björnsson, Director of the Ethnography Department of the National Museum of Iceland, but its name links to the old month of Þorri, which in the pre-Christian Icelandic calendar was the fourth winter month, straddling January and February. It’s assumed that there was a midwinter feast around this time dedicated to the obscure being Þorri, asking him to make the hardest time of the winter better in a country of harsh landscape and hard farming. When Christianity was introduced in Iceland around the year 1000, all official pagan worship was outlawed, but the authorities didn’t interfere with individual farm traditions, so the celebration continued in semisecret in the country. As Iceland gained religious freedom and then its independence from Denmark, the educated upper class started to celebrate with Þorri food in Reykjavik and other towns and it became an expression of patriotism. Its popularity today is down to the work of one single restaurateur.

i 39


“A restaurant keeper in Reykjavik was despairing in the winter about his lack of trade,” explains Arni. “He once told me he was almost getting desperate. Then he got this brilliant idea to invite everyone to a Þorri-feast. This was in winter 1958, and it turned out to be such a success that from now on every second restaurant started to offer ‘Þorrifood’ and all sorts of societies, even religious ones, started to hold their Þorri-feast. And it still goes on.” Most Icelanders don’t realise that their tradition as they know it today harks back to a last-ditch marketing idea from the 1950s, preferring to think of it as a Viking-era food festival, but that doesn’t really matter, as it is in effect less of a food festival and more of a way of remembering the hardships their forbearers overcame. And viewing it as a trial seems a common theme. “I cannot say I’m a fan of pickled sheep balls or fermented shark,” said Bjarni Siguróli Jakobsson the current Icelandic chef of the year who works at Slippbarinn in Reykjavik. “Let’s face it – it’s not really food people enjoy eating everyday; it is more a once-a-year atmospheric thing Icelanders do to reminisce about how our ancestors lived back in the days. The food comes from the hard times in the past when we ate what we could to survive.” Chef Elísabet Jean Skúladóttir agrees. Her father set up Sægreifinn, a restaurant specialising in traditional lobster soup down by the old harbour in Reykjavik, and she runs it



“ I c a n n ot s ay I ’ m a fa n of pIckled sheep balls o r f e r m e n t e d s h a r k ,” saId bjarnI sIgurólI j a ko b s s o n , c u r r e n t IcelandIc chef of the y e a r w h o wo r k s at s l I p p b a r I n n I n r e y k j av I k

today. “I don’t like it either. It’s a festival that older people celebrate, and people just eat the food to be cool, not because they enjoy it. We serve boiled sheep’s head, soured sheep’s testicles and shark in the restaurant, but I don’t eat them. I personally prefer skata, which we eat on 23 December every year. It’s fermented stingray, caught and kept at room temperature for two weeks before being served basted with the oil from a sheep’s stomach. It sounds horrible, I admit, but it’s very good.” Today’s version of Þorrablót is celebrated in January and February in restaurants, shops, schools and homes across the nation, with the aforementioned delicacies plus sheep’s head cheese, liver sausage, sheep’s blood pudding, buttered winddried fish, smoked lamb, preserved sheep’s loins, rye bread, pancakes and brennivín, a devilish spirit made from fermented potato and flavoured with caraway seeds. Typically, families celebrate it together in the home or in restaurants, and the tradition is carried on for ex-pats overseas who hold grand

dinners in national dress to remember it. Eating seasonal food, nose to tail might have been a clever way to make food last, and it certainly works for Fergus Henderson, but nobody knows whether it was ever a menu here that anyone has actually looked forward to. Greenland shark, for example, is prepared in a particularly unique way. Untreated it is harmful to eat, so the ancient Icelanders solved the problem by storing it underground for up to three months, allowing it to rot gently, before bringing it up to hang until eaten. Anyone, like me, who has tried it will agree that while it may be a triumph for those struggling to store food over the winter in a barren and harsh climate, it’s far from it in taste terms, and I struggled to find an Icelandic chef, let alone an Icelander, who could say that they liked it. Antony Bourdain called it ‘the single worst, most disgusting and terrible tasting thing’ he has ever eaten, while Gordon Ramsay vomited after eating it. What’s really incredible about this festival is that any Icelanders put themselves through it:

it’s like an extreme pledge of allegiance to your country. It would be wrong of me to leave you with the impression that Icelandic food is all weird and gruesome and dug up out of the ground and eaten, half rotten. That’s not the case at all: this country has superb lamb and incredible langoustine, salmon and seafood. The puffin, grilled gently and served with a blueberry sauce, is gamey and not half bad. And the sophistication of the food is illustrated by Icelandic chef Agnar Sverrisson’s Michelin star at Texture in London. “Nobody used to think of Iceland as a foodie country,” said Jon Baldur, head of Isafold Travel, a company offering ‘A Taste of Iceland’ itineraries in the country, “but it has changed rapidly in the last 20 years and with menus influenced by the New Nordic cuisine coming from Denmark, our cuisine is making great strides forward. I love Þorrablót and find boiled sheep’s head with béchamel sauce really special, and think it’s really interesting to experience how we used to eat, just once a year.” 41


Beautiful Eggs Poach, scramble, fry, bake or steam: there are many ways to cook an egg. cult food destination rose bakery in Paris have given us some of their favorite egg reciPes. How to boil an egg is a collection of simple ways to cook eggs by Rose Carrarini, co-founder of the AngloFrench bakery and restaurant Rose Bakery. It includes essential recipes for the perfect boiled, poached, scrambled and fried eggs, as well as some of Rose Bakery’s best loved dishes, from breakfast classics such as eggs Benedict, pancakes and muffins, to afternoon treats including Welsh tea cakes, and custard tarts, along with soups, salads and sandwiches. How to Boil and Egg features specially commissioned paintings by award-winning botanical artist Fiona Strickland.

Basic Pastry Dough

Illustrations: Fiona Strickland

Our vegetable tarts remain very popular and are relatively easy to make. This pastry dough is perfect for quiches and vegetable tarts. I included the recipe in my first book and am happy to repeat it here.


➺ Ingredients

Sift the flour and salt into a bowl, add the butter and rub in with your fingertips until the mixture resembles fresh breadcrumbs.

Makes 3 x 28 cm (11 inch) tarts or 12 x 8 –10 cm (3¼–4 inch) individual tarts

Make a well in the middle and add the egg yolk and 125 ml (½ cup) water.

Mix vigorously with a fork until almost all the flour is incorporated, then add a little more water and bring the dough together with your fingers, using as little water as possible. The dough should just come together naturally without force, and be soft but firm and not sticky.

Shape into a ball, wrap in clingfilm (plastic wrap) and chill in the refrigerator for at least 30 minutes


- 500 g (4½ cups) plain (all-purpose) flour - 1 teaspoon salt - 250 g (generous 1 cup) unsalted butter - 1 egg yolk - 125 – 250 ml (½– 1 cup) water


Green tarts

This great restorative one-pot dish is good way to use up extra vegetables. Method

➺ Ingredients

Grease 12 x 8–10 cm (3¼–4 inch) individual tart pans with butter.

Makes 12 x 8–10 cm (3¼–4 inch) individual tarts

Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/Gas Mark 4. Then line the pastry cases (shells) with foil or greaseproof (wax paper) and fill with dried beans, baking beans (pie weights) or rice.

For the filling

Roll out the dough to about 5 mm ( inch) thick on a lightly floured surface and cut 12 rounds to fit the prepared tart pans. Ease them into the tart pans and trim off any excess dough. Let rest in the refrigerator for 30 minutes.

Bake blind for 30–35 minutes, until the base is light, golden and dry. Remove from the oven, take out the weights and lining and let cool.

To make the filling, beat together the mustard, cream, eggs, egg yolks, salt, nutmeg and pepper to taste in a bowl. Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/Gas Mark 4.

Divide the cheese among the pastry cases. Mix the broccoli florets and spinach together and divide the mixture among the pastry cases. Cover with the egg mixture and top each tart with a generous sprinkling of chives. (The green of the broccoli florets and spinach must stick out so the impression is of lots of greens.) Bake for 25 minutes, until set and golden.

Remove from the oven and serve immediately or let cool.

- butter, for greasing - 1 quantity Basic Pastry Dough - plain (all-purpose) flour, for dusting - 2 tablespoons Dijon mustard - 1.5 litres (6¼ cups) single (light) cream - 8 eggs - 2 egg yolks - ½ teaspoon salt - pinch of grated nutmeg - 250 g (2¼ cups) grated Cheddar cheese - 2 heads broccoli, blanched, drained and broken into small florets - 2 handfuls shredded spinach - 1 bunch fresh chives, chopped - ground black pepper 43


Savoury Custards

I love the savoury custards that are served in Japanese restaurants. They are called chawanmushi (literally ‘steamed in a tea bowl’) and are made in little bowls with lids. I’m sure we have another name for them in our Western cooking repertoire, but whatever they are called, they are so delicious and can be altered to suit your tastes and diet. Chawanmushi is often served as an appetizer instead of soup, but I could easily eat it on its own. You will need 4 pretty cups or heatproof bowls and a steamer or a large casserole (dutch oven) or pan with a lid. Method

➺ Ingredients

Lightly mix the eggs with a fork in a bowl, taking care not to make them frothy.

Serves 4

Add the stock, shoyu, sugar and sake, if using. Taste and season with salt if necessary. Strain the mixture into a jug (pitcher). Divide the mushrooms, chicken, prawns and mangetouts among 4 heatproof bowls or cups.

Pour water into the base of a steamer or large casserole to a depth of about 4 cm (1½ inches) and heat. Put the cups into the steamer and fill with the egg mixture. Cover the steamer with a dish towel and lid. If using a casserole, cover each cup with clingfilm (plastic wrap) and put the lid on. Steam over high heat for about 2 minutes, then reduce the heat to low and continue steaming for an additional 20 minutes, until a cocktail stick or toothpick inserted into the custard comes out clean. If there are still traces of the mixture, steam the custards for a little longer and test again. Serve immediately, garnished with chives or spring onions if you like.

- 4 eggs - 600 ml (2½ cups) dashi or other stock - 1 teaspoon shoyu - 1 teaspoon sugar - dash of sake (optional) - 4 fresh shitake mushrooms, trimmed and thinly sliced - about 150 g (5 ounces) skinless, boneless - chicken breast, cut into bite-size pieces - 8 cooked prawns (shrimp), shelled - 8 mangetouts (snow peas) or pieces of spinach - salt - chopped fresh chives or spring onions (scallions), to garnish (optional)

How to Boil an Egg ROsE CARRARINI PHAIdON £22.95



Dishcourse regular Columnist Martin Orbach tuCks into a different topiC in every issue of fork. elcome to a new series of me rambling into the wilder thickets of what’s going on in the food world. To kick this off I’m going for the big one – obesity. Anyone who hasn’t had their head buried inside an English Muffin for the last five years will know that this is the biggest foodrelated health crisis we have faced since… well probably rickets. It’s often referred to as a time-bomb. I think of it more like roadworks outside the house, droaning distantly in the background until every now and then someone gets the jack-hammer out. A recent episode was triggered by the announcement that all the major supermarkets have finally signed up to the Food Standards Agency’s new system of nutritional labelling on food; the socalled traffic-light labels. I don’t hold a torch for the food industry nor do I set great store by my fundamental right to consume as many doughnuts as I like. But I do think that the new system will diminish rather than increase our ability to make informed food choices. The goal-posts are being quietly shifted and for the first time food will carry health warnings. Once food is segmented into healthy and unhealthy, the targeting of bad foods will surely begin. There will be calls for advertising bans. Regulation of how and where such foods are sold and ultimately perhaps prohibition. This would be easier to stomach if there was agreement or even understanding of which foods are ‘bad.’ But this will be a highly contested area. We already know that virtually all cheeses will be


labelled red for fat. We also know that Diet Coke will be green. Full fat milk will be red. Skimmed milk –with most of its nutritional value taken out – will be green. Manufacturers will fight every step of the way. Products will be reformulated to achieve ‘green’ status. These after all are the people who for many years sang the praises of low-fat spreads until they had to be reformulated when transfats were banned. Nutrition like any other science is a work in progress. But there’s another reason why trafficlights will not stop the ticking-bomb. And it has everything to do with linguistics and nothing to do with food. As Ferdinand de Saussure the father of modern semiotics pointed out way back in the 1890’s, words don’t have meaning in themselves. Their meaning is established through a structured system made up of paroles [words in context]– for instance ‘open’ as in ‘door’ is quite different from ‘open’ as in ‘shop’ – and langue [a common framework] – as in it doesn’t matter which ‘open’ you are on about if your interlocutor only speaks Japanese. Traffic-lights were Saussure’s classic example of a simple semiotic system. We pretty much agree on the meaning of traffic-lights. Or at least the red and green. There is a bit of confusion about amber which means slow down to some people and floor-it to others. But what do the lights mean if they’re not in the right sequence and you detach them from a traffic-light? If you jump a red light there are consequences. You could run into another car or get arrested. But what are the consequences if you ignore the red light on a pizza? At best there is a sense of guilt. And what about the green light

on a diet coke? Is that an open-ended injunction to drink as much as we like? And if this isn’t chaos enough, there is a further problem. The food-labelling system puts not one but four traffic lights on the label. There are lights for sugar, salt, fats and saturated fats. Rewind quickly to the traffic-light situation. There are four traffic lights. And they are all showing different colours. It’s a semiotic dogs dinner. Having collected their corporate responsibility brownie points, the big players are already muddying the waters. On a Radio 4 Food Programme discussing the new system, a supermarket spokesman was spinning like a top. Given that people will have a choice between buying a fully traffic-light compliant pizza from a supermarket or, God forbid, stepping out into some High St take-away joint…well it’s only fair to the consumer that those unregulated food-to-go folk should be made to have traffic lights on their pizzas. And what’s more the clearly labelled supermarket pizzas offer people the chance to make a healthy choice by trading down from a Margarita [cheese/ red light/siren!!] to a green label chicken fajita pizza. Seriously folks. That’s roughly what he said. I can’t even imagine how many linguistic rules are being violated by a chicken fajita pizza. In the world where most of us live, a fajita is one thing and a pizza is another. And if you spot a chicken in either of them you can be damned sure it hasn’t had a good life. Martin Orbach is Founder and Director of Programming for the Abergavenny Food Festival. 45


Shelf Life our picK oF the neWest cooKbooKs

 Kitchen memories lucy boyd Harper Collins £20

As daughter of Rose Gray, founder of The River Café, Lucy had a bit of a head start when it comes to good food. After working as a cook, she trained as a gardener and went on to create the kitchen garden at Petersham Nurseries, providing all the vegetables and salads for Skye Gyngell’s legendary café. This book is full of Lucy’s family memories and her seasonal recipes include Summer Girolles, Veal Loin and Rocket, and Cicoria, Mozzarella, Tomatoes with Marinated Salted Anchovies. Ideal for: river Cafe fans reason to buy: simple Italian style food


What Katie ate: recipes and other bits and bobs

the Great british Farmhouse cooKbooK

What Katie Ate started out as an award-

of the good life, with a collection of over

winning food blog by renowned Sydney

100 recipes inspired by the traditions of the

based food photographer, designer,

British farmhouse kitchen. From soups and

writer and cook Katie Quinn Davies. Her

pates to stews, casseroles, roasts, and pies,

droolworthy recipes from the blog have been

and from tarts and crumbles to puddings,

collected together in this stunning book and

cakes, breads, jams and chutneys, seasonal

include Pulled Pork Sandwiches with Apple

produce from the kitchen garden and rural

Cider Slaw and Pumpkin Ravioli with Brown

surroundings is used to present a collection

Butter Sauce & Roasted Pecans.

of simple, country dishes.

Ideal for: food photography junkies reason to buy: food photography porn

Ideal for: rural wannabees reason to buy: rustic country cooking

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The family behind Yeo Valley serve up a slice


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the family behind Yeo Valley serve up a slice of the good life, with a collection of over 100 recipes inspired by the traditions of the british farmhouse kitchen. The Great British Farmhouse Cookbook Sarah Mayor

 A good egg

the trifle Bowl & other tAles

the green Kitchen

A dip into the wonderful Lindsey Bareham’s

blog ( has a cult

and at the same time use as much fruit and

kitchen, with more of her easy-to-follow

following and continually inspires people

vegetables from her garden Genevieve has

recipes, organized by her well-loved pots,

around the world to cook super-tasty,

created a year’s worth of egg recipes that

pans, gadgets and utensils. Roast Tomato

healthy vegetarian recipes using only natural

are shaped by the changing seasons. It’s

Risotto with Saffron and Honey in a sauté

ingredients. A combination of everyday

amazing what you can do with the humble

pan, Cod, Anchovy and Spinach Boulangère

pantry staples with fresh, in-season produce

egg. It’s a book bursting with tortillas and

made using a mandoline, Vietnamese

and stunning photography. From asparagus

tarts, pasta, pancakes and pies, to sauces

Chicken Patties with Mint Salad and Roast

frittata for breakfast, fennel and coconut tart

and ice-creams, curries and clafouti and a

Peanuts in a quaint burger press, and

for lunch, to a beet bourguignon for a supper

couple of cakes for every month of the year.

Raspberry Jelly Trifle in her grandmother’s

to share with friends. This is food that is

It’s a book you’ll use again and again.

trifle bowl.

good for the body and soul.

Ideal for: Chicken keepers

Ideal for: anyone really reason to buy: Perfect recipes

Ideal for: Vegetarians

genevieve tAylor eden project books £15

Inspired to find the most imaginative ways to make use of her hens’ steady supply,

reason to buy: an egg recipe every day

lyndsey BArehAm bantam £20

dAvid frenKiel & luise vindhAl canongate £25

David and Luise’s Green Kitchen Stories

reason to buy: Meat-free inspiration 47

Riverford farmer Geoffrey Maddever

organic meat reared to the highest standards organic, high welfare standards from family farms, not factory farms prepared by our skilled team of butchers

fr ee d eliver y

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Eating In > 50 Rococo's Salted Caramel Ice-cream > 52Our The favourite Bowler's Tuna & Ginger chefs shareBalls recipes from their > 54latest The Bowler's Salmon & Sesame Balls season booksWasabi to try out over the festive > 56 Tom and Henry Herbert's Custard Creams > 58 Tom and Henry Herbert's Battenburg cake > 60 Bread and Butter Pudding with Maple Glazed Bacon from Dorset Cereals > 62 Sweetcorn Fritters from the Dorset Cereals > 64 Yeo Valley's Deep Filled Nutmeg & Custard Tart > 66 Yeo Valley's Blue Cheese and Leek Tart > 68 Salsa Verde Pizza from What Katie Ate > 70 Barbecued Ginger Ale Pork Ribs from What Katie Ate 49

Photography: Romas Foord

Photography Š James Murphy




Cesar’s salted caramel ice cream

Cesar is my nephew. he loves cooking and has had an obsession with ice cream since he spent a summer making it in new ffiork with his other aunt, nadia, founder of lily lolly’s ice kitchen. Cesar is now developing a range of ice creams for rococo. Method

➺ Ingredients

Place a clean and grease-free wide heavy-based deep saucepan over a medium heat. once hot, put 80g of the sugar in the pan. heat the sugar, shaking the pan regularly and stir the mixture with a wooden spoon once the sugar has melted. add another 80g of sugar to the pan and let it melt into the first batch of melted sugar, then finally add another 80g. once all the sugar is in the pan and caramelising, the temperature will rise quite quickly and the colour will darken to a golden caramel colour. be careful not to over caramelise the sugar, or you will end up with a bitter flavour.

Makes 1.5 litres

Remove the caramel from the heat and add the double cream. be extremely careful because the mixture will splutter and spit. bring the caramel mixture slowly back to the boil, stirring constantly to dissolve the hardened caramel, then add the milk. whisk the caramel mixture until nearly boiling, then remove from the heat.

- 275g caster sugar - 600ml double cream - 600ml semi-skimmed milk - 7 medium egg yolks - ¾ tsp maldon sea salt flakes - flaked chocolate, to garnish Special equipment - probe thermometer

In a separate bowl beat the egg yolks with the remaining 35g of sugar until a pale, smooth and mousse-like sabayon. gradually pour the hot caramel mixture on to the sabayon, whisk well, and pour into a pan and heat until 85°c. it must reach this temperature to heat treat the egg yolks. then pass through a sieve into a clean bowl and leave it to cool on ice, then chill in the fridge overnight. stir the salt into the chilled mixture until it has dissolved and transfer it to an ice-cream machine. churn according to the manufacturer’s instructions. transfer the ice cream to the freezer for at least 2 hours, to allow the mix to harden before serving.

Rococo: Mastering the Art of Chocolate Chantal Coady and lauREnt CouChaux oRIon PublIShIng gRouP ltd £14.99 51


Tuna & Ginger Balls

These balls are best eaten on the day of cooking. The meaty tuna can stand up to the flavours of ginger and spring onions. Try to get line-caught skipjack tuna if possible and don’t overcook them ... in fact, if your oven packs in, just eat them raw. Method Preheat the oven to 220ºC (425ºF), Gas Mark 7 and line a large baking tray with non-stick baking parchment. Cut the tuna into 2cm cubes and place it in the freezer for 20 minutes.

Once chilled, pulse in a food processor. Be careful not to over-process, as you want to retain some pieces of fish for texture.

Beat the egg in a large mixing bowl. Add the tuna, spring onions, garlic, ginger, coriander, chilli, Dijon mustard, soy sauce, lime zest and juice, breadcrumbs, salt and pepper, then mix with your hands until well combined. Heat a small frying pan over a high heat. Break off a small amount of the mixture, flatten between your fingers and fry until cooked. Taste to check the seasoning and add more if necessary. Cover the mixture and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes.

Form the mixture into 14–16 balls each about 5cm in diameter (wetting your hands will make the balls easier to shape). Place the balls on the prepared baking tray. Bake for 10–12 minutes, turning the tray halfway through – the balls should begin to brown on the top. I don’t like to overcook tuna, as it’s OK to eat it a little pink in the middle, so take a look at the balls after 8 minutes and decide how well done you want them to be. They are also good panfried in olive oil until browned all over.

These balls are great served in mini brioche slider buns, with rocket leaves and garlic mayo (see Real Mayonnaise on page 115), or with a rice noodle salad with Pickled Carrot & Daikon

The Bowler's Meatball Cookbook JEZ FELWICK MITCHELL BEAZLEY £16.99


➺ Ingredients - 500g fresh tuna steak - 1 large free-range egg - 3 spring onions, finely sliced - 2 garlic cloves, crushed - 1 x 4cm piece of fresh ginger, peeled and finely chopped - 2 tablespoons finely chopped coriander - 1 red chilli, seeds removed, finely chopped - 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard - 1 tablespoon soy sauce - zest and juice of 1 lime - 100g breadcrumbs - 1 teaspoon salt - ½ teaspoon freshly ground - black pepper

Photography Š Christian Barnett


Photography Š Christian Barnett




Wasabi Salmon & Sesame Seed Balls

Wasabi is a Japanese root, from the same family as horseradish. When I first saw it I was surprised to find that it isn’t green, as the dye in many shop-bought varieties may lead you to believe. I love the hit you get from having slightly too much wasabi; when it connects with the roof of your mouth – eye watering, brain tingling, nasal passage-cleansingly great. I have increased my tolerance over time, taking the pain along the way. I love it with salmon, so I had to use it in this recipe. Be careful not to overcook the salmon otherwise it will dry out. Method

➺ Ingredients

Preheat the oven to 220ºC (425ºF), Gas Mark 7 and line a large baking tray with non-stick baking parchment.

- 500g skinless salmon fillet - 1 medium free-range egg - 3 spring onions, thinly sliced - 1 tablespoon chopped pickled ginger - 1 teaspoon wasabi powder - 2 tablespoons chopped coriander - 1 tablespoon freshly-squeezed lemon juice - 1 tablespoon soy sauce or tamari - 100g breadcrumbs - 1 teaspoon salt - freshly ground black pepper - 3 tablespoons black sesame seeds, toasted - 3 tablespoons white sesame seeds,toasted

Cut the salmon into 2cm cubes and place in the freezer for 20 minutes.

Once chilled, pulse in a food processor. Don’t over-process, as you want to retain some pieces of fish for texture.

Beat the egg in a large mixing bowl. Add the spring onions, pickled ginger, wasabi powder, coriander, lemon juice, soy sauce, breadcrumbs, salt and a sprinkling of pepper.

Heat a small frying pan over a high heat. Break off a small amount of the mixture, flatten between your fingers and fry until cooked. Taste to check the seasoning and add more lemon, ginger or wasabi powder if necessary. Mix the two types of sesame seeds together and spread out on a plate.

Form the salmon mixture into 12–16 balls each about 5cm in diameter, packing each one firmly. Roll the balls in the sesame seed mix and place them on the prepared baking tray. Bake for 10 minutes, turning the tray halfway through – the balls should begin to brown on the top. Keep an eye on them to make sure that they don’t get burnt underneath. Serve with Citrus Ponzu dipping sauce

The Bowler's Meatball Cookbook JEZ FELWICK MITCHELL BEAZLEY £16.99 55


Custard Creams Method

Heat the oven to 180 oC/Gas 4. Line a baking tray with baking paper

Cream the butter and sugar together until light and fluffy. Sift the flour, custard powder and baking powder together, then add to the butter and sugar to create a crumbly mixture. Beat the egg and milk together, pour into the mixture and bring the ingredients together into a ball. Knead the dough briefly, wrap in cling film and let it firm up in the fridge for 20 minutes.

On a flour dusted surface, roll the paste out into a long strip about 5mm think and a good 16x40cm. Cut into 2 long strips for 8x40cm, then cut each strip into 8 fingers of about 5 cm wide. You should end up with 16 fingers of more or less 5x8 cm. Place on the lined baking tray. Bake for 15 minutes until golden, then transfer to a rack and leave to cool. For the filling, sift the icing sugar and custard powder together, then beat in the butter, then add the boiling water and beat until smooth. Sandwich the cooled biscuits together.

âžş Ingredients -100g salted butter at room temperature -3 tbsp caster sugar -175g plain flour -3 tbsp custard powder -1 tsp baking powder -1 egg -1 tbsp milk to bind

For the filling: -75g icing sugar -75g custard powder -50g butter, at room temperature -1 tbps boiling water

The Fabulous Baker Brothers: Glorious British Grub Tom HERbERT AND HENRy HERbERT HEADlINE ÂŁ20


Photography Š Chris Terry


Photography Š Chris Terry




Battenburg Method

Heat the oven to 150 oC/gas 2. Grease and line a 6x8 inch Battenburg tin (available online)

Beat together the butter, sugar, eggs, ground rice, flour and baking powder until smooth. It’s quite a dense mixture, which will make a firm cake that will hold together well. Lightness and fluffiness isn’t the aim with this sponge.

Divide about half the cake mixture between 2 sections of the Battenburg tin. I use a piping bag for neatness, but a spoon will also do. Add some red colour to the remaining cake mixture – you want it a deep pink colour – along with the rosewater, and pipe or spoon into the other 2 sections. Bake for about 25 minutes or until springy to the touch. Turn out onto a wire rack and cool.

Put the apricot jam and water into a pan and bring to the boil. Using a pastry brush, brush the cake strips liberally with the hot jam, then stick them together so you have a pink and white sponge at the bottom then visa versa at the top.

Sprinkle a sheet of greaseproof paper with icing sugar and roll out the almond paste into an oblong shape long enough and wide enough to accommodate the sponge. Brush the almond paste with jam, roughly where the sponge will go so that all sides will be covered. Put the sponge on top of the brushed jam and, using the greaseproof paper, roll the sponge up with the almond paste. The paper helps to get a nice neat finish. Trim the edges and your beautiful Battenburg is made.

➺ Ingredients -100g salted butter at room temperature -100g caster sugar -2 free-range eggs -50g ground rice or semolina -100g self-raising flour -½ tsp baking powder -Ruby red colour paste -a few drops of rosewater

To finish -5 tbsp apricot jam -1tbsp water -225g almond paste/marzipan -icing sugar for dusting

The Fabulous Baker Brothers: Glorious British Grub Tom HERbERT AND HENRy HERbERT HEADlINE £20 59


Savoury bread & butter pudding – with maple-glazed bacon

Breakfast for the masses made easy. A little light onion cooking, some assembling and then pop it all in the oven. What could be simpler? Leave out the bacon if you’re serving vegetarians. Method

Melt the butter in a frying pan over a medium-high heat. Add the onion and cook until softened but not browned, stirring occasionally. Remove from the heat and stir in the parsley and chives.

In a large bowl, whisk the eggs with the milk and season with salt and pepper.

Butter a 3-litre / 105fl oz / 3 quart baking dish. Place half of the bread cubes in the dish and sprinkle with half of the onion and Cheddar, then repeat the layers. Gently pour over the milk mixture and leave it to rest for 30–60 minutes.

Preheat the oven to 190°C / 375°F / Gas Mark 5. Bake the pudding in the middle of the oven for 45 minutes until puffed and golden.

Lay the bacon on a wire rack over a baking tray and drizzle with the maple syrup. Pop the baking tray into the oven 20 minutes before the pudding will finish baking.

➺ Ingredients Serves 4–6

- 30g / 1oz / 2 tbsp unsalted butter - 1 onion, finely chopped - 2 tbsp finely chopped fresh parsely - 1 tbsp snipped fresh chives - 6 large free-range eggs - 750ml / 26½fl oz / 3¼ cups whole milk - 200g / 7oz day-old good bread or brioche, cut into 2cm / ¾¾in cubes - 125g / 4½½oz Cheddar cheese, grated - 12 rashers of dry-cured streaky bacon - 2 tbsp good maple syrup - sea salt and ground black pepper

Serve the pudding alongside the bacon – enjoy.

The Breakfast Book DOREST CEREALS PAvILIOn £16.99


Photography Š James Bowden


Photography Š James Bowden




Sweetcorn fritters – with tomato salsa

These colourful fritters are very moreish and perfect for a big family brunch. Method Preheat the oven to 120°C / 250°F / Gas Mark ½.

Place half the corn with the eggs, flour and baking powder in a blender. Season with salt and pepper, then whizz until smooth. Fold in the remaining corn and the spring onions. Heat a frying pan over a medium-high heat and lightly grease with butter. For each fritter drop 1–2 tablespoons of batter into the pan and cook for about a minute on each side until golden. Drain on kitchen paper and keep warm in the oven while you cook the rest.

To make the tomato salsa Mix all the ingredients together gently, then season with salt and pepper to taste. Serve with the sweetcorn fritters and all garnished with extra parsley.

➺ Ingredients Serves 6

- 500g / 1lb 2½oz / 3½ cups cooked corn kernels, from cobs or frozen - 2 large free-range eggs - 125g / 4½½oz / 1 cup plain flour - 1 tsp baking powder - 2 spring onions, finely sliced - unsalted butter, for greasing - sea salt and ground white pepper

For the tomato salsa - 3 large plum tomatoes, cubed - 1–2 red chillies, deseeded and finely sliced - 2 spring onions, finely sliced - 1 small handful of fresh flat-leaf parsley, finely chopped - 1 tsp freshly squeezed lemon juice - 1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil - sea salt and ground black pepper

The Breakfast Book DOREST CEREALS PAvILIOn £16.99 63


Deep-filled Nutmeg and Custard Tart

When we were children, each week a van would come round the village selling cakes and egg tarts. Mum wasn’t too keen, so it was always a challenge to see who could run up and grab one without being spotted. Method

➺ Ingredients

For the pastry, sift the flour, salt, grated nutmeg and icing sugar into a food processor. Add the butter and whiz briefly until the mixture looks like fine breadcrumbs. Beat the egg yolk briefly with 4 teaspoons cold water, add to the machine and whiz until the whole thing comes together into a ball. Turn out onto a lightly floured surface and knead briefly until smooth. Wrap in clingfilm and chill for 15 minutes, then remove from the fridge and thinly roll out. Use to line a 24cm loose-bottomed tart tin, 5cm deep. Leave to rest in the fridge for 20 minutes.

Serves 8-10

Preheat the oven to 200°C/Gas 6. Line the pastry case with foil and a layer of baking beans and bake on a shelf in the centre of the oven for 15 minutes. Remove the foil and beans and bake for another 5-7 minutes or until the base is crisp and golden brown. Remove and set to one side. Reduce the oven temperature to 150°C/Gas 2.

For the filling, put the cream, milk, vanilla pod and sugar into a pan and leave over a medium heat until just starting to bubble. Set aside and leave to infuse for 10 minutes. Meanwhile, put the eggs and egg yolks into a bowl and beat together gently. Pour the hot milk over the beaten eggs, discarding the vanilla pod. Add 1 teaspoon of the grated nutmeg and mix together well. Strain the mixture through a sieve into a jug. Slide out the central oven tray, pop the tart case onto it and pour in the filling. Sprinkle over the rest of the nutmeg. Carefully slide it back into the oven and bake for 45 minutes or until the tart is just set and still quite wobbly in the centre. Remove from the oven and leave to cool. Serve warm or cold, cut into wedges.

The Great British Farmhouse Cookbook SaRah mayoR quadRIllE £20


➺ For the pastry -225g plain flour, plus extra for dusting - pinch salt -1/2 tsp fresh grated nutmeg -65g icing sugar -125g chilled butter, cut into small pieces -1 large free-range egg yolk

For the filling -600ml double cream -300ml whole milk -1 large vanilla pod, slit open lengthways -100g caster sugar -3 large free-range eggs, plus 3 large yolks -11/4 tsp freshly grated nutmeg

Photography Š Andrew Montgomery


Photography Š Andrew Montgomery




Blue Cheese and Leek Tart in Cheesy Oatmeal Pastry

The thing that really sets this tart apart is the pastry, which has a spot of cheddar in it, as well as some oatmeal for a pleasingly nutty bite. As for the filling, any good British blue will do, but we quite like Dorset Blue Vinny. Method

➺ Ingredients

For the pastry, pop the flour into a food processor with the oatmeal, salt, butter and lard and whiz briefly until the mixture looks like fine breadcrumbs. Add the grated cheese and whiz again, then stir in 2 tablespoons of ice-cold water and process very briefly until the mixture comes together in a ball.

Serves 6-8

Line the chilled pastry case with greaseproof paper and a thin layer of baking beans and bake for 15-20 minutes, until the edges of the pastry are biscuit coloured. Remove the paper and beans and return the tin to the oven for 7-8 minutes until the pastry base is golden brown. Remove and set to one side. Reduce the oven temperature to 190°C/Gas 5.

For the filling: - 65g butter - 400g trimmed leeks, halved lengthways, cleanedand thinly sliced - 300ml whipping or double cream - 3 large free-range eggs - 150g de-rinded blue cheese, finely crumbled - 1 tbsp chopped fresh thyme leaves - salt and freshly ground black pepper

Thinly roll out the pastry and use to line a 25cm loose-bottomed flan tin. Prick the base all over with a fork and chill for 20 minutes. Preheat the oven to 200°C/Gas 6.

For the filling, melt the butter in a large saucepan, add the sliced leeks and season lightly. Cover and cook gently for a couple of minutes until just softened, then uncover and cook for a further 3-5 minutes until the leeks are tender and any excess liquid has evaporated. Leave to cool slightly.

For the cheesy oatmeal pastry: - 175g plain flour - 65g medium oatmeal - pinch salt - 50g chilled butter, cut into small pieces - 50g chilled lard, cut into small pieces - 75g cheddar, finely grated

Mix the cream and eggs together in a bowl with some salt and pepper to taste. Stir in the leeks, blue cheese and thyme, then pour the mixture into the tart case. Cook in the oven for about 30 minutes until just set and lightly browned on top. Leave to cool slightly before turning out and serving.

The Great British Farmhouse Cookbook SaRah mayoR quadRIllE £20 67


Salsa verde, semi-dried tomato and labne pizza

When I was a kid, my dad and I would often go the local pizzeria for dinner. We used to stand at the door waiting for a table, and I would watch in awe as the cook flung rounds of thin, elastic dough high up into the air. I would say to Dad over and over, ‘When I grow up, I’m going to be a pizza maker!’ Even now I can still smell the vivid aromas of this place, where, after demolishing a pizza I’d also scoff down a HUGE knickerbocker glory ice cream (served in a glass that seemed taller than me at the time). My love for pizza has never waned – as long as it’s got a thin base, I could live on it. This recipe and the one on the following page are two of my favourites. You can double or triple the quantities for the pizza dough and, once it has risen, divide into equal-sized portions and freeze the excess for another time. Method

➺ Ingredients

To make the pizza base, sift the flour into a large mixing bowl. Make a well in the centre and add the remaining ingredients, along with 125ml water. Whisk them together gently with a spoon or a fork, gradually incorporating the flour. Using clean hands, bring the mixture together to form a dough, then transfer to a well-floured work surface. Knead firmly for 5 minutes, stretching the dough as you go. Place the dough back in the bowl, cover with a clean, damp tea towel and leave in a warm place to rise for 1 hour or until doubled in size.

Makes 2 x 28cm pizzas

Turn the dough onto a floured surface and cut in half, then roll each piece into a round about 28cm in diameter (this dough is super-elastic and generally very easy to work with, so it makes an incredibly thin pizza base). Transfer the bases to oiled trays or pizza stones. Preheat the oven to 200°C (fan), 220°C, gas mark 7. To make the salsa verde, place all the ingredients in a food processor and whizz to a thick, creamy paste, then spread a tablespoon or two over each pizza base. Tear the labne into small pieces and dot over the bases, followed by the semi-dried tomatoes and chilli flakes. Cook in the oven for 15-20 minutes until the pizza base is cooked through and crispy.

While the pizza is cooking, stir the 125ml extra virgin olive oil into the remaining salsa verde to make it more pourable. Remove the pizzas from the oven, scatter with the mint and basil leaves and season with black pepper. Drizzle over the remaining salsa verde and serve immediately.

- 3 tablespoons labne - 3 tablespoons drained semi-dried tomatoes - Pinch dried chilli flakes - 125ml extra virgin olive oil - Mint and basil leaves, to garnish - Freshly ground black pepper

Pizza base - 250g ‘00’ flour - Small pinch caster sugar - Small pinch salt - 30ml olive oil - 1 ¼ teaspoons easy-blend dried yeast Salsa verde - 2 garlic cloves, chopped - 3 tablespoons salted capers, rinsed - 3 tablespoons baby gherkins (cornichons) - 1 long green chilli, deseeded, thinly sliced - Large handful each flat-leaf parsley leaves, basil leaves and mint leaves - 2 white anchovies (optional), drained - 40g pine nuts - 2 tablespoons red wine vinegar - 1 tablespoon Dijon mustard - 125ml olive oil

What Katie Ate: Recipes and Other Bits and Bobs KatIE quInn davIES HaRPER ColllInS £25


Photography Š Katie Quinn Davies



Sticky and sweet and chewy and crumbly and saucy and spicy. Enough said really, other than be prepared to make quadruple the quantity… Method

Bring a large saucepan of water to the boil. Add the ribs, reduce the heat and simmer for 30 minutes, skimming off any fat from time to time. Preheat the oven to 140°C (fan), 160°C, gas mark 2 ½.

Using a sturdy pair of tongs, remove the ribs from the pan and place in a large roasting tin. Season with salt and pepper.

In a bowl, mix together the balsamic vinegar, sugar, soy sauce, Worcestershire sauce, barbecue sauce, chilli and ginger ale. Pour the mixture over the ribs, then cook them in the oven for 2 hours, basting them as frequently as you can. (I baste the ribs every 15 minutes, as the more you do so, the better they will taste. After about 1 ½ hours the sauce will start to thicken, so it will take a little extra time to base the meat – but you will be rewarded with gorgeous, glossy, sticky ribs.) Serve the ribs sprinkled with a little extra chilli, a scattering of sea salt and sesame seeds (if using). 70

➺ Ingredients Serves 4-6

- 1 Kg free-range pork baby back ribs - Sea salt and freshly ground black pepper - 2 tablespoons balsamic vinegar - 2 tablespoons brown sugar - 2 tablespoons soy sauce - 2 tablespoons Worcestershire sauce - 2 tablespoons barbecue sauce - 1 long red chilli, deseeded, thinly sliced, plus extra to serve - 750ml good-quality ginger ale - Sesame seeds, to serve (optional) What Katie Ate: Recipes and Other Bits and Bobs KatIE quInn davIES HaRPER ColllInS £25

Photography © Katie Quinn Davies

Barbecued ginger ale pork ribs

A DAY in The life

On Board Head cHef Mike suggett Has been serving up Meals on pullMan dining cars since 1974.

‘m up early because I do the school run before work. I have three kids and the youngest is still at school so I’ll have some Weetabix and a banana before taking him to school. I then drive the 10 minute journey to Plymouth Railway Station. I’ve been cooking on the trains since April 1975, that’s 38 years! I started when was 16, it was my first job and I went straight from school. My brother was a chef with British Rail and he got me on to learn the ropes, spud bashing and carrot peeling. I was travelsick on my first day, I remember it so well, I was peeling potatoes in the old rolling stock. That lasted a day or so but I pretty much got used to the motion after that. I’m Head Chef on the Plymouth to London trains now, but back in the day I’d travel all over the country, to Edinburgh, Aberdeen and Leeds. When the private companies took over the railways, all the old Pullman cars disappeared which was very sad.


Eating the view Now First Great Western is the only company with restaurant cars, which is such a shame, the train is such great place for a good lunch – where else do you get the glorious English countryside racing past the windows of a restaurant? I get in an hour before the train arrives and go to our store under the platform where all the food is kept. I load up a little fridge on wheels which contains all the food and trollies with all crockery, pots, pans, food fridges - everything we need to prepare the meals on board. We start lunch in Exeter so there’s a rush when we get on to make sure the kitchen is clean and start prepping madly as I only have an hour. My kitchen is very small; I have a 4-ring hob two ovens, a grill and a plate oven. There is a window but it’s frosted so I don’t get a view. I’ve got used to the motion now, the biggest problem for me is late running trains not giving us enough time to get the food ready. The driver can hit a bend too fast which is tricky and last week the grill died, so we had to improvise with cold starters. I also have to phone through orders for the next day and the reception is patchy which is a bit frustrating. We’re cooking some fantastic food now Mitch Tonks has come on board and redesigned our menus. We’re getting some great


Mike Suggett

ingredients too; I love the Brixham scallops. It’s a job getting them all cooked though, they are cooked in their shells under the grill and I don’t have much space. Mitch invited us to his restaurant, The Seahorse on a Saturday morning. He looked after us really well, took us through the menus and asked us if they would work on board. I love cooking steaks. I cook fillet steaks of Somerset beef and I can’t remember the last time a steak was sent back. The crab starter is good too, it’s very simple with just a squeeze of lemon. That’s the secret to cooking on trains really. Top class ingredients and keep it simple with lots of fresh vegetables. The atmosphere in the dining car is lovely. There are great wines matched with the food. It’s a normal first class carriage but with tablecloths and there are table lights that give off soft lighting. It’s separate to the standard class and people don’t walk up and down so it’s very relaxing.

Well kept secret We get into Paddington at 3.25pm and then I have two hours in the mess room waiting to go again and I’ll finally have some lunch. As soon as we get on board dinner is served so we have to crack on really quickly. I’ll go out and talk to the customers if service has gone well. We’ve had great feedback about the menus which is nice. Being a chef, you want everything to be perfect. I love the job satisfaction; people come to the door and say thank-you. I think the regulars aren’t very happy though, the dining car has been a well-kept secret but people are cottoning on and pinching their seats! We’ll get back into Plymouth at 9.25 and I’m home in ten minutes. I’ll have a sandwich when I get home or my wife leaves me something something light. It’s a long day so I sleep pretty well, it’s full pelt form the time you get on, you’re running all the time and you’d never get through it if you didn’t. I’ve been doing it for so long I’m here for the duration now, I can’t imagine doing anything else. I love the feeling that I’ve made people happy. When you get off that train feeling you have achieved something and made people’s journeys a bit more bearable. That’s good isn’t it? The new Mitch Tonks menus are at: firstgreatwestern.

Single Estate Spirits

Fork Magazine Issue 27