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Tuesday is pancake time. In all their shapes and forms, they are a real favourite in our household. It isn't just our children who get excited - I adore pancakes and love an excuse to make a real feast of them. There's something so pleasingly simple, so supremely comforting about a perfectly browned pancake, unchallenging and uncomplicated, but always delicious.
 
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An intense citrus flavour with a zing redolent of raspberries, the blood orange is high up on the list of my favourite fruits. They're usually a treat that appears in our shops at Christmas, and they usually stay on the shelves until about the end of March.
 
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The end of January is almost here and I've been surprised to see how well I've stuck to a few of my New Year's resolutions. One of which is to include lots of healthy pulses and grains and even more vegetables into my diet. I've found it's actually an easy resolution to keep, as I've been making recipes that are so delicious, it's no effort at all to adhere to.
 
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I think that people sometimes have an unfounded fear of pastry. They're afraid it is lurking in wait for you and will pounce on any sign of weakness, cracking or shrinking in the oven. I don't think anyone should fear pastry-making. However, I can understand people's hesitations. Puff pastry does take a little effort and shortcrust pastry mustn't be over-worked, while neither should be allowed to get even to room temperature.
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