In Praise of Spring: how nature makes you happy

What is it about Spring, eh? I mean, think about it. The other seasons just gradually dawn on you, don't they? Not spring. One day it's Winter and the next day, bang, you’re being slapped about the face with a bunch of daffodils...

Rhubarb and Seville orange ceviche

Cooking with the seasons is rarely a chore. There’s always something new just coming in to season to inspire you. Nature is always waving her arms and mouthing, “This! Over here. It’ll go brilliantly with that.” Except for now. Now, Nature is taking a nap…

Unnecessary cooking: a perfect waste of time

The other weekend, home alone and holed up inside from a howling storm, I found myself with nothing to do. This is so rare that when I realised the day stretched before me, I wasn’t sure how I felt about it. What would I do? Cook, obviously...

Making Your Veg Pop & Other Food Styling Tips

I always say that if someone you’re cooking for says, “Wow!” when you put the food on the table there’s almost no chance they won’t enjoy eating it. That’s not say that cooks should worry about crockery and to hell with the salt...

Celery Hearts & Sandwiches: What My Dad’s Taught Me About Food

I think the moment he really knew was when I accidently dropped a mussel into my Orangina, fished it out and scoffed it anyway. We were on holiday in France. I was, maybe, eight...

Plate Politics

The politics of my plate of kale are greater than I first thought. Food isn't just fuel, it is surprisingly politically-charged. As a talk with Nigella & Anna del Conte revealed to me...

Unexpectedly Tasty Kale Smoothie

I think it's ok to say it out loud now, don't you? I've kept my trap uncharacteristically shut about this in the past. But let's get it out in the open: kale smoothies are NOT nice...

We’re up for an award, but we need your vote!

An apologetic digression from the usual to ask for your help. We need your vote! It'll take 2 ticks and would make our Christmas...

Vote for G&G in the Cotswolds Awards

We've been nominated for an award - Best Blogger in the Cotswolds. I know. It's very exciting. The prospect of wearing taffeta and drinking champagne if we win is all too much for us. But the winner is the one with the most votes, so we need your help! Please vote today! Here's how

Glut of Green Shoots

No time to cook this week. Which is fortunate really, because there's only pea shoots and baby radishes to cook with. This week is all about the kitchen garden. The Just So Spring [...]

Nettles, Kale and Rhubarb Gluts for The Cotswold Table Market

A dank and dree dawn greeted us for the Cotswold Table market in Chipping Norton this weekend. Nonetheless, gloves were donned, hot tea was procured and off we went with a whole host [...]

Wordless Wednesday: Spring Sprouts

Glut of Cookbooks: Day Five – The Ethicurean Almond and Pear Cake

Day Five of the Cookbook glut challenge is without doubt the most sublime yet. The Ethicurean cookbook is a joy to behold and this Almond, Pear, Chocolate and Cardamom cake is typical of [...]

Glut of Cookbooks: Day One

  In January, it’s aways troublesome to find seasonal recipes that don’t involve braising, stews, mash and stomach-cementing stodge. So this Bells of St Clement’s ceviche from Tom P-B’s Let’s Eat is a welcome bit of seasonal zing in a notoriously unzingy month using, as it does, pomegranate and Seville oranges. […]

A Glut for the Hungry Gap: Cookbooks

Ten. Count them. Ten. There are ten new cooking-related books on my bookshelf this month. That's one for every other day of 2014 so far. This cannot continue.There's nothing growing in the allotment [...]

A Glut of Plans and Seed Catalogues: The 2014 Patch Plan

It's all about planning this week. Too cold. Too dark. Too soggy for digging the veg beds. Too early to plant seeds. there's only one thing for it: light a fire. Make a [...]

A Hedgerow Christmas Cake

I've never made a Christmas cake before. That I've eaten homemade Christmas cake every year for thirty-odd years and never made my own is testament both to the extraordinary baking skills of my [...]

Wordless Wednesday (or… an off-topic but lovely Autumnal dog walk)

Courgettes: Recipes to Tame the Rampant Glut

Courgettes. They're like children, aren't they? (I'm guessing here, I don't have any...children that is) One day they're beautiful tiny darlings, all rosy cheeked with their bright little flowers shining up at you; the next day they're hulking great terrors taking over your veg patch, devoid of any redeeming features (taste) and demanding to be fed. Such is the temprament of my courgette patch at the moment. They grow so fast you can almost sit and watch it happen. It really has become a race to see if we can eat them before they turn in to marrows. And I will not be beaten. So hotly contested is this race, that I have for you this week a whopping four recipes that use a minimum of two courgettes each. That's eight courgettes gone. No pussy footing around with tempura courgette flowers here. I'm all about quantity this week...

Beetroot Recipes for Breakfast, Lunch and Dinner

“What, will these hands ne’er be clean?” Thus quoth Lady M, stained with the blood of King Duncan. And thus quoth I after dealing with this week’s glut – beetroot. Purple, orange, white, stripy, round, flat, long, short – beetroot comes in all shapes and sizes and isn’t all meant for the pickling jar. I’ve grown the classic Detroit variety this year, but I can also recommend the very beautiful Chioggia which has pink and white rings inside it and is jolly pretty atop a salad. Some golden beetroot has come my way too this week, which does make the glut look even more stunning, but only adds to the volume of beetroot to dispatch. Beetroot stores rather well in a cool dry potting shed. The Urban Veg Patch blog has more details on how best to do this. However, if, like me, you have something of a habit when it comes to beetroot, you may like to enjoy it at every meal as I have done today: Beetroot, Apple and Ginger Juice It’s not like me to have a juice for breakfast. To me, a liquid breakfast screams “Listen sunshine, I’m so important I’m too busy to chew so I have my people juice my breakfast for me. Time is money, kid”. And I don’t approve. However, for my Eat Beets Day I’ll make an exception: […]

A Tart from a Trussed up Cherry Tree

here is more bamboo than branch in our cherry. More trussing than tree. No, it isn't very sightly. But it's the only way of keeping the birds off your cherry glut. It was the invention of my live-in handyman (AKA best beloved) and it, coupled with a studious watering and feeding regime has produced a truck load of cherries. This glut is simply too miraculous to use it as mere ingredient in a recipe. I can't bring myself to cook with them. Instead, we sit in the garden beneath the shade of the cherry tree and trough our way through most of the harvest. But even I can't eat a whole tree's worth of cherries in one sitting. I persuade myself to save some and to put them to good use: Cherry and Almond Tart.

Wordless Wednesday: or Red Berry Harvest Jackpot

What Every Cook Should Grow Themselves

“Oh you simply have to grow it”. The cliched phrase from every kitchen gardener. Perhaps even a “oh heavens, the stuff you buy in the supermarket doesn’t even compare to the home grown version” from the more sanctimonious. And yes, most home grown produce tastes far better than shop bought. But how much of that is the taste of smugness at having created such beauty rather than a genuine improvement on shop bought? What really is worth a cook growing themselves? I attempted, very subjectively and unscientifically I’ll admit, to answer this question when I gave a talk at the first Witney Food and Drink Festival last weekend and I thought I’d share it. So here’s my Top 10. Pay attention. Quiz and debate (heated I imagine) at the end: Hardy. Strong. Good doers over winter. Gorgeous as cheesy leeks on toast. […]

“A Compendium of Rhubarb” by Food Bloggers Everywhere

The interweb wires of Britain are alive with the joys of rhubarb this week as food blogs the land over experiment with cyberspace's collective rhubarb glut. After by rhubarb-induced giddiness last week, I'm [...]