meringue, aqua faba, gbbo, BBC Wiltshire, Desserts

The Food Experience

Food. We all need to eat, but how do we get the best out of our food? Experience is the key. I hope I can explain this here:

gluten free, cake, sweet canapes, chocolate, home made
Its in the eating

OK guys, I’m a sixty-three year old person with a wealth of experience in cookery, food & nutrition. There are plenty of others out there like me. Scanning the social media sites, feeds are awash with advertisements for cakes, canapes & cauldrons of healthy foods, but, everyone with the eye for a quick buck can Google a recipe, watch the instructions on YouTube & all of a sudden they are a cook/caterer/dietician/food writer. Come on, wake up. Real chefs/cooks are time served, they know how to create recipes from a few ingredients, they can pop round & look in your fridge & have the knowledge to create a tasty meal from a few ingredients, they do not rely on packet mixes – expensive – or recipes from in-store mags,which are suggesting you buy their ingredients. Experienced foodies have the know how to substitute ingredients & produce quick, healthy meals. The key word in this missive is EXPERIENCE.

Cooking, cookery, food, recipes, baking
Experience Counts

My interest in cooking started when I watched my Mother cooking. Mum was a great home cook, producing good, tasty, substantial meals, from scratch for her family. I always thought that if I changed this & added that, I could create interesting variations on a theme. I built on this experience & went on to be a family cook at a rectory The Kitchen Experience in the Cotswolds. Prue Leith wrote several articles & published recipes of mine in the Guardian.  I opened a Dinner Party delivery service & “Private Dinning Room” in Broad Campden, Gloucestershire, which attracted many celebrities of the day. The idea being that guests told me their likes & dislikes, I then created the recipes & menu around these likes.  People brought their own wines & a jolly time was had by all.

Country Houses, Shoots, Polo matches, Dinner Parties, Fine Dining
Cowdray House, Cowdray Park, Midhurst, West Sussex

I spent many a happy year at Cowdray Park in Midhurst as private family cook before moving on to Harrods, designing food for the food hall & as Mr Al-Fayed’s family cook.

You may well ask. Why am I not rich & famous? The reason being, I spent my money & time on bringing up my son & travelling to broaden my knowledge & love of all countries cuisines.

Currently, being a person of a “certain age” – read “On the scrap heap” – I converted a Stable, below my rented accommodation, at a National Trust Property into a Catering Kitchen Truffleicious at Great Chalfield I registered with the local Council, earned my 5* food hygiene status & pay rent to serve totally homemade, healthy food to the visiting card holding, trust members of the public. Now, don’t get me wrong. Through constant Social Media marketing – my own – & the generous help of local guides The Pig Guide & local radio BBC Wiltshire GBBO Challenge I have built up a loyal following, who visit to sample my homemade delicacies. Unfortunately, neither the donor family of the property or The National Trust seem to be aware of the service I provide on their property. The verbal abuse I experience is quite extraordinary, just because I do not serve chips, or shop bought white sliced bread. Loyalty to tenants? Unheard of.

Vegetarian, homemade food, raw food, gluten free, bread
“How can I help”

This brings me to a conundrum. I keep getting asked for my recipes. Netflix, recently filmed here. I provided lunch for them, one of the producers from “LA” is desperate to have the recipe of my Gluten free Lemon Mousse Cake?. Another company who is using a photo of my Wiltshire Cider Cake, in their 2019 Calender wants the recipe. It has taken me 40 yrs to be able to perfect these recipes, I am also about to write a book containing these recipes with 40% profits going to the charity MIND . Why do they think they are just available. Gratis.

 

Times & shopping habits have changed, however, experience still prevails. Why would you want to buy or serve a tasteless, nutritionally dubious, ready meal when you could learn in a couple of hours, the tricks of the trade? Cookery Tuition

By the way. Should anyone out there need a Food/recipe consultant to help them create original recipes, for their food outlets, just remember. ” I haven’t been crushed “. Yet.

If you have been. Thanks for reading.

 

Food, Healthy Eating. Mediterranean diet, Vegetarian food, Salads, Low fodmap diet

Poor Man’s Caviar

Well, here I am again. Another month has whizzed by & August is upon us. At TRUFFLEicious, the hot weather has me thinking about salads, this month my thoughts turned to Caviar. Not the expensive Sturgeons roe, type of Caviar – although, that would be nice – but Poor Man’s Caviar.

Food, Tappa's, Home made Caviar, Aubergines, Olives
A great addition to some Tappa’s on a Summer Evening

Aubergines -Also known as Egg Plant & Poor man’s meat, because you can cut them into thick meaty slices- are cheap at this time of the year, especially if you frequent your local market. I mozy on over to Chippenham on a Saturday morning & fill my bags to the brim, with lovely fresh fruit & vegetables. I’m the sort of shopper who buys what’s cheap & seasonal & decide what to make with it, when I get home. Yes, you’ve guessed it. three large shiny, purple, black Aubergines were to become my Poor Man’s Caviar.

You can adapt the recipe below, to suit your personal taste, by adding different, herbs & spices, more or less garlic, seeds, small additions of other veg, – beetroot is nice as it gives it a beautiful pink colour & an earthy undertone.

Mediterranean Vegetables, Salads, Aubergines, Olive oil, Healthy Food
Roasted Aubergine. The vital ingredient.

POOR MAN’S CAVIAR.  Serves 6. GF/ DF/ V/ Vegan/ Low Fodmap

Oven Temp 180c 350f Gas Mk 4

Ingredients:

3. Large Aubergines

2. Lemon’s (juiced)

1. Fresh Chilli. Deseeded & chopped

3. Cloves Garlic, crushed

150 ml Olive Oil

Seasoning

Herbs of choice. I used Marjoram & Lemon Balm.

METHOD

Pre-heat the oven, place the Aubergines on a large baking tray & roast for about 40mins, until tender. Remove from the oven, allow to cool & remove the skin.

Place the Aubergine pulp in a sieve & squeeze until the bitter juices are removed.

Place the pulp in a food processor, along with the garlic, chilli, & herbs. Pulse, until a smooth puree forms.

While the motor is still running, gradually dribble in the lemon juice & olive oil.

Adjust the seasonings to your liking. If you like it thicker add less oil.

I particularly like this spread on bread, in place of butter, in a sandwich. Or served with home made potato crackers to go with a large G&T.


DITCH THOSE BAGGED SUPERMARKET SALADS.

salads, grated salads, mixed salads, shredded salads, vegetables
Healthy mixed salad at a fraction of the price.

While you are at the Veggie Stall, purchase some, carrots, beetroot, celery, etc & make your own salads. All you need is the grating disc on the food processor or a hand grater, for individual amounts. Not only will you save yourself, oodles of cash, veg start to loose their nutrients when they are chopped, so you can save on the vitamin pills as well.

If you find you haven’t the time to make on a daily basis, line a glass bowl with kitchen roll add the shredded salad & cover with more kitchen roll, kept in the salad drawer at the bottom of the fridge, it will last for several day.

Just think. You won’t have that smelly, slimy plastic bag in the fridge to throw away!!!!

Until next time.

 

 

A Souper way to “Love your leftovers”

A #soup you can’t afford to miss. With our British #weather being so unpredictable at the moment, you can serve this soup either #hot, or #iced. Add a shot of Vodka for a #grown up party. #Simples !

PAWS FOR THOUGHT & EATING

Everyone is now into “grow your own” but what do you do with that glut of tomatoes and the mint that is threatening to over take your herb garden.  What about that of a box of veg on the market stall that you can’t resist because it’s a bargain? The answer foodies, is make it into a delicious homemade soup, which can be served hot or on ice.

Soup is not just for winter, cold soups are very refreshing in the summer. Just imaging picnicing by a babbling brook with a glass of wine and a chilled thermos of Minted Tomato & Yoghurt soup served with home-made Parmesan crackers – made with that bit of leftover cheese – you where going to throw away.

MINTED TOMATO & YOGHURT SOUP.

Serves 4-6.  Gluten free, Vegetarian.

INGREDIENTS:  3. Tbspns Olive or Rapeseed Oil. 1.5 Kg Fresh Tomatoes, Skinned & Deseeded, 2…

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food, chocolates, truffles, home made, cakes

Stuff they like

If you don’t already know about it, then shame on you. The Pig Guide was launched in 2009 and has grown organically to become one of the most respected food guides in Bath.

Any self respecting foodie needs to sign up to find out about the best eateries & watering holes in Bath & surrounding areas. Whether you live in the area or plan to visit, this guide is a must have.

Oh!  and by the way. Another mention this month. The lovely Piggies at The Pig guide have given us a some lovely comments:

 

Food Guide, The Pig, Restaurants, Food, Drink
The must have for all foodies in Bath & surrounding areas

Click the link to find out more:  THE PIG GUIDE

chocolates, truffles, cookery lessons, cooking demo's
Truffleicious. Great Chalfield HQ.

 

chicken, diet, Mediterranean, recipe, offers

Mediterranean Chicken

This weeks offer at Morrison’s, Boneless & skinless chicken thigh fillets. These fillets make a quick a tasty dish, which is gluten free & dairy free, with a nod towards the healthy eating Mediterranean diet.

When cooking with raw poultry always, use a separate board & knife for cutting & wash thoroughly, in very hot water after use. If saving to reheat on another day, cool quickly. cover & place in the fridge until ready to heat. Make sure the dish is heated right through.

Always store raw meats at the bottom of the fridge, & cooked items above.

chicken, recipe, special offer, cooking, cookery
Skinless & boneless chicken thigh fillets this weeks offer at Morrisons

Serves 4.  Gluten free, Dairy free.  Oven Temp 200c Gas 6 400F Allergens in bold

INGREDIENTS:

1kg Pack of Chicken Thighs

1 Bulb of Garlic Cloves separated, peeled & crushed

2. Large red onions

1 Large red Chilli. Seeds removed if you like less heat

400 g Celeriac Peeled & Diced

2 Tbspns Dry Vermouth

4. Anchovy Fillets, rinsed of salt

2, Red Peppers. Deseeded & sliced

60ml Olive Oil

200g Black Olives.

2, Lemons

2 tspns Paprika.

Seasoning

Fresh Thyme, & Oregano.

METHOD:

Into the bowl of a food processor place the 30 ml of the Olive oil, garlic, vermouth, paprika, anchovy fillets & grated rind & juice of 1 lemon. Pulse until you have a smooth sauce.

Toss the chicken & the sauce together in a bowl, until well coated. adding black pepper to season.

Put the chilli, red pepper, lemon cut in slices and red onion into a pre-heat roasting dish, & place the chicken & sauce mix on top. Roast, uncovered for 40-45 mins, checking that the chicken is cooked through. Allow to cool slightly.

Remove the chicken to a plate & keep warm. Put the remaining contents of the tray into a food processor, with the herbs & some of the remaining oil & blend until you have a smooth consistency. Add the drained olives & season to taste.

Pour over the chicken & serve with pasta, rice or jacket potatoes & salad.

Happy eating Foodies.