• Glorious gazpacho

    Summer is most definitely here and the last two days have been positively scorching. After the relief of the rain last week it's a shame that the ground is drying out again and everything in the garden is beginning to look a bit parched. But every cloud (or lack of) has a silver lining and today's blistering sun made me yearn for a deliciously chilling Gazpacho.

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  • Easter Entertaining

    At Easter, when you’re likely to have a house full of family for at least some if not all of the long weekend, there is inevitably going to be a lot going on in the kitchen. Having made it through lean lent, it is an opportunity for indulgence; a chance to enjoy those treats which we might have denied ourselves for the preceding 40 days, and many other delicacies besides. The festival atmosphere is enhanced by the arrival of Spring, the longer days and budding gardens, and in our house the mood of celebration is inevitably articulated in the kitchen where the table groans under the resulting fare.

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  • Trout Tales

    I would never claim to have any great skill as a fly fisher-woman, or in fact a huge amount of experience, but the few days I have spent on the bank of river or loch have been very precious indeed. My father introduced me to fly fishing when I was a child and he took me out a few times in a little wooden boat on a local lake. Then, as now, I was allowed to borrow from him a small split cane rod of which I have become incredibly fond. I have been told that it does nothing to help my (very poor) casting technique and that I should try a modern, more flexible rod but its unique character and links with the past enhance my days on the riverbank to such a degree that I am happy to sacrifice hope of more success.

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  • Macnab revisited

    This time of year, and grouse in particular, always remind me of my father who achieved his Macnab in August 1988 and would annually regale us with his account of that very glorious day. On the Brora and the Blackwater in North East Sutherland he caught 2 salmon, the first before breakfast. Later that day he shot 2 ½ brace of grouse over pointers and setters and finally at 9.30pm in fading light, after a 3 hour stalk in midge infested heather, shot his stag. It was a major sporting triumph and my father is, justifiably, very proud of his achievement.

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  • Dorchester Festival, including recipes

    I know everywhere looks better in the sun but I can safely bet that Dorchester on Thames is pretty gorgeous whatever the weather. I had never been there before today but am already thinking up excuses to go back and spend some time wandering round what must be one of the prettiest but also vibrant small towns in the country.

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Welcome to my blog

I'll be blogging regularly to keep everyone up to date with how things are going with the cookery demos and including lots of tempting recipes. Let me know what you think!

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