Midsummer cooking

Pan bagnat and cloudberry jam tarts 🙂




Gin and Tonic Sorbet

Love gin and tonic….love sorbet…cannot wait to try this!!

ice cream magazine

Gin and Tonic Sorbet


½ cup sugar

½ Water

1 large or 2 medium lemon or limes, zest and juice

2 ½ cups tonic water

3 fl.oz. shot gin. Vodka also works!

In a saucepan, make simple syrup by gently heating ½ cup water and sugar until sugar is dissolved. Remove from the heat and add the lemon or  lime zest and juice.

Combine the  gin and syrup then refrigerate. Also keep the tonic water icy cold in the refigerator add this to the gin syrup in the ice cream machine as you start to process.

Follow your machine’s directions to freeze the sorbet 30-45 mins. Transfer and store in an appropriate container and freeze to allow it to continue to firm.


Remove from the freezer 10 minutes before serving,

Serve in pretty little glasses garnished with more lemon or lime twists and/or rim the glass with lime sugar…

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Fabulous Home-made Gnocchi

A couple of months back I got my Goth to make me some gnocchi and it was so delicious I’ve been thinking of getting him to try it again. Almost definitely using this recipe, which looks amazing!

Jono & Jules do food & wine

Gnocchi with peas

Gnocchi – where have you been all our lives? So much easier than we anticipated!

Wine suggestion: We tried a delicious Langhe Nebbiolo by Luigi Pira from Piedmont in Italy which had a great balance between light weight, depth of flavour, dancing acidity and a characterful earthiness. Gnocchi is refined and elegant but also earthy and rustic and the food-wine combo matched really well.

Gnocchi – serves 4

  • 2 large floury potatoes
  • 50g ricotta cheese
  • 90g plain flour
  • 1 egg, beaten
  • 1 thyme sprig, leaves only
  • sea salt and freshly ground white pepper
  • Grated Parmesan – to serve

For the Sauce: 

  • olive oil
  • black pepper
  • 150g frozen peas, defrosted
  • butter
  • 1 thyme sprig, leaves only
  • zest of 1 lemon

Preheat the oven to 200°C/Gas 6.

Bake the potatoes for 1-1¼ hours until tender. While the potatoes are still warm, remove the flesh from the skin and mash until…

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Breakfast eggs Benedicte ?

Cooking with Mr Fitz

Does this count as eggs Benedicte ?

English duchy muffins .. (Bought on a red ticket) Split, toasted and buttered..

Buckinghamshire ham (bought on a red ticket).. Heated through on the iron pan..

Burford brown eggs (no red ticket!) .. Poached in those really neat poachie pouches.. I think they are great! Like coffee filters ( remember them!?)

Just pop the egg into them and straight into the simmering water..

Easy peasey..

Assembled and plops of hollandaise sauce , store bought and very good plopped atop.. garden chives to complete.. With Bristol blend pepper and Mediterranean flower salt..

Is that an eggs Benedicte ?

Does it count ?

Mrs Fitz liked it anyways..

Good morning! 20140617-070410-25450310.jpg



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Cardamom and mandarin sponge

I love to create cakes for special occasions. This particular confection heralded the arrival of two little kittens named Gustav and Zero – friends were invited over to see them and share a slice of summery cake with a burst of fruit.

For the sponge

175g sugar

175g butter

3 eggs

1tbsp rosewater

175 g self-raising flour

1 tsp baking powder

The contents of 10-12 cardamom pods, ground with a pestle and mortar

1 tbsp milk

Preheat your oven to 180C. Beat the butter and sugar until light and fluffy and then gradually add the eggs and rosewater. Once combined, fold in the flour, baking powder and cardamom. Pour the mixture into two greased and lined sandwich tins and bake for 20-15 minutes or until the sponge is lightly browned and springs back when you press it with your finger.

For the filling and topping

2 tins mandarin segments in juice

1 cinnamon stick

5 cardamom pods

50g sugar

150ml whipping cream

Empty the juice from the mandarin segments into a saucepan and add the sugar and spices. Bring to the boil and then simmer until thick and syrupy. Remove from the heat, combine with the mandarin segments AND LEAVE TO COOL. Whip the cream until stiff. Arrange half of the mandarin segments on the bottom layer of your cake and drizzle with syrup. Top with whipped cream and the second layer of cake. Arrange the remaining segements on top of the cake and drizzle with a bit more syrup.



And here are the kittens!


Halloumi-stuffed mushroom bento

It’s summer! This colourful salad is quick and easy to prepare – the little panda pot holds the salad dressing.

Halloumi-stuffed mushrooms (serves 2)

4 x large flat mushrooms

60g halloumi, diced

1 sprig parsley

1 clove garlic, crushed

Juice of half a lemon

25g breadcrumbs

salt and pepper

2 tsp olive oil

Heat your oven to 180C. Brush the mushrooms lightly with the oil and place on a baking tray. Combine the breadcrumbs, parsley, halloumi, garlic, lemon juice and seasonings in a bowl until well-combined. Use the mixture to stuff the mushrooms and bake for 8-10 minutes or until the halloumi is caramelised. Serve however you like – in this photo I have added a salad of cucumber and cherry tomatoes tossed with garlic, gem lettuce leaves and a lemon juice and parsley dressing. You could also use it for a bento with rice and stir fried veg.


Thug Kitchen’s Peach Pancakes


I’ve been enjoying Thug Kitchen a lot lately and decided to try out their peach pancakes over the weekend – shown here topped with banana,  strawberries and agave.

I have to say, my first reaction was disappointment: I made the batter the night before and the pancakes came out wet and stodgy despite extensive cooking.  So, imagine my surprise when I decided to use up the leftover batter midweek…the result was fluffy and delicious and exactly what I’d been expecting with my first try.

The difference?  I think in the meantime the heavy wholemeal flour had time to break down a bit…so next time round I’m going to experiment with different flours/flour mixes.

Fortunately my Goth is a huge fan of breakfast pancakes.