Smoked garlic and thyme bread sauce

I was excited to see freshly smoked garlic in the super market and with roast chicken for dinner there was only one thing for it!

I decided to make a smokey but sweet bread sauce using simple ingredients with a big impact of flavour.

We all generally have leftover bread, milk and maybe some woody herbs from the garden so making this sauce was a no brainer.

It’s fantastic with roast chicken but also this time of year, GAME!

Ingredients:

4 sliced of day old or stale white bread, crusts removed
300ml milk , I used semi skimmed
3 clove smoked garlic
2 sprigs of thyme
1 Clove
1/2 an onion, skin removed
Salt, pepper

Method:

1. Roast the garlic cloves in the oven at 200C for about ten minutes or until tender.

2. Meanwhile, put the milk, thyme, onion and clove in a pan and warm gently to infuse . Be careful not to scald the milk. I added the outer garlic paper also to give an extra smokey flavour.

3 , Once the milk has infused, strain it into a clean pan. Add the bread and stir to break up. Remove the roasted garlic cloves from the oven and squeeze into the bread sauce. Taste and season. A knob of butter can be added to enrich the sauce . Enjoy !

Top tips:

Place the thyme over the onion and stud with the clove to keep everything in one place.

Use any smoked garlic skins/paper to Infuse into the milk.

Sweet smoked paprika can be added for a richer flavour but works incredibly well with game.

A splash of double cream, creme fraiche or knob of butter can be stirred in at the end to give a luxurious finish

When roasted the garlic, pierce them first with a sharp knife. This will stop them from exploding and help them to roast quicker .

You can use any woody herbs such as rosemary, sage, oregano

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My take on the classic Slivovitz!

I’ve just finished bottling up my Slivovitz, it’s gonna hit the spot, that’s for sure : )

joechefbartlett

I was fortunate enough to be given a glut of foraged mirabelle plums from a fellow chef David Beazley, a local wild food expert !

It is quite traditional to make an eau de vie from the plums as they are known for their sweetness .

Having recently drank Slivovitz in Slovakia whilst visiting the capital I thought it would be great to create my own version.

I have used vodka in the recipe and married up the aniseed like flavour of star anise with the plums.

Recipe:
1kg plums
280g white sugar
1 star anise
2 strips of lemon peel, pith removed
600ml vodka approx, at least 40% proof

Method:

1. Pierce all of the plums with a sharp knife to the stone. Place in a clean jar.

2. Add the sugar, star anise and lemon peel. Pour the vodka over until the plums are covered.

3. Seal the…

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Ashburton Food & Drink Festival

A great little write up on the Ashburton Food Festival, Devon

Running Buffet

A year ago, the Ashburton Food and Drink Festival kick-started my Devon A-Z challenge, giving me over 50 different local food and drink producers almost literally on my doorstop. A year on and the festival was back in town again. A lot has changed in a year: my awareness of the Devon food and drink industry has grown significantly and there were many producers at this year’s festival that I had met before (and sampled from before).

On a more personal level, since the previous festival we have bought a house and, on the weekend of the 2014 festival, we were in the middle of trying to prepare it for moving in. Mrs Running Buffet allowed me an hour off though, so I hotfooted it down to the town centre to see what was on offer.

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Easy oaty granola bars

This recipe is more wholesome than healthy but a great way to use up any odds and ends of dried fruit and nuts.

I used some dried apple, sultana’s, dried cherries and flaked almonds

Recipe
Ingredients:

115g butter
4 tbsp clear honey or golden syrup
25g castor sugar
Pinch of sea salt
250g porridge oats
75g dried fruit of your choice
70g nuts, I used flaked almonds

1. Pre heat the oven to 190C. Grease a 20cm square baking tin and line with baking parchment.

2. Place the butter, sugar and honey in a saucepan and melt over a low heat. Add the remaining ingredients and mix well.

3. Spoon the mixture into the tin and firmly press into place. Bake in the oven for 20-30 minutes or until golden brown.

4. Once cooked, leave to cool in the tin before cutting. The bars will last for 5 days in an airtight container.

Top tips:

You can use any dried fruit or nuts that you like.

Alternative sweeteners can be used.

When the granola bars are cooked, press them whilst warm to give you a nice flat and smooth top. This makes them easier to cut. Use a rolling or a potato masher!

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