FROM OUR COUNTRY KITCHEN
For some time now, Pauline Austerfield has been publishing recipes in the Village Voices magazine, under the heading 'From Our Country Kitchen'.
This is a chance to see them all. They are shown below in date order - the most recent first.
Click on the month of the recipe that you require, or here for an alphabetical index.
Artwork by Pauline as well.
2017 December Chestnut, Apple and Onion Pie
November Parkin and Toffee Apples
October Courgette Soup with Boursin
September Fig and Goats Cheese Focaccia
August Raspberry and Amaretti Cake
July Watercress Soup
Watercress and Orange Salad
June Gooseberry & Elderflower Pastries
May Asparagus, Potato and Feta Salad
April Rhubarb Syllabub
March Linseed and Treacle Bread
February Chicken Marengo
January Gratin of Pumpkin and Barlotti Beans
2016 December Chocolate Crunch Torte with Stem Ginger and Figs
November Cinnamon Apple Cake
September Plum and Almond Pasties
August Spinach Tart
July Strawberry Cream Dessert
June Cromer Crab Cakes
April Double Ginger Cake
March Blackberry and Apple Tarts
February Moules Marinière
January Tarte Tatin
2015 December Beetroot Fritters with Gravlax
November Stuffed Peppers
October Aubergines - Baba Ghanoush
- Aubergine Chips
August Peach Melba
July Onion Tart
June Strawberry and Cucumber Salad
May Cauliflower Cheese with Leek
Cauliflower with Creme Fraiche.
April Hot Cross Bun, Toffee and Banana Pudding
February Lamb Hotpot
2014 December Pumpkin and Chicken
November Broccoli Soup with Cheese
October Harissa paste (chillies)
September Courgette Frittata
August Gooseberry Fool
July Blackcurrant Cup Cakes and Jam.
June Lebanese Beetroot Salad
May Almond Biscuits
April Spring Vegetable Risotto
February Vanilla Cheesecake
January A Comforting Soup (poultry & veg.)
2013 December (Windfall) Apple and Quince Cake
November Rice Pudding
October Pumpkin with Coconut
Peppers and Prawns
September Courgette, Tomato and Ricotta Bake
July Russian Redcurrant and Raspberry Pudding.
+ Lemon Curd & Orange Parfait
May Banana and Carrot Cake
April Rhubarb Muscovado Sponge
March Coq au Vin
February Celeriac and Walnut Remoulade
+ Caramelised Celeriac with Pancetta
January Candied Citrus Peel
2012 December Pumpkins and Squashes 2
November Bramley Apple Gingerbread
October Chicken Thighs with Sweet Chestnut Stuffing
September Tomato with Goat's Cheese and Rosemary
August Plum Tart
July Elderflower and Gooseberry Jam
June Broad Bean Hummus and Broad Bean Soup..
May Asparagus with Almonds
+ Asparagus Pasta with Lemon
April Chocolate Orange Cake
+ Marmalade Ice Cream
February Gratin of Beans and Bacon
+ Baked Onions with Parmesan and Cream
2011 December Pumpkins and Squashes
November Bolotti Beans with Sage and Borlotti Hummus
October Chaffcombe Apple Pudding and Peperoni alla Piemontese
September Greek Courgette Pie and a Courgette Side Dish
August Pastry with Quark and Vegetable & Blue Cheese Tart
June Wimbledon Cake
May Pork with Rhubarb
April Nettle Rarebit
March Rocket and Potato Soup
January Pheasant with Apples
2010 December Roasted Pumpkin Soup
November Hotpot of Sausages and Apples
October Poached Pears
September (i) Half Tomatoes and (ii) Courgette Cake
August Greek Salad and Feta, Potato & Rosemary Bread
June Elderflower Cordial
May Rhubarb and 'Heaven and Earth'
April Lemon Curd
March Rabbit and Apple Casserole
January Vegetable Soup
2009 December Focaccia Bread
November French Onion Soup and Shallot Tart
October Baking Potatoes
September Damson Compote, Baked Figs, Blackberries & Apple
August Summer Fruit Trifle
July Lettuce Soup
May A Garden Salad (with Asparagus)
April Vegetable Shepherd's Pie
March Nettle Soup and Winter Carrots
2008 November Pumpkin Stuff
October Cooking Apples
September Courgette and Mint Soup
August Tomato Soup and Parsley Butter
July Mint Sauce and Pesto Sauce
June Asparagus Spears
May Ice Cream
April Leek and Potato Pies
February Cabbage Stuff
2007 December Red Cabbage
October Pickled Pears or Quinces
July Potato and Broad Bean Salad
May Potatoes Lyonnaise
January 2017. Gratin of Pumpkin and Borlotti Beans.
This is a delicious, vegetarian recipe from Nigel Slater that uses our homegrown produce. If you haven't any dried borlotti beans then a 400g tin will do.
1 small onion, halved and sliced lengthwise
2 tbls olive oil
7oz prepared pumpkin or squash
4oz dried borlotti beans
4oz gruyere cheese, diced
125ml double cream
½ oz grated Parmesan
salt and pepper
The night before, put the beans in a bowl and add plenty of water.
To prepare, rinse and cook in unsalted water for approximately 45 minutes to 1 hour until tender.
Warm the oil in a pan and add the onions. When softened, add the diced pumpkin and continue cooking until the pumpkin has started to colour.
Heat the oven to 180 C / Gas 4.
Grease a baking dish and scattered over the diced gruyere. If you are using tinned beans, rinse them well.
Mix the beans, pumpkin and onion and put on top.
Season with salt and pepper. Pour over the cream and scatter with the grated Parmesan.
Bake for 30 to 45 minutes, until the cheese has melted and the cream is bubbling around the edges.
February 2017. Chicken Marengo (serves 4).
My mother used to make this dish and it's a very tasty way to cook chicken. In the original recipe you add cooked prawns, but I have never fancied the
combination. White wine is often used instead of sherry. My recipe includes celery and carrots, so a side vegetable isn't required.
4 tbsp olive oil
2 large skinless chicken breasts
6oz onions, finely sliced
6oz carrots, sliced
2 sticks of celery, sliced
4oz chestnut mushrooms, sliced
1 pint chicken stock
1 small glass sherry
1 400g can chopped tomatoes
1 tbsp tomato puree
2 bay leaves
Salt and pepper
Pre-heat the oven to 180C / Gas 4.
Heat 2 tbsp of oil in a flameproof, lidded casserole. Halve the chicken breasts and add to the pan, cooking for 10 minutes each side.
Remove and keep warm.
Add the remaining olive oil and onions and cook for 5 minutes, then add the carrots and celery.
Stir to prevent sticking, cook for 10 minutes then add the mushrooms.
Cook for another 5 minutes then pour in the sherry, stock and tomatoes. Stir in the tomato puree, add the bay leaves, then bring to the boil.
Take off the heat, cover and put in the oven.
Cook for an hour, take out and check if the carrot is tender. If not, return to the oven for another 15 minutes.
I usually serve this with baked potatoes and sour cream. Depending upon their size, I suggest you put the potatoes in the oven before the casserole.
March 2017. Linseed and Treacle Bread (from Nigel Slater)
This might not sound very appetising but I've made it a couple of times and everyone thought it very tasty.
It's particularly good with a winter vegetable soup and is best served warm or toasted.
I replaced the white bread flour with wholemeal and I couldn't find barley flakes or linseeds but it still worked out fine.
Rye flour 200 g
Strong white bread flour 200 g
Barley flakes 50 g
Sea salt 1 tsp
Black treacle 2 tbsp
Warm water. 350 ml
Fast acting yeast 1 x 7 g sachet
Rolled oats 40 g
Pumpkin seeds 35 g
Sunflower seeds 25 g
Golden linseeds 30 g
Warm your mixing bowl. Combine the flours and barley flakes in the bowl and add the salt.
Put the black treacle in a jug and stir in the warm water and yeast.
Pour into the flours and add the oats,seeds and sultanas. Mix well using a wooden spoon. This will be a very moist dough.
Scrape it out onto a floured board. Wash out the bowl, dry and add a little flour. Return the dough to the bowl, cover and leave to rise for an hour or so.
Pre heat the oven to 220 C / Gas 8 and put a baking tray in to heat.
When the dough has risen transfer it to a greased baking tray, shape it into a loaf then put it onto the heated tray in the oven .
Cook for 35 minutes until the crust is crisp. Remove and cool on a rack before slicing.
April 2017. Rhubarb Syllabub (from Sarah Raven's Garden Cookbook). Serves 6-8
Juice and zest of 1 orange
100 g caster sugar
500 g forced rhubarb
2 cardamom pods
For the Syllabub
284 ml double cream
Juice and zest of 1 large lemon
3 tbsps dry sherry or white wine
100 g caster sugar
Preheat the oven to 190C /Gas 5.
Warm the orange juice in an roasting tray and dissolve the sugar in it.
Cut the rhubarb into 3 inch pieces add to the juice with the orange zest and spices. Cook in the oven for 15 minutes.
With a slotted spoon remove the rhubarb pieces from the juice and then boil up the juice until it thickens. Allow to cool.
To make the syllabub, put the cream, lemon zest and juice, alcohol and sugar into a bowl and beat until the mixture becomes thick and light.
Remove the spices from the rhubarb. Put the rhubarb into individual glasses, spoon the syllabub mixture over the top and chill for a couple of hours.
Serve with almond biscuits (recipe here on Village Voices website)
May 2017. Asparagus, Potato and Feta Salad (for 4)
A lovely, early summer salad that works well on its own or would go well with ham.
750 g small new potatoes, scrubbed
500 g asparagus, trimmed
3 tbsp fresh mint, finely sliced
2 tbsp chives, chopped
100 g Greek feta, crumbled
3 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 dsp white wine vinegar
1 tsp English mustard
1 tsp runny honey
Salt and pepper
Cook the new potatoes until tender, drain and cut in half. Briefly cook the asparagus, (it shouldn't go soft) and cut into 3 inch pieces.
Put both into a bowl with the feta and herbs. Mix the mustard, honey,vinegar, salt and pepper, then whisk in the olive oil.
Pour onto the salad and toss gently to coat the ingredients.
Serve while still warm.
June 2017. Gooseberry and elderflower pastries (serves 4).
If you grow gooseberries it's best to wait until they're really ripe before picking. That way they require less sugar and are more tender.
I used up frozen berries from last year to make these recipes that produce more juice than fresh.
The recipe for elderflower cordial is on the Village Voices website.
200 g block puff pastry
300 g gooseberries, topped and tailed.
60 g caster sugar
2 tbsp elderflower cordial
125 ml double cream
Preheat the oven to 200 C Gas 6.
Put the berries in a pan with the sugar and cordial and heat gently until the berries are tender.
Squash them with a wooden spoon then pour into a sieve over a bowl and allow to drain.
Return the juice to the pan on a low heat and reduce by half to a syrup. Remove from the heat.
Roll out the pastry on a lightly floured surface to the thickness of a pound coin. Quarter the pastry into 4 rectangles.
With a sharp knife,score a line around the inside of each piece and pierce all over the inside with a fork.
Brush with the syrup and bake for 10 to 15 minutes until browned and puffed up. Place on a wire rack and cool slightly.
Using the sharp knife cut round the scored line on each pastry, carefully remove the centre and reserve.
Scrape out any uncooked pastry.
Pour the cream into a bowl and whip, adding the rest of the syrup as you go.
Fold in the gooseberries and taste to see if you want any more sugar.
Cool in the fridge for 30 minutes. Divide the gooseberry mixture between the pastry cases just before serving and top with the lid.
I bought some mackerel fillets and decided to try them with gooseberry sauce. It worked really well and would also be good with pork.
375 g gooseberries, topped and tailed
2 tbsp water
30 g caster sugar
30 butter, softened
1/2 tsp ground ginger
Put the berries, water and sugar in a pan and heat gently until the berries are tender.
Pour off any excess juice and beat the fruit with a wooden spoon until it resembles a sauce.
Mix in the butter and ginger. I served it in small bowls with the mackerel.
July 2017. Watercress.
I'd forgotten how tasty watercress is until I bought a couple of bunches at a farmer's market last week. Unfortunately, it doesn't keep for long
so only buy if it's really fresh.
If you can't use it straight away, cut off the stem ends, put in cold water for an hour, drain and then seal in a plastic bag
and store in the salad drawer of the fridge.
Rinse well before use.
I use the tops for salad and the stems and any bruised leaves for soup.
Watercress Soup (for 2)
2 bunches of watercress, tops removed
1 small onion, finely chopped
1 medium potato, diced small
1 pint chicken or vegetable stock
1 oz butter
A squeeze of lemon juice
Half a cup of milk
2 desert spoons of cream
Melt the butter in a thick bottom pan and soften the onion. Add the potato and cook for another 5 minutes. Stir, so it doesn't stick.
Add the watercress and then the stock. Simmer until the potato is cooked. Remove from the heat and liquidise.
Return to the pan, squeeze in the lemon and then add the milk. Stir well and reheat.
Check the seasoning, pour into bowls and garnish with the cream.
Watercress and Orange Salad
Tops from 2 bunches of watercress
2 tbls extra virgin olive oil
1 tbls white wine vinegar
2 tsp Dijon mustard
Salt and pepper
Slice off both ends of the oranges. With a sharp knife, cut away the peel and the pith. Cut along the membranes to remove segments.
Squeeze the juice from the remains of the oranges into a small bowl, then add the oil, vinegar and mustard.
Whisk to combine and season to taste.
In a larger bowl, toss together the watercress, orange segments and dressing. Serve immediately.
August 2017. Raspberry and Amaretti Cake (makes 6 portions)
I've had a glut of raspberries this year and have been looking for recipes to use them up. I also had a pack of amaretti biscuits in the cupboard so this
seemed the perfect solution.
It keeps well for a couple of days, though loses some of the crunch.
Pre heat the oven to 160 C / Gas 3.
80 g softened butter
80 g golden caster sugar
1 large egg
60 g self raising flour
40 g ground almonds
125 g raspberries
70 g amaretti biscuits, crushed.
Butter and line a loose bottomed 7 inch cake tin.
Cream the sugar with the butter until light and fluffy and mix in the egg. Fold in the flour and ground almonds.
Spread half the mixture in the lined tin, then scatter over half the crushed amaretti biscuits. Evenly distribute the raspberries on top, retaining six for decoration.
Cover with the remaining cake mixture, spread evenly and then top with the rest of the amaretti. Place the raspberries on top of the cake, one for each portion
Bake for approx 50 minutes or until the cake is firm to the touch.
Cool for 15 minutes in the tin. Run a knife around the edge and turn out.
It can be served warm, with cream ,for dessert or for afternoon tea.
I've frozen lots of raspberries to use in juices and to add to summer fruit mixtures. You can also make jam from frozen fruit.
September 2017. Fig and Goats Cheese Focaccia (by Nigel Slater)
This is one of my favourite things and I can't wait for the figs on our tree to ripen. I make the Focaccia from the recipe on our website (December 2009),
but a good sour dough would work as well.
How many figs you will need depends on their size, but 5 small ones will do.
For 2 portions split a piece of Focaccia, about 10 cm x 15 cm, horizontally to give two rectangles, then place them side by side
in a shallow baking tin lined with foil.
Set the oven at 200C, Gas 6.
Spread runny honey over the bread and scatter with finely chopped, fresh rosemary. Slice the figs into four and arrange on top.
Spoon some more honey over the figs , put in the oven and bake for 15 minutes. Remove and turn the oven to grill setting.
Slice 10 g of goats cheese into thick rounds and place on top of the figs.
Grill for 5 minutes, or until the cheese starts to melt.
Serve immediately. (I use steak knives as the bread gets very crisp). .
October 2017. Courgette Soup with Boursin (for 2/3)
A friend suggested this recipe and I tried it out for lunch today.
It's a very good way of using up courgettes that have grown too big. I added another make of cream cheese with herbs and garlic that needed to be used up.
The soup is tasty and creamy and goes well with Feta and Rosemary Bread (see our website for the recipe) .
1 medium onion, sliced thinly
1 lb courgettes, sliced thinly
1 tbsp olive oil
A knob of butter
1/2 pint chicken or vegetable stock
3 oz cream cheese with herbs and garlic
Warm the butter and olive oil in a pan, add the onions and cook gently until they soften.
Add the courgettes, stir in and heat for 5 minutes. Pour in the stock and simmer for 10 minutes.
Take off the heat and liquidise. Return to the pan and add the cream cheese.
On a medium heat stir the cheese so it melts into the soup. Check the seasoning and serve.
November 2017 (Bonfire Night). Parkin and Toffee Apples.
Here are a couple of recipes for November 5th. For something as traditional as Parkin I was surprised by how many different recipes I found this is a combination
of several. I wasn't able to find oatmeal, so I used oat bran, which worked fine. The Parkin can be made a week ahead as it improves with keeping,
although I couldn't help but try some warm from the oven and it was delicious.
Parkin (makes 10 pieces)
4 oz fine or medium oatmeal
4 oz self- raising flour
2 heaped tsp ground ginger
1 tsp mixed spice
1 tsp ground nutmeg
4 oz soft brown sugar
4 oz butter
4 oz black treacle
5 oz golden syrup
1 egg, beaten
Pre-heat the oven 160 C / Gas 3. Grease and line a 7 x 4 inch roasting tin .
Melt the butter in a pan, add the sugar , treacle and golden syrup stir until dissolved and take off the heat.
Put the oatmeal, flour and spices in a bowl and mix well. Pour the butter mixture into the flour/oatmeal and stir.
Mix in the egg and combine all the ingredients. Scrape into the tin and smooth the top.
Put on the lower shelf in the oven and cook for 1 hour.
When cooked, cool on a wire tray, then store in an airtight tin until required.
I'd never made these before and it does take a bit of practice to coat the apples evenly with the toffee. I used small, sweet eating apples, Coxs would be perfect.
Do take care, as the toffee is very hot.
6 small eating apples
7 oz golden caster sugar
2 fl. oz water
2 tbsp golden syrup
1 oz butter
Put the apples in a bowl and pour over boiling water to cover, then quickly pour it off. This will remove any wax coating and help the toffee to stick.
Dry the apples, remove the stalks and push wooden ice lolly sticks into the core of the apples from the stalk end.
Combine the sugar and water in a large heavy based pan and stir over a low heat until the sugar has dissolved.
Add the golden syrup and butter and stir until melted and combined. Increase the heat and allow the mixture to boil without stirring.
Carry on for 10 to 15 minutes until the mixture starts to darken in colour.
Take off the heat and check that the toffee is ready by dropping a little in a bowl of cold water. It should harden instantly and be brittle.
Place a sheet of baking paper on the worktop next to the cooker.
When the bubbles have subsided, tilt the pan, then carefully dip the apples, one at a time in the pan, turning them so they are coated by toffee.
Allow any excess to drop back into the pan before placing on the paper. If there are uncovered areas on the apple you can patch them up with toffee from a spoon.
If the toffee starts to thicken reheat again.
They are best eaten the same day as the toffee will start to soften within 24 hours. Do not put in the fridge.
December 2017. Chestnut, Apple and Onion Pie (serves 6)
This month's recipe has been submitted by Bridget Farrar. We hope you enjoy it !
With Christmas fast approaching, it's time to start thinking of dishes for the festivities ahead!
Perfect for a vegetarian alternative on Christmas Day, or part of a Boxing Day buffet, this is a fantastic pie suitable for vegetarians and tasty enough
to satisfy the most committed carnivores!
550g shortcrust pastry
2tbsp olive oil
350g chopped onion
450g eating apples ( Cox's are best)
300g cooked , peeled and chopped chestnuts (tinned/vacuum packed are perfect when time and patience are short!)
1 tsp chopped fresh thyme
1 tsp chopped fresh sage
Egg for glazing
Loose bottomed 24cm flan tin
Preheat oven to 200 degrees C. Gas 6
Heat oil in a frying pan on a medium heat and cook onions until golden brown.
Meanwhile peel and dice the apples into small piecesand place in a large bowl with the chopped chestnuts, herbs and seasoning, adding the onions when cooked.
Beat the eggs and combine thoroughly with the other ingredients. Set aside.
Roll out 2/3rd of the pastry and line the flan tin. Add the chestnut filling.
Roll out the remaining pastry and cover the top of the pie and trim to form a lid. Seal the edges of the pie with a little water.
Any spare pastry can be used to decorate the top of the pie.
Finally, glaze the top of the pie with some beaten egg and bake in the oven for approx 40-50 minutes until golden brown.
Serve hot with all your favourite Christmas trimmings and a very large glass of wine!