The Cottage Smallholder


stumbling self sufficiency in a small space


Recipe for Celia’s potato pancakes: canapés, starters, light lunch

Posted in Fish and Seafood, Leftovers, Starters and Soups, Vegetables and Sides | 4 comments

Recipe for Celia’s potato pancakes: canapés, starters, light lunch

We don’t tend to have a starter on Christmas day as I prefer to serve canapés if people are feeling peckish. Traditionally these are smoked salmon on thinly sliced brown bread. Danny is a bit picky about the sort of salmon that he likes, ideally the salmon should be wild and not farmed. But as we were having a budget Christmas this year I secreted a pack of farmed smoked salmon trimmings in the fridge and planned a different sort of canapé. Initially I considered making blinis and asked on Twitter for a good recipe. Celia – of Purple...

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Homemade Christmas marmalade with whisky

Posted in Christmas, Jam Jelly and Preserves | 8 comments

Homemade Christmas marmalade with whisky

  Last year I happened to meet someone who supplies citrus fruits to one of the largest supermarket chains in the UK. “How come their fruit and vegetables don’t last as long as those from Waitrose and M&S?” “Ah,” he said, “it’s all a matter of storage temperature. They keep the produce in vast stores with the temperature set very, very low. This means that they can store perishables for a considerable time. Once they come to room temperature they will fade far more quickly.” Fascinating stuff. The temperature in our barn...

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Best roast goose and recipe

Posted in Christmas, Duck Goose and Turkey | 12 comments

Best roast goose and recipe

What do Heston Blumenthal and I have in common? Apart from the fact that we both wear glasses. We buy our geese from Clerkesgeese. Decorating other peoples’ houses has wonderful benefits. Generally the conversation turns to food and information is shared. A young client (‘mother‘ of the mischievous Freddie) mentioned that she had tasted one of the Clerkes Farm Geese last Christmas and had ordered one this year. When she added that Heston Blumenthal had voted their geese the best in his goose taste test, the die was cast. The prices were...

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Transform leftover pastry scraps into deluxe cheese Christmas snacks

Posted in Christmas, Leftovers | 5 comments

Transform leftover pastry scraps into deluxe cheese Christmas snacks

If Danny loads the dishwasher when I get back from work and the cycle finishes before supper has reached the table, I know that I’m running a bit late. The cycle is 108 minutes. This morning I discovered some chicken and ham pie filling in the freezer – all that I had to do was make the pastry. Anne Mary’s recipe for Magimix pastry works perfectly each time. Danny was amazed that I had made pastry in five minutes in the food processor. It normally needs to rest and chill in the fridge for an hour but I decided to speed up the process....

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Guest spot: Blueberry Friands recipe from The Mildred Mittens Manufactory

Posted in Desserts | 10 comments

Guest spot: Blueberry Friands recipe from The Mildred Mittens Manufactory

Shortly before Christmas, Mildred sent me this recipe for these “little light muffins which were so easy to do . . .the recipe was from my friend, Sylvia. You don’t need a mixer, thinking about it I expect they would be fun for children to make! They are yummy, and look so nice!” Baking with children is always rewarding especially if the cooking time is under half an hour and you don’t needto drag them away from another project at the end of cooking time. The name Friand was new to me and a brief foray onto the internet...

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Cranberry and clementine sauce recipe

Posted in Christmas, Sauces Gravy Dressings | 14 comments

Cranberry and clementine sauce recipe

I finally found cranberries in the Cambridge Sainsbury’s store on Friday. I wanted to whoop with joy and run around the store waving them over my head. Instead I quickly grabbed two packs and quietly popped them into my basket. I’ve been looking for cranberries for weeks and was beginning to worry that we wouldn’t have homemade cranberry sauce with our Christmas goose this year. We have a great cranberry sauce recipe here. Reading the comments on that article prompted me to give our sauce a new twist this year. Why not...

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Guest spot: Quick Banana Chutney recipe for Christmas and beyond by Kate(uk)

Posted in Christmas, Chutney and Pickles | 48 comments

Guest spot: Quick Banana Chutney recipe for Christmas and beyond by Kate(uk)

“Fiona, would you be interested in a recipe for banana chutney? It sounds odd, but I can assure you that it is the very, very best chutney with cold turkey and if made this week will be ready for use on boxing day. As long as it is kept secret or you will find family members standing with empty jar in one hand, dessert spoon in the other and a guilty look on their faces” “Yes please.” Just reading her email made me desperate to get my hands on the recipe. A superb chutney that only takes 10 days to mature. This would be...

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Guest spot: The Mildred Mittens Manufactory recipe for Stollen

Posted in Christmas | 24 comments

Guest spot: The Mildred Mittens Manufactory recipe for Stollen

I love Stollen. When Mildred sent me her recipe I was delighted. This sounds so good I just had to put it on the blog. I will be making this with my mum when I have a few days off over Christmas. Mildred wrote “Have you ever made Stollen I wonder? The recipe in Andrew Whitley’s ‘Bread Matters’ book is superb! I tweaked it a bit and the resulting Stollen is wonderful! Andrew’s recipe has made a nice sized loaf and every step was explained very well. Everything I have made from this fantastic book has worked...

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