The Cottage Smallholder


stumbling self sufficiency in a small space


Jam sandwiches

Posted in Snacks Breakfast Lunch | 2 comments

Jam sandwiches

“I wondered if you’d like a jam sandwich? Margaret pushed a tiny bag of dainty sandwiches along the worktop towards me. “They were rejected by a passing monk.” I was intrigued. “He took the paté and cucumber ones. It’s a long drive to Ambelforth so I’m surprised that he didn’t want the others.” She pushed the bag a little further toward me with an encouraging nod. I was vaguely peckish but . . jam sandwiches? To be polite I took a tiny sandwich and sampled it. Perhaps it was the jam...

read more

Delicious pork chops with tarragon, dry sherry and fresh fennel recipe

Posted in Pork Ham Bacon Sausages | 0 comments

Delicious pork chops with tarragon, dry sherry and fresh fennel recipe

We love the recipe for pork chops with tarragon and white wine in Nigel Slater’s The 30 Minute Cook, although we have always cooked our chops very gently for much longer (at least 25-30 minutes). Danny started to experiment with the ingredients recently and added fennel seeds. Last week it was my turn to cook. I opened the fridge door and two plump pork chops twinkled from a cool white dish. Great. I planned to make the tarragon and white wine recipe. We use a wine box of dry French wine for cooking. I turned to check that we had some...

read more

Superb warming lunch time snack

Posted in Snacks Breakfast Lunch | 0 comments

Superb warming lunch time snack

“This tastes just like good tapas,” Danny smiled and indulgently counted the remaining triangles on his plate. He is at his happiest mid meal. I’d come home for lunch on a chilly dreary day wanting something warm to eat for lunch. I poked about in the fridge and discovered a length of salami, some Philadelphia cheese, the wedge of Nduja and the crusty ends of an old loaf of white bread. I grilled the crusty side of the bread and flipped them over. Then I spread a thin layer of Nduja on the soft side, scattered this with...

read more

Duck breasts with a fresh plum sauce recipe

Posted in Duck Goose and Turkey | 20 comments

Duck breasts with a fresh plum sauce recipe

I spotted some large French duck breasts at Fred Fitzpatrick’s butcher’s shop on Saturday. As all his meat is excellent I bought a pack as a treat, feeling a bit guilty about the air miles. I was going to make our lazy duck in apricot sauce recipe but when I saw some large plump fresh plums in Tesco I changed my mind. I had to ignore the air miles yet again and resolved to bottle some of the local wild plums and bullaces in the autumn to use as sauces for duck and pork. They are tart and perfect for this recipe. I decided to make a...

read more

Quick Steak and Kidney Pie Recipe

Posted in Beef and Steak and Veal, Savoury Pies | 1 comment

Quick Steak and Kidney Pie Recipe

This was the pie that I used to make before I discovered the merits of slow cooking. It does not quite have the soul of our Slow Cooked Steak and Kidney Pie Recipe but it is delicious. It’s well worth making if you are pressed for time and are willing to splash out a bit more on the meat than for the slow version. I always cruise past the cut price food section at Tesco and snap up any reduced priced packs of steak to freeze for this pie. Sometimes I run this up for Danny as a treat if he has had a bad day. This pie also magically...

read more

Giant potato croquette recipe

Posted in Leftovers, Vegetarian | 3 comments

Giant potato croquette recipe

My mother used to reheat yesterday’s mashed potato with milk, in a saucepan, very gently. This wasn’t good – it had a wishy-washy taste. Up until two weeks ago we made potato cakes if we had some left-over mash knocking about in the fridge and were feeling galvanised. More often than not, the bowl would be pressed into a dark area of the fridge where food mysteriously vanishes until it is exhumed days later to make room for something fresh. One lazy day last week, I opened the fridge and found a decent sized bowl of cold...

read more

Last minute Christmas cake recipe

Posted in Christmas, Desserts | 282 comments

Last minute Christmas cake recipe

Over the years we have tried various Christmas cake recipes but the best by far was the one that we made last year, a week before Christmas. We wanted a cake packed with fruit but not a dark heavy traditional type of Christmas cake. We’d had to force down too many slices of these in the past. My Mother used to make us these and bring one each Christmas. Then she decided to buy them. These were worse and not disguised by being fed with lashings of brandy. We’d cut a few slices at Christmas, give her half the cake to take home at the...

read more

Jocelyn’s Baked Garlic recipe

Posted in Vegetables and Sides | 7 comments

Jocelyn’s Baked Garlic recipe

Our friends Jocelyn and Miles have a house in France. They worked there for years and have kept it on as a retreat. Like the French, they love to eat out and one of their favourite local restaurants is run by a gloomy individual called Monsieur Misère. I was intrigued to meet this fellow who bobbed and smiled as we crossed his restaurant threshold. When he realised that our French wasn’t quite as fluent as our friends’, we were relegated to fourth division and tolerated with that polite distance, usually reserved for unruly...

read more


Copyright © 2006-2012 Cottage Smallholder      Our Privacy Policy      Advertise on Cottage Smallholder


FD