Selling my food

I have a table at The Skinners’ School Christmas Fayre and Farmers Market on Saturday 3 December 2016 on St Johns Road in Tunbridge Wells.

If you would like to try some of my chutneys, jellies, cakes and biscuits before you buy, please come along between 11am and 2pm.

I will also have Panforte, traditional Christmas cake and Christmas Puddings for sale along with gift boxes which can be made up with your choice of chutneys, jams, marmalades and jellies.

I look forward to seeing you this weekend.

PS Please bring cash with you as I don’t think my card payment machine will have arrived in time – sorry for the inconvenience!

Spiced redcurrant jelly

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I picked redcurrants a few weeks ago and made another batch of spiced redcurrant jelly. From the field to the jar within 24 hours – perfect! The jelly will be delicious with roast lamb or venison or I use it to enrich a game gravy. As I don’t own a stand for the jelly straining bag, I go for an upturned chair and bits of string – this works just as well! The jelly has white wine vinegar added to give it extra flavour as well as cinnamon and cloves.

Courgette and chocolate cake

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Here is another cake made with grated courgette – please don’t stop reading now! This one is gluten free as it is made with rice flour and ground pistachio nuts. The sponge contains cocoa powder for a rich, dark chocolate flavour and it is sandwiched together with a cocoa flavoured butter cream. The grated courgette keep the sponge moist and the ground pistachio nuts give it a slight crunch. It seems strange to make a cake with vegetables and then say you can’t tell that they are there but don’t be put off – this is a delicious cake!

Getting professional advice

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A little while ago, a friend asked if he could photograph my business for a college project.

He spent the day watching me making a cake, flapjacks and chutney, and taking pictures of the preserves I had already made. I will be adding these to my blogs over the coming months.

It was fascinating watching him at work, getting the lighting just right and making the foods I had made look appetising. I especially like the selection of jars – who would have guessed that jams, jellies and chutneys could look so good!

If you want to see other examples of his work, please have a look at http://www.craigprentis.co.uk

The final countdown ……

24 hours to go and still plenty to do ….

If you have forgotten the cranberry sauce and live near Southborough, I still have a few jars. This is the cranberry and orange compôte I have mentioned before, flavoured with spices and port. It is the perfect match for your Christmas dinner and also to accompany the cold meats on Boxing Day.

Happy Christmas to you all – have a wonderful time with your families and friends.

 

Christmas gift ideas

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If you are looking for Christmas gift ideas, here are two selections which I have put together.

They can be tailored to suit your requirements – select 3 jars of the same size and hey presto!

Shown here are two chutneys with one mincemeat which will cost £12.00 and two jellies with one chutney which will cost £10.00. Other combinations can include jams and marmalade – please contact me with your exact requirements and I will let you know the cost.

Christmas preparations

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I have made my own mincemeat for 30 years. I think the flavour is much better and I know exactly what ingredients have been used – I can reduce the amount of sugar and use good quality dried fruits. I use raisins, sultanas, currants and apricots and lots of brandy! This gives the mincemeat a jewel-like sparkle and gives the kitchen a delicious aroma. I usually use vegetable suet so it is suitable for vegetarians.

As well as using in mince pies, my family like it mixed with the apple in an apple crumble, used to stuff and bake in apples and in a cake. It lasts well if kept in a cool dark cupboard – up to 12 months. I keep the jar in the fridge after opening.

Jars are available to buy for £3.50 each. Please contact me if you would like to order.

Take one pumpkin ……

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This year, I decided to make good use of the pumpkin I bought for Halloween. First, I made a pumpkin and corn bread with semolina and chilli flakes – it has a slightly gritty texture and heat from the chilli and goes well with soups. Next I made a sweet pumpkin cake, similar to carrot cake, with grated pumpkin and sultanas and flavoured with orange. I decided not to add the sweet cream cheese topping, although i can see that would make it a delicious pudding. Then I washed the seeds and dried them out in the oven before tossing them with salt, smoked paprika and olive oil. They made a lovely crunchy snack. For supper, I prepared a spicy pumpkin soup with harissa and chickpeas as I had seen an interesting recipe in the weekend newspaper. Finally, I made a pumpkin and raisin chutney with spices and pepper which goes excellently with cheese.