Korean Belly Pork and Peanut Brittle

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Peanut brittle is a real childhood favourite and this delicious recipe for Korean pork belly from Buttermilk and chef James Strawbridge is a new twist that everyone will enjoy on cold Autumn evenings. It makes use of one of the tastiest and most economical cuts of pork and we always buy local at Lobbs Farm Shop. Wonderful Cornish cabbage, thinly sliced and tossed in a wok with soy sauce and sesame seeds is also a tasty and healthy side dish.

Peanut brittle is a versatile ingredient to play with in the kitchen. In this dish James used it to add sweetness to a Korean style BBQ sauce and finish the pork belly with some crackling texture. The spring greens and fresh mint work well with a sweet butternut squash mayo and the sticky, spicy and sweet pork. We would also recommend trying this recipe with confit duck or brushed onto chicken wings.

Ingredients

For the Pork:

  • 600g Higher Welfare Pork Belly
  • 2 tbsp Cornish Honey
  • 3 tbsp Rice Wine Vinegar or Mirin
  • 1 tbsp sliced Root Ginger
  • 1 tsp Fennel Seeds
  • 50g Peanut Brittle (available from Buttermilk Kitchen)
  • 5 tbsp Soy Sauce
  • 1 tbsp Gochujang

For the Hot Salad:

  • 75g Sugar Snap Peas
  • 2 Spring Onions
  • 100g Pak Choi or Chinese Cabbage
  • 1 Garlic Clove – nely sliced
  • Juice of 1/2 Lime
  • 25g Peanut Brittle
  • 1 Red Chilli
  • 1 tbsp chopped fresh Mint
  • Pinch of smoked Cornish Seasalt

Method:

  1. Prepare the pork belly by removing the rind and marinading the meat with soy sauce, gochujang, honey, root ginger, fennel seeds, and rice vinegar. Leave for at least 4 hours or overnight in a sealed container.
  2. Preheat your oven to 170 ̊C and place the pork in a roasting tin covered with foil, adding a cup of water and roast for 2-3 hours or until tender. Remove your pork from the oven and increase to 200 ̊C.
  3. Then blitz your Peanut Brittle and add to the sauce in a small saucepan, reducing until sticky. Brush the Peanut Brittle sauce back over the pork and roast uncovered for another 20 minutes until caramelised. 4. For the hot salad simply toss the ingredients together in a bowl and cook in hot sesame oil using a wok or large frying pan. Serve the sliced pork belly on a butternut puree and garnish with your salad and more Peanut Brittle crumb.

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Amandasig

Autumn in Cornwall

The departure of one million visitors means Autumn is time for the Cornish to take back their county again, while those of you who are holidaying here can savour the colours and mild temperature and enjoy the attractions more easily. No more having to plan when you travel and avoiding using a motorway on changeover days or worrying about finding a car parking space. Many of the beaches also relax their dog restrictions once the summer is over too.

Watergate Bay in Cornwall, England, UK

Our local attractions of the Lost Garden of Heligan, which you can walk to from Mevagissey, and The Eden Project still buzz with activities, but try exploring further afield. Trebah Garden at Mawnan Smith has a lovely walk through tropical gardens to a tiny beach. Dramatic rolling waves on North Cornwall beaches make a change from South Cornwall’s calmer waters. Fantastic if you are keen on surfing or fancy strolling along Watergate Bay, with breakfast at The Beach Hut or lunch at Jamie Oliver’s Fifteen restaurant, where tomorrow’s chefs are trained.

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Lovely St Ives also has a swathe of golden beach, but it is most famous for its artistic heritage. Only about an hour away in Autumn, it is still vital to check websites before visiting. We turned up at Tate St Ives once anticipating fisherman painter Alfred Wallis, only to find an obscure Japanese artist on show. Not the celebration of Cornwall’s culture we were hoping for. Opening times for many places may also have been changed, as illustrated by Tate St Ives being closed until Spring with around town art tours substituted.

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Just down the road from Tate St Ives, The Barbara Hepworth Museum and Sculpture Garden is still very much open though. While in an intimate setting at her former home and studio, it is a world class collection of her work with a fascinating history of her life and tragic end. Like so many museums today, it is also family friendly with a Hepworth Family Activity Trail, a great idea which means today’s children have a happier introduction to the art world than those of us with memories of being dragged around galleries.

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Throughout Cornwall there is a fantastic collection of museums, including Helston Museum on social history – they also welcome dogs – The National Maritime Museum  at Falmouth and The Royal Cornwall Museum in Truro. They all work hard to provide interesting exhibitions and interactive events that make a first time visit fun and a return visit worthwhile. So no excuse for sad faces if the weather turns and beach time is not an option. Although they do say in Cornwall there is every type of weather every day and as the county with the longest coastline, there will be a beach near wherever you have a day trip.

Cornwall is also increasingly famous for its artisan food and drink producers and the Cornish Winter Fair in Wadebridge on Saturday 19th November is a great family day out. Taste samples at the array of foodie stalls and either treat yourself or start your Christmas shopping at the craft stalls stocked by talented artists of all types. There are plenty of farm animals, including the prime stock show, and you can have a go at milking a (mock) cow or grooming a pony. Entry is free, so you can go for as long or as short a time as suits you without feeling you have to get your money’s worth.

Every budget can be catered for at this time too for those who want to experience the creations of Cornwall’s exceptional chefs. It is easier to get reservations and there are special menus which explore seasonal produce and are very good value for money. In Padstow, Rick Stein’s St Petroc Bistro has three course charity lunches for £12.50, while Michelin starred Paul Ainsworth at No 6 has three course lunches for £26. Fans of Nathan Outlaw should sign up to his Grub Club on line before visiting his Port Isaac Fish Kitchen to find out about special offers and get ten per cent off meals.

Autumn really is a fabulous time here: truly accessible in every way.

If you have enjoyed this blog, please follow us on Instagram or Facebook to get daily updates on life in Cornwall and notices of when the next blog will appear.

Amandasig

Beehive Bars Cocktail Recipes

Everyone loves a cocktail and particularly one created by Beehive Bars that makes the most of Cornwall’s great artisan spirit producers.

Beehive Bars was set up in the summer of 2014 by Jessica Rowe, aged 34 and Alex Logan, aged 29 – work colleagues at Wineincornwall.co.uk and great friends. Together Jessy and Alex have more than 20 years of working in events and hospitality, so when they were approached by Frugi, the Cornish children’s clothing company,  to run a bar for an anniversary celebration they jumped at the chance; Beehive Bars was born.

The hot weather over the 2014 summer made for great bar building weather and many a day was spent painting, waxing, sanding and hammering with a lot of help from Andy (Jess’s husband) and Nigel (Alex’s dad). The bar is made out of three old oil drums and scaffolding boards that have been nailed together sanded, burnt, and waxed.

Why is it called Beehive Bars? On top of the bar sits two beautiful glass beehive drinks dispensers that will be filled full of cocktails like Limoncello Gin Fizz, Mojito and their signature drink ‘Storm in a Teacup’ which is a Beehive Bars spin on Rum & Ginger.

When they started building Beehive Bars there were four factors that were very important to them.

1. Using local produce where possible. Alex says “There is such a wide selection of drink producers in Cornwall who are crafting such quality products; their reputation’s go beyond the Cornish borders – Tarquin, Aval d’or, Camel Valley, Curio to name just a few! Plus being a Cornish company we also see the importance of supporting fellow Cornish business’s where possible.”

2. Keeping drinks prices reasonable

3. To be creative (Alex loves to make wonderful syrups for the cocktails and Jessy is always hunting for new treasures to go on the bar)

4. Offer great service

Knowing we grow blackberries, apples and Rosemary, Beehive Bars have created three delicious cocktails for us. Wonderful for guests to try when they are staying or for any cocktail enthusiastic to chill out to at home.

Blackberry Cooler

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Homemade Blackberry syrup

If you have a large crop of blackberries from a Autumnal picking session and don’t know what to do with them then perhaps this recipe will help. Syrups are so easy to make and are a fantastic way of making some delicious drinks by jazzing up some dusty bottles of booze that have been in the cupboard for a while. Jessy and I have been picking this weekend and managed to pick enough to whip up a batch of syrup.

  • One mug of caster sugar
  • Two mugs of blackberries
  • One lemon squeezed
  • One mug of water
  1. Add all ingredients to a lovely big pan
  2. Bring to the boil over a medium heat and simmer for a couple of minutes
  3. Allow to cool
  4. Blend with a hand blender
  5. Pass through a sieve
  6. Decant into a Kilner bottle (or something similar)

The next bit…. The Cooler

  1. Fill a glass with ice and a few blackberries and a slice of lemon
  2. Add 35mls (an egg cup full) of Curio Gin
  3. 15mls of Chambord (half an egg cup)
  4. 35mls of Blackberry Syrup
  5. And top up with soda.

(Also works with vodka or you could add your syrup to a glass of bubbles!)

Cornish Apple Martini

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  • Aval D’or Vodka
  • Knightor Vermouth
  • Polgoon Apple Juice
  • Lemon

1. Put into a shaker

  • Ice
  • 50mls Vodka
  • 25mls Vermouth
  • 25mls Apple Juice
  • Squeeze of ½ a lemon

2. Shake

3. Pour into a martini glass

4. Garnish with a few slices of apple.
(Also works with Gin!)

Rosemary Gin & Tonic

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  • Rosemary
  • Curio Gin
  • Cucumber
  • Franklins Tonic
  1. Infuse your favourite gin with some Rosemary from the Garden
    (Leave 2 or 3 sprigs of rosemary in a bottle of gin for a few days)
  2. Put ice, slices of cucumber and a sprig of rosemary into a tall glass
  3. Add 35mls of Infused Gin
  4. Add 120mls of Franklins Tonic

Now in their second year, Beehive Bars offer a completely bespoke service which include cash bars, event drinks packages, simple bar hire, event staffing, cocktail classes, all tailored to the customer’s specific requirements and budgets.

To Contact Beehive Bars
T:01209 313620
M:07582 630989

https://www.facebook.com/beehivebars/
https://www.instagram.com/beehivebars/

If you have enjoyed this blog, please follow us on Instagram or Facebook to get daily updates on life in Cornwall and notices of when the next blog will appear.

Amandasig

A Visit to Cardinham Woods

img_6882Holiday makers to Cornwall dream about beautiful beaches, wide coastal views and historical tropical gardens, but Cardinham Woods is a lovely hidden secret waiting to be discovered.  Set in a lush green valley near Bodmin and imaginatively managed by the Government’s Forestry Commission, the multi-coloured mixed woodland makes a perfect day out for all the family, including dogs.

Explore four winding waymarked walking trails, identifying trees, the remnants of the old mine and clapper bridge across a free flowing stream, using the free ForestXplorer app (available for iOS and Android). Alternatively hire mountain bikes from Trailmunki and take their advice on the best routes for your fitness level through miles of quality single track left by the mining industry.

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For children and parents, Badger Forest School and Outdoor Learning is a great introduction to new types of play, adventure and skills, including campfire cooking. They will even teach you how to light your own fire using just a steel and lighter. Great fun as either another holiday activity or for an unusual birthday party.

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The woods have a large car park, loos and children’s playground at the entrance, with plenty of seating for picnickers and free barbeques for those who want to create their own feast. Alternatively, try the charming Woods Café, nestled below soaring trees. In winter, they have a roaring fire indoors, while their large outside seating area makes a lovely spot for dog walkers to enjoy cakes and coffee or a cream tea.

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We had a lunch of pea soup with feta cheese, followed by sausage rolls made from well seasoned Cornish pork, a seasonal salad and homemade spicy apple chutney. There is a selection of drinks, including local bottled beers, but glasses of tap water are freely available (and the Cornish tap water is very drinkable.) It was an absolute bargain at £5.95 a head – unlike many tourist locations where a catering monopoly is an excuse to rip off visitors. The water bowls for thirsty dogs were appreciated too.

It is so easy to sit and relax at the café that we recommend site seeing and exercising are best taken before a refreshment break. It is a lovely way to end a visit by treating yourself to some fresh homemade food using the best of Cornish produce while chatting about your latest discovery. This is definitely a place which justifies return visits, particularly as the woods reflect the season changes. There are also specially designed activities, with the Autumn Activity Trial now open and a woodland community canvas to display the natural materials you discover on the forest floor.

If you have enjoyed this blog, please follow us on Instagram or Facebook to get daily updates on life in Cornwall and notices of when the next blog will appear.

Amandasig

Bacon, Egg and Parsley Pie

Our Property Manager Amanda Craze was given this lovely recipe by her Granny, a Cornish farmer’s wife with 11 children. When young, Amanda lived next door to her Granny and was always popping in for tea and the bacon, egg and parsley pie was a firm favourite. Amanda remembers, ‘Often there would be cousins round too, dozens of us, and Granny would feed us all. She was a great one for using what was to hand and often she’d put grated cauliflower in the pie as a filler. With that many hungry mouths, she needed to be inventive. She also made the most delicious coleslaw with whatever vegetables and herbs there were and a clotted cream and vinegar dressing. Unfortunately she didn’t write down a lot of her recipes, there wasn’t the time with no washing machines or dishwashers to help out. Whenever anyone in the family makes this pie it’s always called ‘Granny’s Pie,’ and certainly keeps alive our memories of her.’

Recipe

Serves 6

Oven temp. 180 c. pre heated

23cm loose bottom flan tin

Pastry
280g Plain Flour
70g Lard – chopped into small cubes
70g Butter – chopped into small cubes
Pinch of salt
Cold water to mix
Flour for rolling out
Place all ingredients into a large bowl, except the water. Rub in the fat to flour until it resembles bread crumbs. Add enough water to make a pliable dough, cover with cling film and place in a fridge for 30mins.

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Filling
8 x Eggs – preferably geese eggs if they are available
450g Lean bacon chopped
1 x Large bunch of parsley
Pinch of salt
Pepper
Beaten egg to glaze

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01 Fry the bacon lightly to draw out any water, drain if necessary then leave to cool.
02 Meanwhile roughly chop the parsley.
03 Lightly whisk two of the eggs together, add a pinch of salt and plenty of pepper.
04 Cut 2/3 of the pastry, roll out on a floured surface and line the flan tin leaving an overhang to allow to seal the lid and the bottom together.
05 Place the cooled bacon in the pastry lined tin followed by the parsley and the two beaten eggs. Make six equally spaced indentations in filling and break a whole egg into each one.
06 Roll out the remaining pastry large enough to cover the top of the filled tin, allow an overhang, brush overhang with beaten egg, pinch both pastry overhangs together to seal, make a small hole in the top of pastry lid to allow steam to escape. I crimp my overhangs to seal, but this is not essential.
07 Brush pie top with beaten egg.
08 Place pie on an oven tray and cook for 35 – 40mins. The pastry should be golden and the pie should feel firm when cooked.
09 Allow to cool before serving.

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Those who are busy can always use a good quality ready made short crust pastry, but do take the time to relax and enjoy this for lunch, a picnic, or for a traditional high tea.

If you have enjoyed this blog, please follow us on Instagram or Facebook to get daily updates on life in Cornwall and notices of when the next blog will appear.

Amandasig

Groom’s Speech ideas from Hew Belgrave

We loved this wonderful video showing Hew Belgrave giving his eloquent groom’s speech at his recent Polpier wedding to beautiful Donna. As giving a speech at your wedding can be a scary task for some grooms and it is a pity to let nerves cast a shadow over a day of happiness and fun, we asked Hew to share his top tips.

Hew says, ‘I am not a comfortable public speaker, it’s not something I look forward to, so I found the process rather daunting. The key for me was realizing that this was a unique opportunity to say some things to some people that are far too often overlooked. A chance to thank people, appreciate and also openly talk about how much things have meant to me. Rather than focusing on it as a speech, for me, it was an opportunity. I tried my hardest to keep it to 10 minutes, but even a week out from the wedding it was more like 15 and I shortened a few bits to keep it to the point in the final few days.

Here are some key pointers that helped me write it.
1) Start early – I started writing notes on my phone about 3 to 4 months before the wedding. Constantly adding or removing bits as better bits popped up.
2) If it’s an “in” joke or story, make sure it has context so all the guests understand. I mentioned a court visit with my dad as a low point in our relationship and then forgot to include that it was for a speeding misdemeanour on the day.
3) Thank key people in your life.
4) If you struggle to recite the story as it is too funny – definitely use it! Laughing your way through the day is a great look. The laughter will also put you at ease.
5) Be honest and open.
6) Be brave, we Brits are not the best at talking about emotions and really thanking people. Don’t miss this opportunity.
7) Write it down and stick to it.
8) I read the speech into the voice recorder on my phone and listened back to it. Hearing it back made me realise some bits were too long, others too short.
9) Cross check a few key points with your best man to make sure you aren’t heading for duplications on the day

Delivery
1) EVERYONE is on your team. You won’t be battling an uninterested audience.
2) Have written prompts or even the whole thing, with key titles and topics in bold.
3) Don’t worry about stopping to check where you are. You spent time writing this speech, so don’t leave bits out.
4) Really look at people when you are talking directly about them.
5) Take it slow and enjoy it.
6) Don’t have too many beers beforehand! The beer after will be one of the best ever!

Finally
1) You will miss bits.
2) You will rush it a bit.
3) People will laugh.

The last bit of advice is plan the end thoroughly. By the time you get to it, you will see the end coming and that’s when it can fall apart a bit. My closing statement was, “Finally I would like to raise a glass to those who cannot be here with us, either because they aren’t invited or because they are….. dead”. Now I think everyone agrees there are better ways to close it out.

Most of all enjoy it. I did not expect to enjoy it. But I did. Then you can relax, listen to the other speeches and enjoy them.’

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Amandasig

Queen of puddings recipe

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This traditional pudding can be traced back as far as the 17th Century, no doubt because it was made from kitchen staples and would have been a frugal use of old bread and bruised fruit. To stand the test of time though, it has to be made with the best quality ingredients to show how easily to hand basics can be turned into a delicious pudding. We use our local Boddington’s raspberry jam, made in Mevagissey and packed with flavor and free range eggs from Lobbs Farm Shop at the Lost Gardens of Heligan. Baker Tom’s organic white loaf is perfect for plump breadcrumbs and, with Rodda’s rich Cornish milk and butter, it means this is a celebration of the best of the county. Normally the pudding is served in one dish, but we tried it in six ramekins, smarter for a lunch or dinner party and easily packed for a picnic at the beach.

Ingredients

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For the base
600ml/1 pint full-fat milk
25g/1oz butter, plus extra for greasing the dish
Finely grated zest of 1 lemon
50g/2oz caster sugar
3 egg yolks
75g/3oz fresh white breadcrumbs – either made by grating or by whizzing the bread in a blender.
225g Boddington’s raspberry jam

For the meringue
175g/6oz caster sugar
3 egg whites

Serves 6
A 1.4L/21⁄2pt oval ovenproof dish that will fit inside a roasting tin or six ramekin dishes.

1. Preheat the oven to 170C/325F/Gas 3 and grease a pie dish or six ramekins.

2. For the base, warm the milk in a small saucepan. Add the butter, lemon zest and the 50g/2oz of sugar, stir until dissolved.

3. Lightly whisk the egg yolks in a bowl. Slowly pour the warm milk into the eggs, while whisking.

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4. Sprinkle the breadcrumbs over the base of the buttered dish and pour over the strained custard. Leave to stand for about 20 minutes, so the breadcrumbs absorb the liquid.

5. Carefully transfer the dish to a roasting tin and fill the tin halfway with hot water. Bake the custard in the preheated oven for about 25-30 minutes until the custard has set. Remove from the oven and set aside to cool a little.

6. Gently heat the jam in a saucepan and spoon over the base.

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7. Run half a lemon around a large bowl to make sure it is fat free and whisk the egg whites using an electric hand whisk on full speed until stiff peaks form when the whisk is removed. Add the remaining 175g/6oz sugar a teaspoon at a time, still whisking on maximum speed until the mixture is stiff and shiny. Using a metal spoon, cover the base with the meringue.

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8. Lower the oven temperature to 150C/300F/Gas 2 and return the pudding to the oven (not in the roasting tin with water) for about 25-30 minutes until the meringue is pale golden all over and crisp.

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Queen of Puddings may be served hot or cold and is delicious with Cornish vanilla ice cream or clotted cream.

If you have enjoyed this blog, please follow us on Instagram or Facebook to get daily updates on life in Cornwall and notices of when the next blog will appear.

Amandasig

Our 5 favourite cornwall blogs

When planning a holiday in Cornwall, a long term move to the county or just indulgencing in escapist day dreams, there is a blog to suit everyone. Here are our favourites.

www.visitcornwall.com

visitcornwall1Created by Cornwall’s tourist board, this is the go to site for everything about the county. Particularly good for its What’s On calendar which covers the huge variety of events from country walks and nature to theatre and music. There are also plenty of useful sections covering different groups, be it families with children or people with dogs, and they even – very honestly – have suggestions for rainy days.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


www.seasaltcornwall.co.uk

seasalt1Seasalt is a successful fashion brand but their blog is much more than just a puff for their clothes. The Meet The Bloggers section gives a clear idea of the personalities ‘shouting out about life in Cornwall.’ With a strong and long connection to the county, their Cornish love affair comes across, whether discussing the trendy Port Elliot festival, behind the scenes of photo shoots or gig rowing.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


saffronbunny.wordpress.com

saffron1Freelance writer Rachel Wilson-Couch’s highly individual take on the ‘frustrating glory’ of living in Cornwall should be read by everyone who imagines life here is all surfing, blue skies and pasty eating. Whether giving her view of childbirth, the Four Best…Moans About Cornwall or why nolonger a foodie, she always has something interesting to say – even if you disagree with her opinion.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


thecornishlife.co.uk

cornishlife1As a copywriter and designer, it’s to be expected that Anna Clark’s blog would be beautiful and well written, but it is also fun. She may rave about living in Cornwall, but why would anyone be reading a blog about Cornish life unless they felt something positive about the county? There are also plenty of quirky points of view under her section Rants And Ramblings and useful advice such as What To Pack when visiting Cornwall.
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


cornwall-uk.blogspot.co.uk

cornwallblog1A long running and newsy blog about what is going on in Cornwall with a whole range of subjects from filming of Poldark to festivals and bicycle hire. Well laid out with a useful side section on the most popular posts and clear titles for the archives.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 


Hope you have enjoyed this blog and I am always interested to get your feedback under comments on our polpier_penpol Instagram. Do follow if you are interested in daily updates of life in beautiful Cornwall and notices of the blog posts.

Amandasig

Fish Pie Recipe

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There can be nowhere better to make fish pie than Cornwall with the miles of coast line and fishing industry.  Rich with Cornish butter, milk and cream, It is also the perfect comfort food for cosy evenings or, if given an elegant piped potato topping, suitable for a dinner party. With no need for last minute attention, it is also great for larger parties, particularly if popped in ramekin dishes for individual servings. Our Property Manager Amanda Craze is sharing her own recipe of how to make this classic dish.

For the mashed potato.
1.5kg King Edward potatoes cut into small chunks
salt and white pepper
Butter to taste
splash of cream

Fish
750g white fish of your choice
250g smoked haddock
250g salmon
120g raw prawns

Sauce
150ml full fat milk
1 x small carrot, cut in half
1x small onion, cut in half
3 x peppercorns
1 x small bayleaf
75g butter
75g plain flour
A large bunch of fresh parsley, finely chopped
1 table spoon drained,rinsed and chopped capers
150ml double cream
100g grated strong cheddar cheese

Oven temp 180C – preheated                serves 6

1. Boil potatoes in a large pan of salted water for 15-20 mins until tender. Drain and mash with butter and cream, add salt and pepper to taste. Place to one side.

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2. Skin fish, if required , cut into bite size chunks, place in a wide deep sauté pan. Place the milk, carrot, onion, bay leaf and peppercorns into the pan and slowly bring to a simmering heat for about 4 mins until the fish is tender. Remove the fish and remove any bones, place in a shallow casserole dish along with the raw prawns. Leave the vegetables in the milk liquor for another 15mins to infuse. Remove vegetables, peppercorns and bayleaf after this time.

3. For the sauce, melt the butter in a sauce pan on a low heat, add the flour to make a paste, add the infused milk, a ladleful at a time and keep whisking until smooth. Add the parsley and capers, simmer for about 8-10 mins, do not let boil. Add cream and cheddar cheese, mix until you have  a smooth sauce.

4. Pour the sauce over the fish and top with mashed potatoes, either forking over or, for a prettier finish, piping on. For piping the mash needs to be very smooth and add a little more cream if it is looking dry. Leave the potato to cool before piping, using a large disposable piping bag with a large star nozzle. A scattering of parmesan can be added for those who prefer a stronger cheesy flavour.

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5. Place in the preheated oven and bake for 25 mins, or until golden brown.

We serve with fresh green vegetables from the garden in summer and in other seasons frozen peas are the perfect accompaniment and very easy if you are catering for a large crowd.

If you have enjoyed this blog, please follow us on Instagram to get daily updates on life in Cornwall and notices of when the next blog will appear.

Amandasig

Khalile’s Top Ten Wedding Photography Tips

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Ten years ago, Khalile Siddiqui was running his own photo lab and doing studio work when he decided to become a wedding photographer. ‘Brides kept bursting into floods of tears about their dreadful wedding photos and it was heart breaking, so that, combined with a friend who wanted me to photograph their wedding, made me decide to branch out,’ he remembers. Now after photographing more than 200 weddings, Khalile is sharing his vital advice on what couples should do to make sure their wedding photographs successfully capture their special day.

  1. To find a photographer, ask friends for recommendations, explore websites and wedding fairs, but most importantly speak to the photographer. If meeting is not possible, then facetime or skype. Khalile explains, ‘As well as liking the photographer’s style, you must feel 100% comfortable with them. They will be in close proximity for a lot of your wedding day, often in intimate situations, so you must like them. ‘Khalile-Siddiqui13
  2. Check that they use correct protocol and procedure. A sign of that is whether they are not just a member but have a Licentiate (Licence) Associateship or Fellowship of a professional body. Khalile is a Licentiate of The Society of Wedding and Portrait Photographers which means the quality of his work has been approved by other professionals. Likewise, a photographer who has entered and won awards is showing both pride in their work and that they are good at it. The South West Wedding Award, which Khalile has won three times, has independent judges rather than an easily manipulated Facebook liking system.
  3. Check that the photographer has public liability and professional indemnity insurance. Khalile’s insurance means that should a couple’s wedding photographs be of bad quality they are entitled to have another wedding day paid for. Happily, he has never had a claim against him. ‘I understand that this is the most important day of their lives and the photos are sacred,’ said Khalile. ‘When my wife was due to give birth to our son Quais, I reassured the couple whose wedding I was doing I would be with them even if she went into labour. After all, they booked me before the pregnancy happened. Luckily the two dates didn’t overlap.’Khalile-Siddiqui15
  4. Check how the photographer safeguards your images. Khalile uses two memory cards simultaneously on the day and downloads the images to duel hard drives immediately after a wedding.
  5. Check whether the photographer does their own editing, as Khalile does. Some photographers farm out the images for editing which can result in poorer quality. Do remember though that the photographer can only do so much with editing, this may be an occasion when a professional makeup is a good idea. Khalile’s wife Tamsyn, as well as taking photographs on the wedding day too, is a makeup artist and she freshens up the bride’s makeup and subtly change it as the lighting changes. What looks good in the sunlight, is not the same as what looks good under the disco lights.Khalile-Siddiqui16
  6. Have a meeting with your photographer about a month before the wedding and make it at the venue if the photographer has not seen it. Khalile says, ‘This is when I am part wedding planner as well as photographer. We discuss the timing of the day, for example I am not a fan of photos of brides in their curlers, so that’s when I gather together the groom and his mates for a photo shoot, then I can be with the bride for the finishing touches, such as putting on the dress. I also suggest a visit to the local beach between the wedding breakfast and evening reception. It’s often a down time and it gives the couple a breather, as well as atmospheric photos.’
  7. Make lists of your family and friends and what groups you would like them photographed in – no one wants to find that a random plus one is star of the wedding photos while a much loved relative is missed out. Khalile says, ‘The shortest group list I’ve had was the bride and groom with her parents and his parents, but most of the time couples have many more people they want featured. I also like to know people’s names, it’s much friendlier on the day to be asking for Shelia rather than the mother-of-the-bride.‘Khalile-Siddiqui12
  8. Khalile also suggests setting out a photo booth style setting. He explains ‘I provide studio lights and the couple can provide fun props like photo frames, feather boas and glasses which are cheap on ebay and it really helps even the most camera shy guest relax. A bit of mischief, it’s fun and quirky.’
  9. But do not go too quirky in the style of the photographs. Khalile advises, ‘Go for a timeless style, not one where people can say ooooh I remember when everyone had their wedding photographs done in that way. For example, there was a fashion for black and white wedding photos with the balloons coloured. It looks dated now and also it’s not helpful in 40 years when your grandchildren are asking what colour the bridesmaid dresses were and you can’t remember because your photographer only supplied you photos that have been through filters or are black & white.’Polpier-and-Penpol-6.8-56-edit
  10. Make sure the photographer gets some photographs to you soon after the day. ‘I like to send a link to the couple of their wedding blog on our website a couple of days after their wedding day,’ says Khalile. ‘It reassures them that the job has been well done and they can go away and relax knowing when they return the full batch will be waiting for them to enjoy.’Khalile-Siddiqui20

You can view Khalile’s contact details on www.weddingphotographyincornwall.co.uk.

Amandasig