Here is a round-up of the lunch in pictures.
English early season asparagus laid out in a roasting tin with lemon wedges and sprinkled with salt and pepper. roasted for about 8 to 10 minutes and served with Anglesey Sea Bream fish cakes, wild garlic and watercress salad and little bowls of fresh herb and yogurt sauce (below)
making individual Black beef and wild mushroom pies…what transpired to be the most time-consuming job ever!! It took me an hour and a half to make about 10 small pies!!!
Rhubarb, roasted with orange rind and juice and split vanilla pods
Pudding, mash and PSB
Rosie the teen waitress
JoJo the excitable supper club dog
Rhubarb and Cointreau Cranachan. The baked rhubarb was mixed with toasted oatmeal, Cointreau and whipped cream.
Me with home-made crackers (left) and Hilly, my kitchen helper warning me not to bring her any more washing up!!
Finally, I have managed to get some time to update the blog. Its fantastic having so many private dinners, but what with trying to get on with life and all the other things I seem to fit in, I find myself with so much to write, but never the time to do it!!
Our last dinner took place on Bank holiday Monday. A lunch for what turned out to be seven in the end (their teens dumped dinner for a climbing course). I was intrigued. I didn’t know much about my prospective guests other than that they were staying in Wales for the week, that they varied in age and there were no vegetarians.
The menu was devised to make full use of all the seasonal local produce possible, while still keeping it exciting (which is hard in spring when we still seem to be ploughing through the end of season root veg, while the new crops are still growing). It was as follows
Citrus blush cocktails – using my own home-made Limoncello
Anglesey Sea Bream fish cakes with baked early season English Asparagus, wild garlic and watercress and fresh herb dressing
Welsh Black Beef and wild mushroom pudding, creamed potatoes with leeks and purple sprouting broccoli
Rhubarb and Cointreau Cranachan
Local cheeses, home made Rowan and Damson and Crab Apple Jelly. coffee and tea
For the main bulk of the produce I didn’t even have to venture out of my village. Leeks, purple sprouting, carrots and potatoes were all from the local farm. Herbs and wild garlic were from my garden and my neighbours, rhubarb was from another friends garden.
The beef came from the local butcher and the cheese from my usual suppliers (mild Seriol goats cheese from Cwt Caws, Camembert from Rhyd y Delyn Farm and Smoked Brie from Dave at Derimon, whose smoked mature cheddar was this week featured on the Great British Menu (http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b00sbqrt/Great_British_Menu_Series_5_Wales_Judging/
The wild mushrooms were from Cynan, who is similarly tipped for celebrity, as he has just been filmed for Country file!!
As I believe I’ve mentioned before, we do have some FANTASTIC food producers around here, and I only hope my dinner guests enjoyed sampling the food. It transpired that they were up from London (Hackney being the home of the couple that booked) and they had spotted my details in ELLE Decoration magazine. They hadn’t yet managed to get to a supper club on home turf….so travelled 300 miles to visit me!!!…well not quite, but I like to think they did. Lunch was fab, with lots of interesting conversation and a very excited dog, who I think had become giddy on country air. Even the sun shone for our visitors. We couldn’t have asked for more!!