Seasonal recipes using the ingredients we produce on the farm.
Devon Ruby Meatballs in a Rich Tomato Sauce
Ragu (or Bolognese) with Spaghetti (or as meat sauce for lasagne)
225g chicken livers
4 rashers streaky bacon
2 medium onions
garlic clove or two if garlic is your thing
tin of tomatoes
glass or three of red wine
seasoning and your choice of herbs (thyme or oregano for me)
I give quantities here as a guide, but it’s not really how I cook. I’m all about a lump of this, a heap of that, an overgenerous amount of meat etc, so play it by ear. Soften the chopped onion in olive oil with the garlic and bacon, then add the beef and brown it well, adding the chicken livers after a few minutes. Cook for 5 minutes then add the tomatoes and the puree, wine, seasoning and herbs. Cover and simmer and then put in the oven for 45 minutes at least. Lovely just with spaghetti and a salad, or you can make pancakes, fill with bolognese, roll up and put in an oven dish, cover with a cheesy sauce and bake for half an hour in the oven til bubbling
Devon Ruby brisket with herby or mustard dumplings
Roast Devon Ruby beef
The perfect Devon Ruby sirloin steak
Take a frying pan, drop in a small swoosh of olive oil and let it heat up properly, then put in your seasoned steak. Cooking times, approximate as always, but as a guide for a 2cm thick sirloin steak:
Blue: about 1 min each side
Rare: about 1½ mins each side
Medium rare: about 2 mins each side
Medium: about 2 ½ mins each side
Well-done: about 4-5 minutes each side
You can use your fingers to check how well cooked your steak is: rare will feel soft, medium-rare will be slightly bouncy and well-done will be much firmer. What is critical for tenderness and juiciness is leaving it to rest. A cooked steak should rest at room temperature for at least five minutes – it will stay warm for anything up to 10 minutes.
Accompaniments? Chips or baked spuds, roasted tomatoes, mushrooms and fried onions, or mushrooms baked with blue cheese, or just as simple as it comes: the best bread/ciabatta roll you can find or make, the inside dipped in the steak cooking juices, topped with the sliced steak and a swirl of horseradish or some onion marmalade.
South Yeo Devon Ruby beef stew
Crab apple jelly
Stuffed Goose Neck
For the stuffing
4oz breadcrumbs or flour or mix of both
2oz suet or chicken/goose fat
2-4 teaspoons of fresh herbs to your taste (I like thyme and sage)
half a lemon, zest and juice
1 small onion chopped finely
thinly chopped liver from the bird whose neck you’re stuffing
salt & pepper
Mix all the ingredients together, adding a little water to moisten if necessary to hold the mix together. Sew up one end of the goose neck, fill with the stuffing and sew up the other end securely. Put in the oven in the roasting tin with the goose, about an hour before you are ready to take the bird out of the oven, basting occasionally. If there’s no room, put it in its own dish and bake in a moderate oven til crisp and brown. Serve in slices as an accompaniment to the roast goose.
Upsidedown Raspberry Cake
For the fruit layer:
50 grams unsalted butter
100 grams light brown sugar
500-650 grams fresh raspberries
100 grams granulated sugar
2 tsp cornflour
In a small saucepan, melt the butter and brown sugar until it gets bubbly. Take the pan off the heat and allow to cool. In a medium bowl, combine the fruits with the granulated sugar and cornflour.
For the cake layer:
250 grams self raising flour
½ tsp salt
100 grams unsalted butter
200 grams granulated sugar
½ tsp vanilla essence
4 duck eggs, whisked
splash of milk
Cream the butter and sugar, add the salt and a bit of flour and some of the egg mixture, and mix, adding more flour and egg until the eggs are incorporated. Add the vanilla essence and any remaining flour. Add a splash of milk to make the mix softer.
You’ll need a non-stick 9-inch springform cake tin, which you should butter first. Sit the whole thing on a baking tray or roasting pan to stop any volcanic mixture bubbling onto the oven floor. Pour the melted butter and brown sugar mixture into the cake tin. Fling the raspberry mixture on top. Pour the batter over the fruits. Bake for 1 hour or a bit more until a metal skewer comes out clean. Let the cake cool for 15 minutes, then put a serving plate over the top of the cake tin and flip it over with care as the fruits will be very hot. I think the recipe said let the cake cool completely, but that’s bonkers; eat it hot or warm with a slug of thick cream. The smell of hot raspberries will drive everyone in the neighbourhood wild, so it’s a good thing that it’s a whopping big cake (with close family ties to the much loved steamed jam sponge pudding) and will serve 12 greedy people easily.
Tomato and Chilli Relish
6 lbs ripe tomatoes, skinned and chopped
4 oz salt
4 apples, peeled and chopped
8 large onions, chopped
3 lbs sugar
4 small tablespoons mustard powder
1 pint cider vinegar
5 small fresh red chillies
2 tablespoons cornflour and a little vinegar to mix it (to add near the end)
Mix the mustard powder with a little of the cold vinegar. Add to other ingredients in a large pot and boil for at least an hour. Thicken with 2 tablespoons of cornflour in a little vinegar and bottle in sterilised jars.
Mutton – any or all cuts from neck to leg, breast, shoulder or loin – it all works
red pepper, deseeded and roughly chopped
fresh root ginger, peeled and roughly chopped if you have it to hand
Ras el Hanout (essential)
paprika (smoked if possible)
extra cinnamon if you like it
dried fruits (a mix of apricots, dates and sultanas is good)
red wine or beer or water
lemon or lime
I tend to make this in a huge vat of a casserole (or two) at a time, because 1. it makes the ultimate winter fast food when defrosted in suitable portions from the freezer. 2. It’s suitable for absolutely any or all mutton cuts so I grab what’s available and save myself time later, and 3. because it seems to create even more perfect results when made in big quantities.
Trim any excess fat from your mutton, but don’t denude it completely. Cut into large mouth-sized chunks. If you use/include chops, leave them on the bone. Shake some seasoned flour onto the meat to cover it lightly.
Peel and chop carrots into chunks, slice onions, chop celery, leeks & peppers and put in a big heavy-bottomed casserole with some olive oil and soften it all over a slow heat for 10 mins. Add the floured mutton and spices, stir and brown, not allowing it to burn. Add dried fruits and nuts, tinned tomatoes and your choice of liquid (to cover the contents in the casserole). If you fancy, you can add chickpeas too. Bring to a simmer and then put in a hot oven for an hour and a half. Take out and stir, add freshly squeezed lemon (or lime) juice and cook for a further 5-6 hours at a lower temperature. If you have a range, put it in the bottom oven, even overnight if you like. Serve sprinkled with fresh coriander, with couscous or flat bread, natural yoghourt, and salad or hot green veg.
Enough shallots to completely cover the bottom of a heavy casserole
4 or so big dessert apples (they keep their shape and don’t fluff to nothing)
4 large trimmed Berkshire pork chops – but keep half the fat on
A beer bottle’s worth of elderflower champagne (or cider if you must)
salt and pepper (ok, this wasn’t from the farm)
Brown the sliced shallots in a slug of olive oil. Add the apple slices and stir about. Add the chops and brown for a few minutes. Pour over the fizz. Bring it up to bubbling point, stick a lid on it and bung it in the oven for at least an hour. If you’ve got an Aga or similar, after its hour in the hot oven stick it in the bottom oven for several more hours until you’re ready to munch – the pork will stay in one piece but slide right off the bone. Serve with whatever carb takes your fancy that will soak up the amazing juices.
Runner Bean Chutney
8 medium onions
500mls malt vinegar
2kg runner beans
2 heaped tablespoon English mustard powder
2 heaped tablespoon ground turmeric
500mls white wine vinegar
500g granulated sugar
4 heaped tablespoons wholegrain mustard
4 teaspoons flaked sea salt
Dice the onion and put in pan with malt vinegar, simmer for 15 mins. Trim runner beans and slice thinly, put in a pan of boiling water and cook for 3 minutes, drain and refresh. Mix the mustard powder, turmeric, cornflour, salt and wholegrain mustard with 4tbsps white wine vinegar. Stir sugar and remaining white wine vinegar into onion/malt vinegar mix, boil and cook for 2 minutes. Add beans and cook gently for 10 mins, giving it a bit of a stir. Pour mustardy mix into the mixture stirring vigorously to avoid lumps. Simmer for 20 mins, stirring regularly. Put into hot jars and seal. Store for at least a month before eating, but it’s better if left for 3 or 4 months, or 12!
Noemi's hot apple cake
6oz self raising flour
1/2 level teaspoon of baking powder
3oz caster sugar
1 duck egg (a hen egg would do, I suppose….)
1/4 pint of milk
1 1/2 oz butter
1lb dessert apples or mix of baking and dessert
4oz demarara sugar with 1 or more teaspoons of cinnamon
Butter a small baking tin (approx 10 x 6 x 2 inches, or 25 x 15 x 5cm). Rub the butter into the flour and baking bowder as if you were making a crumble topping. Add the caster sugar, egg and milk and beat to a thick batter. Pour into the baking tin. Peel, core and slice the apples, scattering them on top of the batter. Sprinkle generously with the demarara and cinnamon mix. Bake in a hot oven for 35-40 minutes. Use a clean skewer to test that the batter is cooked and comes out clean from the centre of the cake. Serve hot with thick cream. You can make this the day before and reheat in the oven for 10 minutes. The quantities double or treble easily (I make a triple quantity and cook in a big roasting tin lined with parchment).
2lbs Victoria plums, stoned and chopped into 4
1lb tomatoes, chopped
1lb stoned dates, chopped
8oz chopped onions
1lb chopped apples
1lb chopped carrots
1lb moist dark brown sugar
tsp ground ginger
1.25 pints malt vinegar
Boil everything except the sugar and the ginger for an hour to an hour and a half, until soft – don’t let it stick on the base so use a heavy bottomed pan and stir from time to time. Add the sugar and ginger and boil for a further hour. Then put in hot jars and seal. It keeps, literally, for years, and best after 12 months, but you can dip in after 6 months if you must! And why Kate? It’s a family heirloom recipe.
This is my favourite salad dressing ingredient for summer and makes a great gift for salad loving friends when put in a pretty bottle. It’s also perfect using blackberries in place of the raspberries.
- Allow 1 pint of white malt vinegar, white wine vinegar or cider vinegar to each pound of raspberries
- Put the fruit in a glass bowl. Add the vinegar to the fruit, and leave for 3-5 days stirring occasionally
- Strain off the liquid, discard fruit and measure the quantity of liquid. Add 3-4oz white sugar per pint to the vinegar
- Boil together for 10 minutes and bottle. You can put a few fresh raspberries in the bottle if you fancy.
Raspberry and blackberry fool
1lb of fresh blackberries
1lb of fresh raspberries
2 pints of double cream (not the extra thick kind, as it has to be whippable)
4-8 oz of caster sugar (depending on sweetness of berries and tooth)
Keep back a handful of whole berries for decoration
Wash the blackberries and drain. Put in a pan with 4 oz of sugar and heat gently so that the berries release their juice (5 mins max). Then sieve, pushing through the berries to get as much flesh and juice as possible. Discard the stuff in the sieve; it’s the strained glory you want, so leave that to cool. Stick the raspberries in a liquidizer/processor to puree. Taste the berry mixtures. If they are sweet enough you don’t need any more sugar, if not, add some caster sugar to the cream, mid whip. Whip the cream to soft peaks and add in the blackberry mix, and whip more so things aren’t sloppy. Fold in the raspberry puree. Spoon into individual glasses or a huge glass bowl and chill for at least an hour, longer if possible to firm up. To serve, decorate with the whole berries, and if you have it, a sprig of fresh mint. This is an incredibly rich pud and you can serve in ramekin sized portions and still make everyone very happy. It’s an autumn dessert that tastes of summer.
Devilled lambs' kidneys
As many lambs kidneys as you can get hold of – at least 2 per person, preferably far more
large sliced onion
dessert spoon of grainy mustard
jellied stock from a recent roast or chicken stock
generous gob of schmaltz (that’s dripping to you)
half a glass of sherry or marsala
Halve the kidneys lengthways and remove the fatty core (scissors work best for this). Sizzle the onions in the schmaltz until translucent and starting to brown. Chuck in the halved kidneys and keep on a highish heat so that they brown too. Flip them over to brown on the other side and then stir in the mustard – the yellow stuff won’t do for this, you really want the grainy type. Glug in the alcohol and let that sizzle too, then add in the stock. Bring up to a simmer and then cover and cook for 15 minutes or so on a gentle heat so as to keep the kidneys tender, or put in the oven. If this is for breakfast or brunch, serve on split hot muffins, or if you want it as a starter, stir in a generous gloop of thick greek yoghourt and sprinkle with coriander (or if you must, parsley, but I really don’t like the stuff) and serve on a small mound of carbs: rice, couscous, tagliatelle, or ciabatta.
Roast leg or shoulder of lamb
Red Cabbage Casserole
1 red cabbage
1lb of apples – dessert or culinary as you prefer
3 oz demarara sugar
Big handful of sultanas
Red wine dregs – a glass or three
Red wine or cider vinegar – a sploosh
Slice the red cabbage thinly and remove the hard core. Push the cabbage into a lidded casserole. Peel, core and chunk the apples and put with the cabbage. Scatter over the sugar and the sultanas. Pour in the wine and a couple of tablespoons of wine vinegar. Bung on the lid, bring to a simmer on the stove and then stick in the oven. A good two hours in a medium oven should do it. It tastes great fresh, but the flavour deepens the next day or from frozen. Serve it hot with lamb, pork, goose or duck (probably not all at the same time). Some folks add onion, but I think that’s a mistake.
Succulent sweet roasted Berkshire gammon
a handful of carrots chopped roughly into chunks
a couple of small onions, ditto
half a celery, ditto
a handful of fresh thyme
runny honey, maple syrup or muscovado sugar
your favourite mustard (Moutarde a L’Ancienne, Dijon etc)
Plonk your joint into a big pan or casserole, cover with water and bring to the boil. Drain off the water, cover again with fresh water, bring back to the boil, scoop off any scum and then add the carrots, onion and celery and the thyme. Either simmer on the stove or in the oven for an hour. Take out the joint and using a sharp knife slice off the skin but leave all the fat. Score the fat diagonally, and again in the opposite direction so you have diamond shapes popping out, making the joint look a bit like a hedgehog. Smear liberally with your fave mustard – it might be whole grain or smooth, just as you like. Then add your sweet ingredient of choice, so pour the maple syrup, spoon the honey or using your hands, clart the sugar onto the surface of the fat to make it cling. Put the joint into a roasting pan. Spoon all the veg out of the cooking juices and scatter around the joint. Add a few generous tablespoons of the liquor around the joint and then roast in a hottish oven for 45 minutes. This can be eaten hot, as it comes, with baked spuds and red cabbage casserole (above), with the cooking vegetables and a swirl of the pan juices, and is wonderful cold in sandwiches or with salad. Also great sliced and fried for breakfast with a duck egg.
Duck Egg Brioche
2.5 teaspoons dried yeast
2 tablespoon sugar
1 teaspoon salt
6 duck eggs
200g softened unsalted butter
Mix the yeast with a couple of tablespoons of water and put to one side. Put the flour, sugar and salt into a large mixing bowl. Make a well in the centre of the flour mix and add the yeasty water, 5 of the duck eggs (beaten) and mix together to make a soft , damp dough. Turn the dough onto a floured surface and knead for 10 minutes until it’s nice and elastic. Wash and dry your mixing bowl and then grease it with a knob of melted butter (taken from the 200g). Put your dough in the bowl and turn it to make it nice and buttery all over. Cover the bowl with a clean tea cloth and leave to rise for an hour or more in a warm place to double in size. Using your knuckles, knock it back and leave to rest for another 10 minutes. By hand, squish small nuts of butter into the dough, until you’ve added 175g. Turn out again onto a floured surface and knead for a few minutes til the butter is evenly incorporated. Grease a pound loaf tin with butter. Divide the dough into ten balls and place them, 5×2 into the loaf tin. Cover the tin with your tea cloth and let the dough double in size once more; this should take half an hour. Heat the oven to 220c/425f/gas7. Brush the loaf with an egg yolk mixed with a dash of water and bake for 20-25 minutes. Turn out of the tin and leave to cool on a wire rack, or, like us, tear off balls of brioche and eat warm with raspberry jam.
Roast leg or shoulder of hogget
James Martin’s recipe for roast hogget with anchovies and lemon (adapted by us)
Lancashire hotpot, hogget style
3 large floury potatoes e.g. Maris Piper
2 onions, sliced
500ml lamb stock
Preheat the oven to 170C. Dust the meat lightly with flour and sprinkle with a pinch of sugar, salt and pepper. Peel the potatoes and slice them thinly. Butter a high-sided casserole dish and arrange about a third of the potatoes in the bottom. Season and sprinkle with thyme. Top with the meat and bay leaf followed by the onions. Arrange the remaining potato slices on top and Pour enough stock over the potatoes to just come up to the base of the topping, and dot with butter. Cover and bake for two hours, then uncover and bake for another 30 minutes, until golden. Serve with pickled red cabbage.
Herb crusted hogget rack
Stir together bread crumbs, chopped fresh mint, rosemary, lemon zest, salt and pepper in a bowl, then drizzle with just enough olive oil so that they combine nicely, If you have an end of parmesan sitting like a small rock in the fridge, you could grate that in as well. Brown the rack in a hot pan, then spread the skin/fat side with French or English mustard. Press the crust mix onto the mustard, and then cook the rack in the oven for about 25 minutes. Let it stand for up to 10 minutes, then slice into chops and serve with your favourite veg – purple sprouting broccoli, parsnip puree, and new potatoes.
Hogget devilled kidneys and Boozy hogget liver
Cut the kidneys in half and snip out the white core with scissors. Fry a couple of small finely chopped shallots, then add the kidneys and a rasher or two of streaky bacon cut into pieces, letting the meaty bits brown. Add 1 tsp of grainy mustard, a small splash of Worcestershire sauce and a pinch of cayenne. Stir in 1 tsp of redcurrant jelly if you have it, and most importantly a glass of sherry – fino, amontillado or cream, whatever you have in the cupboard. Let the sauce bubble and cook for a few minutes until the kidneys are no longer bloody, but just a touch pink on the inside. Pile on to crisp toast, or a bed of massed potato. Eat in secret!
You can cook the hogget liver in a very similar fashion to the kidneys. Slice it in strips, coat it in flour, then fry with onions or shallots, add bacon and mushrooms. When the liver is cooked to your satisfaction (again, slightly pink, just for a few minutes) add madeira or sherry and let it bubble to thicken the sauce. Serve with mash, rice or noodles and I bet the juice will run down your chin.