Cookery Courses designed for you.

You will find our homely kitchen just outside
Chichester in historic Tangmere, West Sussex

TEL : 01243 532240

Email : alexhalswell@gmail.com

WE are delighted now to be taking BOOKINGS again.

We are happy to discuss courses, and plan ahead with you.

Do email me for more information :-
alexhalswell@gmail.com

Seville Orange Marmalade

Makes: about 800g/1-2LB)

Ingredients:

1K Seville oranges
2 Litres water
2-3tbsp lemon juice


Sugar (allow about 500g fruit to 500g sugar – or more for a sweet result)
Method
1 Remove the fruit rind with a peeler (discarding the white bitter pith) and chop, cut or shred it as fine or as chunky as you like.
2 Halve the fruit and remove the pips. Squeeze the juice and set aside. Tie the pips and flesh in a piece of muslin (they give extra flavour and pectin – setting agent). Soak the rind and pips overnight in the water. Put the sugar in a large bowl in a warm dry place.
3 The next day tip the fruit, water, rind and bag of pips into a large pan and simmer gently until the rind is tender. Add the sugar, lemon and fruit juice and stir well while the sugar dissolves over a gentle heat. Then boil the mixture rapidly until setting point is reached. (See below)
4 When you are sure the marmalade is ready remove the bag of pips and cool until the fruit and rind will distribute evenly. Fill the hot sterilised jars, seal and label.
To test for setting point:
a. The thermometer should read 104ºC/220ºF for a light set or 105ºC/222ºF/ for a very firm set.
b. Put a little of the marmalade on a very cold (place in freezer 10mins) saucer and leave to cool. After a few seconds push you finger across the surface to see if it wrinkles. If not continue boiling.
c. Take a wooden spoonful of marmalade from the pan and allow it to drip into the pan until the marmalade begins to hang in flakes, if not continue boiling.
Tips: For the best results remember to allow time for the rind and pips to soak overnight in water and the sugar to warm for 1-2 hours, it will dissolve more easily.

Rhubarb Marmalade

Makes: 3-4 x 500g jars)

Ingredients:

600g/1.25-1.5 lb rhubarb
2 large oranges
2 lemons
1.15L/2pints water
Sugar (allow about 500g/1lb sugar to 500g/1lb fruit
2tsp ground ginger or 2tbsp chopped stem ginger (optional)

Method
1 Trim and chop the rhubarb and set aside.

2 If you want the citrus fruit rinds, remove them with a peeler (discarding the white bitter pith) and chop, cut or shred it as fine or as chunky as you like.

3 Halve the fruit and remove the pips. Tie the pips and citrus flesh in a piece of muslin (they give extra flavour and pectin – setting agent). Squeeze the juice and set aside. Soak the rind and pips overnight in the water. Put the sugar in a large bowl in a warm dry place.

4 The next day tip the citrus fruit, water, rind and bag of pips into a large pan and simmer gently until the rind is tender. Then add the rhubarb, the sugar, lemon, fruit juice and ginger and stir well while the sugar dissolves over a gentle heat. Then boil the mixture rapidly until setting point is reached. (See below)

5 When you are sure the marmalade is ready remove the bag of pips and cool until the fruit and rind will distribute evenly. Fill the hot sterilised jars, seal and label.

To test for setting point:
a. The thermometer should read 104ºC/220ºF for a light set or 105ºC/222ºF/ for a very firm set.
b. Put a little of the marmalade on a very cold (place in freezer 10mins) saucer and leave to cool. After a few seconds push you finger across the surface to see if it wrinkles. If not continue boiling.
c. Take a wooden spoonful of marmalade from the pan and allow it to drip into the pan until the marmalade begins to hang in flakes, if not continue boiling.

Tips: For the best results remember to allow time for the rind and pips to soak overnight in water and the sugar to warm for 1-2 hours, it will dissolve more easily.

Rhubarb Fudge Crumble

The crunchy, sweet and slightly fudgy topping makes a great change from the usual crumble mixture and perfect to tempt those who find rhubarb just a bit too sharp!

Serves: 5-6
Ingredients:

700g/1½lb rhubarb, washed, trimmed and chopped
Grated rind and juice of 1 orange
75g/3oz light brown sugar
110g/4oz butter
110g/4oz Demerara or light brown sugar
175g/6oz digestive or ginger biscuits, crushed
1heaped tsp cinnamon

Method:
1 Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/gas Mark 4. Place the rhubarb in an ovenproof dish with the orange rind, juice and light brown sugar. Cover with foil and bake for about 30 minutes. Or microwave, covered with film, for 4-6 minutes.

2 Melt the butter in a pan. Stir in the Demerara sugar, crushed biscuits and cinnamon. Cook for about 5 minutes until thoroughly mixed and the sugar softened, then spoon over the rhubarb. Spread out evenly and return to the oven.

3 Bake for 15-20 minutes until the topping is crisp and serve with ice cream or whipped cream.

Orange Flummery

This is an old fashioned dessert. It is rich and creamy, quickly made and left to set overnight. Try it with some rough crumbly oat biscuits.

Serves 4
Ingredients: 4tbsp thick marmalade (chop the rinds finer if necessary so it is not too chunky), 225g mascarpone cream, 150g thick Greek yoghurt, 1-2tbsps orange liqueur

Place all the ingredients in a small pan and allow to warm through gently, stirring occasionally until everything is well blended and the mixture is just beginning to bubble. (Or warm through carefully in the Microwave for only about 2 minutes, on medium. If the Mascarpone and yogurt boil the mixture will curdle.) Pour into small ramekins and chill overnight until mixture is thickened again. Serve decorated with a few strips of rind or grated chocolate.

Left Overs Pilau

A little cold roast pork and half a cooked cauliflower did not look very inspiring for supper last night, but the addition of some classic spices, and flavourings, rice, leeks, onions and some nuts made all the difference.

Serves 2-3 People

Fry 1 sliced medium onion; 1 large leek, trimmed washed and sliced; in a large pan with a little vegetable oil until beginning to soften. Stir in 1-2 cloves crushed garlic (optional), 1 tsp each of ground turmeric, coriander and chili or paprika (or 2-3tsp Harissa mix or your favourite spice blend) and 50g per person of Basmati or long grain rice. When well mixed stir in 100ml per person hot stock, cover and bring to the boil. Simmer gently for about 10 minutes or until the rice is swollen and almost tender. Add extra liquid or stock if it seems too dry.
Then stir in 200-250g chopped left over roast (turkey, pork or lamb), 50g or more whole, chopped or flaked mixed nuts (save some to sprinkle on before serving) and seasoning to taste. Cove and leave to cook very gently for another 5-10 minutes until rice is tender and meat is fully heated through.
Serve immediately sprinkled with more nuts, toasted, and chopped herbs. Serve with a little chutney, relish or spicy tomato salsa on the side.

Fruity Topped Buns

First of all spread halved buns all over with softened butter right to the edges, and place on a baking tray in the oven at about 180C/350F/gas mark 4. Whilst they are warming up peel, core and slice an apple or a firm pear.

Also peel and segment a tangerine or Satsuma. When the buns are looking crispy and a little bit browned arrange the fruit on top – a few of each type on each bun and then sprinkle with a little sugar or drizzle with honey. Return to the oven for about 15 minutes until turning golden and well heated through. Srve with custard or ice cream.

OR you could give them a meringue topping! Whisk one egg white until stiff and stir in 2tbsp or 50g castor sugar until you have a firm glossy mixture. Spoon this over the fruit and return to the oven for only 5-8 minutes until the meringue is turning brown.
A great week-day treat with very few ingredients!

Cheese & Nut Pesto

This is a very flexible pesto mix – great to use over pasta, left over boiled potatoes or boiled eggs, in wraps with left of cold meat and some shredded salad.

Blend together about 100g soft- ish cheese (e.g. goat’s cheese, St Paulin, Port Salut, Boursin, Dolcelatte or other very soft blue cheese); a handful of flat leaf parsley, roughly chopped; a handful of basil, roughly chopped; 2 cloves garlic, crushed; about 100g toasted nuts, 4tbsp or more olive oil and seasoning taste. Add more oil to give the texture you prefer and lemon juice if you like a little sharpness. Chill until ready to serve. Heat only very gently or just allow to warm over the pasta or potatoes or serve at room temperature.

Add chopped or broken up nuts to crumble toppings whilst blending, or into your Muesli mix; make up a batch of flapjacks with nuts and dried fruits; sprinkle on top of a cake or bread before baking; blend until fine and use to coat chicken fillets, potato or fish cakes; throw whole nuts into salads or curries at the last minute.

Celeriac Remoulade

This is a classic French hors d’oeuvres salad great to serve with cold and smoked meats, steaks, and burgers for instance.

 

Serves: 4-6

Ingredients:

450g celeriac
1tbsp lemon juice
1-2tsp saltDressing:
2tbsp French or Dijon mustard
1 egg yolk
2tbsp wine vinegar
150ml olive oil
Salt and pepper
1-2tbsp chopped fresh parsley

Method:

1 Clean and peel the celeriac and then cut into fine matchstick strips, keeping them as even as possible. Place in a mixing bowl with the lemon juice and salt, mix well and leave for 20 minutes or so until all the liquid has run out.

2 Meanwhile make the dressing. Put the mustard, egg and vinegar in a bowl and whisk well. Then gradually whisk in the oil until you have a thick sauce. Season to taste and chill until the celeriac is ready.

3 Squeeze out any excess liquid from the celeriac, drain briefly on kitchen towel and then stir in the dressing to coat well. Add a little chopped parsley and serve cold with smoked meats or as part of a hors d’oeuvres selection. Keep, well covered, in the fridge for a day or two, tightly covered.

Celeriac Gratin

Winter root vegetables may not always be the most popular with the family but this is a sure-fire way of tempting their taste buds. Leave out the bacon if you need a vegetarian version.

Serves: 4-6
Prep time: 20mins
Cook time: 55mins

Ingredients:

450g peeled celeriac (or swede), thinly sliced
450g peeled parsnips, sliced
175g streaky bacon
25g butter
25g plain flour
300m1 milk
150m1 single cream
150g Gruyere cheese, grated
5ml Dijon mustard
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
Topping:
25g butter, melted
25g fresh white breadcrumbs
To garnish
Chopped fresh parsley

Method:

1 Bring a large pan of lightly salted water to the boil. Add the turnip and cook for 5 minutes, then add the parsnips, cook for a further 5 minutes and then drain thoroughly.

2 Meanwhile, grill the bacon until crispy.

3 Melt the butter in a pan and stir in the flour, cook for 1 minute then gradually stir in the milk. Cook stirring until the sauce thickens then stir in the cream, 110g of the grated cheese, mustard and seasoning.

4 Preheat the oven to 350F/180C/gas Mark 4. Lightly oil a 1litre/2pint shallow ovenproof dish and arrange turnip and parsnip slices alternately into the dish.

5 Pour the sauce over the vegetables. Sprinkle with the remaining cheese, mix the melted butter and breadcrumbs and scatter over the top. Bake for 45 minutes, until golden and bubbling, serve hot with a sprinkling of fresh parsley to garnish.

Tip: to freeze undercook slightly, cool and wrap well. Freeze for 2-3 months and reheat at the above temperature for 30-40 minutes, or golden and bubbling

Caldo Verde

(Spiced soup with greens)

This chunky Portuguese inspired soup has a touch of spice from the hot pepper flakes. With this light broth, the chunks of potato and a good spicy chorizo sausage make it hearty enough for a warming evening meal.

Serves: 6-8
Prep time: 10 mins
Cook time: 25 mins

Ingredients:

1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 onion, chopped
4 cloves garlic, minced
1/4 tsp hot pepper flakes
2 air-dried sweet chorizo sausages, sliced
4 large round potatoes (about750 g), coarsely chopped
1/2 kg thinly sliced red Swiss chard or kale
1- 1.5 litre light stock
1/2 tsp salt

Method;

1 In a large pan gently heat the oil and add onion, garlic and hot pepper flakes. Cook, stirring for 5 minutes or until softened.

2 Add the chorizo, potatoes and chard and stir to coat. Cook, stirring for 5 minutes or until chard has wilted. Add water and salt and bring to boil. Partially cover and simmer for about 20 minutes or until potatoes are tender.

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