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    You are in: Home / Cookbooks / A Country Pantry - Pickles, Chutneys, Jams & all types of Preser
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    36 recipes in

    A Country Pantry - Pickles, Chutneys, Jams & all types of Preser

    There is something very seductive and pleasing about taking fresh seasonal fruit and vegetables, then adding spices, sugars & vinegars to achieve glossy jams & fruity chutneys! I have a whole pantry full of pickles, jams, confitures, conserves and chutneys; we use them in our Bed and Breakfast business & the guests appreciate the "home made" aspect. I will be adding my new recipes to this book all the time! I have included butters, mustards, candied flowers, dressings, sugars, syrups, pates and terrines.........anything that takes nature's bounty and preserves it for future enjoyment!
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    When my two fig trees are in season, I struggle to cope with the amount of fruit they produce..........a rather nice problem I have to admit! We eat figs fresh with nearly every meal; I make jams, conserves and also bottle the fruit in liquor. However, this is one of my favourite ways of using some of my fresh figs, and this chutney is just amazing when served with the cheese board or with cold meats and charcuterie. Ginger has a natural affinity with fresh figs and gives this chutney an extra layer of flavour. This chutney does not keep as long as some other fruit chutneys, but that never seems to be a problem, as we eat most of it quite quickly and I always have numerous requests from family and friends for a pot or two when I make it! This intense chutney really captures the fruit’s rich sweetness perfectly and is capable of turning a simple toasted sandwich into something rather special.......it's great with all types of cheese.

    Recipe #381309

    Pull up a hammock, select a good book and make a jug of this cooling lemonade to refresh you as you gently sway and wile away the long, hot hours! A simple zingy lemonade syrup that is added to water to dilute and is compulsory for hot, humid days! Lemon Verbena is one of my favourite herbs and is a welcome addition to my walled herb garden here in France. The syrup is also amazing if poured over ice creams and summer berries for a tangy citrus flavour. Add an attractive label and a sprig of lemon verbena leaves for a thoughtful summer gift.

    Recipe #380309

    A quick and easy home-made honey recipe from the Auberge in South West France! I use lavender honey so much in my cooking, that I thought it was about time I made my own - given that I have about 30 lavender bushes! As well as giving an amazing and subtle flavour to your recipes, it also makes a wonderful gift for a fellow foodie. I plan on making my own lavender honey all the time now, as even in France, it is quite expensive to buy. You can increase the quantities to make more jars - just remember to keep the flower to honey ratio the same.

    Recipe #379821

    This is my mum's recipe for rose syrup - and the name of their cottage in England! Try to use old English shrub roses, as they are highly fragranced and impart a delicate flavour to the syrup. The correct word for this recipe would be a Shrub or a Ratafia, as it is fortified with brandy - however, Ratafia would also have fruit or almond kernels added; it would have been offered as a refreshing "pick-me-up" to gentile ladies - with water or lemonade added of course! This recipe is well over 100 years old and a bottle of this would make an unusual and delighttful gift.

    Recipe #379765

    A selection of my four favourite "cheesy" flavoured butters..... Cheddar & Garlic Butter, Camembert Butter, Roquefort Butter and Stilton & Green Peppercorn Butter. These can be prepared well ahead of time and stored in the fridge or the freezer. I then cut off rounds or slices, as and when I need them. My favourite uses for these wonderful cheese butters are as toppings for steaks, grilled fish and vegetables. They are also wonderful spread and melted on ciabatta, a baguette or good artisinal bread - a meal in themselves!! I have also popped a slice or two into pasta dishes or white and any savoury sauces, for that extra cheesy zing!

    Recipe #228627

    I always have at least several jars of Confit d'Oignon in my pantry; it is excellent with so many different types of dishes & recipes. Serve it with charcuterie, terrines & cheeses; it is wonderful added to vegetables, soups, stews, daubes or as a sauce for steaks. I also use it for tarts, quiches & grilled cheese sandwiches. It is well worth making a few jars - it is expensive to buy, even in France; make up several jars when onions are cheap or you have a glut in your garden. You can make it with red or yellow onions, red onions gives the finished confit a fantastic colour! This what I use when I make my Recipe #205353.

    Recipe #211001

    This should be called Mum's quick pickled cucumber and onion, as this is what she made EVERY Sunday afternoon for tea-time! We always had this alongside fresh bread and butter, boiled eggs, cold cuts of meat, fruit cake, scones, sometimes a tin of red salmon and always a pot of tea! Wonderful memories, and an easy and tasty pickle for tea-time food. This is also wonderful with picnic food, smoked salmon or an assorted cheese board.

    Recipe #245742

    The salad cream that most of us in the UK know, love and use was invented by Heinz in 1914 and was very popular with working classes; a truly socialist salad dressing if you will. However, its popularity waned in the latter part of the century, with the arrival of the decadent mayonnaise, flaunting its Continental French and Spanish roots and pushing the humble salad cream to one side. However, like any good socialist, salad cream would not go away and still remains a firm favourite in the UK with people who have refused to climb that social ladder to mayonnaise!! My recipe for homemade salad cream comes from Mrs Beeton's cookbook originally, but I have made some modifications. Mrs Beeton uses quite a lot of vinegar in my humble opinion, but the recipe is flexible so add more if you wish. I prefer salad cream when I am trying to cut back on fat - plus I rather like it's tangy flavour, and it is truly wonderful when spooned over hard boiled eggs or fresh lettuce leaves. Or, try it in sandwiches and dips, for a lighter taste to mayonnaise.

    Recipe #359598

    The Auld Alliance is the historic friendship between Scotland and France, as well as a traditional cheese and whisky recipe. Here is a modern version of my Scottish grandmother's recipe for Auld Alliance. I have used Scotch whisky and a lighter French blue cheese, Fourme d'Ambert, instead of the usual Roquefort, which I find very salty. This makes a fabulous appetiser or an alternative cheese course. Choose a blue cheese and Scotch whisky of your choice; blends are better than malts in this recipe. A Potted History! Scotland’s most famous connection with Europe was the Auld Alliance with France. First agreed in 1295/6 the Auld Alliance was built on Scotland and France’s shared need to curtail English expansion. Primarily it was a military and diplomatic alliance but for most of the population, it brought tangible benefits through pay as mercenaries in France’s armies and the pick of finest French wines! The preparation time includes the chilling time.

    Recipe #359855

    An easy and old fashioned pickle that takes its name from the fact that this pickle goes so well with simple bread and butter, or sandwiches. This pickle must be stored in a DARK place, or the cucumbers will lose their colour, and it is best eaten after 2 months. I always try to have a jar or two of this colourful and tangy pickle tucked away in my pantry - as it makes fabulous sandwiches for teatime or picnics, as well as being an ideal accompaniment for simple suppers and light toasted snacks. This recipe is ideal when cucumbers are cheap or you have a glut in your garden. If you don't have time to wait before eating this, I also have a "quick" recipe for this type of pickle posted on Zaar: Recipe #245742 .

    Recipe #299697

    A fabulous recipe for a soft set strawberry jam, or rather a strawberry conserve, where most of the fruit remains whole and is suspended in a delicious strawberry flavoured jammy syrup! This conserve reminds me of the traditional Cream Teas you get in the West country of England - especially Devon and Cornwall; a pot of tea served with fluffy fresh scones, butter, thick cream and this strawberry conserve. (Preparation time includes the 2 days allowed for the fruit to stand in the sugar.) This type of jam recipe is also very French, they tend to have a softer set jam here in France - it is lovely to see WHOLE pieces of fruit on your toast or scones! I also use this for steamed puddings - absolutely divine!

    Recipe #299326

    A delicious and traditional English style artisanal mustard made with good English ale and garlic; the type of mustard that is so expensive to buy in the supermarkets. Home-made mustard is easy to make and very satisfying, as you can add special ingredients to suit your taste. This mustard is wonderful served with all manner of pies, pasties and savoury pastries, as well as cold meats, steaks, roasts and sausages. It is a quick maturing mustard, and is ready to eat in two weeks. Makes an ideal gift, especially for men and BBQ fanatics!

    Recipe #291096

    This is my "secret" recipe, that I make for the guests who stay in our Chambres D'Hotes - Bed and Breakfast! (Not so secret anymore!) It is always popular, and makes a nice change from the usual pork rillettes, and it is MUCH lighter in fat as well. Serve these rillettes as I do, with triangles of hot toast and a selection of cornichons, pickled onions and a good quality or home-made confit d'oignons.......a good Dijon mustard is also "le Must Have" as well as a selection of salad leaves! I have a recipe for confit d'oignons posted on Zaar: Recipe #211001

    Recipe #282605

    A lightly spiced butter, laced with dark rum - this traditional old recipe originates from the county of Cumberland in the Lake District of Northern England. In Cumberland, rum butter served with oatcakes or buttermilk scones were given to friends who called at the house to see a new baby. In turn they would leave a silver coin, and on the day of the christening, when the butter bowl was empty, the coins were placed in it. A sticky bowl, with plenty of coins sticking to it, meant that the child would never be wanting. The saying goes...... “Butter symbolizes the richness of life, sugar the sweetness of life and rum, the spirit of life.” Cumberland rum butter is traditionally served with Christmas pudding and mince pies; it also makes a wonderful gift for any new parents or to give throughout the festive season.

    Recipe #275331

    A subtle blend of sweet and savoury with just a hint of alcohol which echoes the ancient practice of adding spice and fruit to meat dishes. I also have a "Boozy Fat Free" mincemeat recipe posted,Recipe #184762, but if you wish to make a mincemeat recipe with little or no alcohol, this is a wonderful traditional recipe for long lasting mincemeat. Mincemeat was always made at home before the advent of commercial brands, and although this is based on an old recipe, this was obviously made after the introduction of sugar into England. In earlier times mincemeat was a mixture of real meat, spices and fruit. The only remaining and symbolic ingredient of this ancient culinary practice is the inclusion of the suet - which can be beef or vegetable suet for vegetarians. Excellent in mince pies and all manner of steamed and sticky puddings! PS. If you cannot obtain suet locally, you can use grated butter instead; place the butter in the freezer until nearly frozen and very firm and then grate into the bowl straight away.

    Recipe #257241

    I have been making these for years and years now, and I always like to have a jar handy in the pantry. They are great to munch on with cold meats, cheeses, bread and crackers, as well as being a much loved and traditional accompaniment to Ploughman's Lunch and also Fish and Chips. You will often see large jars of pickled onions in British fish and chip shops, AND on the bar in British pubs! If you start these in October, they will be ready to eat by Christmas and New year - making them an ideal addition for your cold buffet table and cheese boards. Please note, this is an easy and therefore a NON BRINING method; they will last for about 6 to 9 months in ideal conditions, a cool and dark pantry or store cupboard. If you wish to make these in bulk to last a couple of years, you need to brine the onions first; I have added brining notes at the end of the recipe instructions. I hope you will enjoy these as much as we do!

    Recipe #255611

    We have a wonderful fig tree in our back garden, and this year I cannot keep up with all the fruit! We have had figs in salads, baked figs, figs and cheese - I have made fig chutney, bottled figs and figs in Armagnac...finally, I thought up this idea for a jam, as I think figs and ginger go so well together. It is delicious - and such a wonderful rich colour! Not only is it wonderful spread on toast or bread, but it is lovely dolloped on ice cream and hot desserts, or for steamed puddings! You need to use fresh figs for this recipe - you don’t get the same results with dried figs.

    Recipe #254187

    I always dry at least a kilo of orange peel during the summer months - and that keeps me right through until next year. This is not so much a recipe as a technique, but it is so useful to have a jar of this in your pantry throughout the drear winter months. I use this dried peel in daubes, tagines, stews, curries, marinades, desserts, cakes and baking. It really does not take that long to dry in direct sunshine - and the quicker it dries, the more intense the orange aroma and the higher the oil content. A great by-product of oranges, and a part that is normally thrown away!

    Recipe #254233

    This Anglo-Indian recipe is more a relish than a chutney, but it can be used like a chutney in cooking, as well as a condiment. A real "must" in this recipe are the Nigella Seeds, also known as Black Onion Seeds - these give the Relish/Chutney an authentic Indian flavour, as well as making it very special. It is delicious with all types of cheese boards, cold cuts and meat platters, burgers, sausages, curries and also when used in sandwiches. My daughter loves this in toasted cheese sandwiches! Or, give a jar as a gift as I often do! I couldn't resist giving it a "magical" name, especially as India is famous for its Rubies and Emeralds!

    Recipe #254269

    A delightful apple chutney with the added kick of ginger. I make this every autumn when I harvest my apples from the garden - you can use windfall apples too. Chutney is such an interesting preserve as it combines sweet and savoury flavours, making it an ideal accompaniment for a range of dishes such as cold meats, salami, ham, pasties, pies and is essential in a traditional Ploughman's Lunch! I also add chutney to my curries, tagines and winter stews. The word chutney is derived from the Hindu word "chatni" meaning strongly spiced. Try to use good cooking apples with plenty of flavour and taste for the best results. This is based on a family recipe and is a mellow and mild type of chutney.

    Recipe #251103

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