Food: Cherry Brandy

Out the front of my house is a sizable cherry tree. Its a wilding having sprouted up from a cherry stone no doubt dropped by a bird. The tree wasnt there 5 years ago but is now taller than the house! It fruits little sour cherries which have little flesh on their stones. Not much…

Food : Pottekaas

Like most people who travel to Brussels in search of Lambic and its surrounding culture I came back very much taken by the cheeses served alongside the beer . Most interesting to me was the pottekaas, a dip or spread that combines the tangy fresh cheese of the region with garlic, chives and lambic. Upon…

Food : In defense of British cookery

You hear it and see it so often. From the outright slanderous attack to damn with faint praise. You hear it from citizens of the world comfortable in their trendy fusion food moverments but also from the British themselves. British food is terrible. Or that is what we are all meant to think. Recently someone…

Food : Salsa Sauce

Its high summer which means tomatoes are cheap which means its time to make tomato sauce. I make a few varients, some using the smoker to add some earthy tang to proceedings. This one however plays on the flavours of a good Pico de Gallo Salsa. I call it Salsa Sauce but I suppose its…

Cider : Orchard Update

As we head towards the longest day I thought it might be worth a wee update on the orchard. The majority of my trees that went in mid winter were cider varieties and were first growths that are spending the summer developing roots and growing. However I did put in one Sturmer Pippin an old…

Food : Low and Slow BBQ Cabbage

Back in November I turned 40. To mark the occasion I threw a party in our barrel cellar . I did all the food and we had a feast. I cranked up the SnW offset smoker. Somewhat surprisingly the dish that left the biggest impression on people was the vegan BBQ main. Inspiration for this…

Food : Christmas Cake

This recipe is mainly based on Nigella Lawson’s boiled chocolate fruit cake recipe. I have been making it every Christmas for about a decade and a few tweaks and changes have crept in. The most important method wise is i have moved to ‘boiling’ or ‘simmering’ the fruit , booze, butter and sugar in a…

Food: Spicy Kaleyard Boil up – greens and pork boiled in broth

This dish takes inspiration from the spicy boiled Collard Greens dishes of the American South. Kale and spinach are simmered in a hearty broth flavoured with smoked pork, chilli, herbs and a generous dose of garlic. You can of course serve this as a side to BBQ brisket or pork shoulder , or with roast…

Travel : Sydney to Brisbane by train

I was up early next morning , walked across to the railway station from my hotel. The trip out of Sydney was incredibly picturesque , leafy suburbs gave way to lush forest and then suddenly we were in a tidal striking river valley called the Hawkesbury River that looked like a cross between the Marlborough…

Food : Brisket A La Carbonnade

I love brisket , I get a regular supply of BBQ brisket at work and usually will pick up brisket if I see it and pop it in the freezer. I do sometimes do brisket in the smoker however this recipe is a different take on cooking brisket combining the slow cooking in beer of…