Country Kitchen

Homemade mango chutney with ginger and red pepper.
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In are country kitchen we aim to bring you great ideas for you to try at home in your kitchen.
From homemade jams and chutneys, to bread and soup, using ingredients that you can grow in your garden, there is nothing better than a rustic farmhouse soup with crunchy fresh bread on a autumns day.
We will have weakly recipes.
You can also use the forum to ask questions or give information onm cooking and how to do things in the kitchen.
We will also have a unique section where you can purchase vintage french cooking equipment like copper pots and pans, to rustic farmhouse kitchen display items.

Chestnut & lentil stew:

4 carrots
3 celery stalks
2 onions
5 garlic cloves
1 lt veg stock
1 X 400g tin tomatoes
1 X 400g tin lentils (drained)
300g cooked, pealed chestnuts
salt & pepper
1 tbsp mixed dried herbs
1 tbsp tomatoes purée
1 tbsp butter
1 tpsp oil

Dice finely onions, carrots and celery.
Heat oil & butter in a large heavy based saucepan, add onions, carrots and celery and fry for 15-20 min until golden and softened.
Add tomatoes purée, stir and cook for 2-3 min.
Mince garlic and add to pan, cook for 3-4 min over low heat.
Add stock and tomatoes, stir well and simmer for 30 min, stir in herbs, chestnuts and lentils and season to taste then simmer for a further hour until chestnuts are softened.

Butternut squash & sweet potato soup:

3 tbsp unsalted butter
2 large roughly chopped onions
2lbs butternut squash, peeled and cut into 1 inch chunks
1 lb sweet potatoes, peeled and cut into 1 inch chunks
chicken or vegetable stock
Pinch of chilli flakes to give a bit of spice
salt & pepper to taste

Melt the butter in a large pot.
Add the onions and cook over medium low heat until soft and translucent.
Add the butternut squash, sweet potatoes, the stock with salt & pepper to pot.
Turn the heat to high and bring to a boil.
Reduce the heat to medium and cook until vegetables are very tender, about 15mins.
Tunr of the heat and blitz until smooth.

Chestnut soup:

675g chestnuts
1 3/4 Lt veg or chicken stock
1 small onion
small handful chopped parsley
125ml double cream
2 cloves
1 bay leaf
1 3/4 tsp sugar
salt & pepper

Cook and peel chestnuts.
Finely chop the onion.
Place chestnuts, onion, parsley, cloves, bay leaf and stock into a saucepan.
Bring to boil and reduce to simmer.
Cook for 45 min then remove bay leaf and cloves.
Blitz in blender until smooth, add cream, blend again, season with salt, sugar and pepper to taste.

Glazed chicken thighs:

serves 4-6 people
1 Kg chicken thighs
2 tbsp runny honey
2 tbsp soy sauce
1 tbsp sesame seeds
100 Ml crème fraiche
100 Ml Greek yoghurt
100 G mayonnaise
2 tsp lemon juice
pinch of cayenne pepper
2 red chillies seeds removed and finely diced
celery sticks and carrot batons to serve

Heat oven to 200 deg C – gas mark 6.
Place the chicken thighs in a roasting tin or shallow baking dish.
mix together the honey, soy sauce and half a tbsp of sesame seeds and pour over the chicken.
turn the thighs over and coat well with the glaze, roast for 20-25 min turning occasionally, cooked through until a sticky golden brown colour.

Mean while to make a dip combine the crème fraiche, Greek yoghurt, mayo, lemon juice and cayenne pepper, season well and add chillies to taste.

When thighs are cooked scatter over the remaining sesame seeds and chilli.
serve the celery and carrot batons with the dip and ENJOY!

Vegetable dhal curry:
Serves 4:
1 tbsp vegetable oil
1 large onion peeled and diced
2 tsp ground cumin
2 tsp ground coriander
1 tsp turmeric
1 tsp black mustard seeds crushed
125g split lentils
600 ml boiling water
1 cauliflower broken into small florets
1 fresh chilli seeded and chopped
1 aubergine cut into chunks
4 tomatoes quartered
100g green beans trimmed and sliced into 1 inch pieces
75g of fresh spinach leaves
1 tbsp of chopped fresh coriander

Heat the oil in a saucepan and cook the onions gently until soft and clear stir in the spices and cook for a minute or two on a low heat.
Ad the lentils and stir in the boiling water.
Bring to a gentle simmer, cover and cook gently for 25mins until lentils are tender, add more water if required.
Stir in the cauliflower, chilli and aubergine and cook for another 10 min stir in the tomatoes and beans and cook for a further 5 mins then throw in the spinach take the pan of the heat and stir in sprinkle over the top the coriander and serve with rice and naan bread.

Leek and potato soup:
3 sliced leeks
25g butter
1 chopped onion
500ml Vegetable stock
2-3 potatoes
Melt butter and add leeks and onion. Cook until soft.
Add the vegetable stock and potatoes then add a pinch of salt and pepper and bring to the boil and simmer until potatoes are soft.
Blitz and serve with a chunk of fresh bread.

Cottage pie:
500g minced beef
1 large chopped onion
450g tinned chopped tomatoes
3 sliced carrots
2 handfuls of frozen peas
1 tablespoon Worcestershire sauce
4 tablespoons gravy granules
25g butter
100ml milk
1kg potatoes
Grated cheese
Brown the mince and onions. Drain off excess fat. Add Worcestershire sauce, tinned tomatoes and fill the empty tin with cold water and add to mince.
Add the carrots and peas and simmer for 30 mins until the carrots are soft.
Add the gravy granules and place in an oven proof dish.
To make the mash peel and cut potatoes boil until soft.
Drain mash and add the butter and milk and mix.
Place on top of the mince grate some cheese on top.
Place under a grill or in a hot oven until the cheese has melted and serve whilst hot.