One word, ‘pasty’.

Happy St Piran’s Day folks! (…and happy engagement day Mrs R.)

Loe Bar – Porthleven, St Piran’s Day 2003.

I’ve posted before about pasty withdrawal, and even carrots! But, no more nonsense, I’m a Cornishman and I was brought up on these things, here’s a recipe:

Six Homemade Pasties – ingredients

  • ~500g*, (6 x~80g) cubed beef  
  • pastry; OK, we could make it, but two packs of shortcrust ready-made pastry’s easier. (A 500g block makes three)
  • 3-4 potatoes*
  • 2-3 onions*
  • 1 swede* (which the Cornish call turnips)
  • pepper and salt

*Six handfuls

How to make ‘um:

I have found a 500g block of pastry will do three medium pasties. Cut a block into three, screw the slice up, and roll it out to a circle. Then put on:

  • A handful of diced potato,
  • A handful of chopped onion,
  • A handful of diced swede,
  • A handful of cubed beef (1cm sqs) ~80g,
  • Shake a pinch of salt,
  • Shake a good dash of pepper – a good pasty needs pepper!
  • Egg-wash around the edge.

Fold the top edge forward to the bottom edge and crimp.

Make the other one. One is never enough!

In a greased baking tin, egg-wash (or milk, or egg & milk) the top of thre pasties.

Cook on high 200° for an hour.

If it’s burning (cover with tinfoil).


Again, happy St. Piran’s Day! There’s more pasty stuff here: ‘pasty


Spiced Banana Cake, with Ginger.

So, we have a ‘Banana Cake’ thing going on at the mo,
(more details of why & where in due-course)
but for posterity, here’s the recipe.

Ingredients for our Spiced Banana Cake, with Ginger;

  • 200g self-raising flour
  • 1.25ml bicarbonate of soda
  • 2.5ml Salt 
  • 75g Unsalted Butter (If you’ve salted butter don’t add the salt above)
  • 150g caster sugar (for a different dark cake, use dark sugar!)
  • 2 beaten eggs
  • About 4 bananas (~450g if weighed with skin)
  • Mixed spice
  • Crystallised Ginger – chopped.


  1. Heat oven to 180°C.
  2. Grease & line with baking paper a small loaf tin.
  3. Mix the flour, bi-carb & salt together.
  4. Peal and mash the bananas.
  5. Cream the butter and sugar together.
  6. A little at a time, mix in the eggs and some flour mixture.
  7. Add as much mixed spice and chopped crystallised ginger as you fancy.
  8. Stir in the remaining flour and mashed banana.
  9. Pour into your lined tin & bake for 60-75 mins or until a knife comes out clean.
  10. Cool for a few minutes before turning onto a cooling rack.


As mentioned, the reasons for our Banana Cake adventures will be released in due-course.

For other cobbled together recipes (many Cornish), search ‘recipes’.


Peater Butnut Cookies

We like to mix it up a bit.

Covid, kids, broken doors, antibiotics, chalazion, wall papering! argh!…
I had to take my mind of things for a bit…

There’s been a jar of peanut butter in our kitchen for months, and it’s usually only me that eats it. But for some reason even I’ve gone off peanut butter sandwiches!

So, as I say, I needed a distraction – hence Peanut Butter Cookies.

The easiest! Four ingredients, 15 mins.

  • about 200g or peanut butter
  • about 200g of caster sugar
  • about 100g of breakfast oats 
  • 1 egg*

*incidentally, I can recommend the double-yokers from Sunrise Farm Seagrave!

  1. Heat oven to 180C.
  2. Mix the peanut butter, sugar, oats, and egg until smooth.
  3. Place balls on a baking tray – I used an ice-cream scoop.
  4. Flatten each ball a tad.
  5. Bake for about 12 minutes, until just starting look brown*.
  6. Cool on a baking tray.

Don’t over cook them or they will be hard when cooled. If you take out when just turning brown, they should remain chewy on the inside.



Seafood Linguine

This is so simple it’s silly. We tried this a few months ago – trying to vary from the lock down staples. It’s become a regular favourite for me and the boss, though the kids are still at an “ick, fish” stage.

You do really need to be a chilli fan but do it to your liking. Again, it’s so simple – initially you think basic/bland – but, if you get the mix just right it’s delightful and filling.

  • Enough pasta for two: we use linguine.
  • olive oil
  • Lazy garlic, or finely chopped fresh if you have it
  • Lazy chilli, or finely chopped fresh if you have it
  • 200ml dry white wine
  • cherry toms whole
  • white fish like cod, and cooked large prawns or anything you fancy.
  • parsley if you have it.
  • A lemon

Pasta: A pasta of your choice – make your own if you can, it’s so much more tasty – there’s some nice ones if you just look above the basic pasta, and I think it’s worth having a nice one. For this dish try a nice linguine. (Digression: I do keep looking for Orzo, not tried it yet, but once we’re out of lock down I intend to track it down)

  • Cook you pasta accordingly…
  • While the pasta’s cooking, in a large pan heat up a dash of olive oil and add lazy garlic and chilli (you decide quantity!) and heat for no more than 1 minute – just until it starts to colour. Then pour add the white wine, and bubble until it’s reduced by half.
  • Once reduced by half, add the cherry tomatoes and heat for cook for 2 mins. We like keeping cherry toms whole, as when you eat them they are really juicy – boom!
  • Then add your white fish and cook for ~2 mins – Your white fish should break up in a few mins. Use the pan lid to retain heat and moisture if needed.
  • When fish is breaking up, add your drained cooked pasta to the fish and toms – you may want a bit of pasta water if you’ve over reduced the mixture too much. Also add your precooked prawns (things like precooked prawns just need to warm through, not too long or they’ll be chewy)
  • Mix it well, and serve with parsley and a good squeeze of lemon.

Again, it’s so simple, but if you get the mix right it’s delightful and a small amount can be filling.

Other recipes: Recipes


Easy Lemon Drizzle Cake

Easy Lemon Drizzle Cake:

Cream together:
4ozs marg
6ozs sugar

Mix into the above:
2 eggs
6 ozs SR flour
1 tsp baking powder
4 tablespoons milk
rind of one lemon – (need lemon juice later)

Line small loaf tin* with drop of oil then greaseproof paper

Bake ’bout 45mins at about 180 degC

While cake’s still hot, make a syrup of lemon juice and 3 tablespoons of icing or caster sugar (or any sugar to be honest – dark brown is also great).
Pour over cake while hot and still in tin.

Take out of tin after 10-15mins.
(Can be topped with melted chocolate!!)


*For the cake pictured I doubled the recipe, used a big round tin and cooked it for about an hour (cover with foil if it starts to burn)



Just putting this here ‘cos it’s something we’ve used a lot over the last few weeks of #isolation.

Thankfully we are able to usually just go and buy some bread*.  But we have found ourselves short a few times recently.  So we have made flat-bread dough which lasts a few days or more in the fridge.

Flat-bread is made with flourwater, and salt. Some types use yeast, some do not. Some are thick and some are thin.

It’s thought that flat-breads date from 1000s of years before the start of agriculture, these would have used wild grains.

The flat-bread we cook is thin and pan-cooked. It’s versatile, we’ve used it for breakfast with egg, lunch as a snack, and dinner with a curry.

Our flatbread:

  • 500g bread flour
  • 2 teaspoons salt
  • 7g dried yeast  (I double the weight of yeast if using fresh yeast so; 14g fresh yeast- but don’t quote me on this – it works.)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil (fat helps it last longer)
  • about 300ml water

500g of flour in a large bowl – add the salt to one side and the yeast to the other.

Add the oil and half of the water. Mix together. Then add the remaining water a little at a time, until you have a soft, sticky dough.

With oil on the work surface. Knead for 5-10 minutes. The dough will become less sticky and more smooth when ready. (I have not worked out whether dough or flour is better to stop it sticking, but if you add more flour then add more oil also.)

Put the dough ball in an oiled bowl. Cover and leave until the dough has doubled in size. An hour or so.

Lightly flour a surface and knock the dough back until it’s smooth. This can be cling wrapped and used whenever. Ours usually lasts a few days or more in the fridge!

With a floured rolling pin on a floured surface. Separate to a few balls and roll each out thinly to the size and thickness preferred. We prefer a thin pancake-like thickness.

Using a frying pan and a little oil, fry each flatbread for a few minutes on each side. Not too hot or the outside will burn and the inside will be not cooked. Brush with soft or melted butter mid-fry…  you know it makes sense!

Love it!

More bread here.

*We are so lucky to be in a situation where we can do this. We are thankful.



Apple bake…

After a rainy summer’s day yesterday today the sun shone and the garden needed a bit of tlc. The rogue apple tree was straining under it’s load of fruit and so baking had to commence.

Can’t pretend to know what I am doing but we made a random flapjacky type apple creation and an apple traybake type cake. I can’t even remember what we put in to the flapjack, oats and honey and stuff – total guesswork. But here’s the Apple traybake Cake for the record…

Peel and roughly dice about 500g of apples and mix with lemon juice to stop browning.

Mix the ingredients below butter, caster sugar, eggs, vanilla, flour and baking powder into a large bowl and mix well until smooth. 

250g cubed softened butter

280g caster sugar

A dash of vanilla extract

A shake of mixed spice to your liking

350g self-raising flour

2 tsp baking powder

4 eggs

Spread some of the mixture into a prepared traybake tin. Sprinkle half the apples over the top of the mixture, then add another layer or 2 of mix & apples… top with demerara sugar.

Bake for ~50 mins at 160C fan 160c fan.

Cool for 10 mins before you turn out of tin and cut to your liking.

Boom, with ice-cream… Summertime!



Butternut Squash Soup…

We were recently given a whopper of a butternut squash by a friend with an allotment. Thanks H.

And so to add to our store of Green Bean Soup, we now have 5 packs of BNS soup in the freezer, (as well as roast BNS with our roast today).

And so for our take on BNS Soup:

  • 1 large BNS.
  • 2 Onions
  • A helping of lazy Garlic (to your taste)
  • A teaspoon of lazy Chillies.
  • 1.5 litres of veg stock


  1. Peel and chop the BNS (see here), drizzle with oil & seasoning, and roast for 20-30mins (to your liking). We also roasted some carrots that we had left in the bottom of the veg tray! Add what you wish!
  2. Fry the onions, and add the garlic and chillies.
  3. Add the veg stock and the roasted veg and simmer for 20-30mins.
  4. Allow to cool a tad, and then wizz with a blender to your desired consistency. It will blend to a thick saucy soup. To serve, you may wish to dilute the mixture with hot water to your liking
  5. Eat a portion or two, with some crusty bread and real butter! Nice!
  6. Cool and freeze the rest! Ready for the cooler months approaching.

Happy Autumn!   Other recipes here ‘Recipes’


The simplest fruit cake

MixingBecause occasionally it just has to be done!

P’s homework was to follow and recipe etc and so any excuse to bake and we’re on it!

  • 350 g mixed fruit, raisins, currants, cherries, whatever’s in the cupboard
  • 100 g caster sugar
  • A teaspoon(to you liking) of mixed spice.
  • 100 g butter or margarine (we use 50/50 you can’t beat a bit of butter!)
  • 150 ml water
  • A squeeze of lemon.
  • 1 egg
  • 225 g of SR Flour


  1. Simply out oven at 150ºC and line a small cake tin with greased baking paper.
  2. Put fruit, sugar, marg/butter, mixed spice, lemon and water in a saucepan, and simmer lightly for 20 min – lid on!
  3. Allow to cool. Beat an egg and add to fruit mix then stir in the flour.
  4. Put mix into readied cake tin and bake for about 1 to 1.5 hours – depends on oven and shape of tin.
  5. Check with a sharp knife or skewer of it comes put clean it’s probably ready.
  6. Leave in tin for 15mins.
  7. Remove and cool on a wire rack.
  8. EAT!

Because occasionally it just has to be done!


Cheese scones, no butter!

It’s Friday, kids home from school and want to bake… but we’ve no butter! And I am on a purge from sugar and fat. But it’s Friday so Cheese Scones it is!

  • 2 cups of self raising flour 
  • 2 tsp baking powder 
  • A pinch salt (a shake of chilli powder, optional)
  • Grated cheddar cheese to your liking
  • 3 tsps of olive oil 
  • About 125 ml milk 
  • One egg

Ok, sift the flour, baking powder, salt and chilli into a mix bowl. Then add the cheese and mix through the flour mixture. 
Beat the egg and milk in a jug and add the oil. This oil replaces the butter, nice!

Pour the beaten milk-egg-oil into the flour mix and mix to a dough using a metal fork until it’s flour’s absorbed. If too dry, add a tad more milk but not too wet.

By hand press out on a floured surface to about 5mm thick, then fold it over ontop of itself (this forms the scones split after it’s baked) press again using your hand, but not too hard as they’ll not rise if you crush them. 

Cut out your scones by using a cup, glass, or cutter. Put them on a baking tray, pop them in the oven at 180 c for 15-20 mins depending on size. 

Cool on a rack.

So light they almost floated away!