Welcome to my recipe page. This is where I will feature all my Forage ‘N’ Feast menus. You’ll also find other recipes that I love to share.
Stuffed Dock Leaf Pottage
- 8 dock leaves washed well
- 2 tbsp walnut oil
- 250 g mince (lamb or beef)
- 1/2 onion finely chopped
- 1 lemon juice only
- 50 g bulgur wheat
- 1 large tomato
- 1/2 tsp mixed spices
- 200 ml cold water
- 1 tbsp tomato purée
- 4 tsp grated Parmesan
Preheat the oven to 180C/350F/Gas 4.
Boil the dock leaves in water for a couple of minutes and repeat. Drain and pat dry with kitchen paper.
Meanwhile, mix one tablespoon of the walnut oil with the mince, onion, lemon juice, bulgur wheat, tomato and mixed spice until well combined. Add a little of the water to loosen the mixture if necessary.
Roll 8 equal-sized balls from the mixture and wrap one in each boiled dock leaf. Place the stuffed dock leaves into a large cast-iron casserole (or saucepan).
Mix the remaining tablespoon of oil with the tomato purée and water and pour the mixture into the casserole.
Put the casserole onto the hob over a medium heat and gently bring to the liquid to the boil. Remove the casserole from the heat and transfer to the oven. Cook for 30 minutes, then remove from the oven and set aside to cool slightly before serving.
Grate Parmesan over dish before serving
Stir Fried Chilli Chicken With Steamed Clover Leaves
- 1 lb clover leaves
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ½ teaspoon soy sauce
- 2 teaspoons rice wine
- 4 boneless skinless chicken breasts, thinly sliced
- 1 teaspoon soy sauce plus 1 extra tablespoon
- 2 teaspoons cornflour
- Peanut oil
- 1-2 tablespoons minced ginger
- 3 cloves garlic thinly sliced
- 2 tablespoons sweet chilli sauce
- 3 spring onions chopped
- 1 handful pine nuts
In a medium bowl, add the sliced chicken breast, 1 teaspoon soy sauce, 2 teaspoons cornflour and 1 tablespoon peanut oil. Mix well. Heat your wok over high heat until smoking. Add 2 tablespoons peanut oil and pine nuts, and sear the chicken until it just turns opaque (it can still be slightly pink). Remove the chicken and pine nuts from the wok and set aside.
Reduce the heat to medium, and add another couple tablespoons of oil to the wok. Add the ginger and cook for 1 minute. Add the garlic, sweet chilli sauce and fry this mixture for 2 minutes.
Then add the chicken back to the wok along with the spring onions and the remaining tablespoon of soy sauce. Increase the heat to high, and stir-fry for 1 minute. Keep warm until the next stage of recipe is complete!
Thoroughly rinse the clover in water, taking care to pick out any stray weeds or grass.
Gently heat the rice wine in the wok and add the clover leaves. Toss clover for 10 seconds, making sure the clover does not get scalded or burned. The clover will wilt quickly. (like spinach)
Add the salt and soy sauce, and continue to stir until the seasonings are mixed in and all of the clover is wilted. This will only take another 15 seconds. Turn off the heat and add the rice wine, lightly tossing it into the cooked clover. Serve immediately with the chicken .
Ground Ivy Cup Cakes
- 175 g unsalted butter at room temperature, plus extra for greasing
- 175 g caster sugar
- 50 g dried ground ivy grind with coffee grinder or blender
- 3 large free-range eggs beaten
- 1/2 tsp mint extract
- 175 g self-raising flour
- 300 ml double cream
- icing sugar for dusting
- 500 g chopped, peeled and cored apples
- 500 g sugar
- 1/2 cup water
For the filling, place the apples and water in a large saucepan, gently cook until apples are soft, mash with a potato masher or fork.
Add the sugar and heat gently, stirring continuously, until the sugar dissolves.
Keep stirring, increasing the heat, bringing it to a full rolling boil, one that bubbles vigorously, rises in the pan and cannot be stirred down.
Start timing and boil for four minutes only. Remove from the heat and set aside to cool.
For the sponge, preheat the oven to 190C(170C fan)/375F/Gas 5. Lightly grease the tins with butter.
To make the cakes, cream the butter and caster sugar together until the mixture is pale and light. Gradually add the beaten eggs, mixing well between each addition and scraping down the sides of the bowl from time to time. Add the mint extract and mix to combine.
Sift the flour and ground ivy into the bowl and fold in until the mixture is glossy and smooth.
Divide the mixture between the cup cake tin and level with a teaspoon.
Bake on the middle shelf of the oven for about 20 minutes until golden-brown and springy to the touch.
Leave the cakes to cool in the tin for two minutes and then ease onto a wire cooling rack and leave to cool completely.
Whip the cream to soft peaks and spoon into a piping bag fitted with a small plain nozzle.
Cut each cake in half horizontally with a bread knife.
Pipe one dot of the cream in the middle of each cake base and the rest in dots around the edges. Drizzle the filling over the cream, place the sponge tops on and lightly sift icing sugar over the cakes.
Chilled Avocado & Cleaver Soup
- 3 large or 4 medium ripe avocados
- 1 Juice of 1 lemon
- 150 g wild cleavers goosegrass/sticky willys
- 750 ml cold light chicken or vegetable stock
- ¼ tsp tabasco sauce or harissa
- Salt and pepper to taste
Skin the avocados and remove their stones, then chop the flesh and place in a blender or food processor with the lemon juice.
Coarsely chop the chickweed (keep a few leaves for garnish) and place in the food processor with the avocados.
Pour over the stock.
Add the harissa and seasoning and blend until smooth.
Transfer to a bowl, cover and refrigerate for at least 1 hour.
Before serving, taste and adjust the seasoning. Pour into bowls or glasses, add an ice cube and garnish with the cleaver leaves.
Serve chilled in small glasses.
Nettle & Parmesan Tart
For the pastry:
- 125 g butter – very cold
- 250 g white flour – sieved
- 50 g parmesan cheese finely grated
- 1 teaspoon icing sugar
- Pinch of salt & pepper
For the filling:
- 20 g butter
- 500 g nettle leaves. Just the leaves
- 3 Juice of 3 limes or lemons
- 3 large eggs plus 2 large egg yolks
- 300 ml double cream
- 200 g grated parmesan
- 25 g pine nuts chopped walnuts
- Pinch of salt and pepper
- You will also require a 12inch diameter tart tin.
To Make the pastry:
Preheat oven to 180 degrees.
Grate the butter into a bowl, add all the other pastry ingredients. Mix and crumble the ingredients with your fingers until it resembles bread crumbs. Use a nice light touch.
When fully mixed, add small amounts of water until you can form the mixture into a rough ball. Wrap in cling film or grease proof paper. Refrigerate for 30 mins.
Roll out the pastry and place in a 12” tart tin. (This may take a bit of manipulation and don’t worry if you need to patch a few bits here and there!) Prick the base all over with a fork and return to the fridge for 20 mins. Cover the pastry with grease proof paper and add a weight such as dried beans, rice or pasta for blind baking. Place in oven for 15 minutes, then remove the paper and whatever you used as a weight and return it to the oven until it starts to turn golden brown. Then remove.
To Make the filling:
Melt the butter in a large pan on a medium heat, add the nettles and lime juice and sweat them gently for 10 minutes, stirring regularly. (Just like spinach, it’ll reduce in volume). When it’s cooked, whizz it in a food processor or use a hand held blender. Place in a bowl with all the eggs, cream and Parmesan (leave a small handful of the Parmesan aside) and beat together vigorously. The more air you beat in now, the more the filling will rise when cooked. (I use an electric mixer)
Pour the filling into the cooked pastry case and sprinkle with the reserved handful of Parmesan and the nuts. Place in the oven for 20-25 minutes, or until it stops being really wobbly in the middle and looks golden brown. Remove and serve.
Spicy Sweet Potato Wedges
- 2 tsp ground cumin
- 2 tsp chilli flakes
- 2 tsp smoked paprika
- 2 tbsp thyme leaves roughly chopped
- 2 tbsp rosemary leaves roughly chopped
- 3 garlic cloves
- zest and juice 1 lemon
- 3 tbsp olive oil
- 1 1/2 kg sweet potatoes, cut into wedges
Heat oven to 200C/180C fan/gas 6. Using a pestle and mortar, bash together the spices, herbs, garlic and some seasoning.
Spoon into a large bowl and stir in the lemon zest and juice, and the oil. Add the potatoes and toss together. Arrange, skin-side down, on 2 baking trays and bake for 30–40 mins until soft inside and crisp on the outside.
Lemon Posset & Pine Needle Shortbread
- 300 ml double cream
- 75 g caster sugar
- 1 large lemons zest and juice only
Pine Needle Shortbread
- preheat oven to 175°C
- 75 g fresh pine needles and/or tips –Douglas Fir or Scots Pine
- 150 g unsalted butter softened
- 75 g granulated sugar
- Zest of 1 lemon
- Pinch of salt
- 300 g plain flour
Place the double cream and the sugar into a large pan over a low heat and bring to the boil slowly. Boil for three minutes, then remove from the heat and allow to cool.
Add the lemon juice and zest and whisk well.
Pour the lemon cream mixture into 6 small glasses and refrigerate for three hours.
Finely chop the pine needles in a food processor or coffee grinder. Remove any large pieces.
In a large bowl, combine the pine needles, butter, sugar, lemon zest, and salt. Mix with a wooden spoon until creamy.
Gradually add the flour, mixing thoroughly after each addition to form a buttery ball of dough.
Divide the dough between 2 large sheets of wax or grease proof paper. Using the paper as an aid, roll each piece of dough into a 1.5-inch diameter sausage shape. Wrap in cling film and freeze for 15 minutes.
Unwrap the dough and cut into 1/4-inch-thick rounds.
To bake, place the cookies 1 inch apart on baking paper-lined baking sheets. Bake until the edges are golden brown, about 10 minutes. Transfer to a wire rack to cool.
Tomato & Mozzarella Mille Feuille on a Bed of Chickweed & Purslane
- 4 Large Tomatoes
- 2 Pks Buffalo Mozzarella
- 2 Handfuls Chickweed
- 2 Handfuls Purslane
- 1 Squeezed Lemon
- 1 Squeezed Lime
- 1/2 Cup Water
- 1 tbsp Sugar
- 1 Pinch Pepper
Cut the lemon & lime in half and squeeze into a saucepan, add sugar and water. Heat through to rolling boil until consistency of syrup. Take off heat.
Rinse Chickweed & Purslane. Mix together.
Add a small handful of the wild salad ingredients to each plate.
On top of each salad, stack the mozzarella and tomato, starting with tomato then continue to alternate with mozzarella.
Drizzle the lemon and lime mixture over each serving.
Leg of Lamb Steaks with Ground Ivy Pesto
This pesto can be made with nettles, wild garlic or even chickweed.
- 3 Large Handfuls Ground Ivy
- 30 gms Pine Nuts or Walnuts
- 30 gms Parmesan Cheese (grated)
- 3 Garlic Cloves
- 60 ml Olive Oil Extra Virgin
- 1/2 Lemon – Squeezed
- Pinch Salt
- Pinch Pepper
- Pinch Paprika (optional)
- 8 Parsnips
- 6 tbsp Honey
Rinse your ground ivy, and bring a large pot of salted water to the boil. When the water is boiling add your ground ivy to the pot and boil for two minutes.
2. Remove your ground ivy from the pot and place in a bowl of cold water.
3. Dry roast your pine nuts (or walnuts) in a pan (no oil) until golden brown.
4. Place the nuts in your food processor, and add the cloves of garlic, grated Parmesan, salt, pepper and lemon juice (and paprika if you’re using it). Pulse for a minute or two until you have a grainy texture.
5. Remove your ground ivy from the cold water and shake out as much water as you can. (You could also twist it in a tea towel).
6. Add your ground ivy to the food processor, and pulse the mixture for a minute until it’s green and grainy.
7. Whilst your food processor is still running slowly drizzle in the olive oil.
8. Set aside until needed.
9. Preheat the oven to 200C/180C Fan/Gas 6. Place the parsnips, table spoon of oil and honey into a baking tray and mix to coat the parsnips. Season with salt and freshly ground black pepper. Roast in the oven for 20 minutes, turning half way through, until the parsnips are tender and golden-brown.
10. Remove parsnips from oven and puree in a food mixer. If you don’t have one, mash with a potato masher or fork.
11. When you’ve turned your parsnips at the half way stage… Pre-heat a skillet or frying pan with a small amount of olive oil.
12. Coat one side of each lamb steak with a mixed egg. And add a decent amount of pesto on top.
13. Place the leg of lamb, with pesto side down, into the pan. Cook for 3-4 mins until golden brown, flip over, and cook other side for a further 3 mins. Cook longer or shorter depending on ‘pinkness’ of lamb that you prefer.
14. To plate up. Put the pureed parsnips in the middle of a heated plate, place the crusted lamb stakes on top and drizzle plate with honey.
Gorse Sorbet with Pine Needle & Gin Liqueur
- 500 g Boiling Water
- Large Jug Gorse Flowers
- 200-300 g Icing Sugar (sweetness depending on personal taste)
- 2 Juice Lemons
- 2 Beaten Egg Whites
- 4 Sprigs Pin Needles
- 1 Cup Gin
- 250 g Water
- 150 g Sugar
Boil 500ml Water
Add flowers and boil for 2-5 mins remove flowers from liquid (you can leave a few in if you like)
Add 200-300g icing or caster sugar (depending on how sweet you want it)
Return to low heat, add juice of lemons
Allow to cool
Place into fridge for 2 hours
Empty liquid into a tub, add the beaten egg whites, mix thoroughly, put into freezer for 2 hours (take out after 1/2hr and remix, put back in fridge for rest of the time).
For the gin liqueur. Add the water, pine needles and sugar into a sauce pan.. Bring to the boil for 5 – 10 minutes until it has the consistency of syrup. Take off the heat, add in the gin and stir well. Leave to cool.
Serve the sorbet into each dish, then drizzle with the liqueur. Sprinkle a couple of fresh gorse flowers on top.
- 8 litres warm water
- 1 kg sugar
- 5 lemons zest & juice
- 4 tbsp White Vinegar
- 15 Fresh Full, Elderflower heads or 25gms dried flower heads
- 1 tsp yeast champagne yeast would be best
- 8 75cl swing top bottles
Pour 2 litres of boiling water into a well sterilised clean large plastic bucket, pot or container. (use sterilising tablets or sterilise in dishwater at 70 degree setting.)
Add sugar into the water and stir until dissolved .
Top up water to 8 litres with cold water
Place lemon zest, and flower heads into a muslin cloth, or tie into bundle in an old, white cotton shirt and place in container. (or an old pair of tights!)
Add lemon juice and white wine vinegar. Gently stir contents for a couple of minutes.
Add yeast and stir gently into solution.
Cover container with a cloth, towel or blanket and leave in a safe, cool place for 24/48 hrs. Stir frequently during this time to infuse the flavours into the liquid.
Remove muslin cloth with its contents. (Although, sometimes I do leave it in for another day or two…)
After 24 hours check for signs of fermentation. (Bubbling and/or frothing) If no signs of fermentation, move to a warmer place such as an airing cupboard.
Leave to ferment for 5 – 7 days, until solution no longer bubbles. Check that the yeast has fallen to bottom of the container and the solution is clear.
Sterilise 8 x 75 cl swing top bottles and add 1 tsp of granulated sugar to the bottom of each bottle. (this is known as the 2nd fermentation process and provides the fizz!)
You’re now ready to decant into the swing top bottles. Leave the last 2-3 inches of liquid in your container so the sediment stays on the bottom and doesn’t make its way into your bottle. Don’t worry if it does though, it will resettle on the bottom.
Make sure whatever bottles you use can cope with carbonation, or there may be a few explosions! If this happens open the bottle tops to release some co2 and then reseal.
Store upright and allow for the co2 to go into solution to give the fizz. (can take approx 7 days) When ready to drink, refrigerate for at least 3 hours and then pour and serve. Enjoy!
Herbal Cold & Flu Tea
If you’re suffering from the above, then you need to hark back to ‘the good old days’ of grannies cold recipes or, in truth, much further back in time than that.
All the ingredients for this recipe can be found on a normal woodland walk, or perhaps it’s lurking in your garden already and you don’t know it.
Let me make this easy for you…it’s unlikely that you have the dried or fresh ingredients available in your kitchen cupboards. I have them, but only because I am a passionate forager of all things herbal. If you need them…then look no further than this website… Just Ingredients. It’s an AMAZING website for dry ingredients that you should look at just for the hell of it!! You’ll find the link below.
- 1 cup dried peppermint leaves
- 1 cup dried lemon balm leaves
- 1 cup dried elder flowers
- 1 cup dried yarrow flowers
Add 1-2 tsp of tea blend per cup of boiled water
Add 1/2 – 1 tsp of fresh grated ginger (optional)
Honey to taste (optional)
Bring water to the boil. Add to pot or cup, along with the ginger if you are using it. Leave to steep for 5-10 minutes. Strain, pour and add honey and lemon if you desire.