Saturday, 31 October 2009

This weeks new plates

Here is a slow poached seabass torchon with glazed vegetables and red wine fish jus

Laverstoke park beef fillet wrapped in smoked Alsace bacon, braised beef brisket, violet sprout leaves, aligot, seared foie gras, jus gras(foie fat)

Apple and blackberry gnocchi, oatmeal crumble, walnut custard, nice one Sam!

Ballontine of Loch Duart salmon, seasonal vegetables, pink grapefruit, fromage blanc and fresh herbs

New Forest game

Once again the game season is upon us. Time to get your game on i say. Here is a warm partridge salad with rolled and poached leg, pink fir potatoes, baked fig, pistachio oil and cracker, fig juice, partridge jus vinaigrette

Friday, 30 October 2009

Seared Shetland Island scallops, butternut, salsify, walnuts and smoked Alsace bacon

Hello, this is a dish that has just gone onto the a la carte menu. Proving to be a popular dish already. There is a butternut puree hinted with a touch of anise, salsify, Perigaux walnuts, smoked lsace bacon lardons, Tinkerbell pumpkin wedge, squash cracker, brown butter sauce and butternut juice.

Thursday, 22 October 2009

Slow roasted pork belly, honeymead soaked apricots, cepe mushroom, pecan jus

Here is a dish iv'e just finished. Very simple and very seasonal. The apricots are soaked in a home made honey mead. Im loving this old English honey wine and have been using it to sweeten things up in certain dishes. Its been used for pickling, marinating, ice cream, sauces, glazing, jelly, cocktails.

  • 6 to 8 kilograms of grade-A honey
  • 20 lt of tap or bottled water
  • 8 grams (1/4 ounce) of freeze-dried wine, champagne, or dedicated mead yeast


Making mead requires essentially the same basic kit necessary to brew beer at home: primary and secondary plastic-bucket fermenters with air locks and spigots, transfer hosing, a bottle-filler tube, heavy bottles, bottle caps, bottle capper, and a bottle brush and washer.

Bring the water to a boil. Boiling should remove harsh chlorine from municipal tap water. If you don't own a pot large enough to hold five gallons of water, boil as much as possible. You will add the remaining water to the fermenter later.

Once the water reaches a boil, remove it from the heat and stir in all of the honey. Do not boil the honey, as it reduces the aromatic quality of the finished mead.

While the honey dissolves in the water, put a cup of lukewarm water into a clean bowl. Sprinkle in the yeast and cover the bowl with plastic wrap. When the honey has been fully dissolved in the water and the pot is cool to the touch , pour the honey-water into the fermentation bucket and stir in the yeast mixture. Note: Cooling the honey-water could take quite a while. This process can be accelerated with a so-called sink bath, that is, repeatedly immersing the pot in cold water in a sink or basin.

If you have not already added the full 4 1/2 gallons of water, top it off with the balance in bottled water .

Seal the bucket and allow the mixture to ferment for two weeks to one month. The progress of fermentation can judged by monitoring the carbon-dioxide bubbles escaping from the air lock: When they drop to one bubble every sixty seconds, fermentation has nearly concluded. Note that is only an issue during this primary fermentation; secondary fermentation has more to do with aging and mellowing and hence is more flexible. When primary fermentation has subsided, siphon the mead over to your secondary fermentation bucket and seal it. Allow one to four months aging time. Do not open the fermenter, as this risks contaminating the mead.

When you decide it has matured enough (and the mead has cleared), you will want to siphon it into sterilized bottles and cap them. Follow the same procedure as you would for home-brewed beer.

This recipe is a basic mead. You can add different spices or play with elderflowers or add fruit flavours to your mead. It all depends what you want to use it for.

Wednesday, 21 October 2009

Monkfish roasted on the bone, glazed pork belly, Roscoff onions, violet artichoke, Le Puy lentils, broken red wine vinaigrette

This is another finished article for the a la carte. Ingredient quality is the main attribute to any dish. This dish is no exception. Wild monkfish caught off the Hampshire/Dorset border, local Greenfield pork belly, pigs free to roam their Hampshire countryside, Le Puy lentils, noted for their slight peppery taste and failure to lose shape when cooking, Roscoff onions, originating from the town of Roscoff in Brittany, delivered door to door back in the French hey day by onion Johnny's with striped shirts and onions around their necks. Pink in colour and sweet in taste. Violet artichokes, these are originated from the Southern French region of Var nearby Cavaillon. This is a precious variety which is known for its superb taste and aroma and tenderness. This artichoke variety is characterized by two external aspects:The violet color over the green leaves.The shape of the fruit bottom is conical. The red wine vinaigrette is made by reducing red wine with toasted anise, cinnamon, sugar and fennel seeds. Reducing to a syrup consistency, then topping the reduction with grapeseed oil (without mixing).

Thursday, 15 October 2009

Lamb noisettes with glazed sweetbreads, wild mushrooms, molten potato croquette, sherry vinegar caramel, thyme emulsion and a mushroom froth

This is another completed dish for the a la carte. Very simple, just 4 ingredients on the plate, lamb, sweetbread, mushroom and potato. The potatoes are made by setting a creamy potato mousseline with gelatine and rolling it into small cylinders. Then they are rolled in potato flour, eggs and instant potato pearls, then egg and potato pearls twice more. They are a suprising element to this dish and gluten free, which i try to avoid certain allergys when writing my menus so they cater for all........that is unless you are allergic to lamb, mushroom, potato.

Thursday, 8 October 2009

Terrine of Greenfield ham hock, smoked pigeon and foie gras, sultana puree and Jerusalem artichoke

This is the terrine which will go on the a la carte menu. The ham hocks are from Greenfield pork products which are based in Andover, Hampshire. The breed is Saddleback and they are cooked for four hours in a court bouillion. The pigeons are soaked in a brine for 2 hours, then the breasts are hot smoked on the boneuntil pink. The legs are smoked then confit sous vide and cooked in a waterbath until tender. The foie gras is confit in duck fat at 60C for 15 - 20 mins. The terrine is set by reducing down the pork stock and pouring over the built terrine. Some roasted pearl onions are placed in the terrine to add a slight crunch and bring a sweetness.

Tuesday, 6 October 2009

New menu dish

This is another finalised dish for my new a la carte menu. It is a dish that has been working well for the pick up and also for the mis en place. There is a cube of braised brisket to add richness to the dish. The potatoes are made by mixing potato puree and choux paste together and combining sour cream and freshly chopped tarragon.

Tenderloin of Casterbridge beef and brisket,
baby turnips, chestnuts, pickled radishes and sour cream and tarragon potato beignets

Saturday, 3 October 2009

New a la carte

I am currently working hard on my new a la carte menu to start in a couple of weeks. I have done a number of dishes already and have had them on du jour menus gaining feedback and seeing how they sell. The results so far have been positive. Over the coming days i shall post my a la carte menu dish by dish. Here is the first dish which is a
Wild halibut fillet
spiced pumpkin, Autumn cabbage ravioli, cockles and a kumquat sauce