Tray-baked sea bream with lentils and salsa verde

Our garden has gone crazy over recent weeks so I’m looking for new ways to use the growing supply of vegetables that are ready to be eaten each day. This one brings in the green stuff…spinach wilted into lentils and a salsa verde made from fresh basil and parsley. There’s nothing like drizzling homemade salsa…

Apricot, plum and lavender cake

This weekend we harvested the apricots that grow on the tree behind our house. Last year was a bumper crop but sadly there were very few this year, most likely due to the unseasonally cold and wet conditions during May. So the only option was to make them into a cake, adding a handful of…

Food, friendship and the comfort of strangers

Exactly three months ago today I was travelling to the UK for work and to see my two grown up daughters and grandson Rex. A few weeks earlier I’d returned from a work trip to The Philippines which I’d combined with an opportunity to learn about some of the delicious but entirely unfamiliar dishes of…

Elderflower cordial

Foraging is one of my new favourite things. There is something immensely satisfying about returning home from a walk with a handful of beautiful flowers or leaves and turning them into something delicious. In the last few weeks I’ve made pesto from wild garlic and sugary fritters from the flowers of the acacia tree. This…

Lebanese mezze

I thoroughly enjoyed my last online cooking lesson with Cinzia in Florence and her recipes for ravioli with zucchini and garlic sauce and tiramisu have been a big hit with my friends and followers (especially the tiramisu which is the ultimate lockdown comfort food!) But the experience of being grounded is starting to take its…

Pizza ortolana con pesto

When my children were young I used to make pizza almost every week. We lived in the Welsh hills and there wasn’t a pizzeria for miles. My son Dylan would take the orders, scribbling down the selected toppings of household members, whilst I kneaded the dough. It became something of a weekly family ritual. Since…

Torta de mela (Italian apple cake)

Winter in Piedmont means that the local farmer’s market is full of apples grown in the rolling hills which surround Mondovi. And that means I have no choice other than to make torta de mela or Italian apple cake! This recipe is adapted from one I found elsewhere with the main difference being that I…