2021 · Anglican · Autumn · Baking · Church of England · Clergy Wife · England · Food · Freezer · Rural · Vicarage · Vicarage Kitchen

Sunday Morning Treat | Croissants

On Sundays, the Mhinisteir has 2 warm croissants for breakfast instead of his usual soft boiled eggs and porridge.

Until a few weeks ago, his croissants came from Marks and Spencer via Ocado. All I had to do was to warm them up in the oven.

Unfortunately, the M&S croissants are often out of stock and so I have had to find an alternative; that is when I found Picard Frozen Croissants. At Ocado, it costs £3.99 for 8 frozen croissants. You put them in a hot oven at 180c for 18 minutes and voila! you have soft and buttery croissants to enjoy. The Mhinisteir tells me that these croissants taste much better than the M&S croissants. I can’t eat them due to my food intolerance.

As the weather gets colder, you might want to keep a bag in your freezer for that occasional treat.

ps: I am not paid to promote these croissants.

2021 · Anglican · Autumn · Blogging · Butcher · Church of England · Clergy Wife · England · Food · Observations · Parishioners · Rural · Scotland · Scottish Highlands · Vicarage · Vicarage Kitchen

Bambi Vs Nemo

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On Sunday, we had pan fried wild Scottish venison haunch for lunch. As I was preparing the meal, I got transported to Scotland as it usually happens!!!

When we lived in Scotland, we ate a lot of venison as it is my favourite red meat. I prefer it to beef; I don’t like lamb as I find the flavour a bit too strong for me.

At least one of our parishioners was a ghillie (one who attends to deer stalking expeditions) which meant that we always had venison in our freezer! In bygone days when I was fighting fit, we used to entertain quite extensively but strangely, I have never ever served venison to any of my dinner guests.

As a host, I always like to ask guests before hand their likes and dislikes together with their dietary requirements and every single time, I was told that they don’t like to eat bambi!!!!

However, they had no trouble with the Scottish Salmon that I served which has made me wonder how is it that they had no trouble eating nemo but not bambi???😂😂😂

2021 · Anglican · Autumn · Blogging · Church of England · Clergy Wife · England · Goodhousekeeping · Private Eye · Rural · Supermarket · Vicarage · Vicarage Kitchen

Brillo!

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Have you ever used Brillo pads? For the uniniated, Brillo pads are steel wool soap pads. As for those who read the Private Eye, you will know that Andrew Neil of GB news fame is known as Brillo in that magazine!😁

Anyway, coming back to the real Brillo pads, they are used for scouring pots and pans. I have seen them in supermarkets and know what they are but have never used them until last week. My vintage Le Creuset pans were looking tired and needed freshening.

Now that I have used them, I am super impressed with Brillo pads; removing stains from the pan was a doddle and required no elbow grease.

2021 · Anglican · Autumn · Blogging · Church of England · Clergy Wife · England · Left Handed · Parish Life · Rural · Scotland · Vicarage · Vicarage Kitchen

4tbsp or 4tsp?

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I almost had a kitchen disaster last week while preparing to entertain a senior cleric. Regular readers will observe that these days I am often in the company of senior clerics!!!😀

The Mhinisteir was due to have a meeting with him at the Vicarage and since we all had to eat, we invited him to join us for lunch. I had only seen him from a distance at the cathedral so was delighted when he agreed to join us.

The lunch menu consisted of carrot and coconut soup, roast chicken sandwich, mini blinis with cream cheese and Scottish smoked salmon, chocolate cake and shortbread. All made by own fair hands!

I decided to prepare the soup a day in advance and as I set out my ingredients, I realised I had run out of chicken stock. Thankfully, I had Marigold organic bouillon powder but I had never used it before to make soup as previously I had only used either homemake stock or Kallo organic stock.

As per instructions, I put 4 tablespoons of the bouillon powder in a measuring jug. Just as I was about to pour some boiling water to make up the stock, it dawned on me that I had almost half a tin of bouillon powder in the measuring jug. I thought to myself that surely it can’t be right and decided to read the instructions again. 4 TEASPOONS not tablespoons!!!!! Oh my goodness, what a disaster it would have been!!!

Anyway, the soup turned out beautifully. The lunch too appear to have been a great success based on the thank you note we received.

2021 · Anglican · Blogging · Church of England · Clergy Wife · England · Left Handed · milk · Rural · Summer · Supermarket · Vicarage · Vicarage Kitchen

Spoiled Milk!

For 2 weeks in a row, I have had to dump all the milk that the milkman has delivered as they had gone off!

I cannot explain why this is the case. The weather is still warmish so I always leave the cool bag out for the milkman to deposit the milk which he has been doing diligently. I wonder if this has got anything to do with the delivery problem experienced by most of the UK.

It happened again on Monday morning! As most of you know, spoiled milk smells quite nasty! I decided not to report this to milkandmore as it will quite frankly be a waste of my time.

Years of rural living has taught me to always have a UHT whole milk in the cupboard and so that is what I used.

I have a dairy allergy so it is only the Mhinisteir who uses milk. He decided that we should pause our milk delivery until the autumn when the weather will be cooler. He really liked the new organic UHT whole milk that I had bought from Ocado and suggested that we use that for the time being.

A bit more about the organic UHT whole milk. It is called MOO and comes from Devon. The producers have their own cows! How fabulous!

2021 · Anglican · Blogging · Butcher · Church of England · Clergy Wife · England · Food · Left Handed · Rural · Summer · Vicarage · Vicarage Kitchen

From the Vicarage Kitchen | Centre Cut Fillet Steak

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The Mhinisteir and I are often mistaken for vegans or vegetarians. Why? I have no idea!!!

We both eat meat. However, we only buy meat from a butcher and it has to be free range/ organic meat which means our food bill is slightly higher but then we rarely go out to eat.

We both love a good fillet steak. About 12 months ago, I noticed that my butcher in Scotland had started selling centre cut fillet steak, grass fed of course. It is pricier than ordinary fillet steak but the Mhinisteir just loves it.

I like my steak medium while the Mhinisteir loves his cremated!!!

Just before cooking, I rub the steaks with olive oil and season with salt (no pepper!) and pan fry them in a smoky frying pan for 5 minutes on each side. I do not add any oil to the frying pan.

The steaks always turns out wonderful! I serve them with handcut triple cooked chips, tomatoes, mushrooms, salad and peppercorn sauce.

2021 · Anglican · Blogging · Church of England · Clergy Wife · England · Food · Left Handed · Rural · Supermarket · Tesco · Vicarage · Vicarage Kitchen

From the Vicarage Kitchen | Samphire

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For the first time last month, I tried samphire. I have seen them in supermarkets but wasn’t brave enough to experiment with them. I used to be very adventurous with food in my younger days but these days I prefer to play it safe. Maybe it’s because the Mhinisteir doesn’t like to experiment with new dishes.

The samphire duly arrived with my other groceries from Tesco. The very young delivery driver got quite excited when he saw the samphire. He started giving me advise on how to cook them, not that I asked!!! Anyway, he told me to steam and serve it with a good piece of fillet steak. I already had other plans. I was going to steam it and incorporate it in my pasta with Scottish smoked salmon and that was what I did. It tasted heavenly. By the way, the Mhinisteir had something else to eat!

The delivery driver told me to add rock salt but I didn’t as I read somewhere that samphire is salty.

2021 · Anglican · Blogging · Church of England · Clergy Wife · Dairy Free · Gluten Free · Left Handed · Rural · Spring · Vicarage · Vicarage Kitchen

From the Vicarage Kitchen | Stuffed Chicken Supreme | Gluten and Dairy Free

We had Stuffed Chicken Supreme for Sunday lunch yesterday and it went down a treat. The Mhinisteir thought it was shop bought!!! I took it as a compliment.

Ingredients

2 Chicken Supremes (Fillets with the wing tip attached)

4 Rashes of bacon

6 Ready to eat pitted prunes

1 tablespoon Cashew nuts (you can use pine nuts if you don’t have cashew in your cupboard)

2 Garlic

1 shallot

1 dessertspoon olive oil plus some for brushing

1 tablespoon red wine (you can use port if you don’t have red wine)

Method

  1. Preheat oven to 200c
  2. Blitz the prunes, cashew nuts, shallot and garlic in a food processor. It should resemble a paste.
  3. Saute the paste in olive oil. Remove from heat and cool.
  4. Make pockets in both the Chicken supremes and divide the prune and cashew paste between the 2 Chicken supremes. Seal the stuffing by wrapping 2 rashes of bacon each.
  5. Brush the Chicken supremes and the baking tray with the remaining olive oil.
  6. Bake in the Oven for about 25 minutes or until cooked.
  7. Remove the Chicken Supreme from the oven and keep warm by wrapping them in foil
  8. Add the red wine onto the baking tray and heat it up in the hob until it becomes syrupy.
  9. Serve the Chicken supreme with the red wine jus, mash and seasonal vegetables.
  10. Enjoy!

2021 · Anglican · Blogging · Church of England · Clergy Wife · Dairy Free · England · Food · Gluten Free · Left Handed · Roast Chicken · Rural · Vicarage · Vicarage Kitchen · Winter

From the Vicarage Kitchen | Sliced Baked Potatoes (Dairy & Gluten Free)

This potato dish goes very well with roast chicken. It is fairly easy to prepare and the best thing is that the oven does most of the work.

Recipe (Serves 2 to 3)

4 medium potatoes. peeled and thinly sliced (I use organic ones)

2 small shallots, thinly sliced

Dairy free butter, enough to grease the baking dish and to dot the potatoes (I use Stork)

Rice milk, enough to cover the potatoes. (I use Alpro)

Salt

Method

  1. Rub the baking dish liberally with the dairy free butter.
  2. Arrange one layer of the sliced potatoes.
  3. Dot it with dairy free butter.
  4. Scatter a few of the thinly sliced onions and season with salt.
  5. Repeat steps 2 to 4 until you run out of the sliced potatoes.
  6. Pour enough milk to cover the potatoes.
  7. Bake in a preheated oven at 170c for about 45 minutes or until the potatoes are cooked.
  8. Enjoy!

2021 · Anglican · Blogging · Church of England · Clergy Wife · England · Food · Left Handed · Rural · Supermarket · Vicarage · Vicarage Kitchen · Waitrose · Winter

Confusion over Chicken Fry

This week’s online supermarket delivery was from Waitrose. There is usually a shopping list stuck to the Vicarage refrigerator which the Mhinisteir and I use to add items for the shopping basket. One of the items that the Mhinisteir added read “Chicken Fry”. Regular readers will know of the Mhinisteir’s obsession love of Indian food.

I duly ordered all the items on the list and they arrived yesterday morning. The Mhinisteir had a quizzical look on his face when he saw the Chicken Fry. He said “This is Keralan Chicken Fry” to which I replied ” Yes, that’s what you had put on the list”. “No” He said. “It was the Crispy Chicken Fry that I wanted! How am I to know??? I didn’t even know there were two types of Chicken Fry. I wish he had specified it instead of just scribbling Chicken Fry on the pad! I simply typed in Chicken Fry on the Waitrose website and added the first Chicken Fry that appeared!

Anyway, he has magnanimously agreed to give the Keralan Crispy Chicken Fry a go!