The bread, the pie, and the butter are homemade, by me surprisingly (I bet you don’t believe a grumpy old git like me could cook did you?).
I have just bought a blender/mixer thingy so to try it out I made a veggie smoothie. Then I made some butter. It took a long time, longer that I expected, but the result was worth it; it’s really yummy! I kept the left-over buttermilk to make some Irish soda bread today. Some of the resulting butter is in the dish, which I duly spread on the bread. I added a tomato (grown at a nursery in heated tunnels just 4 miles away), some coleslaw, Leicester cheese, pickled onions and pickled gherkins.
The bread I made to a recipe from Betsy’s blog, but strangely it turned out nothing like her version. Maybe the flour in England is different to the all-purpose flour in the USA. Normally I make my bread to my own secret recipe that I have used for years. I NEVER buy supermarket bread, I don’t know how it’s made but I do know it’s not proper bread like my Grandma used to make.
The pie was made using the first lovage of the year, together with finely chopped onion and chunks of chicken. I won’t give the details here, but if you go to my previous post about the virtues of lovage just here you will find a recipe and a description of the plant.
If you are one of the unfortunate people who have never tasted lovage then you are missing out on on of the most fabulous tastes ever! The taste of it is nothing like you have experienced before, it’s a whole new taste sensation, there is nothing else on this earth that tastes like it. I have introduced it a lot of my friends and neighbours over the years, and the look on their faces when they had their first taste of it was a picture! Last year I grew about 60 plants from the seed of my mother plant and everybody had one, plus I divided my mother plant into several pieces (it is a prolific grower) and gave those to people.
Every body loves it in pies, putting it on the Sunday roast instead of the usual rosemary, and one local lady makes savoury biscuits with finely chopped lovage in them and sells them every week at the Women’s Institute fairs in the local church during the summer months. She can’t make enough of them, they all go straight away! Even I buy some from her, they are lovely with a bit of Leicester cheese. If you are interested in making some of these little bits of heaven then go ye to this site, from whence cometh the recipe she useth. (She’s a Quaker). Just here, or click on the picture.
The downside of lovage is that:
a) It dies back in the late Autumn and does show again until April,
b) It doesn’t dry very well and it tends to lose a lot of it’s flavour, and
c) Not being a well known herb it is difficult to source. You might find it under it’s popular name of Sea Parsley.