back to blogging...
Will the Catering Industry ever be the same.... I have been in catering for a little while now, and all the great times, the fab achievements, building consistencies, working together for the same goal, supporting local producers and their foods, making people proud of Shropshire and everywhere else, all been taken away by decisions made higher up, claiming a pandemic is the cause. We still don’t know what Covid-19 is other then it has been around for 60 years, Bill Gates has it all under control and we just wait till given the green light, then one has to pick up the pieces and try and make ends meet, I have a feeling that it might be short lived as a second wave probably will follow soon. That to think that our industry has been around for thousands of years and survived wars, deceases, plagues who where definitely worse then this epidemic....To be the first industry to be shut down to keep people away from each other. Human species need to interact/socialise... the government is discussing now to relax the 2 meter rule what can become acceptable 1 meter. But we are still closed
Cooking every day is my life, my passion and my pride, my Journey has taken me all over Europe and Great Britain, from Festivals to food shows, finest Hotels to incredible eateries using the finest fresh produce, working with and for the great and good and meeting some finest people too.
The last few months gave me time to reflect on our life’s and I am sure we all have and did a lot of home cooking as everyone else, trying to make fine breads using old techniques and have my family around as my tasters, a never ending learning curb and I love it, so it does has it’s positives.
Further, doctors all over the world are saying that there are no obvious symptoms, and no testing is no use as they do not know what they are testing for. The whole lock down should stop immediately and all should go back to Pre-pandemic times and carry on as B4. I agree we should. Negative ‘News’ creates anxiety and uncertainty something we have had enough of lately, life goes on and we all have a purpose and need to have our structured life back.
I hope that 2020 does not end as it began, looking forward to the good times that lay ahead and make it count. Fingers crossed it will be soon...
Well as previously mentioned, a lot of time for practicing and learning/creating new recipes, Sour dough starter is something one has to understand and learn to work with and control. each kitchen environment is different whether it is at home or industrial, they are all different and have an effect on the behaviour of the starter. once you got it going it becomes a never ending daily surprise to see it 'eating' when it has been fed and then there is the end result....every time the baking is done, you cut it in half and look for the sour dough holes and see how nice it has been air rated.....and then you start baking every day till you found your own recipe suiting everything, I am very humble to now have found that and my starter is working nicely, feeding it is a daily routine when having your own breakfast, making dough and overnight proving, all becomes the norm and knowing you have fresh bread every day whether it is a Boule or a French stick. If you want any advice on sour dough starter or methods of making or cooking, there are a good few on you tube etc but I put you in the right direction.
Evening, well it is in these troubled times one does a lot going through recipes and exercise making loads of stuff at home. I do love making bread and have done from a very young age, there are certain breads I can do blind folded others a little more challenging. then there are the new varieties never tried by me before which are easy one you go through the motions. Each country has their own styles and methods. But there is one which I never had the chance or even the patience to master it. The ever loved Baguette or French stick as we say here. Recipes ....I have loads....that is/was not the problem, but I finally managed to track down a French baker from near Paris, Jacques is his name. Funny in a way but speaking to him that in times like this, covid 19, people in general are more helpful and reluctant to help, explain, appreciate and happy to pas on information they never would do before, being persistent and persuasive as I am he agreed. obvs this is for me only he said...lol. Anyhow after 3 tries the last few days I finally 'cracked his code'....Very happy with the final result seen in the picture.
I thought I'd share this with you guys as there is always a way if you are determent to progress in ones quest...🙂
It is in times like this when everyone is put on hold, you had your 5 weeks of sun this year and rain is just coming down like it meant to be, one becomes creative and does things out of the norm. Having aquired raw Peruvian cocoa beans, roasted those and the kitchen smelled like Brownies. Winnowing the skins of the beans it is hartly to believe that chocolate bars are made of these. No I am not tempted to make a Kit-Kat bar, just working my next experiment. Cooking and chemistry are going hand in hand and I love both.
And then there is the planning of dinner, Wrekin Blue and spinach raviolis and clafoutis for after.
see you next.
It has been a while from the last time I was on here, at the same time it is very difficult for me to stay in one place. So home cooking and supporting local producers where I can, guiding them to make use of internet selling, working together for the right reason, staying sharp and diverse from the usual. I strongly believe it will make all smaller producers stronger and their businesses will be better and busier when this is all over. Although social distancing is active somehow it brings everyone closer together. t also gives me time to reflect and to do things I used to make and see If I am still able to recreate. the picture shows you a plaited bread loaf made this morning for Sunday lunch outside in the garden where I have spend a lot of time the last 5 weeks.
It would be nice to know when we will get the green light when we can go back to work again, the longer they hold it back the more difficult it could be to get the hospitality back on its feet and how will it look like. But I am hopeful.
Further I am developing a new flavoured rapeseed oil for Bennet and Dunn and hopefully launching that one in October 2020.
I am not to sure as yet what will happen with all the Food Festivals this year, but probably more looking towards next year.
Going forward, I will post more dishes and other updates soon.
Untill then, stay safe and look after each other X