With chilling easterly winds still blowing, our recent cookery demonstration entitled Tarts, Pies and Comfort Food was particularly appropriate.

To warm us up we started with freshly brewed tea and coffee with some delicious lime marmalade tray bake from Mary Berry’s latest cookbook.

Then Alison made crab filo parcels with plum chutney. This was a slightly more exotic take on your average samosa and paired with piquant flavoured plum chutney, made a versatile starter or snack for any chilly March day.

Another dish that worked well with the plum chutney was a parsnip, cumin and cardamon tatin. There was a lovely mix of sweet and savoury in this dish and it made an unusual use for a winter vegetable.

For the main course Claire crafted some top and bottom pies. These were delicate suet crust pastry pies packed to bursting with chicken, ham and leeks cooked in a lovely sauce. These pies were really light and tasty – sort of pies for girls!!

The second dish was a pot roast pork belly. This is a dish that the AGA cooks so beautifully, the slow roasting of meat in the simmering oven, surrounded by creative seasoning ingredients makes for delicious pot roasts and this was no exception. Served with creamy mash and homemade kale chips this made a lovely warming dish perfect for this time of year.

We were all pretty full by the time we had munched our way through the first four dishes but undaunted we trenched on with the sticky apple pudding with drunk sultanas! This was a cake/ pudding. Lovely to have as a pudding with a dollop of double cream, or just as nice for a small slice with a cup of tea!

To round the demonstration off we finished with rhubarb crumble trifle. Rhubarb is very much a food of the moment and a few drops of grenadine really helped it to keep its lovely pink colour. Add homemade vanilla custard and a crunchy crumb topping and hey presto, a delicious pudding packed with seasonal flavour.

We were thrilled with our first themed demonstration of the year and look forward to two more this spring. Please contact us for further details or visit our ‘Demonstrations’ page on the website. You can also email us to join the mailing list for future events.