If ever you require a large dose of comfort or perhaps a little something to nibble alongside your tipple of choice of an evening, look no further than ‘Lotte’s Country Kitchen’. This cook book is a beautifully inspired collection of recipes by writer and broadcaster Lotte Duncan. You may also wish to prepare yourself for a trip to the garden centre …
Further into spring, Lotte looks forward to her annual “seed packet frenzy” as she begins to bring the garden into her country kitchen with dishes, such as ‘wild garlic, sorrel and nettle tart with cheesy pastry’ and ‘potted salmon with sorrel’ served in a pretty china teacup. Don’t miss ‘Daisy’s banana cake’, which my kids now love having as a treat.
By early summer, as Lotte confesses she is an “herbaceous plant addict”, she adorns her delightful ‘fairy cakes with fruit icing and sparkles’ with rose petals and shares her versatile ‘English herb and flower salad’, also perfect with some English asparagus or local goats’ cheese. I can’t wait to also try making my own ‘homemade butter’ to go with Lotte’s ‘dried berry scones’.
By late summer, Lotte is sitting in her hammock nibbling on ‘crunchy nutty chicken with chilli jam’ or ‘beer-battered alliums.’ Your own garden or a spot of berry-picking will, without doubt, inspire you to recreate Lotte’s ‘apple, blackberry and elderberry squidgy pudding’ or ‘plum and pistachio tart’. Beautiful British plums could also be steeped in vodka or gin (they certainly will be in my house this year).
Lotte brings happiness and joy to the table with every bite of her mouth- watering and eye-catching food. The recipes exude comfort and fun and they will certainly inspire you to look differently upon your garden, with flowers, fruits and herbs providing a wonderful twist to your cooking. Recipes are easy to follow and are easily achievable by the home cook looking for welcoming British cooking. Her funny and heart-warming head notes and recollections make this a truly special cook book for any home cook’s collection and would make a great foodie gift.
I am sending a copy of this book, very kindly signed by Lotte, to my sister in the mountains of northern Italy, who will love it, not only for its ‘English country garden’ themed recipes, but also for Lotte’s ability to evoke comfort on every level, bringing a touch of colour and sparkle to even the coldest of days!
Photos very kindly supplied by Lotte Duncan. Copy my own.