• Posts Tagged ‘country kitchen’

    Heavenly cake

    by  • 19/02/2015 • Country food • 0 Comments

    marmalade and plum cake

    Frosting and icing, layering and sandwiching, whipping and drizzling – sometimes all you need is an all-in-one style cake in a tin. It’s just so much faster from mixing bowl to mouthful. This marmalade, plum and hazelnut cake is just the thing, the sweet fruit combining perfectly with a zippy tang of marmalade (Marmalade Week kicks off on Saturday 28th @MarmaladeAwards – there’s no better time to be making your own). Serve up a slice of this with a nice cup of tea or alternatively as a dessert, with some Greek yoghurt or ice cream on the side.

    50g soft unsalted butter
    50g golden caster sugar
    1 tablespoon of your favourite marmalade
    6 plums

    For the cake:
    100g hazelnuts
    175g soft unsalted butter
    125g golden caster sugar
    50g light or dark muscovado sugar
    2 teaspoons ground mixed spice
    3 large eggs
    2 tablespoons marmalade (see above)
    100g plain flour
    2 teaspoons baking powder
    100g polenta

    1 Preheat the oven to 180°C/fan 160°C/gas 4. In a small bowl and using a wooden spoon, mix the 50g of butter and 50g of sugar together until smooth, then chop the tablespoon of marmalade in a cup using scissors and stir that in too. Spread this mixture over the base of a buttered and base-lined 20cm springform tin.

    2 Next, halve and de-stone the plums and place them on the sugary butter, cut side downwards – this will be the top of your cake once it is baked. Whiz the hazelnuts in a food processor until ground. Then mix with all the rest of the cake ingredients and a pinch of salt – use a mixing bowl and an electric hand mixer or a free-standing mixer. Once thoroughly combined, spoon the cake mixture on top of the plums and smooth the top with a knife.

    3 Put the tin on a baking tray and bake the cake for 1 hour 25 minutes to 1 hour 30 minutes, loosely covering the top with foil after about 45 minutes to prevent it from over-browning. Leave the cake to cool in the tin before releasing it and inverting it on to a flat plate or board.

    Recipe taken from Marmalade: A Bittersweet Cookbook by Sarah Randell is published by Saltyard, £20, and is also available as an ebook.

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    Love pantry-inspired fabrics

    by  • 17/02/2015 • Country style • 0 Comments

    Country dining room Country Days Country Homes & Interiors

    Hurray it’s Pancake Day, and food is very definitely on our minds here at Country Days, so not surprisingly this distinctive collection of gorgeous fabrics from Prestigious Textiles, called Pickle, caught our eye.

    These jolly fabrics depicting vintage labels, dinky flowers and a fruity patchwork – all with evocative names such as Pantry Antique and Bramley Marmalade – are guaranteed to bring a splash of colour and character to any country kitchen or country dining room.

    Because they make such a style statement, they work best against a subtle backdrop – try an all-white scheme as shown here. Then team with retro furniture and industrial-style lamps for an on-trend vintage feel.

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    All-in-one breakfast hash

    by  • 05/02/2015 • Country food • 0 Comments

    breakfast hash

    This is a great idea for a simple one-pan late breakfast or brunch at the weekend when you can take your time, relax and enjoy it. Definitely worth getting out of bed for…

    Serves 4

    750g waxy potatoes, such as Charlotte, peeled and cut into 2cm dice
    3 tbsps olive oil
    2 red onions, chopped
    200g smoked back bacon, rind removed and roughly chopped
    4 tbsps roughly chopped parsley
    4 tbsps roughly chopped dill
    ¼ tsp smoked hot paprika
    4 medium free range eggs
    Extra herbs and paprika, to sprinkle

    1 Boil the potatoes in lightly salted water for 10 minutes or until soft. Drain well in a colander, shaking the potatoes around so they start to break up.

    2 Heat 2 tbsps of oil in a medium frying pan, preferably non-stick or heavy-bottomed. Gently fry the potatoes for 5 to 10 minutes, turning often, until lightly browned and beginning to crisp. Drain and reserve. Fry the onion and bacon in the remaining oil until tinged with colour, about 5 minutes.

    3 Return the potatoes to the pan and stir in the parsley, dill, paprika and a little salt. When everything is thoroughly combined, use a spoon to make four deep wells in the mixture, each large enough to contain an egg. Carefully break the eggs into the cavities and continue to cook over a gentle heat, covered with a lid, until the eggs are softly set, about 15 minutes. Serve scattered with extra herbs and a sprinkling of paprika.

    Recipe: Joanna Farrow. Photograph: Laura Edwards

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    Say yes to comfort food

    by  • 22/01/2015 • Country food • 0 Comments

    butternut squash and sage bakeEveryone here at Country Days loves this recipe for Butternut Squash and Sage Bake. Such a versatile ingredient, butternut squash is brilliant in comfort food dishes and it’s our go-to when we’re looking for something to keep the chill from the door. Sage partners it perfectly, adding just the right amount of zip. Enjoy this dish on its own or served with a roast leg of lamb. Just the thing for a cold January day.

    Serves 4
    1 butternut squash (approximately 800g), peeled, deseeded and chopped into 4cm cubes
    1 teaspoon olive oil
    small bunch of fresh sage leaves, roughly torn
    300g Classic Greek yoghurt
    200g Parmesan, grated
    salt and freshly ground black pepper

    Preheat the oven to 180°C/gas mark 4. Place the squash cubes in a shallow ovenproof serving dish, approximately 15 x 20cm. Season well, drizzle the oil over and toss to coat. Roast for 30 minutes. Remove the dish from the oven and mix in the torn sage leaves and yoghurt. Sprinkle the cheese over and cook for a further 20–30 minutes, or until the squash is tender.

    *Recipe from the Total Greek Yoghurt Cookbook by Sophie Michell, published by Kyle Books (£18.99). Photograph by Emma Lee.

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    Be inspired by a dream kitchen

    by  • 20/01/2015 • Country style • 0 Comments

    Country kitchen Country Days Country Homes and Interiors

    If your new year’s resolution is to treat yourself to a new country kitchen, take inspiration from this dreamy design from Humphrey Munson.

    It’s a contemporary take on a classic painted kitchen featuring two tones of grey – a pale shade on the units and a darker one used to highlight the island.

    Islands are still big as the hub of the kitchen and this one has a sink, as well as a prep area, plus space to pull up stylish rattan bar stools for a quick cuppa. The island becomes a stunning feature when it’s finished off with a trio of metal pendant lights overhead.

    We’re also loving that handy alcove by the range for condiment storage… what a great idea!

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    Let’s eat cake

    by  • 15/01/2015 • Country food • 0 Comments

    Ginger Cake

    It’s January so you can’t move for healthy eating options. Salads without any interesting bits to zhush them up and green smoothies (blended kale and cucumber for breakfast – really?) seem to be a talking point at the moment but two weeks in and we are so over diets here at Country Days. This ginger cake is sort of healthy anyway – it doesn’t have frosting or sprinkles.

    Serves 6–8

    110g butter
    170g black treacle
    80g golden syrup
    225g plain flour
    55g dark brown sugar
    1 tsp mixed spice
    2 tsp ground ginger
    1 tsp sodium bicarbonate
    125ml milk
    1 medium free range egg

    Grease and line two 15cm x 10cm [about 8.5cm deep] cake tins and set aside. Preheat the oven to 150°C, 130°C fan, 300°F, gas 2. Gently melt the butter, treacle and syrup and stir to combine. Place in the bowl of a mixer with the paddle attached. Sieve the flour, brown sugar, mixed spice, ginger and sodium bicarbonate together and gradually add to the syrup mix until well combined. Add the milk and then the egg. Divide the mix between the cake tins and bake for approximately one hour or until a wooden skewer comes out of the cake clean. Allow to cool for 5 minutes, then remove from the tins. Serve a slice with a freshly brewed cup of tea… and a piece of fruit if desired.

    *This recipe comes from The Chef Recipes Collection, new from Caple. This is their first hardback cookbook and you can order your copy online at caple.co.uk

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    Be inspired by a retro country kitchen

    by  • 06/01/2015 • Country style • 1 Comment

    Country Kitchen Country Days Country Homes and Interiors

    Here at Country Days we’re loving the trend for giving a modern twist to a classic country scheme with retro and vintage touches.

    And this wow country kitchen is a great example. Here, classic Shaker units in on-trend grey are combined with a stainless-steel range to create a soothing and stylish backdrop. Lighting with an industrial edge is used to make a statement above the island, while retro bar stools – in a pretty duck egg shade that really lifts the scheme – create the perfect spot to perch for a cuppa.

    Bring in extra warmth with a rustic wooden flooring such as Simply Oak from Kersaint Cobb for the perfect finishing touch.

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    The heart of the home

    by  • 02/12/2014 • Country style • 2 Comments

    Country kitchen diner Country Days Country Homes and Interiors

    It’s that time of the year when the country kitchen earns its place as the heart of the home. And here’s a stunning kitchen diner that’s perfect for the occasion. It blends classic country cabinets with a vintage-style dining area, and is replete with the natural tones of mellow wood and slate flagstones.

    A generous farmhouse table is just the thing for festive entertaining and, here, is set off beautifully by the characterful chapel chairs. Lighting plays a key role from both a style and practical point of view – rise and fall lamps enhance the mood of the eating area while industrial pendants act as task lighting above the island. Linking colours is key to the scheme – soft greys are carried through from the pendant lights to the painted base of the table and the splashback tiles for a co-ordinated look.

    To see more rooms from this beautiful house, visit http://bit.ly/1Fj9fx3

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    Festive stocking

    by  • 30/11/2014 • Country craft • 0 Comments

    Create this festive stocking follwoing Country Homes and Interiors blog

    At Christmas there can never be enough stockings! All the better if they match this seasons latest colour trend of muted greys with frosted touches bringing a real country winter feel. This one features in our January issue and is so simple to make. To find out how to make click here.

    If you like this idea we have lots more easy craft projects for you to try. Happy crafting!

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