• Posts Tagged ‘country kitchen’

    Country room: classic kitchen

    by  • 27/05/2014 • Country style • 2 Comments

    White is a firm favourite in a country kitchen, and it’s easy to see why as there’s nothing like it for creating a bright and airy room.

    A classic white handpainted Shaker design, such as this one by Rencraft, works well with dark granite worktops. Interest can be added with an island unit painted in a slightly darker shade and topped with travertine, while stylish high-back bar stools make the perfect place to perch for a cuppa.

    A panelled chimney with a mantle shelf and tiled splashback is a great way of making a focal point of the range cooker. And don’t you just love that trio of on-trend chrome fisherman’s lamps that add the perfect finishing touch above the island?

    Classic style hand painted kitchen (cupboards painted in Pointing by Farrow & Ball, island painted in Shaded White by Farrow & Ball) by Rencraft. Prices start at £16,000.

    Classic-style handpainted kitchen (units painted in Pointing, island painted in Shaded White, both by Farrow & Ball) by Rencraft. Prices start at £16,000.

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    Country craft: bench cushion

    by  • 18/05/2014 • Country craft • 0 Comments

    Comfy bench cushions as seen in our May issue or Country Homes and Interiors.

    Comfy bench cushions  as seen in our May issue. Made with Polka Stripe light green and duck egg, £35 per metre, Emma Bridgwater for Sanderson.

    We love this comfy rectanglar cushion that tops this banquette seating as seen in our May issue. A great and versatile design, why not make a similar bench cushion to add a comfy layer to a settle or window seat too. Easy to make and adaptable – they make a great outdoor floor cushion when made in suitable fabric (we particularly like the new outdoor fabrics by Ralph Lauren). Click here to see Country Homes & Interiors easy to follow instructions to find out how to make a similar style.

    If you like this idea we have lots more easy craft projects for you to try. Or for more country crafts, recipes and room ideas, why not try our new Country Home Ideas app?


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    Country craft: calendar noticeboard

    by  • 11/05/2014 • Country craft • 0 Comments

    Create a colourful feature wall with a handy calendar noticeboard

    Create a colourful feature wall with a handy calendar noticeboard

    Never miss a date or event with this fantastic homemade noticeboard as seen in the latest issue of Country Homes & Interiors. Ideal for busy Easter holidays it is easily made with a shop bought cork board some twine and numbers.  To make follow these easy instructions;

    You will need
    A corkboard (we used one from Boards Direct)
    Paint (we used Hot Paprika 4, £1 for a 30ml tester pot, Dulux)
    Wooden numbers (we used some from Hobbycraft)
    Safety pins (try Hobbycraft)
    Red twine (we used some from Pipii)

    To make divide the corkboard evenly up into squares for each calendar day, measuring 7 squares across and 6 squares down to show a full month. To separate each square or day vertically, take a length of twine and pin it from the top and bottom of the board. Next divide the board horizontally by pinning and threading through another length of twine across the squares. Pin numbers to the board to correspond with different calendar dates and days then fill with invites, tickets and social reminders to create a decorative and informative display.

    If you like this idea we have lots more easy craft projects for you to try. Or for more country crafts, recipes and room ideas, why not try our new Country Home Ideas app?

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    Country food: weekend treat

    by  • 01/05/2014 • Country food • 0 Comments

    Chocolate biscuit cake

    What’s not to like: all our favourite things in one no-bake chocolate biscuit cake

    There is a small bakery near the Country Homes & Interiors office that has been turning out the most legendary cakes and bakes for the past 20 years. Whether we’re celebrating a birthday or a super-successful issue, we head to Konditor & Cook to pick up an indulgent lemon chiffon cake or a gorgeous sweet hit of bakewell slab. Their new cookbook is definitely one for your collection. It’s packed with classic recipes including this one which actually requires no baking and can be made really quickly. You just need a little patience while it sets in the fridge. Unsophisticated it may be, but it’s utterly delicious and, if you want to have some kitchen fun with your kids this long weekend, it should appeal to aspiring junior bakers everywhere. And of course everyone who is searching for a little something sweet for a weekend treat.

    Makes 1 large cake

    150g unsalted butter
    100g golden syrup
    200g dark chocolate (54 per cent cocoa solids), chopped
    1 medium free range egg, lightly beaten
    330g digestive biscuits (or similar)
    60g walnuts
    60g sultanas
    100g glacé cherries
    75g brazil nuts

    1 Line a 23cm square cake tin or similar-sized flat dish with baking parchment. (You could use individual silicone loaf tins to make your own chocolate bars, in which case you will need to break the biscuits up smaller. Or you could use a 20cm x 34cm brownie tin but only fill three-quarters of the tin with biscuit mixture.) Melt the butter and golden syrup together in a saucepan then bring to the boil. Add the chocolate, reduce the heat to its lowest setting and stir with a whisk until the chocolate has melted.

    2 Gradually add the beaten egg and continue to stir with the whisk until the mixture has thickened a little and formed a shiny emulsion. The egg will cook in the heat of the mixture but be careful not to let it boil (the temperature shouldn’t reach above 85°C). Remove from the heat.

    3 Break up the biscuits into large chunks (quarters are fine), put them in a bowl and add the walnuts, sultanas and half the glacé cherries. Pour the hot chocolate mix over the dry ingredients and mix gently with a wooden spoon. Decant the mixture into the prepared tin, leaving the runny chocolate on the side of the bowl for now. Press the mixture flat in the tin.

    4 Put the brazil nuts in the bowl that contained the chocolate mixture and, using a spatula, coat them in the liquid chocolate from the side of the bowl. Sprinkle them in a loose pattern over the biscuit cake, then place the remaining glacé cherries among them. For an American touch, you could also decorate it with mini marshmallows. Chill for 3 hours or until set, then cut into bars or long fingers.

    *Recipe taken from Konditor & Cook: Deservedly Legendary Baking by Gerhard Jenne (Ebury Press, hardback £20). Photograph: Jean Cazals 2014



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    Country Room: stylish kitchen

    by  • 29/04/2014 • Country style • 2 Comments

    Mixing old and new is a well-tried combination that’s great for injecting character into a scheme.

    This country kitchen has a light, fresh feel with its muted palette. White units are a traditional country kitchen staple but you can bring in a modern twist with a statement wall featuring a paisley print paper in on-trend grey.

    Keep the look unfussy and streamlined with painted Windsor chairs and an extending table – a practical solution for dinner parties – from I & JL Brown, and add in retro pendant lights for an up-to-the-minute finishing touch.


    Primitive ‘easy glide’ extending table, £4295, painted Windsor chairs, £355, small nickel pendant lights, £335, antique wooden dairy bowl, £225, antique glass bottle, £45, medium white bottle, £35, white ceramic tray, £95, white confit pot, £75, I & JL Brown.

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    Country news: 52 Weeks of Everyday Style

    by  • 12/04/2014 • Country craft, Country style • 0 Comments

    52 weeks fo Everday Style,Homes and Lifestyle Collection

    52 Weeks of Everyday Style

    Discover how to make this pretty lace doily trinket bowl with 52 Weeks of Everyday Style.

    Discover how to make this pretty lace doily trinket bowl with 52 Weeks of Everyday Style.

    Looking for lots of crafty ideas? If so you’ll love ’52 weeks of… Everyday Style’ published by the Homes & Lifestyle Collection. Packed full of stylish makes, clever touches and easy handicraft projects, it’s a real treat for creative home makers. Ideas include 10 minute fixes to weekender projects, focusing on the little things that can transform your house into a home. Priced at £4.99 and available from Marks & Spencer, Sainsbury’s, Tesco’s, Waitrose, Morrisons, and WHS HS/Travel or click here to get to purchase a digital copy http://bit.ly/1k4bLSM



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    Country look: charming little birdies

    by  • 11/04/2014 • Country style • 0 Comments

    May I introduce you to the world of Lil3birdy, the home of beautifully illustrated homewares and stationery. We love the colourful patchwork birds and scattered flower designs, perfect for adding a feel-good spring vibe to your country home.


    Colourful birds and floral coasters, £12.50, Lil3birdy.

    Lil3birdy offers coasters, placemats, mugs, tea towels, notebooks and greetings cards all decorated with simple nature-inspired drawings, all the work of designer Clare Shields.


    Chicks tea towel, £10, Lil3birdy.

    In addition to pretty birds the collection also features more classic country favourites; dogs, cats and foxes…


    Dog and Fox ceramic mugs, £7 each, Lil3birdy.


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    Country room: colourful kitchen

    by  • 08/04/2014 • Country style • 1 Comment

    If you could pick one key piece that epitomises a country kitchen, it would most likely be a dresser. Be it warm wood or painted, it’s a staple ingredient.

    Choose a painted design to create a co-ordinated look with the rest of your scheme or, as here, pick a scrubbed pine one with a timeworn appearance and team with brightly coloured walls for a homely feel.

    Dressers are fantastic for storing cutlery, tablelinen and, of course, your favourite china. Shelves lined with distinctive Cornishware, as the owners of TG Green have done in their own kitchen, draw the eye straight to the dresser.

    For more rooms from this beautiful house, visit http://bit.ly/PXBiiG

    Classic country kitchen

    A scrubbed pine dresser, farmhouse table and chapel chairs make a classic country kitchen

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    Country food: spring lemon cake

    by  • 03/04/2014 • Country food • 1 Comment

    Lemon cake

    Lemon heaven: lemon cake with lemon cheesecake icing…

    Monday nights are Mary Berry nights in our house. I love her new show and the cookbook that accompanies it is packed with fabulous recipes. In particular I like the cake section. Lemon cake is my favourite so I couldn’t wait to try this recipe. There are three whole lemons (three!)  in this, so the flavour is intense and utterly delicious. The baked cake will keep for up to 4 days in a tin but sadly didn’t last that long in our house. 

    2 small thin-skinned lemons or 1 large one
    275g softened butter, plus extra for dusting
    275g caster sugar
    275g self-raising flour
    2 level teaspoons baking powder
    4 free range eggs

    For the filling and icing
    50g softened butter
    175g icing sugar
    250g full-fat mascarpone
    175g fondant icing sugar

    To decorate
    1 thin-skinned lemon
    50g caster sugar

    1 Grease two 20cm round sandwich tins and line the bases with baking paper.

    2 First make the lemon decoration. Peel long strips of lemon rind then cut into fine strips (keep the lemon to juice it for the icing). Place the peel in a saucepan with half the caster sugar, cover with boiling water and boil for 1 minute. Drain and pat dry, then place on baking paper. Scatter over the remaining sugar and dry out in a low oven set at 110°C/90°C fan/Gas ¼ for about 1 hour, until crispy. Cut the lemon in half and squeeze the juice, then set aside for the icing. Increase the oven to 180°C/160°C fan/Gas 4.

    3 To make the cake, place the 2 whole lemons in a small saucepan, cover with water, bring to the boil and simmer for 20 minutes or until very soft and tender. Drain and cut the lemons in half and remove any pips.

    4 Place the boiled lemons in a food processor and process to a pulp but with some chunky bits left. Transfer to a small bowl. Add all the remaining cake ingredients to the food processor and blend until smooth. Lift out the blade and stir in just over half the processed lemon pulp.

    5 Divide the mixture evenly between the two prepared tins and bake for 30 minutes or until golden brown and just shrinking from the edges of the tins. Leave to cool for 5 minutes then turn the cakes out, peel off the paper and leave to finish cooling on a wire rack.

    6 To make the lemon filling, place the butter and icing sugar in a bowl and mix till smooth and creamy (you could also do this in a food processor). Add the mascarpone, mix again, then add the reserved lemon pulp and mix until just combined.

    7 Cut both cakes in half horizontally so you have 4 layers. Spread the lemon cream evenly between 3 of the layers, stacking them on top of each other. Place the remaining layer on top.

    8 Mix the fondant icing sugar with 1–2 tablespoons of the reserved lemon juice to make a thick pouring consistency. Pour the icing over the top of the cake, allowing it to drizzle down. Sprinkle the candied lemon rind on top.

    Mary Berry Cooks published by BBC Books, £20. Photograph Georgia Glynn Smith




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    Country food: spring pasta

    by  • 27/03/2014 • Country food • 0 Comments

    Fresh tortelli

    Fresh tortelli – pasta squares stuffed with crab

    A fresh and simple supper idea packed with flavour, tortelli are closely related to tortelloni. The largest shape in the family, sometimes they are flat square parcels, and sometimes they are round with a hole in the middle. Here they are stuffed with crab, mascarpone cheese and fresh herbs. The British crab season starts next week, so why not get things off to a flying start?

    Serves 4 (3 tortelli each)

    200g fresh egg pasta
    4 small sprigs fresh dill, chopped, to garnish
    salt and pepper, to taste

    For the filling:
    1 large crab, about 1.5kg, freshly boiled
    75g mascarpone cheese
    1 tsp brandy
    2 tbsp finely chopped fresh dill

    For the sauce:
    60g unsalted butter
    1g saffron strands or 2 sachets powdered saffron

    1 Extract all the meat, white and brown, from the crab, making sure there are no bits of shell left. Mix this with the mascarpone, brandy, dill and some salt and pepper to taste. Keep to one side.

    2 Roll out the pasta dough to 1mm thick, preferably by machine, into 1 or 2 long strips. Place 1 tsp of the filling at intervals in the centre of each strip, wet the edges, and fold over. Press to seal, then cut into 7cm squares with a serrated cutter.

    3 Cook the pasta in plenty of boiling salted water for 4-5 minutes or until al dente. Meanwhile, melt the butter in a small pan until foaming, then add the saffron. Divide the tortelli between warmed plates. Pour some of the saffron butter over the top, and decorate with a sprig of dill. Serve hot.

    TOASTING SAFFRON Put the saffron strands in the bowl of a kitchen spoon and toast over a gas flame, the flame under the bowl. This dries the saffron, which is then easy to grind to a powder.

    *Antonio Carluccio’s new book Pasta is out now (Quadrille, £20). Photograph by Laura Edwards




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