Carol Bamford, the founder of Daylesford, came to Gloucestershire in 1992 and the start of the journey was to convert the land to become organic to produce local, seasonal and sustainable foods. A step back in time - I can remember my grandparents having a huge allotment, no pesticides were ever used and the fresh produce meant that there was always good food on the table. There were also a few hens in the garden at the back of the house which meant lots of fresh eggs for eating and baking.
I've spent a good few weeks reading A Love for Food and because it is so much more than recipes it has taken me a while to write a review.....
Throughout the book we are introduced to some of the team who are passionate about their work at Daylesford, reading their stories and how they came to be part of the journey. Jez Taylor - The Market Gardener, John Longman - The Cheese Room, Eric Duhamel - The Bakery, Richard Smith - The Livestock and Andy Wheeler - Black Barn Chef.
I can't resist a great chilli recipe and this one from the book is a winner.
There are many seasonal recipes throughout the book including rhubarb queen of puddings - smashed broad beans with peas - mint, tomato and feta salad with a mint and lemon dressing.
Some of the recipes which caught my eye are roast rib of beef with Dijon mustard and balsamic vinegar, cod with lemon, parsley and tomato butter, Bledington Blue Cheese and brocolli tart, blood orange and polenta cake with orange whipped cream, chicken casserole with a splash of brandy and salted ginger treacle tart. Christmas mince pies and a Christmas Cake recipe from the family of Carol Bamford are also included.
Chapters and notes within the book include from the market garden - salads and vegetables. The cheese room - savoury tarts and pies. Meat - with notes on casseroles and notes on roasts with useful guidelines.
I particularly enjoyed the bread chapter with notes on ingredients and technique. There is also a day by day guide outlining how to make natural leavens with grapes and recipes for sourdough once you have made the natural leaven.
The sign of a good cookery book in my house is one that has sticky notes attached to the tops of pages to help me find recipes that have caught my eye - this book has many sticky notes attached.....
There are family recipes and also recipes that will be familiar with foodies who visit the farmshop and cafe, but for those of us who have yet to visit, we can now make these award-winning recipes in our own homes.
This is a substantial book with 424 pages, seasonal recipes and a general mix of recipes from savoury to sweet, not all recipes are accompanied with a photograph of the finished dish. All of the recipes are easy to follow and are written thoughtfully with a guiding hand. A cookery book for foodies, those who grow their own fruit and vegetables and cooks who use local organic produce.
Published by Fourth Estate
Thank you for the review copy.