Flower school and flower pizza

22nd September
At the shop
It is a day for anybody who is interested in making table centres.
Whether you are a bride thinking about doing your own flowers, or just somebody that has a lot of dinner parties.

You will make 2 different arrangements in containers provided using two different construction methods. We will discuss the why and wherefores of each method, and the practicalities of providing flowers for an event / different shaped tables, and flower heights.

There will also be chat on linens and candles and other props, and I will also demo other ideas such as garlanding.

Morning coffee, cake, lunch, wine and afternoon tea are included in the price.

To book and to see other information click here.

I am also addicted to yellow courgette and cauliflower pizza.

I have tried many of the recipes, most seem to involve adding a lot of cheese to the cauliflower, and others that involve microwaving and drying it out first, which is all a lot of hassle.

The Hemsley Hemsley method works perfectly every time.

Their recipe
140g cauliflower
1 egg white beaten
50g ground almonds
40g buckwheat flour
salt pepper
1/4 teaspoon bicarbonate soda

My "lazy" version

1 medium cauliflower
2 eggs
2 tablespoons ground almond
2 tablespoons buckwheat flour
salt pepper
1/2 teaspoon of bicarb and an extra bit for luck.

I can't be doing with separating eggs, or weighing out small grammage of things or having a leftover bit of cauliflower in the fridge.

In a food processor blitz the cauliflower until it looks like rice, add everything else, blitz a bit more.

Line a baking sheet, grease with olive oil or coconut oil and spoon some of the dough and with the back of a spoon spread it out into a base about 1/2 cm thick.

Bake in the oven for 15 minutes, at about 190 then flip over and bake for 5 more minutes.

I quite often use greek yoghurt as a base instead of tomato sauce, with leftover pork belly, ribbon of yellow courgette, a scattering of parsley and parmesan.

Bake for another 10 minutes.


School days

This morning i received the Old Girls' Guild newsletter. In it were images of the new home economics room. It looks like something from a tv studio, so very different to our day.

I wasn't very good at home economics, at the end of the Upper 4th i remember my teacher leaning over and saying

"I do hope i won't be seeing you next year"

Nice. She needn't have worried, there was no way Mother Hen was going to let me do cooking or drawing for G.C.S.E anyway, not when there was another science or language available xx This is an ongoing joke in my family, as well as the comment i made aged 8 when we were living in the middle of the Yorkshire Dales.

"I want to go to London, If i stay here all there is to do is marry a farmer and bake cakes all day"

Oh the sweet sweet irony of it all.

At school I could cook, i just had no interest in cooking the things in the SHS cookbook. Due to Ma Hen's interest in food and travel we grew up eating anything and everything. Except things like shepherds pie, which was the preserve of going to friends' houses for tea.

In the past i have worked for some great chefs and food companies.

It is A-Level results day, i think this is a sort of it doesn't matter what you do at school post.

It is also a flower school post, we are holding a table centre course in September. If you want to learn how to make something like the above details are being emailed to those on the mailing list on Sunday evening.

That is if i can work out mail chimp.

Sign up here


A wedding

The mother of this bride and I have previous.

We have done this before, for the bride's sister.

So it was an honour to be asked to do the wedding of Mike and Anna.

Roses, peonies, sunshine and morning suits.

A beautiful classic English wedding.

I think that last photograph is so special.

Photographs by Sarah Vivienne


The other side of the embroidery

On Saturday night Mr Naylor and I went to the cinema to see Chinese Puzzle Romain Duris AND Audrey Tatou. hashtag allthefrenchcliches. It is good.

In the film they make reference to life being like an embroidery. The first half is the front, the pretty picture, and the second half being the raw working side, less pretty but you understand how it all works.

And then last night we went to see Looking for light, a documentary about the photographer Jane Bown. In which she talks of a journalist who opened every interview with the same 3 questions. 1. What do you hope for? 2. Do you believe in god? 3. If today was your birthday what would you have for breakfast?

Something to think about.

The images are from Dartmouth, finally a chance to meet baby Martha, a rugby club BBQ with paella and pirates bringing freshly caught bass and mackerel in the sunshine with wine, and then gin on the deck, and a lunch by boat and more wine, raiding the deli and then a lunch at a vineyard, have the fritters.

"we don't live like this all the time" everybody chirped

I think they do.

and then back to land locked Rutland and some more mackerel. their sides slashed and their bellies stuffed with mint, garlic and lemon a la Marte Marie Fosberg.

I have to say i was a little sceptical of the cooked mint thing, i once had a disaster with roast chicken and mint. I'm all for raw mint added to dressings, salads, sauces but cooked is odd, but if it's good enough for Ms Fosberg. I went with a curly mint that has a more savoury flavour, predominantly because it was the one nearest the back door, and is least likely to to taste of extra chewing gum.

They were quite delicious, roasted in a very hot oven, because its less faff and smelly than char grilling and i didn't have a bbq or any rugby players on hand.

Served with roast tomatoes, everything is served with roast tomato at the moment.

and then you must watch The Lunchbox

"sometimes the wrong train will get you to the right station"