We have recently returned from Madeira, what a fantastic little island; it has very lush vegetation, fertile soil and unusual fruit and the people are very friendly.
On Saturday 7th of September, we had two tickets for the "Cheeses under the Stars" event at the British Cheese Awards taking place at Churchill just outside of Oxford.
We had previously booked a room in the 'Corner House B&B' which backs onto the green where the event was taking place, therefore, we decided to make a day of it in Oxford prior to turning up for the night time event.
We arrived in Oxford just after 9.00; I have to say the Oxford Park and Ride service is expensive, but it was very smooth and efficient.
We had a great day doing the tourist things – the University Library and Pitt Rivers Museum were both covered before we had lunch in a great Italian restaurant called Bella Italia. After lunch we then took in the Ashmolean Museum. Fantastic, loads of culture, loads of great food and we still had loads of cheese to look forward to.
It was with aching feet that we returned to our car and did the short journey to Churchill, I was so keen to get there, settle in, and take some pictures before it got too dark. The village is a beautiful example of what you can expect in the Cotswolds area, stone built homes, lovely church on the village green (Fig 1) and a lovely fountain on the green (Fig 2).
There on the green, almost like hallowed ground was the Marquee in which all of this fantastic cheese was sitting waiting for me to sample (Fig 3).
We rested, showered and changed our attire in the comfort of the very well appointed Corner House, then went off to sample the cheeses; My word, there were some fantastic cheese to try, all in all, we had a terrific day.
To read a more in depth report of the Cheese Awards, please see the article on the cheese page.
After putting the recipe for Minced Beef Pie on the website and reminiscing about how the pie took me back to my youth, a friend tweeted me to say, it must be a generational thing because she could remember making Minced Beef Pie when she was younger and the recipe had inspired her to start making them again.
This started me thinking of all the wonderful savoury pies my mother used to make when I was young, Corned Beef and Potato, Bacon and Egg, Cheese and Onion, Meat and Potato and Pork Pie; then there were the Apple Pies, ‘Apple and Blackberry’, ‘Bilberry Pie’ all fantastic and part of our staple diet when I was growing up – we seem to have lost this knack. I have decided to try and do my bit to bring them back into fashion once again.
That’s without the fantastic cakes my Mother and Aunty made, Orange Cake, Coffee and Walnut with Butter Cream, all fantastic; she also made Jam tarts and my favourite, Bakewell Tart.
Then there were Butterfly cakes with Butter Icing, Fairy Cakes – help me out here folks, please send some recipes for these Pies and Cakes.
In the meantime, I may just give some pointers on how to make some of the above Pies.
See the article on Pies in the Home Baking Page.
It’s been a bank holiday, yippee, one day extra at home to do things; we have had a great time, I hope you all have too. The weekend started on Friday night because we went out for a meal to the local pub; then Saturday whilst Jan went to get her hair done and take her mother out, I got on with some Cheese making. I cracked out a Stilton in the morning, dressed some cheeses in the afternoon and then we had a lazy evening.