COOKERY - Farmers Weekly

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3 March 2000




Sausages with tomatoes and butter beans

Serves 4

250g Waitrose butter beans, soaked for 8 hours, then rinsed, simmered for

1 hour and drained

15ml (1 tablespoon)

Waitrose sunflower oil

8 Waitrose free range

pork sausages

6 thick cut Waitrose British rindless back rashers, chopped

1 large onion, finely chopped

400g can Waitrose

chopped tomatoes

150ml (1/4 pint) red wine or vegetable stock

salt and freshly

ground black pepper

1 pack Waitrose fresh chives

Prepare the butter beans – if you dont have time to prepare dried beans, use two 424g cans of Waitrose butter beans and drain them in a colander.

Heat the oil in a large skillet (with a lid, if cooking on an Aga), then brown the sausages all over. Add the bacon and onion about half way through the browning. Add the drained butter beans, the tomatoes, wine or stock and season, then bring to a gentle boil. Either simmer for 30 minutes on the hob, or cover the pan and cook in the roasting oven of the Aga – either with the shelf on the floor or on the lowest runner, depending on your pan.

Remove the sausages from the pan, then boil the beans and tomatoes quickly to reduce them to a thick broth, if necessary. Season to taste, then add the snipped chives.

Serve the sausages and bacon on a bed of the beans, with plenty of freshly cooked vegetables and a good dollop of English mustard.

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6 August 1999

Veterans enjoy the midland ambience

MEMBERS from as far afield as Cornwall and Northumberland, and all stages in between, gathered at the annual meeting of the Crystal Set – members of 15 years or more standing.

The weather was perfect for enjoying the Warwickshire countryside and chatting with friends over a drink before lunch. Quite a few menfolk came along in their capacity as chauffeurs and also enjoyed the scenery and convivial company at the Woodhouse Hotel, Princethorpe.

A few years ago I had a vision of long tables with damask tablecloths filling the lawns of the hotel with a couple of hundred members milling about, maybe next year the response will be so great to celebrate this milestone that my dream will come true.

Welsh speakers make foreigners at home

THEY do things differently in Wales. For one thing, the Merioneth FWC leadership changes every two years, which is no bad thing as some contact leaders will tell you that meetings are not so enjoyable when you have responsibilities to fulfil.

On a hot summers evening we sat overlooking the river valley above Dolgellau surrounded by magnificent mountains and welcomed Margaret Rees as the new contact leader. She has taken over from Gwynedd Leigh, but will be supported by Ann James. Rona Jones remains secretary and Angela Balchin treasurer – their terms of office dont finish until next year so there is always an overlap to keep the club running smoothly.

With quiet efficiency the programme planning took place and although many of these members first language is Welsh they make the English-speaking ones at home and much laughter was had at my attempts to speak a few Welsh words.

Jean Howells




Spiced Lamb Chops with Summer Vegetable Rice

Serves 4


1 pack Waitrose Fresh Mint

15ml (1 tablespoon) Bart Spices Picante Pimenton

1 small onion, grated

1 garlic clove, crushed

30ml (2 tablespoons) Waitrose Olive Oil

8 lamb loin chops

1 bunch salad onions, trimmed & sliced

1 small butternut squash, about 450g (1lb) peeled and de-seeded and cut into 1cm cubes

30ml (2 tablespoons) Waitrose Olive Oil

pinch of saffron strands

200g (7oz) Waitrose American Long Grain Rice

600ml (1 pint) water

180g pack legume medley

1 X 397g can Waitrose Artichoke Hearts

Mix 1 tablespoon finely chopped mint with the marinade ingredients and reserve the remaining mint for garnish. Smear the marinade over both sides of the chops, cover and refrigerate for at least 30 minutes. Cook the salad onions with the squash in the oil for 2-3 minutes, then add the saffron and cook for 5-10 seconds. Stir in the rice, then add the water. Bring to the boil, stir cover and cook for 8 minutes. Grill or barbecue the lamb chops for 6-8 minutes on each side or until cooked. Stir the legume medley and the drained and halved artichokes into the rice, cover and cook for a further 6-8 minutes, until the water has been absorbed. Season to taste, then stir in the remaining mint. Serve on warm plates with the chops and a tomato salad.

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2 July 1999


THERE were only two places to be at the end of last week – Glastonbury Festival and the Royal Highland Show. Members of the farming community tended to opt for the latter, heading to Edinburgh for this event renowned for its unique mix of business and fun. Scottish NFU president Jim Walker summed up the mood on opening day Thursday: "Everyone seems a bit more upbeat than last year. Its useful to come out and share your problems with other people."

Above: Best overall exhibit in the flower show went to Southfield Nurseries. A key feature of this display was a 40-year-old Mammillaria bombycina. And try saying that after coming out of the beer tent…

Above: Lights, camera, action… Young farmers filmed and interviewed visitors, then played the results on a big screen. Here, vice-chair of the Scottish Association of Young Farmers Clubs Rachel Anderson gets the third degree from Richard Oxley and Alistair Brooke. Around the Ingliston showground, members were out in force. "Theres three things on their mind," said SAYFC vice-chair Robin Traquair, "the tug of war, the stock judging and the dancing."

Above: Getting pickled… The food hall was a popular attraction

– not least because of the free samples. The event saw the

launch of Parliamentary Pickle to mark the new Scottish parliament. The contrasting colours mirror the diverse political colours in a parliament, said Camille Ortega McLean of maker Well Pickled. Another favourite on this stand was the Peps chilli relish. Very hot it was, too. "That sorts the men out from the boys," said Camille.

Above: Stars and Stripes… Belted Galloways on parade in the sunshine.

Below: Children from Arrochar Primary School on the banks of Loch Lomond gather for a guided tour of the stock lines.



This combination of seasonal salad, hot chicken and new potatoes can be served on one large platter or individual plates. Place the potatoes in the middle of the salad, so some of the leaves become coated with the butter juices.

Lemon and Honey Chicken Breast with New Potato Salad

Serves 4


Grated rind and juice of 1 lemon

1 clove garlic, crushed

30ml (2 tbsp) clear honey

30ml (2 tbsp) Waitrose Extra Virgin Olive Oil

salt and freshly ground

black pepper

4 chicken breast fillets, slashed deeply 3 times on the smooth side

500g (1lb 2oz) small new potatoes, scrubbed

a couple of handfuls

baby spinach leaves

100g (4oz) watercress

10-12 baby plum tomatoes

half a cucumber, diced

2 ripe peaches, stoned and diced

120ml (8 tbsp) Waitrose Lemon,

Garlic and Chive Dressing

knob of butter

tub salad cress

Blend the marinade together in a shallow dish, add the chicken breasts and leave for 30 minutes or more, turning once or twice. Roast at 200C, (400F), Gas mark 6 or in the centre of the Aga roasting oven for 20-30 minutes, depending on the size.

Boil the new potatoes in salted water for 10-15 minutes, or until just tender. Meanwhile, prepare a salad of baby spinach leaves, watercress, baby plum tomatoes, cucumber and peaches and dress lightly. Drain the potatoes, then allow the butter to melt over them in the pan.

Arrange the potatoes in the middle of the salad, then top with the chicken breasts. Garnish with the salad cress and serve immediately.

Recipe: Rosemary Moon

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