Sunday lunch at the shed


We have just wrapped up another Sunday up at the Farm Kitchen, and yet again had a great group come along to look around the farm and join us for a late lunch. It's all on again next weekend and we still have some spots left for the Sunday lunch (Saturday is booked out), so please email me if keen. In the meantime here are some recipes and photos from today. I would have included a photo of the main dish - venison topside wrapped in prosciutto with potato dauphinoise and quince jelly - but in the rush to plate up and pass it around just didn't quite get to the camera!

Orange and almond cake

I am a little addicted to almond cakes and this is my favourite so far. The recipe comes from Stephanie Alexander's Cook's Companion but she credits Claudia Roden for its inspiration. And like all simple recipes with limited ingredients, it makes a huge difference if you can source the very best of each. I used freshly ground new season almonds from Canobolas Pure Health and they were just beautiful. Today we had this with yogurt sorbet (recipe here but I omitted the mint) and a warm orange sauce.

6 eggs
250g ground almonds
3/4 cup sugar
1 tsp baking powder
2 large oranges

Place the oranges in a saucepan and cover with water, bring to the boil then reduce to a simmer and cook for about two hours, topping up the water if necessary. Preheat the oven and grease and line a 25cm cake tin (the mixture mustn’t be more than 4cm deep or it won’t cook properly). Roughly chop the oranges and remove the seeds then blitz them and remaining ingredients in a food processor until smooth. Pour into prepared cake tin and cook for one hour or until the cake is just firm to touch and beginning to come away at the sides.

These pea and broad bean tarts (above) are so easy to make it's hardly a recipe; just buy some pre-made savoury tart shells or make up a batch of your own. Then mix together 150g goat's cheese, 60g creme fraiche and the zest of one lemon. Blanch about half a cup of broad beans and then peel away the outer layer. Cook up the same amount of peas and then toss the beans and peas with a little olive oil and lemon juice. Spoon the goat's cheese mixture into the tart shells and top with the pea mixture.

Venison Carpaccio and asparagus ‘rolls’

This is a great way to serve carpaccio, the idea and base recipe comes thanks to Delicious magazine's latest issue.

500g venison tenderloin
2 bunches asparagus, woody ends trimmed

2 tbsp balsamic vinegar

1/3 cup extra virgin olive oil

1 garlic clove, crushed

1/4 cup pine nuts, toasted

1/4 cup parmesan, shaved

Slice the venison as thinly as you can then place between two sheets of plastic wrap and gently flatten until about 1mm thick. Lay each piece on a bench and lightly brush with the mustard. Place the asparagus spears in a shallow bowl and pour over boiling water, to cover. Stand for one minute to blanch then drain and refresh with cold water. Pat dry with kitchen towel. Meanwhile make the dressing by combining the balsamic, oil and garlic in a jar, season with salt and pepper and shake to combine. Lay an asparagus spear on top of each slice of beef then sprinkle with the pine nuts and grated parmesan. Roll and place in a platter, drizzle with dressing and serve.

Almond biscotti

Biscotti is dead easy to make, lasts for ages and is perfect dunked into a hot black coffee. You could swap the almonds with hazlenuts or pistachios and add vanilla, cinnamon or other spices. 

2 cups plain flour
1tsp baking powder
1 cup caster sugar
2 eggs
1 egg yolk
zest of one orange
1 cup almonds, toasted and roughly chopped

Pre-heat the oven to 180C. Sift the flour, baking powder and sugar together in a large bowl and add remaining ingredient. Bring together into a ball and tip this onto a lightly floured work bench. Divide the dough into two pieces and form into logs. Place these on a lined baking tray and bake for half an hour or until lightly golden. Remove from the oven and let cool, then slice each log across the diagonal into pieces about 1 1/2cm thick. Lay these on the baking tray and return to the oven for another ten minutes. Store in an airtight container.


  1. More beautiful food Sophie! I used to bake muffins very similar to your orange and almond cake for a local cafe...I supplied them for almost 3 years and they did not get sick of them! Your weekend lunches sound wonderful.

  2. Thanks Jane! And yes isn't that orange almond cake fantastic! I make it all the time. Have a lovely week, Sophie

  3. Hi Sophie, just venturing across from BYW class, love the concept behind your blog, it's a really refreshing read.
    Almond Biscotti are my favourites, I'd never considered making them myself, maybe I'll give them a go now!

    1. Hi Anna, thank you so much for your comment. The biscotti are SO easy, definitely give them a go! See you back on BYW. Sophie

  4. Gorgeous food, gorgeous blog! I am hungry now! I popped over from BYW. Love the sweet serenity of your site! Call me inspired! I will be back!

    1. Dear Christine, thank you so much for visiting my blog! I loved reading your comment. Thanks again, Sophie

  5. Hi Sophie:) I'm popping over here from BYW. So pleased to have found your gorgeous blog. Love your photos and your farm and all of those delicious country style recipes. I look forward to visiting you here lots:)

  6. Dear Kim, hello and thank you so much for popping by! I hope you are enjoying BYW. I am struggling to find time to keep up with it all but loving it all the same!


  7. Yes, Sophie, I'm struggling to keep up too. Thankfully we've got all of November to get sorted:) x

  8. HI Sophie.
    I've been following your blog for a while now unofficially and as of today - officially. I just think you do the most beautiful job in this little space. Whenever I visit I instantly feel a sense of calm but also creatively inspired. Thanks so much for sharing. I've just seen you're part of BYW. Me too! And yes, struggling to keep up but loving the creative challenge.

    1. Dear Frances, thank you so much for your kind words about Local is lovely! I really appreciate you writing to me. I've been the world's worst BYW student but hoping to spend some time there this week and next. Thanks again, Sophie

  9. WOW...this blog is so precious!!! LOVELY!! Really...what a great job you have done. I just followed you today♥ Calling from BYW class.


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