This week we are delighted to introduce Stephanie Taylor, Mama and beautiful curator of @the_taylor_table, sharing her love of delicious home cooking through the most tantalising imagery and reassuringly simple recipe walk-throughs.
This is where it all starts 👇
Her cooking achieves everything I aspire to; beautifully fresh dishes with depth of flavour, knocked up in a calm and relaxed manner and presented in a River Cottage meets checkered picnic rug in a wild bluebell wood, vibe.
She has shared three wonderful foraging recipe ideas with us; Dandelion Honey, Wild Garlic Pesto and Wild Garlic, Asparagus and Mozzarella Homemade Pizza.
Let's start with Dandelion Honey. DANDELION. HONEY. You read that right! 🍯
This is Urban Foraging at it's best!
"A delightful spring flower syrup that tastes virtually identical to honey. A great wholesome lockdown kiddie activity!"
A few health facts about dandelions; they're said to be powerful antioxidants, anti-inflammatory and packed with minerals and vitamins such as beta carotene, folate, magnesium and calcium. As well as vitamins A, C, K and E. And this is vegan friendly. Tick, tick TICK.
Ingredients (equal volumes of):
Golden caster sugar (white ok too)
Juice of half a lemon
1. We picked 100g of dandelion heads which made us one jar. (A bigger jar than the one photographed!) But you actually need to work in volumes not grams with a cup or bowl.
2. Over a bowl start by cutting the green bits off the bottom of the flower heads so you’re just left with the yellow part of the flower.
3. Tip in a saucepan and then fill the bowl with the same volume of water. Add to the saucepan, stir and simmer for 20 mins with a lid on.
4. Sieve the flowers over a bowl and push all of the liquid out of the flowers with a spoon.
5. Return the liquid to the pan, add the sugar and the lemon juice, bring to the boil stirring.
6. Turn heat down and simmer for another 25 minutes (without a lid).
7. Tip into a clean jar, allow to cool then put in the fridge. Once it completely cools it will thicken more. The consistency is a little runnier than real honey.
Winnie the Pooh would find this a whole lot easier than climbing the honey tree to satisfy his sweet honey tooth.
Handful of wild garlic
Handful of basil or spinach
Piece of parmesan (about 40g)
Handful of nuts (cashews, almonds, hazelnuts or pine nuts)
Juice of half a lemon
Squirt of honey
2 tbsp olive oil
1-2 tsp water if needed
Salt to taste
1. Whizz up in a blender, if it’s too thick add a couple of teaspoons of water and blend again.
2. Stir a large spoonful through cooked hot pasta and serve topped with Parmesan.
And last but not least: Wild garlic, Asparagus and Mozzarella Pizza. A little taste of Italia in your own kitchen.
"A fantastic, quick recipe for a professional tasting pizza! No bread flour needed, no resting, proving or yeast. Just equal quants of self raising flour and yoghurt and a bit of baking powder."
Ingredients (for the bases):
180g self raising flour
180g full fat yoghurt
1/2 tsp baking powder
Wild garlic pesto
1. Preheat your fan oven as high as it will go.
2. For the pizza base mix ingredients together in bowl then tip onto a floured surface and use hands to create a dough.
3. Use a generous amount of flour for dusting and roll out fairly thin.
4. Place on baking paper and add toppings.
5. Place in the oven still on the baking paper. Ideally onto a pre heated metal baking tray.
6. It will take around 15 minutes depending on the oven!
"Announce to everyone in the household that the children made the food and they will feel a total hero! 🏆"
Steph's top tips for getting kids involved in the kitchen:
1. A little cooking outfit is great for getting them in cook mode.
2. Ask them to help get all of the bits out you’ll need, bowls, spoons, scales etc. Then allow them to measure out, stir etc where possible.
3. Let them make suggestions during the process (even if they’re a bit random!)
4. For the bits they can’t do like using knives/the hob sit them so they can watch and explain what you’re doing, they will still feel involved.
5. The likelihood of your child trying and eating new food is much more likely if they think they have made it.
6. Announce to everyone in the household that the children made the food and they will feel a total hero! 🏆
7. Molly also used to love doing the washing up! Obviously I had to redo it but that was an activity in itself, along with a river by the sink!
THANK YOU @the_taylor_table 🖤