Swine and Cheese

A passion for Pigs and Food

Archive for the ‘Food’ tag

Borough Market

without comments

img_1305 On Friday Neale and I visited Borough Market in Southwark, London. We’d been meaning to visit for several years but had never got around to it, we always seemed to be busy just keeping our small food business going. As food producers and foodies we have been to and exhibited at loads of food shows, some good and some not so useful. So in fact we did know about a lot of the food producers at the market but as ever in London there are always businesses that we have never heard of with fabulous produce to sell. At long last we made the trip and were instantly rewarded. The market is open to the public on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays. We arrived at 12.20pm on the Friday when the market had just opened and the crowds and general buzz were reminiscent of those wonderful French markets like Arles or Cahors. The crowds seemed to be made up of those just looking and grazing and those who were shopping for their weekend requirements, earnestly searching through piles of wonderfully colourful and wonky vegetables with their baskets brimming with all manner of goodies.

img_13041We loved it all and spent ten minutes with a delightful lady at the Mons cheese counter. We stock all the best British cheeses from small artisan producers at our company Dukeshill such as Montgomery’s Cheddar, Mrs Kirkham’s Lancashire, Barkham Blue to name but a few so we don’t really ever need to buy French cheese. But this lady was so knowledgeable and the cheeses at the peak of perfection that after tasting at least six different types we gave in and bought five cheeses that we hadn’t come across before.

img_13031There were quite a few farm-shop enterprises selling beautiful looking cuts of meat, sausages and bacons produced using whatever breed they happened to stock although I didn’t see Tamworths or Berkshires mentioned anywhere. Perhaps we will be lucky enough to get a pitch at the market one day and be selling our Berkshire and Tamworth products?! Amongst the farm-shop stalls was one called Sillfield Farm whose message I particularly liked and which is one we endorse wholeheartedly at Dukeshill – see below.

If only more of the great British public realised how much care and effort goes into producing the sort of foods available at Borough Market, the quality of the starting materials and the refusal to cut corners, which no supermarket is ever going to replicate despite their claims to have done so, what a wonderful and exciting culinary country Britain could become.


Written by sarahh7282

May 11th, 2009 at 12:57 pm

Potted Ham Hock

with 2 comments

Dukeshill Potted Ham Hock

Dukeshill Potted Ham Hock

I have got to tell you about a wonderful product Neale and Nick have come up with at Dukeshill, potted ham hock. The ham hocks are cured by immersion in a Wiltshire cure brine for a minimum of two weeks followed by a slow cook of 12 hours to produce the tenderest ham and magical stock. To this a generous amount of brandy is added and the stock reduced before being used to set the shredded ham. This wonderful potted ham hock has just been launched by Dukeshill and is available through their website.


Written by sarahh7282

May 5th, 2009 at 7:39 pm

Posted in News

Tagged with , ,

Toulouse Sausage Casserole

without comments

A wonderfully tasty recipe which can be tweaked to suit depending on what you’ve got to hand, based on an old French peasant dish called Lentilles-Saucisse a L’Ancienne. If you’ve got an Aga even better, as you just pop the prepared dish in the simmering oven in the morning and come home to a heart-warming supper.

Toulouse sausage casserole

Toulouse sausage casserole

250g green lentils
olive oil
6 Toulouse sausages
6 slices unsmoked back bacon, chopped
2 onions, chopped
2 leeks, sliced
2 garlic cloves, sliced
200ml white wine
400ml good stock (such as Swiss Veg Bouillon)
1 bayleaf
few sprigs of thyme
freshly ground black pepper

1. There’s no need to pre-soak the lentils.

2. Heat the oven to 160°C/ 315°F/140°C fan.

3. Heat the olive oil in a casserole dish, add the onion, bacon, leeks and garlic and saute for 5 minutes. Add the thyme and bay leaf and cook for 5 minutes.

4. Remove from the heat, add the lentils and white wine and freshly ground black pepper, stir well, then pour in the stock. Place the sausages on top, cover with a lid and cook in the oven for 2 hours.

5. Taste and adjust seasoning as necessary. I don’t add any salt to this recipe as plenty comes from the bacon during cooking.

Just serve in bowls with lots of crusty French bread and wine to wash down.

serves 4

The best Toulouse sausages I’ve got to say are produced by Nick at Dukeshill where the sausages are made by hand to an authentic recipe using outdoor reared British pigs, fresh garlic and natural hog skins. They can be ordered through the Dukeshill website who deliver nationwide. I also used the Wiltshire cured bacon in this recipe but any good butchers’ bacon should do.


P.S. I wouldn’t advise giving any leftovers to the family labrador as we found out the hard way!


Written by sarahh7282

May 5th, 2009 at 5:26 pm

Posted in Recipes to try

Tagged with ,