my new kitchen


‘Kitchen Bitching’, is an online open forum of amateur cooks where they can bitch about their culinary woes and get hints and tips from other cooks.

They say ‘ All amateur cooks know the pain of a recipe that just won’t do as it’s told. Like a disobedient puppy it sulks, sticks, slides or sinks at that crucial moment just as your mother-in-law is rap-rapping on the door…..

Head to



From 1st – 31st July the Hampshire Food Festival which be taking place in venues across the county. There will be workshops, wine tastings and foodie walking tours plus cookery demonstrations from Rachel Allen and James Martin. Visit

From 27th-29th July the Big Cheese Event takes place in the shadows of one of Europe’s largest Castles the town of Caerphilly which comes to life as people of all ages come to The Big Cheese®, an extravaganza of street entertainers, living history encampments, music, dance, traditional funfair, folk dancing, falconry, fire eating, minstrels, troubadours and much more. . Visit

On the 21st July it’s Oundle’s Food Festival,The line up for this year’s Oundle Food Festival is fantastic. Not only will there be a fabulous array of stallholders, but also Times food columnist, Joanna Weinberg will be demonstrating some of her favourite dishes from her book Cooking for Real Life; BBC Presenter Sue MacGregor will be chairing what promises to be a lively debate on current issues in the food industry; and The Eden Project will be running children’s activities demonstrating how easy it is to grow your own tasty and nutritious vegetables from seed. During the week, in association with the Food Festival, you will also have a chance to eat a special seasonal menu at some of the best local restaurants. Go to the website for more details

From the 14th/15th July visit The Great Shoreham Chilli Festival . If you love your curry then you will love this festival. It will be full of curries, breads and salsas to taste with some of the hottest curries from all over the world. For more details go to the website


Keep Calm and Bake Cakes

Have you ever fancied you own personal chef? Well, you can have one now through a company called ‘Housebites’ at

You can order food from chefs which they have been carefully vetted and food hygiene approved. They will have their own series of menus that you can choose from and the chefs will either deliver the food themselves or send a courier.

Starters are around £5 and mains £10. At the moment it is only available in London and Brighton but will soon be launching in Edinburgh and Manchester.

Look at for more details.


NOW, is the time to pick your elder flowers before it’s to late. They call it the ‘free harvest of the year’. The hedgerows are bursting with blossoms at the moment and the elder flowers will soon be at their best when the sun shines, but their picking time is limited.

A classic recipe for Elderflower Cordial is


900g/2lbs granulated sugar
50g/2oz citric acid
2 lemons, sliced
25 (around) large elderflower heads


Place sugar into a large mixing bowl and pour over 3 litres of boiling water
Stir to dissolve the sugar and leave to cool
Add the citric acid and lemons
Shake the flower heads gently (for any bugs)
Rinse them gently with water
Add to the mixing bowl and stir them in gently
Cover with a clean tea towel and leave for 24 hrs
Sieve through a muslin
Pour into your sterilised glass bottles
The cordial can be diluted to taste
Keep in the fridge for best results and for no longer than six months