With a Pinch of Imagination: Why a 1980’s cook book remains an endearing favourite.

Good Food From Farthinghoe - available on-line

Good Food from Farthinghoe by Nicola Cox. Published by Victor Gollancz Ltd 1981

Good Food From Farthinghoe by Nicola Cox. Published in 1981 by Victor Gollancz Ltd, London.


Cookery books, like people, come in myriad shapes and sizes, colours, languages and nationalities. As a consummate collector I have amassed over 500. Amongst this pottage or feast of books – either could be a collective noun for such an assortment – there are tall thin books leaning at angles for support, tiny to the point compendiums, learned leathery tomes alongside glossy, eat me now fashionistas.

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The Best Handmade Ice Cream in Cumbria!


The Handmade Ice Cream Company

I first met Steve at Cranstons, Orton Grange Charity Christmas Fair where he was quietly offering tasters of some of his delicious handmade ice-cream. I know from experience how difficult ice cream is to make especially for commercial sale so I was immediately impressed by the quality of his product. It has a warm velvety mouth feel and excellent flavour.  He was one of the first Cumbrian food producers that I contacted, and subsequently met, when setting out to do the research for my new book, At Home in Cumbria, A Recipe Book; written to celebrate 20 years of care in the community from Hospice at Home Carlisle and North Lakeland.  After visiting Steve at his business  The Handmade Ice Cream Company (article below), I was inspired to develop a dessert using his gingerbread ice cream.  Mini Baked Blencatharas  – a twist on a classic, epitomising the flavours of Cumbria.  Continue reading