Foraged, Bought, Grown


Cooking when on holiday is a little strange. This is exacerbated when I am cooking for one and when I am cooking while in the middle of writing.

When I am alone and writing my day tends to divide up differently. I basically just work and walk. Walking really helps me structure my thoughts and make sense of what I want to say. I walk when I can’t work and work when I can. This means meals happen at odd times. Don’t worry, I still eat well (I am a regular visitor to the glorious food emporiums of Pump Street Bakery and Pinneys) and I still eat about 4 times a day – possibly this is a form of procrastination??)

Anyway, when I was back at the smallholding on Saturday I collected some mushrooms from the field. You can also buy local oysters from Pinneys in Orford and I had brought a small chunk of smoked pork belly from our pigs from home. A plan was formed – baked oysters with mushrooms and bacon.


I would have made these in a smaller ramekin, but there wasn’t one here. I would also have used Pamresan but I just had some Cheshire with me.

Oysters with mushrooms and smoked bacon: half a dozen oysters, small chunk of smoked bacon cut into cubes, handful of mushrooms, some grated cheese, a little cream.

Gently fry the bacon. Meanwhile open the oysters but save the juice. Pop the oysters into an oven-proof dish. Add the chopped mushrooms to the bacon and cook.

bacon and mushrooms.jpg

Add some single cream and a little of the oyster juice to the frying pan and let it bubble. Then add the whole thing to the oysters and sprinkle with cheese. Cook under a grill or in an oven until brown-ish and bubbling.


I served it with a green salad from the garden – squeak can you see one of our first cucumbers? I love cucumbers.

salad ingredients.jpg

N.B. the smoked bacon and oyster juices make this very salty – think about this before adding extra salt …. the voice of experience!



9 responses to “Foraged, Bought, Grown

  1. Nice – what’s the cottage like? How is the book going? I hope it will be finished and you will be feeling de-mob happy when you come and visit šŸ™‚ xx

  2. Mmmm, very interesting combination yet makes perfect sense. N.B has a point about the salt factor but extra cream can help balance some of that out.
    Where did you go for your holiday?

    • extra cream is always a good idea – I will add more next time. We went to Orford, a small, very old town about 10 miles from where I live. I wanted to write and needed to get out of the busy-ness of the smallholding and campsite to make some progress on a book I have to finish!

        • I’m an academic, a reluctant historian, so it is a history book. But it is a history book that doesn’t say what happened in the past – it looks at what people have said has happened and why they might have said it. I look at early modern Ottoman and modern Turkish narrations of the sieges of Nagykanizsa Castle. So it is about textualities, ways of writing and reading, identities, power, and why and how people use the past. It has a very small target audience šŸ™‚ I have been working on it for nearly 20 years and I need to finish it off and move on to my other book projects.

          • Oh now that is a really neat take on history. My boss loves to read books like this – more of the ‘why’ behind the ‘what’ and the hows’.
            He love work like yours!

            • Where I am at with my research now, I am playing with the idea that we should all stop doing history so it is hard trying to finish a book that tries to argue for history – kind of – if used to facilitate ethical discussions about our society, but anyway …..

            • Hmmm…..allow me to reach out to my boss.
              If he has anything on this, I’ll follow up.

              It wouldn’t surprise me if he has some ideas about this but then again he may not have them written down.

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