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Breads & Bridges!

Breadmaking is good for us: healthy, creative, delicious and very hygge! It was a pleasure to meet up with Andrew and Veronica of Bread Matters on a wintery afternoon and see their superb set up. Set amidst 5 acres, where Andrew grows a range of heritage grain varietals, their courses not only cover a comprehensive range of sourdough breads but also insights into the ingredients and the all important health issues relating to modern grains, industrialised food systems and our relationship with food.

Check out his courses on

This Baltic weather makes one crave an Ardross Farm Steak Pie!! It takes some beating,

brimming with slow cooked juicy meat from their own cattle, a rich gravy and a hearty crispy pastry topping. Indeed I’ll need to return now, just writing about it. Top up on vegetables (no lack of greens here, all from their farm), eggs and dairy produce whilst you are about it and your food shop is sorted!

Those of you who have watched The Bridge will know of this iconic masterpiece of engineering over Öresund. I have flown over it many a time but the other week we drove over it…very exciting! For those requiring further explanation, its wow lies in the fact that it starts as a bridge then descends underwater mid channel (or vice versa depending on your approach), as does the train that runs beneath the roadway.

The man made isle on which this transformation occurs is a haven for wildlife both on its shores (no humans) and its underwater formation, creating habitats for lobsters, crabs and young fish that are no longer in danger of trawling. Contrary to the scientists’ prediction of doom, the Bridge has become a reef and an environmental success story.

A rather delightful foodie aside is that this manmade isle was named Pepparholm (pepperisle) to be in harmony with the adjacent natural isle of Saltholm (saltisle), a nature reserve and farm stepped in history, incidentally home to a herd of Galloway cattle – you can see black dots grazing the incredibly low coastal meadows, the isle being 2metres above sea level at its highest point!

In Scotland we have Pancake Day; in Sweden Semlor Buns, creamy almond filled cardamom

buns, devoured by Swedes from now until Easter…a bit like a certain cream egg, each year they appear earlier. Semlor Buns are delicious and I have been having fun experimenting with recipes this week.

Last week Ann Dorward’s Ayrshire Dunlop Cheese was among other Ayrshire produce to be exhibited and sampled at Westminster. Ayrshire Dunlop is an Ark of Taste product, as is Ann’s Artisan Crowdie and very tasty it is too

Miller’s Larder’s Perfyit Piccalilli has become the must have accompaniment at the Murrrayfield 6 Nation rugby banquets. Their fabby packaging is only outdone by the tremendous taste of this award-winning comestible.

Congratulations to John Lawson Butchers who won the National Scotch Beef Title for Best Lamb at Smithfield Awards this month. (photo credit Q Guild) These fantastic guys have a great family business with three immaculate shops in West Lothian, all run by members of the family. They are also one of the very few butchers left in Scotland who make their own black pudding using fresh blood as opposed to dried imported blood. Their Original Fresh Blood Scots Black Pudding is on Slow Food’s Ark of Taste.

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