This is a book I bought a couple of years ago, Annabel Langbein The Free Range Cook by Annabel Langbein my edition was published by Mitchell Beazley 2011.
I had a look through it and ooh-ed and ahh-ed, but that was as far as I got for a while. Then a little while ago I picked it up again, and started cooking from it, and one recipe has followed another, and now I’ve cooked lots!
I like the ethos of this book and the food within it, good ingredients cooked simply, but well. Slow down a little and see some of the good bits of everyday life. There is a second companion volume to this one (Simple Pleasures 2012) but I’ll come back to it another day. Today though it is time for The Free Range Cook!
Annabel is a New Zealander, and the series which accompanies this book is set in the New Zealand countryside. It’s a country that I consider myself very lucky to have visited, and it’s left a definite print on my heart and soul. I can indulge that soft spot cooking from this book and watching the series. It makes me feel happy. I’m all for a spot of kitchen table travelling!
The book is illustrated with gentle and pretty pictures of totally do-able food and some beautiful scenery too. Pretty much all of the recipes are pictured. Chapters are: *From the Oven* From the Garden* From the Farm* From the Lake and Sea* From the Larder* and * From the Orchard*.
Corn and Avocado Salad
Sticky Date pudding with Wicked Toffee Sauce
Honey Vanilla Panna Cotta with Sunshine Fruit Topping
I made this for a dark January Saturday night, with tinned peaches and fresh passion fruit. It was so right and injected us with a lovely burst of sunshine, even though it was cold and dark outside.
A Pavlova flavoured with coconut and topped with a tropical fruit salad of pineapple, kiwi fruit and passion fruit. I made it as one big pav, instead of individual ones.
Greek Yoghurt and Berry Syrup
The same syrup from the tiramisu, simple and delicious with fresh berries and Greek yoghurt.
Cypriot Shepherd’s Pie
I made these for Valentines Day dessert. We loved this…and I got to use my pretty little cups that I found in an old shop recently. They begged me to take them home, so I paid up and they now live with me!
Beetroot and Feta Salad
Braised Red Cabbage
Steak and Double Mushroom Sauce, Potato Gratin with Gruyere and Garlic & Green Beans with Lemon
My Mum requested this for Mother’s Day, and the three recipes together made a fabulous treat of a main course. Each offsetting the other perfectly. Worth the effort.
So as you can see I have made a lot, and I’m not finished yet either there is an amazing looking cake called a strawberry cloud cake….soon when the berries are ripe.