41 days ago
Normally Joshua and I pick blackberries for ice cream, flavoured vodka and crumbles (with homegrown apples) after we get back from Greece. But this year they started early. One of our favourite haunts is the village churchyard where there is an enormous bush in the middle and a few smaller ones either side of the fence between the graves and our upper field.
74 days ago
I am not sure about the home made honey ice cream, I shall report back tomorrow. Meanwhile I discuss Mirriad (MIRI), Canadian Overseas Petroleum (COPL), valuing oil E&P plays, Zephyr Energy (ZPHR), today’s ouzo moment with Scotgold (SGZ), target price 0p and a full investigation by AIM regulation and the FCA, and Totally (TLY)
96 days ago
A mixture of sweet and sour cherry trees were among the first things I planted at the Welsh Hovel after clearing the jungle. It was three and a half years ago that I planted eight trees alongside the wall that overlooks the track down to the house. I have added a couple since with fanciful ideas of cherry blossom falling onto the road.
101 days ago
My pal Chris came aroud to pick a stack of our glut of strawberries. He, and his daughter, took a trug home with a couple of lettuces after supper but we still have stacks more to pick. Meanwhile on the production line:
102 days ago
You can, of course ,just eat them and this attraction has prompted that rare spectacle, the Mrs and Joshua heading into the garden of their own volition. But faced with a glut, even that is not enough. I pushed a few through the blender to make the first strawberry ice cream of the year on Sunday and it is generally agreed that it was utterly amazing. If I sound conceited, anyone who has tasted my home made ice cream knows that I have every reason to be conceited. What you see below was picked in just 20 minutes by myself with Joshua and Jaya supervising ( i.e. picking to eat).
111 days ago
The first three and a half litres of home made ginger beer should be ready within 24 hours. The ginger beer bug plant is bubbling away and the next batch will be ready for bottling a week today. Meanwhile, the elderflower bush at the top of our upper field by the churchyard is in full flower, flowers we picked on Saturday afternoon.
371 days ago
Sadly, photographer C did not hang around for the cold salmon, stuffed marrows, leeks and new potatoes with mint all from the garden. Nor for the home made ice cream and for the drinking which continued until 9 PM. And for some of us even longer as home made nettle beer was opened up inside the house. Next year he must stay for that and so can you. The date is now fixed as September 23 2023 and we have a new really big name headline speaker. But back to 2022.
381 days ago
Yesterday, as my Oxford contemporaries discovered whether they were moving up or down the slippery pole at Westminster, my five year old son Joshua and I celebrated getting a sex pest suspended from his work, by going blackberry picking. It is horses for courses I guess. But boy was it fun as we discovered two new spots where nobody seems to have been and which were dripping with blackberries. Joshua’s motive is that if we picked enough I could make more cordial which then becomes ice cream. His birthday party looms and he is keen that his friends have his favourite ice cream. Meanwhile…
395 days ago
I am working like a demon picking blackberries with Joshua in order to produce as much blackberry cordial as possible. On Saturday we spent an hour picking at our two favourite sites and the amount we produced generated 600 ml of cordial which is enough to make three litres of ice cream. But with both Sharestock and Joshua’s birthday party looming I need about 6 litres, plus some for normal family use. And fear not there will be other ice creams at both events (lavender and rhubarb & ginger). So it is all hands to the coalface.
466 days ago
There are a few firsts in last night’s produce, all of which came from what was once the jungle, but is now a football pitch-sized vegetable garden.
746 days ago
The mint plants in the herb garden next to the new strawberry patch on badger hill have flourished and ever eager to try new ice cream recipes I set out to make mint cordial and then choc chip mint ice cream.
750 days ago
I was up at 5 AM working on another series of articles busting the Umuthi fraud and as a distraction I made some damson gin and also used 300 heads that Joshua and I picked yesterday and brewed up another 1.5 litres of lavender cordial which now sits in the fridge. It is great in prosecco or in water for Joshua and it is what i used to make lavender ice cream.
755 days ago
The one hundred lavender bushes that line the approach to the Welsh Hovel are largely decorative. Next year they should be almost three foot tall and I hope even bushier than this year making a real “wall” of colour and smell. But already the smell as you wander past them on the way up to the rhubarb at the top of the garden is strong and wonderful. But the plants have uses too.
774 days ago
Daughter Olaf arrives this afternoon but will be gutted to hear that what sits below will not be ready for two months.
774 days ago
If we had arrived back a week earlier the harvest would have been far larger. The old plum tree at the bottom of the vegetable patch was dripping with plums last year but, this year, most of them have already dripped all the way to the floor and have rotten. But I salvaged a few from there and then had a pleasant surprise.
828 days ago
Fresh strawberry ice cream! Yum, yum. A treat for Joshua’s last night in Wales ahead of our trip to the Greek Hovel and for the Mrs to make up for our absence. With strawberry slices melted into the ice cream, it is awesome, possibly even better than the elderflower cordial ice cream. On the subject of elderflowers, the champagne is now really starting to fizz and woe betide the Mrs if she fails to burp it over the next few days.
835 days ago
This time it is rhubarb ice cream using the same amount of cooked rhubarb as the recipe I am given for strawberries and using rhubarb juice for half the suggested amount of milk. So far Joshua has not had a taste, his penultimate Friday ever at his nursery beckoned so no breakfast here. But the Mrs agrees it is fairly magnificent. Ideal for those who want something a bit less sweet than yesterday’s elderflower ice cream.
837 days ago
I kid you not. This is the best ice cream I have ever tasted. Substituting home-made elderflower cordial for 5/6 of the milk added to the cream, sugar and vanilla essence I then added in some elderflowers, parted from their stalks by Joshua, and into the ice cream maker it went. In the freezer overnight, what Joshua and I tasted for breakfast was simply divine as you can see below. Perfect for taste and texture with that added crunch from the soft flowers.
839 days ago
Yes, as you can see below, notwithstanding badgers, slugs and birds, we have our first strawberry from the patch I created on badger hill. I picked it yesterday while weeding and after snapping this photo ate it. It was superb. And there are many, many more coming up just behind. Strawberry ice cream for Joshua and me this weekend!
840 days ago
I need 200ml of the stuff to make elderflower ice cream so on Saturday I went picking elderflower, wading through grass, nettles and weeds in the top meadow which are almost as tall as me, in order to get to the bush by the churchard. Twenty five heads went into a pot with the zest from four lemons onto which I poured 1.5 litres of boiling water and left it to stand overnight, under a tea towel.
844 days ago
Jayarani does not yet get a vote so this was a 2-1 split: should we get an ice-cream maker? But the Mrs was so vehement in her opposition that her vote almost counted twice. I say almost..
975 days ago
I have moved from a managerial position to that of an honest peasant labourer in the gardens of the Welsh Hovel, the area formerly known as the jungle, which runs along the lane from the Hovel up to the centre of the village. We started with the planting of 100 lavender plants to create a wall alongside that lane. Spurred on by a discussion earlier about how I had once eaten lavender ice cream, Joshua felt motivated to join myself and my colleague Paul and, as a bonus, he brought the lady who looks after him two afternoons a week who, it turns out, has green fingers.
1135 days ago
Our local bistro here in Wales is a Greek South African joint so on the former basis, not the latter, it merits our support. Besides which, the owners are good folk and Joshua is in love with the waitress and it is a mutual feeling as they both share a passion for starting to talk about Christmas sometime in July. And so today my son and I had a modest lunch out.
2997 days ago
The pizza hardman Darren Atwater is still on holiday so I find myself in charge at Free Speech & Liberty pizza in Clerkenwell this fine Saturday and discover that the hardman has added a new flavour to the ice cream range.
We get our ice creams from a small independent and innovative supplier. So while everyone has salted caramel these days we had it two years ago. It is still my fave but to talk to customers you have to know what you are talking about. And so I have just “taken one for the team” and forced myself to sample a scoop.
It tastes just like the home made lemon curd pies my mum used to make when I was a kid. It has me thinking of her small farmhouse kitchen. But its ice cream. So not a warm piece but smooth cold cream. Not bad at all.
3745 days ago
At Real Man Pizza on Saturdays, kids eat for free. And as a result we have an increasing number of junior customers coming in to enjoy the Pirate’s menu of pasta, pizza (including chocolate pizzas), garlic bread and of course our 16 flavours of ice cream.
Saturday’s star pupil was George. He tried to drink his father’s Curious beer. He fought granny over control of a knife he seemed keen to stick as far up his mouth as possible and his eating … he enjoyed his food. You are welcome back at any time young man.
3758 days ago
Pizza, pasta, soup, ice cream, Nigel’s American cheesecake – whatever you fancy – the menu for our two courses for £9.95 is a long one. And all the food is produced in our own kitchens from fresh produce (apart from the sixteen flavours of ice cream which comes from a local supplier). The two course for £9.95 runs all day Monday through to Wednesday at Real Man Pizza Company, the coolest and quirkiest Celtic Italian restaurant in Clerkenwell if not London. Actually are there any other Celtic Italian restaurants in London? We think not. Pictured below is a pizza not on the menu but which a customer asked for and which we tried and it is delicious. We always take requests however odd. This one is a Margherita with ricotta cheese. It is really good, honest!
3761 days ago
At The Real Man Pizza Company, we are picky about our food. For example, our pasta and pizza dough is handmade every day by our chefs and we buy our absolutely amazing ice cream from a local creamery.
Today, it's our coffee. We have switched to Clerkenwell roaster Workshop Coffee, who source and roast their beans just down the street from us. Drop by and taste the difference at Clerkenwell's quirkiest Celtic Italian restaurant.
3768 days ago
Well there’s fame for you….a helpful comment on the Mumsnet comments board from a mother who enjoyed our free food for children offer (especially the 16 ice creams) last Saturday. Well thank you&hellip
It was not just a one off… every Saturday here in Clerkenwell you can get a free, high quality fresh food (and ice cream if you want) for your children here in Clerkenwell.
What can your children devour? There is a wide choice. Check out our Pirates menu here.
Yes it includes, pizza, pasta and our 16 flavours of ice cream and more besides.
All day Saturday children can choose two courses from the menu and their food is absolutely free. The only condition is that you need to have the odd adult present and ordering a main course (at least) – the adult menu is far longer.
For every adult enjoying a main course, up to 1.5 children can eat free. We are not expecting anyone to saw a child in half. That just means that two adults can bring three children to eat for free.
The offer runs all day Saturday at Real Man Pizza in the heart of Clerkenwell.
Pictured below is a dish called linguine Manx – spaghetti, crab meat, Queenies (scallops from the Isle of Man), parsley with a hint of chilli and garlic in a creamy tomato sauce. Yummy yummy.
(The picture at top is from our previous blog post: What flavour ice cream is it? Pink!)
3802 days ago
I think it was actually strawberry flavour but she loved it anyway. Dad meanwhile tucked into rum and raison, white chocolate and (wise man) salter caramel flavour. Just four of the 16 flavours of locally produced ice cream on offer at our Celtic Italian Real Man Pizza Company restaurant in Clerkenwell. The full list:
Milk Chocolate, Vanilla, Rum and Raison, Pistachio, Strawberry, Honeycombe, Mint Chocolate Chip, Root Ginger, Hazelnut, Peanut Butter, Salted Caramel, Dulce de Leche Granizado, White chocolate, and on the sorbet list: Lemon, Orange, Raspberry, Passion Fruit and Gin & Tonic.
How can you resist? She couldn’t.
Meanwhile Mum opted for Nigel’s homemade North American vanilla cheesecake with a fruit coulis. I tried to get a picture but it had all gone just too fast. So here’s one Nigel made earlier.
Real Man is open all day Saturday with Dominique and pizza supremo K in charge so if you fancy high quality ice cream you know where to come.
3805 days ago
And so the happy band of brothers and sisters expands at Real Man Pizza Company with the addition of our latest waitress Julia who joined last week. She survived those first few days and will now be working five days a week here in Clerkenwell at our quirky Celtic Italian restaurant run by manager Dominique ( also pictured inset). Today's special: Julia.
Only kidding, once again - by popular demand - it is the garlic prawns and roasted red peppers linguine at just £9.95. And the other good news is that we have just had a fresh delivery of salted caramel ice cream as supplies were almost exhausted. What more could you ask for?
3852 days ago
Okay, I am a little bit obsessive about this but I have always had a soft spot for ice cream. I am a sort of ice cream nerd. A geek. Have I mentioned that I have a small collection of ice cream scoops, old new, neo-antiques, British, American. I like ice cream.
And I have never really been satisfied with our ice cream menu at Real Man Pizza Company until today. 16 flavours. Hand made. And delicious. Check out the menu here [PDF]
3853 days ago
I mentioned a while ago a wonderful breakfast we all enjoyed at Real Man Pizza in Clerkenwell sampling 20 different ice creams. We selected 16 and they have all now arrived – a new special ice cream menu goes live tomorrow.
But it is already clear which flavour is the winner. Salted caramel is to die for. In the interests of bringing you a photo of this culinary treasure I have just been forced to eat three scoops – waste not want not!. Mmmmmmmmmmmmmmmm