Your Last Mouthful

Cardiff based food blog

Tag Archives: jam

The Preservation Society- So Good There Is A Waiting List

If you are a cheese monster like me, you will most likely be a chutney monster too. Both are things that I try not to buy too regularly because otherwise I spend too many hours with my grubby mits in the fridge ‘just having a little bit’ until I am too full to enjoy dinner.

Having said that, as a treat or an indulgence, cheese and chutney is as good as chocolate for me. Throw in some crunchy bread and I’m in heaven, all be it with a tummy ache!

You can probably imagine that I was very excited on my way to meet Angharad of The Preservation Society in anticipation of what she had for me to try.

I first tried Chepstow based Preservation Society’s products at a pop up kitchen event in Rudry where her chilli jam was being sampled. It was wonderful so I was keen to find out what else she had been making. When I arrived for our meeting at Cocorico Patisserie, Angharad and her gorgeous little baby girl were already waiting for me with a table full of jars and some little spoons!

I wasn’t expecting the array of products, there was certainly a good range with chutney, jams, sauces and vinegar. Angharad sources all of her produce locally where possible and supplies some local businesses, sells at fairs and through Rudry Kitchen.

All products are made at home and they all have that lovely fresh homemade taste. They are also beautifully packaged with simple labels and quirky names. They looked especially attractive all together because of the wonderful colours in each jar or bottle. None of your browish unidentifiable goo here. The colours were bright but natural, a testament to the fresh produce used.

I started off (of course) with the chutney. I tried the Scrummy Scrump Jelly with Three Saints Cider and Sage, the Chunky Chutney with Untapped Ale and the Plum and Cuban Rum Jelly. All were delicious. I find that sometimes chutney with alcohol in them can be overpowering and drown out the other flavours but these all had a great balance.

I particularly enjoyed the cider one. Along with the plum, I loved it’s jelly-like consistency. It was beautifully sweet but the accompanying cider vineger cut through the sweetness giving it an edge. Beautiful. The other two were lovely too. I think the plum one would go especially nicely with duck or a gamey meat.

Chunky Chutney with Untapped Ale

After the chutney, I had another sample of the delicious Chilli Jam I had tried before along with some Preserved Lemons. I have tried all manner of rubbish chilli jams in my time, many of them in restaurants but this one was excellent. A fresh, bright orange colour with real seeds and a bit of a kick. The preserved lemons were also very good and after two weeks in Morocco recently and lots of tagines, I can confirm that they were very authentic.

Moving onto the sweet options, I tried some Rhubarb Coulis made with homegrown rhubarb which Angharad told me would go very nicely with greek yogurt and almonds. I also tried some Sassy Strawberry Preserve and an Apricot Almond and Ameretto Preserve. The strawberry preserve had chunks of fruit in it and wasn’t too sweet which was good but I personally prefer a thicker jam when it comes to strawberry without lumps, but that is just my preference, it was still very good.

The Apricot preserve however, was fantastic! The Ameretto was subtle with chunky apricots and crunchy almond flakes. It was a great combination to have the soft jam with the crunchy nuts. This was my favourite of the sweet preserves.

Next was a real treat. Anghrard’s fantastic Ravishingly Raspberry Vinegar. I had this at the pop up event in a Bellini which was beautiful but straight from the bottle it was even better. It is so delicious and so versatile. It would work perfectly on a duck salad and Angharad also said it goes great with goats cheese or in a gin and tonic, two more of my favourite things!

Much to my delight, I was given all of the products I tasted to take home except the raspberry vinegar which is in such demand it was the last bottle and there is a waiting list for more! I’m really not surprised and need to be added to that list.

I was very impressed with The Preservation Society and would definitely buy some of these products at a market or fair. For £2.50 a jar or 3 for £6 and £4 for the bottles, the price is right too.

Tempting me with some of my favourite things and then bringing along a cute baby was always going to make for a successful afternoon. I wish Angharad every success with her business and recommend her products.

My last mouthful was: The Ravishingly Raspberry Vinegar

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This months competition starts tomorrow with the chance to win a gift box of Preservation Society goodies!

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One Mile Bakery- Great Concept With Food To Match

I try no end of good food thanks to Your Last Mouthful and it is not unusual for me to have a delivery of some kind of delicious produce, but I have never been delivered bread before and I am yet to come across a concept as brilliant as One Mile Bakery.

The brain-child of Elisabeth Mahoney, One Mile Bakery was born after two years of preparation and stems from a genuine passion for good, simple food made with local or homegrown, quality ingredients. The concept is simple, The One Mile Bakery delivers handmade bread, soups and preserves within a one-mile radius of its kitchen in Cardiff.  Everything is made using seasonal produce and traditionally milled organic flour, and delivered to local addresses in Pontcanna, Llandaff and Canton on foot or by bike.

Elisabeth arrived at my door with a rustic basket housing two loaves of bread, a jar of jam and a large container of soup, all bearing the One Mile Bakery logo. As we chatted and unpacked the goods, Elisabeth explained that instead of buying individual items, customers pay for a monthly subscription and receive a weekly delivery providing they are in the one mile proximity of her kitchen. There are many subscriptions to choose from but I was trying the bread, soup and jam subscription at £23.50 per month. This would mean a delivery of two loaves of bread and a container of soup per week and a jar of jam with the first batch of the month.

Now you should know that bread and butter is my weakness. I suffer from IBS so as I rule I avoid bread and try not to buy it but looking at the loaves on my kitchen table, this was going to be worth the pain!

Each week, customers receive a different type of loaf and soup depending on the produce available. My delivery consisted of Harira Soup, a Rye, Wheat and White Sourdough and a Multi-seeded and Honey Loaf with a jar Rhubarb, Strawberry, Vanilla and Elderflower Jam.

I’m ashamed to say that the minute Elisabeth walked out of the door I tucked into the bread. Starting with the sourdough, I covered it in lashings of butter and sank into my armchair while I drifted into my bread and butter heaven. The sourdough was beautifully soft inside with a lovely crunchy crust. The contrast between the bread and the crust was just right and I throughly enjoyed it. This lasted very well too. I still have some left 5 days later and it is still delicious toasted.

With dinner simmering away on the hob, I intended to just have a small piece of the Multi-seeded and Honey Loaf with some of the jam. Ten minutes later I had eaten half the loaf! I can honestly say this is some of the nicest bread I have ever tasted. It was just so deliciously soft and sweet. It had a real dense, spongy texture with a beautiful soft crust. I could eat it without butter and if you knew the extent of my bread and butter addiction that is saying something!

Not only was the bread delicious but it didn’t actually make me ill. Elisabeth said that it because everything is natural  and fermented for such a long time, it is easier to break down and digest. You don’t know how happy this makes me.

Not to be out done by the bread, the jam was also fantastic. I do love jam but it’s something I never really get around to finishing but on this occasion, it is nearly gone. This is definitely not your average strawberry jam. Strawberry was the dominant flavour in my jar but there were clear and complimentary undertones of rhubarb and vanilla. I’m afraid the elderflower was a bit lost but it was still beautiful nonetheless.

For me, the best thing about the jam was the texture. It was very thick and quite jelly-like which I really enjoyed although Mr V said that he would have prefered it to be softer. He didn’t dispute the delicious flavour though.

I managed to control myself and save the soup for lunch the next day. The container of soup provided two very generous helpings. If you’re not a big eater, I think it would have done three days with bread. The Harira soup came with herbs and lemon and some rose harissa that could be added according to taste. Packed full of noodles, chick peas and lentils, this was a very filling chunky soup, perfect on a rainy day.

I haven’t got a bad word to say about One Mile Bakery. The food is fantastic, the price is right and the concept is brilliant. The only problem is, I don’t live within the one mile radius. My house is on the market though and this could well become a deciding factor when choosing our new house!

Even though I totally buy into this concept, I think that what really sold it to me and would keep me coming back for more if I lived in the area is Elisabeth. One of the great things about having my website and blog is that I get to meet people who are so passionate about what they do and it is just so inspiring. One Mile Bakery has only been up and running a few weeks and already Elisabeth has been inundated with orders and I fully believe that it is not all about the food (although it is fantastic). For me the personal touch and the love that goes into something like this is just so important and Elisabeth certainly has this.

Elisabeth told me stories about her childhood and how she enjoyed cooking with her Mum who grew everything herself and the love for Italian food she developed from a childhood friend. Many of Elisabeth’s recipes have been handed down from her Mum and I love this as it is something that is so often lost these days as people stop cooking for themselves. Elisabeth has been able to take her Mum’s recipes and others that she has found along the way and tweak them to make them her own, creating simple but beautiful food.

Elisabeth doesn’t believe she is very creative when it comes to cooking but recognises the importance of good quality ingredients and wants people to experience the food she loves. Her creatively comes through with her business model. Creative or not, she certainly knows her stuff. Elisabeth is a food and travel writer when she isn’t baking and has even been a food critic in her time. With an extensive career in food, this seems like a logical step and one that I hope continues to develop as Elisabeth has lots of ideas for extending the product range and for cookery classes. I wish her every success.

My Last Mouthful was: The multi-seeded and Honey Loaf

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