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29 July 2011

Roasted Smoked Garlic


When it comes to food, often the simplest things are the best. If you love garlic, you'll love this – simply roasted and then squashed on to a good piece of bread, which is perfectly toasted, it is pretty indulgent.

You could use any garlic but the smoked garlic from The Artisan Smokehouse makes it just that bit more extra special and the garlic bulbs are huge with big fat cloves, so there's plenty to go around. The subtle maple smoke adds a faint but noticeable flavour of smouldering wood, in fact before we used them they filled most of our house with a smell reminiscent of a distant and agreeable bonfire.

Roasting the garlic results in a creamy texture with a sweet taste and if you do have any left you can store, covered, in the fridge for a couple of days, ready to be used in sauces for pasta too.



How to do it
  1. Preheat the oven to 200C / Gas 6.
  2. Find some kitchen foil or baking parchment and cut in to squares big enough to individually wrap your garlic bulbs. If using the paper, you'll also need some string. Parcel string is good but make sure it's not plastic otherwise it will melt.
  3. Cut off the top of each garlic bulb and place in the centre of your paper or foil.
  4. Drizzle with some olive oil and sprinkle with salt and black pepper.
  5. Wrap up the garlic and tie the top of the parcel (if using paper) with the string.
  6. Place in an ovenproof dish.
  7. Bake in centre of the oven for 30- 40 minutes or until soft.
  8. Allow to cool slightly and slip out the soft garlic cloves with the point of a small knife.
  9. Eat!
Photos: ©childsdesign 2011

4 July 2011

Essex Festival of Food & Drink 2011

9th – 10th July 2011

Essex steps into the ring, this weekend, to showcase some of its finest producers, chefs, vineyards, farmers' markets and food vendors for the Essex Festival of Food & Drink.
The event will be held in the grounds and medieval barns of Cressing Temple Barns, near Braintree and there will be market stalls offering fantastic seasonal produce from the best locally produced meats and delicacies to wines and beers.


We are proud to announce that there will be several of our Artisan Food Trail producers taking part in the Essex Festival of Food & Drink, so do take this opportunity to visit them in person, chat to them and most importantly taste and buy their produce:

Alder Tree
The Artisan Smokehouse
Edible Ornamentals
Food Safari
Samphire

As well as food to buy, there will also be cooking demonstrations from top chefs including Jean Christophe Novelli and Essex's own, Mark Baumann of Baumann's Brasserie in Coggeshall.

For more information about the festival: http://www.thisisawards.co.uk/foodfestival/home.html

1 July 2011

We've won an award!: The Artisan Food Trail is 'Highly Commended' for Internet Marketing

Graham Childs (left) and Lisa Childs (centre)



Last night we achieved our first milestone and we're very excited about it too.
Although The Artisan Food Trail has only been around for just four months, we have been recognised by being awarded a 'Highly Commended' Internet Marketing Award for 2011. As the award title suggests, we were not only judged on our website, but for all of our marketing activity and promotion online – website, blog, email campaign, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn and the numerous other places you'll find, see or know about us.

From what started as a passion for real food from real people and a humble food blog, we've amazed ourselves in what we've been able to achieve in those four months and we thank everyone that's supported us so far.
The food producers who are part of the trail form the symbiotic relationship that holds together, what is becoming a strong online community, helping us to help others.

We obviously intend to build The Artisan Food Trail further, so who knows what awards we may be winning in the future.

www.artisanfoodtrail.co.uk