I’m not a very adventurous cook. I tend to make things from memory, and so I stick to trusted family favourites. These change with the seasons, and from year to year. I like to cook with what is in season and in the larder, and keep a list of essential dried and packet goods to that end. Meat and fish I buy daily, milk is delivered, and the eggs come from our own hens. I grow as many of our fruit and vegetables as possible, and buy the rest from a local farmer.

What follows is a collection of everyday recipes. I hope you will find them as reliable, tasty and satisfying as we do.

Irish tea bread

Daily bread

Hedgehog bread

Stone soup

Short pastry

Lancashire hotpot

Cheese and onion pie


Monday pie

Slow beef stew with dumplings

Fish pie

Nettle soup