Archive for Food Blog

Lunchtime Specials

This week in addition to our regular menu we have on offer 2 deliciously tasty specials, all prepared cooked and served from our own kitchen. (see below for details.) Last week 2 of our customers were slightly confused by the name Supper Solutions. We have used this name since the Autumn of 2016 when we 1st launched our home delivery service. From then until late March this year we ONLY did evening deliveries. Then when all cafes restaurants pubs etc had to close we started to offer lunch deliveries as well but kept the name the same.

We continue to provide the lunchtime home delivery service and will do so for the forseeable future. Orders for a hot nutritious freshly cooked lunch can be placed days in advance, or on the day you require delivery. If you wish to order for the same day please phone us by 11.00 AM and we shall deliver between 12.30 and 1.30.

You are also welcome to join us at our riverside home on Temeside. We open at 10AM for drinks and light refreshments, please just drop in if you wish. Lunch served from 12 to 2 PM, if you intend to come for lunch please phone us beforehand to reserve a table and avoid disappointment. 07983 941 856.

Riverside lunch? Or home delivery?

We had a successful first week of opening our riverside cafe. Although it was unfamiliar to be serving meals on plates rather than delivering them to people’s homes in boxes. This was the first time we had done so for nearly 4 months, and pleased to say we had some happy customers.

You’re welcome from 10AM if you would like a coffee, tea, ice cream by the river do come down. If you would like to visit us for a meal we have a limited inside space available so it’s advisable to phone us first and make a reservation

Specials this week are two of our most popular dishes. We have a slow cooked tender brisket, and mushroom stroganoff. See menu below for more details. For lunchtime delivery phone before 11.00AM or supper delivery phone before 3.00PM. Also you can order in advance of the day you would like a delivery. The number to call is 07983 941856. If you’re connected to the answer phone when you call please leave a message and we WILL call you back

Chilly? Try some chilli.

Writing this on Monday evening the weather feels decidedly cool compared to last weeks heatwave. Warming, wholesome and nutritious our classic Chilli con Carne or a bowl of our delicious Chunky Vegetable Chilli would be just the ticket. See menu below for more details

For lunchtime delivery phone before 11.00AM or supper delivery phone before 3.00PM. Also you can order in advance of the day you would like a delivery. The number to call is 07983 941856. If you’re connected to the answer phone when you call please leave a message and we WILL call you back

With July starting on Wednesday and the government having anounced a date to permit our industry to re-open its doors, we are working to receive guests at our new location by the river Teme. Bookings are advised and we shall let you know the actual date we open our diary.

Meeting Up?

Seems as though the weather doesn’t really seem to know which season we are in just recently. Last week we prepared a pic-nic lunch for a couple celebrating their wedding anniversary, unfortunately for them the day turned out to be wetter, greyer and colder than any of the previous 6 weeks I think! If you are planning a social celebration or business meeting in the near future and require catering maybe we can help? We can’t guarantee you the weather but, we can bring you some nice food.

Mmmmm… Supper Solution Specials from Pea Green Cafe.

Marvellous Meatlof & Mashed potatoes.
AND of course some fresh vegetables, delivered to your home.

Mushroom Stroganoff and rice, goes very well with a slice of garlic bread or a side salad.

For lunchtime delivery phone before 11.00AM or supper delivery phone before 3.00PM, the number to call is 07983 941856. If you’re connected to the answer phone when you call please leave a message and we WILL call you back

Home Garden Visitors allowed again

With the start of June and the easing of the restrictions on visitors to your home you could now enjoy our home delivered meals in the company of friends and family. Delivery available for lunch or supper Tuesday to Saturday

See the menu below for this week’s SPECIALS. In addition we have our varied menu of tasty, nutritious, freshly prepared food available for you to enjoy.

For lunchtime delivery phone before 11.00AM or supper delivery phone before 3.00PM, the number to call is 07983 941856. If you’re connected to the answer phone when you call please leave a message and we WILL call you back

The Advice Is Clear…

So, over the weekend the government have received critisism for failure to give clear advice about what we should be doing now to reduce our risks to the coronavirus. We would like to give you some very clear advice: Order one of our specials from the safety and comfort of your own home and let us bring it to you!

A choice of Marches Pork Casserole or Pasta and Sweet Pepper Sauce. All our dishes, including these specials, are cooked from scratch using local ingredients and our own unique recipes, they are served hot and ready to eat. Delicious and nutritious why not order one today?

For lunchtime delivery phone before 11.00AM or supper delivery phone before 3.00PM, the number to call is 07983 941856. If you’re connected to the answer phone when you call please leave a message and we WILL call you back

“Like Me Muvver Used To Make”

Cauliflower Cheese

I was in my local butcher’s ( Walls in High Street)  the other day and was buying some “thick Ludlow sausages” for Sunday breakfast, a real treat. The talk in the shop was all about the up and coming Food Festival which is unbelievably celebrating it’s 25th year. They were discussing the probability of getting a hog roast going opposite the shop, which had been very effective for them in the past. Not only in street sales, but with people then going into the shop to buy their meat. One of the reasons the Festival is so successful is that it show cases the town and it’s wonderful local produce which I can buy any day of the week, but visitors wouldn’t necessarily know about. We are always being asked where we buy our sausages. Let’s hope the visitors do use the shops and not just the castle stalls

Humans have been making sausages for thousands of years, the outcome of efficient butchery. The word itself comes from the Middle English “sausige” which in turn is from the Latin for salt, salsisium. It is obviously a way of preserving the lesser cuts of meat which are ground, blended with “filler” usually bread, and herbs and spices. The Romans are credited with bringing sausages to Britain like so much else they were meant to have introduced and since then various counties have their own way of flavouring them. Lincolnshire uses fresh sage, Cheshire caraway and coriander. Ludlow sausage makers make a variety of different flavourings, from the spicy Red Dragon in honour of the Welsh, to mushrooms and brie. They even produce Gluten free and Slimmer’s World sausages. Though me, I’d rather have a flavoursome sausage or go without. It seems as bizarre as “vegetarian sausages”. Why if you don’t want to eat meat would you want something that looks like meat?

It was in the reign of Charles I that sausages were first made into links. They used to stuff them up chimneys to be mildly cured! They are the ultimate comfort food, a plate of “bangers and mash” with onion gravy and peas. Yum. They got the name “banger” from the second World War because their high water content made them explode in the pan. They were made a sin in the early catholic church because of their association with pagan Roman festivals. So like any prohibition, sausage eating went underground until the ban was lifted. Their combination of hard exterior and soft interior plus the luscious aftertaste make sausages after all as irresistible as any forbidden fruit.

I love Toad in the Hole, that flavoursome combination of Yorkshire Pudding, crisp fried onion and sausages, as do the rest of the family. In the café we serve sausages with cauliflower cheese as a special, and always pride of place on a freshly cooked breakfast, two of our most popular dishes. Try out a “thick Ludlow” sausage by popping into Pea Green.

One of Our Local Breakfast Options
One of Our Breakfast Option

And Little Lambs Eat Ivy

May has burst upon us, blue skies. Swifts screaming over the bridges and by the eaves, bluebells coating the floors of budding up woods. The lambs of a few weeks ago, all gangly wobbly wool, have taken on the statue of stocky young things, daring to play follow the leader away from mum.

The green hills which hold Ludlow cupped in their hands are dotted with the white of sheep. Ludlow was founded on its wool trade. Since Neolithic settlers made their homes in the hills sheep have been farmed here, though the Medieval period was when Ludlow and the surrounding area really made serious money from their fleeces. During the 12th century Ludlow developed as a centre for the wool trade and cloth manufacturing, with mills being built all along the Teme. One landowner in particular, Laurence of Ludlow became fabulously wealthy, enabling him to build Stokesay Castle, and travel all over England, visiting also the Low Countries and a fair at Champagne in north-west France. Another beneficiary was Bishop Robert Mascall, the Carmelite Friar, who became King Henry IV’s confessor and founded the priory and other institutions in the town. The church was enlarged and beautified with wool money, as were many of the fine medieval buildings still prominent in the town.

We tend to no longer eat mutton, though I do remember mutton stew as a school dinner, which I thoroughly enjoyed.

A Shropshire hillside

 Lamb on the other hand, especially local reared, grass fed lamb is still a popular spring and early summer treat. Pricked with garlic, and dusted with salt, pepper and rosemary, lamb steaks are one of our favourites, especially with an onion sauce and young carrots. It is a very versatile meat and can be used in Tagines, curries, hot-pots and casseroles. A great celebration dish is a guard of honour, two racks of cutlets, tied side to side with the bones interlacing. They often have frilled white caps on the ends of the cutlets.

As for the old song, “Mares eat oats, and does eat oats and little lambs eat ivy” it turns out to be true!  Apparently, they love it and it is a good tonic for older sheep that are poorly as well. Any good shepherd welcomes it on his grazing land.

The farming of sheep has shaped our uplands for hundreds of years, and the care of flocks and their sale has shaped our town. You could be forgiven for calling lamb, Ludlow on a plate.

“If you come my way”

I always consider March to be a particularly Welsh month, and not just because the 1st of the month is St David’s day. The daffodils are coming into flower, bowed by the wind but still subtle enough to bounce back and smile at us.

Rugby’s six nations champions are battling is out, with the Red Dragon of the Welsh rampant and breathing fire.

Leeks, another Welsh symbol are in season along with shallots and spring onions which all come from the same vegetable family. The edible part of the leek is it’s bundle of leaf sheaths, which we sometimes wrongly call the stem. As well as being versatile and tasty, it contains calcium, iron and other vitamins and minerals. The daffodil is known in Wales as “Peter’s Leek” and is worn on St David’s day, a custom that goes way back to at least Saxon times.
It was said that a Welsh King ordered his soldiers to wear them in their helmets so that they could be identified in an ancient battle that took place in a leek field. Or maybe it was beacuse St David was alleged to have eaten only leeks when fasting.
The Welsh Guards still use a leek as the cap badge of their regiment.

Leeks have a mild onion taste but a smoother texture. The whole of the leaf sheath is edible, though most people discard the tougher outer leaf and the dark green tops. If washed however these make a good addition to stocks and can be tied in a bundle with herbs to make a bouquet garni.

Leeks can be eaten raw in salads, having a mild flavour and a slightly squeaky bite, but they are commonly eaten as part of soups and stews. The welsh soup, Cawl cenin, is celebrated in the poem “If You Come My Way” by Lynette Roberts, who lived in a small village in Wales.

“I will offer you a choice bowl of cawl
Served with a “lover’s” spoon and a chopped spray
Of leeks or savori fach, not used now,”

I like a leek sauce on top of a cooked sausage base, a cheap, easy supper and delicious cold too. Makes a great picnic item. Pop along to your local market or green grocers and pick up some pearly white and soft green leeks.


Dumplings

This is the season when a hearty bowl of stew is one of the most welcome of meals, and there is nothing I enjoy more as an accompaniment than a dumpling. Not that I have always been able to cook them, my first attempts being like bullets and one one memorable occasion, so large that they supped up all the liquid in the casserole!

Dumplings originate from China. 1800 years ago in the Han Dynasty, a man named Zhang Zhongjian noticed that all the people in his village were suffering most dreadfully from frostbite, especially around their poor ears. He solved he problem by cooking up mutton, chilli and healing herbs wrapping them in scraps of dough, folding the dumplings to look like ears. He boiled them and handed them out to the villagers, who thought they tasted wonderful.

History does not record wither they cured the frostbite. The experience of eating food such as this, is enhanced for me by knowing that our ancestors enjoyed them too.

The dough of a dumpling can be made from a variety of starch sources, based on bread, flour or potatoes. This is then wrapped around a filling which can be one of meat, fish, cheese or vegetables. There are also sweet dumplings, filled with fruit or sweets.

They can be cooked using different methods such as baking, boiling in stock, simmering or steaming. It is easy to see why dumplings are so popular, they are relatively cheap and (allegedly) easy to make. The traditional British dumpling which some of us remember so fondly from childhood onward, is made by combining twice the weight of self-raising flour to suet, bound by cold water to form a dough seasoned with salt and pepper and if the fancy takes you herbs.

My family hale from Norfolk where the dumpling is made in a slightly different manner. The Norfolk Dumpling, (the food not one of the inhabitants!) is not made with fat but with a raising agent and flour. In the Cotswolds they add breadcrumbs and cheese, sometimes rolling them in breadcrumbs too. Then, oh sinful loveliness, they fry them all golden and crispy.

A vegetarian version of the suet dumpling just uses a vegetable suet rather than the meat based product, and you wouldn’t taste the difference. We use this in our sweet mincemeat so that vegetarians can enjoy it too. In Scotland, dumplings sweetened with fruit and spices are boiled tied inside a cloth in water and are called a “clootie dumplings” after the cloth.

Dumplings in fact, have taken over the world, being made and eaten from the Asian continent to the Americas. A truly international dish.