Porridge is one of the most popular dishes here at Fields Lodge Bed and Breakfast, where we pride ourselves on being an Award Winning Breakfast provider. But, the question is, will any old porridge oat do??
The answer, for me, is no! You have to have a particular type of Porridge Oat.
Having been creating Award Winning Breakfasts in the B&B here for many years now, there are a few things that I just couldn’t live without. A tad drastic a statement, you may say, but some of these items, I would struggle to produce the award winning breakfasts we have become so well known for.
My Top Five
Silicone Griddle Pad
This is a life saver–we use it on the cooler top ring on the Aga, and here, oil free, we can cook eggs and pancakes, we can crisp up bacon and brown off tomatoes. We also use another type of silicone sheet to keep the Aga lid clean, but I can live without if needs be, by replacing that by a tea towel!
2. Apple Corer & Peeler
Who knew there was such an invention! I stumbled across one of these just this year, but it has made our life here much easier!
We like to make lots of homemade chutneys with all the homegrown we have-=between out trees here and the ones down the lane at our neighbours, we have bags and bags of apples for making lots of lovely different types of chutney. One of my favourites is an apple & date chutney and I do try to make them all without refined sugar, some use dates, others Xylitol, just to mix it up a bit.
This contraption, peels and cores and slices in one go-a marvellous invention. If I was super critical, it peels fairly thickly, so you’re left with apple spaghetti! As long as you’re quick, you can chop this up and add to a salad for a little sweetness, I do hate to throw any food away!
Here’s a Facebook Live I did when I trialled it for the first time–have fun!
3. A Breadmaker
Although we make artisan breads by hand and then cook these in the Aga–the more common loaf-the basic white and wholemeal loaf, that we go through plenty of, we do make these in a breadmaker. This means we can get on with all the other thigs we need to cook whilst the breadmaker is taking care of itself. Over the years, we have gone through a few models, we are currently using a Panasonic, which is doing a great job for us, and with it being a more upmarket make, spare parts are readily available.
And why I love making bread?? The same reason as why I love making other things-you know what you’re putting in it, you know what you’re eating and that way you can make sure you’re eating as healthily as possible. As an example, our sourdough loaf has 3 ingredients in it, one supermarket loaf of bread I looked at the other day, had 32 ingredients on the back of it, some of which I didn’t recognise as food at all!
4. An Egg Boiler
Maybe an extra gadget in some households, but for us here, not having to keep an eye on eggs boiling when you’re busy cooking other things is a relief. This little gadget, not expensive, will cook your eggs to the desired consistency-hard, soft or medium, and buzzes once the eggs are ready for perfect eggs & soldiers-just writing this is making me fancy that now! and of course, for me, it’s gluten free bread, for my soldiers!
5. Garlic/Ginger& Parmesan Grater
Something that looks like a saucer that you’d put olives in to pick at, is one of my favourite gadgets. This nobbly saucer grates all of the above–no peeling garlic, just rub it on the nobbles. No peeling Ginger-just rub away and parmesan is just as simple, and what’s great, is that it doesn’t take up much space at all. A great find, and we now sell these here at Fields Lodge, so if you want one, just email me!
What are the gadgets you can’t live without? I could quite easily list a few more without thinking too long!
I went to a roadshow a while ago, organised by Visit Wales. It was an event where the good and great of the Tourism Industry were present, lots a great businesses and producers for us to meet and inspirational speakers.
One of the speakers, started their segment with …’Multi-award winning, that’s what all businesses strive to be able to say’…….
Wales is well know for cooking on a griddle, a large metal flat skillet(no sides)–it’s where our Welsh Cakes were traditionally made and are still made today in many houses.
Now, I love a pancake and a Welsh Cake but as you may (or may not) know, I am on a food journey to be sugar, dairy and wheat free.
I couldn’t possibly do without my pancakes, especially on Pancake Day, or any other day I fancy them actually!
So, to help me and my lovely guests that are on their own food journeys, we now offer Pancakes that are wheat and sugar free and as we are in Wales, it’s only right to call them by their Welsh name-Crempog, or Crempogau, for plural.
You can see this recipe and many more from our award winning breakfasts in our Recipe Book Here
Almond Griddle Pancakes (Crempogau)
To make 2 servings 125g ground almonds 60ml water 2 eggs 1 tbsp maple syrup (you can use1 Tbsp Xylitol instead, should you wish) ¼ tsp salt 1 tsp oil
• Mix all the ingredients together, add more water if required to achieve a dropping consistency • Using a dessert spoon, spoon the mixture onto the griddle in circular portions (use a frying pan rubbed with olive oil or coconut oil if you don’t have a griddle) • Turn each pancake when bubbles appear and the edges are cooked • Serve with yoghurt, honey, chopped walnuts and your choice of fruit
Valentine’s Day, also called Saint Valentine’s day, February 14th is a day for celebrating love in many parts of the world. Originating as a Western Christian Feast day, although it is not a public holiday in any country, it is widely celebrated linked with romance and love.
Many stories of martyrdom are associated with ‘Valentine’s’ through time, one being a Saint Valentine of Rome, who was imprisoned for marrying Roman Soldiers forbidden to marry, and according to legend, during his imprisonment he restored the sight of the daughter of his judge. Before his execution, he wrote a letter to the daughter and signed it ‘Your Valentine’.
The day became associated with romantic love in the times of Chaucer, when lovers expressed their feelings for each other with tokens-flowers, confectionary and greeting cards (known as Valentine’s).
We see it today with hearts, flowers, swans and doves, cupids and cherubs amongst others.
An Offer to Celebrate
To celebrate, we are sharing the love with a 3 Reasons to stay in Winter Celebration Offer, this is one reason, click the image below to read about the other two!
I was lucky recently to be part of a group to be driven around our area to meet some local producers. I was keen to go, as although I know well my very local producers, I cannot say the same for some of those that are a little further away.
The day was organised by Cywain, which is a Mentor a Business project, encouraging collaboration between businesses and getting more local produce from producers, through suppliers to the end consumer.
We started our day off at Coles Distillery, which is just outside of Carmarthen at LLanddarog. This is a family run business with two brothers who are completely passionate about the alcohol they make. They have a great USP, they are the only distillery in Wales that make their alcohol completely from scratch-from the grain. Every other distillery in Wales, we were told, buy in their alcohol and start there making process from here. The Coles brothers actually start it from the grain itself. They have engineered their own processes, machinery and equipment and made these themselves-it’s quite a thing to see. And because of how they have their alcohol production set up, they can make any number of alcohol varieties. They make beers and ciders, gins, brandy, rum and whiskey.
Although, at the moment you cannot buy the whiskey as it is still in its storage phase. Apparently, although we are in Wales, and are making Welsh Whiskey, we(as in the country) still have to abide by the rules for making Scittish Whiskey (!!?!?), and so, it is deemed that Whiskey has to be laid down for 3 years and 1 day before it can be bottled and sold. So, we have one more year to wait before we can get our hands on that!
The distillery room is full of stainless steel, spotless shiny metal all around and the smell is quite glorious! There are oak barrels of liquor all laid on their sides, patiently doing their thing, and the smell is intoxicating. Although, once you’ve been in there for a while, whilst listening to the very interesting talk on the Coles family journey, you stop noticing the lovely aroma.
You can watch a video which tells you all about the family and the distillery, you can have a tour right around the distillery and their cider making barn, there is a very informative notice board, with the whole process laid before you, with little boxes of all the different grains, herbs and botanicals that are used in the production of the various alcohols.
Then you can have a wander into their pub, which is on site and choose some lovely artisan hand crafted alcohol to take home. You can buy an empty bottle and fill it with your own choice (you can get these refilled afterwards if you wish) or you can buy a sealed bottle of their finest, and there’s such a choice. There’s a honey based rum, which is good for a cold! There’s a rum named after a pirate from Milford Haven, so of course, I had to buy that one!
The rum is called Cadogan, and it’s a dark rum, the colour comes from the molasses that the alcohol is mixed with (I never knew that!) and it’s nice enough to just sip like a port or you could add a mixer, should you wish.
Here’s the story behind the name of the rum: The Cadogan was the ship of a Milford Haven Pirate called Howell Davies. Unlike other pirates though, he did not rely on arms and power to get what he wanted. He was an intelligent man and used all kinds of tricks such as bribe and disguise to get his loot. His pirate career only lasted 1 1 months before he was deviously ambushed and shot 5 times.
Coming back to the pub, this is a classic village inn with a marvellous thatched roof and a intriguing décor serving good honest pub food.
They undertake distillery tours at 11am most days, and so, it’s a great place to visit for a tour then enjoy a spot of lunch, on your way to us here for your first night’s stay in Pembrokeshire. You can always buy a little momento of your visit and enjoy that when you get back home, which will give you fond memories of your visit
The promoter is Fields Lodge Bed & Breakfast whose registered office is at Fields Lodge, Middlekilns Lane, Herbrandston, Milford Haven, Pembs.The competition is open to residents of the United Kingdom aged 18 years or over except employees of Fields Lodge and their close relatives and anyone otherwise connected with the or judging of the competition.
We’re busy making cocktails at Fields Lodge. Having recently been awarded our alcohol licence, we are now keen to create a Fields Lodge Signature Drink, and we are hoping that our guests can get involved too!
Room Attendant of the Year!!! How fantastic is that??
In the Finals
Our lovely Rhiannon, one of my team of ‘angels’ has been shortlisted as one of only 6 finalists for this prestigious award. Out of all the hospitality businesses in the UK, when you think how many that would be-there’s over a 1000 in Pembrokeshire alone! She has been chosen and is now in the final 6. This is SOME achievement. To say we are proud is an understatement!
So, the Puffins have now left Skomer Island, and that now means they are now replaced by the seal pups! Don’t you just love a seal? They’re sooo cute! How can you fail to not feel joy when you see a seal-even in a photo, never mind if you get to see them swimming in the water.
I had such a great day out this week! I visited one of the last remaining working water flour mill, right here in Pembrokeshire. Y Felin, has been in use since the 12th Century it is believed and is a step back in time.
I took a visit to Skomer Island this week-into the last few days of the Puffins on the island for 2018. It has been a great year for Skomer Puffins–over 30,000 puffins were counted this year, and as far as a population is concerned, Skomer Puffins are bucking the trend, as other Puffin colonies elsewhere in the world are declining. So much so, that the Puffin is now classed as an endangered species.
How wonderful, the BBC have profiled the Puffins on Skomer Island!
I have long been an advocate of these fantastic birds. For me, they are such healing creatures, you cannot fail to watch a puffin and smile. They just make everything in the world alright. To see them clumsily trying to get airborne from the water is a delight. Watching them you would never think that they could fly the huge distances they do when they migrate from Skomer Island in late July each year.
I am delighted to announce that I have partnered with the National Botanical Gardens of Wales for a ‘Buy one, get one free’ entry to this fabulous garden attraction for my guests. This means that when you stay with us here at Fields Lodge, we can arrange this lovely bonus for you!