Tag Archives: Food

Where would we be without herbs?

Bundle of fresh Kitchen HerbsBy Daniel Galmiche

I cannot remember a day when there were no herbs in my home or my kitchen, and if such an instance we ever to happen, it would purely be by accident. Would I be able to cook without them? Yes, because I love my trade. Would I like it? Probably not.

It’s very hard to explain how essential herbs are to the cooking process or how profoundly they enhance food, whether added to a salad, meat, fish, vegetables or even a dessert. They have such an important place in the kitchen simply because they bring so much taste, so much scent, so much colour to a dish.

Like everyone, I have a few favourite herbs that I often use. One of them is thyme; one of the most versatile and commonly used herbs in the kitchen. It is especially good with meats such as pork, lamb and mutton because it aids the digestion of fats, and it’s also used in stuffing, ragout, and the all-essential bouquet garni- my standard bouquet garni is made up of a sprig of thyme, a sprig of parsley and a bay leaf.

Another herb I like to use is lavender. Many people do not associate lavender with cooking and are surprised to find it in food, but it is a versatile culinary herb. It is great in meat and poultry dishes as well as desserts. We use it in our specialities at The Vineyard. For example, lavender infused in honey and chilli gives a wonderful flavour to fish dishes.

My favourite herb to cook with is rosemary. Whilst it’s difficult to explain why I love it so much, I suspect it is partly because it is so evocative of my childhood, reminding me of when I would cut it freshly from our garden at home to go in whatever dish Maman was preparing that day.

When mixed with other ingredients, rosemary changes character. It is a great herb, but it’s strength can be lethal, and adding too much of it can make a dish taste bitter. Using rosemary carefully is therefore crucial – but when you succeed, you have a heavenly scent.

Growing a variety of herbs in your very own herb garden, whether in your kitchen or on a balcony, a roof terrace or window sill, is a great idea, especially if you cook a lot. Not only does this allow you to control the quality of herbs you use in your cooking, but it also means you regularly get to use fresh herbs whose flavour is completely different from and far superior to the flavour of shop bought dried herbs.

Chef’s Table – a totally unique and exclusive dining experience

DG on the pass with Slow cooked fillet of Scottish beef - 529KBThe Chef’s Table at The Vineyard is fantastic for larger groups as it allows everyone to see behind the scenes in the kitchen throughout lunch or dinner from preparation right through to dessert. So whether you’re looking for an exciting way to end a productive meeting, celebrating a birthday or another special occasion, the Chef’s Table is the perfect way to entertain and indulge in food and wine pairing at it’s best.

With fixed cameras fitted to the most interesting areas of the kitchen, guests will be able to watch the chefs in action on large television screens from the comfort of their own seat.

Vineyard-66A select number of guests will be lucky enough to get an insight into the workings of a hotel kitchen by joining our Executive Head Chef, Daniel Galmiche and his team throughout the dinner to put the finishing touches to each of the dishes before they are served. Kitchen tours for the whole group can also be arranged so that everyone has a chance to see behind the scenes.

Vineyard-69You’ll be treated to a Champagne reception on arrival followed by a seven course tasting menu cooked by Daniel and his team with matching wines for each course chosen by our sommelier team. With over 30,000 bottles in our cellar and 3,000 bins, we have wines to suit every food, mood and palate. Take a peek at our menu that past Chef’s Table parties have enjoyed:

Cream of asparagus velouté, white balsamic gel
Guinea fowl and parsley terrine, orange, chicory, almonds
Lyme Bay monkfish, green and white asparagus, fennel
South Coast turbot, girolles, rocket, chicken jus
Corn fed Tidenham duck breast, spring carrot, wild rice
White chocolate and passion fruit terrine, exotic purée, coconut
English rhubarb savarin, poached in thyme, hazelnut cream

Daniel_Galmiche - photoEach guest will receive a signed menu by Daniel Galmiche at the end of the evening to take home as a souvenir of the unique culinary experience. The price per person is £220 per person based on a minimum of 50 people.

Daniel comments on the Chef’s Table: “I really enjoy meeting the guests and inviting them into my kitchen to see all the amazing seasonal produce we use. Being a sustainable restaurant, we only use produce in season sourced as locally as possible. ”

If you are interested in discovering more about our Chef’s Table experience, please don’t hesitate to give our events team a call on 01635 589407 or email events1@the-vineyard.co.uk

For more details on other food and wine experience we can offer, please visit our website

Recipe: Raspberry Clafoutis

Traditionally, a clafoutis is made with cherries, but the summer brings an abundance of fruit – tender apricots, juicy plums, fat cherries and wild blackberries, all warm from the sun begging to be eaten. However my favourite is raspberry! The sweetness of the berries and the zing of the lime zest send your taste buds twirling!

  • Preparation time 35 minutes
  • Cooking time 25 minutes
  • 250 – 280g/9 – 10 oz/2 – 2 ¼  cups firm raspberries
  • Zest of 1 lime
  • 125g/4 ½ oz/ ½ cup caster sugar
  • 50g/2oz butter, half softened and half melted
  • 85g/3oz/ 2/3 cup of plain flour
  • A pinch of salt
  • 1 egg
  • 1 egg yolk
  • 300ml/10 ½ fl oz/ 1 ¼ cups full fat milk

Preheat the oven to 180°C/350°F/gas 4. Put the raspberries, lime zest and 2 tablespoons of the sugar in the bowl. Mix gently, then set aside to macerate for 15 minutes. Meanwhile, grease a 24 x 16 x 6cm/9 ½ x 6 1/4 x 2 ½ in a baking dish or clafoutis dish (an oval earthenware dish) with the softened butter and sprinkle with another 3 tablespoons of sugar. Carefully shake the sugar around the dish to make sure it coats the inside.

Sift the flour and salt into a mixing bowl. In a separate bowl, whisk together the egg, egg yolk and remaining sugar, then slowly add the mixture to the flour and mix until incorporated and smooth. Slowly add the milk, stirring until the batter has the consistency of a crêpe batter, then add the melted butter and mix until combined.

Put the raspberries in the clafoutis dish and mix to release the juices. Pour the batter over the raspberries and bake in the preheated oven for 25 minutes until golden brown and set. A tip of a sharp knife inserted into the centre should come out clean and dry. Remove from the oven and serve.

CHEFS TIP: It is also fun to make this dessert in individual 150l/5fl oz/ 2/3 cup ramekin dishes, just reduce the cooking time to 10-12 minutes.

Enjoy!

Daniel Galmiche
Executive Chef at The Vineyard

The Food at The Vineyard

If you haven’t seen already The Vineyard has a new look and feel! The entrance has been totally refurbished and an impressive glass-floored wine vault now takes centre stage! Go through the wine vault to ‘Taste’, an ideal space to enjoy a glass of wine and of course to sample some of my latest dishes. Taste is also home to the magnificent Judgement of Paris painting by artist, Gary Myatt.

I have been working hard to create dishes that are tasty, simple, sustainable and fresh. We have created various menus making the dining experience at The Vineyard a little more flexible, relaxed and enjoyable. This gives diners the opportunity to taste different foods, mix dishes and most importantly taste a variety of wines that The Vineyard offers, which can be matched to your dish by our sommeliers, or wine coaches as we call them.

One of my favourite dishes on the current seasonal menu is line caught pan-roasted turbot, spiced bread, courgette. This would be perfectly paired with a William Selyem, Pinot Noir Ferrington Vineyard, California 1999.

Discover more about my current dishes by visiting our Menus page or book a table and come a try a plate or two!

Daniel Galmiche
Executive Chef
The Vineyard