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I wanted to share with you a feature I wrote about a new Cornish cookery school, first published in Cornwall Today.

In which pasties & cream learns how to make, er, pasties and cream (more pictures below the fold):

You can hardly swing an artisan baguette in Cornwall without hitting upon a specialist bakery course, a filleting masterclass or a foraging walk, with everyone from chocolatiers to fishmongers to high-end restaurants now running niche cookery lessons on the side to meet our seemingly insatiable appetite for food education. The flourishing market for food skills and selectively sourced ingredients is, I like to think, part of the nation’s long journey back from the anonymity of the supermarket to the origins of our food.

If ever there were somewhere to help us reconnect with the land without forgoing modern sensibilities, it is Philleigh Way, a dedicated new cookery school on an old farm amid the pristine pastures of the Roseland Peninsula.

The business is the brainchild of brothers-in-law James, a long-time foodie who has left a 15-year career in law, and trained chef George, who earned his stripes in the kitchen at Bustophers in Truro – and their aim is to teach ‘new generation country cooking’.

It’s a back to basics approach, drawing on generations-old recipes and precision-sourced local ingredients, combined (and this is the really attractive bit) with the comforts of a state-of-the-art contemporary kitchen. Unlike the predominantly demo-based courses on the market in Cornwall, Philleigh Way stands out for its custom-created space, with workstations for up to ten people and no expense spared in the fit – marble surfaces, Neff ovens (à la Great British Bake Off), Robert Welch knives and Le Creuset cookware in the kitchen – not to mention the satisfying crunch of gravel on the approach.

No rough and ready farm experience, then, but nor is this an operation that shies away from the necessary mess, mud and blood of real food. One of the courses on its calendar is called, quite simply, ‘Pig’, Read the rest of this entry »

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I’ve taken the King Harry Ferry twice in the last month – so I decided to post a short clip of this meditative little journey across the Carrick Roads.

I can never resist a ride on this chain ferry (can you hear the clicks?) rather than drive the long way round to the Roseland, even if I am £8 poorer per 10-minute return trip as a result. It isn’t really acceptable pricing as a functional part of Cornwall’s transport system, is it? But I’ll leave that rant aside for now as it’s just so beautiful, and is a particularly calm and woody treat for a West Pewithian, where trees and calm water are both somewhat rare.

King Harry Ferry, £8 return day trip. More details & timetables here.

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p&c january header: artist’s studio Newlyn

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