Clash of the Titans – Prince Charles Trophy and David Brown Cup’s

 

This year The Great Food Company were asked to cater for one of the greatest tournaments for Polo’s top players and finest horsepower at the Royal County of Berkshire Polo Club in Windsor.

This year marked the 30th Anniversary of the tournament bestowed to the club by its first member H.R.H Prince Charles.

The lawn was adorned with over 75 Aston Martins including prestigious and heritage models right through to the latest supercars, a chance to see all of these models all gathered in one place is a rare and not to be missed experience.

TGFC’s three course lunch included a starter of seasonal Heirloom Beetroot and Goats Cheese Salad decorated with edible flowers and herbs of green and white in tribute to Aston’s colours, supplied by Maddox Farm in Devon.

Main course was succulent French trimmed Chicken Supremes wrapped in Prosciutto accompanied by buttered Jersey Royals, vinaigrette French beans and a creamy Tarragon Gloss.

Whilst guests dined they could view paintings, sculptures and works by some of the most accomplished equestrian and Polo artists.

The dessert was canapes of Lemon Curd Meringues, Gooey Chocolate Brownies and Crème Patisserie and Blackberry Tartlets.

After Lunch guests were invited to watch a spectacle of fashion on the catwalk where the latest summer outfits were modelled.

The superb high-goal tournament final, the Prince of Wales Trophy, was won by Valiente Dubai beating Apes Hill in the eighth Chukka.  Then followed by The David Brown Trophy, played in honour of the longstanding Chairman of Aston Martin where team Vantage got the upper hand over Lagonda

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Meeting Tom Kerridges two Head Chefs

What a great morning Monday was this week. I was asked to co-present the Food & Wine show at Marlow Radio by my delectable buddy & fellow caterer Donna Minett. It’s always a pleasure, however today the added bonus was meeting three great guests. Two of them were both amazing & inspiring head chefs from Tom Kerridges Restaurants – The Hand & Flowers & The Coach, both in Marlow. What lovely chaps – learnt a lot about seasonal vegetables and cooking burgers to perfection in a sous-vide. Having eaten at The Coach, I can’t wait to take Selb to the Hand & Flowers next week, to sit at the bar and sample some the old favourites – the Essex lamb buns with sweetbreads or beer roasted chicken

A thoroughly enjoyable morning was topped off with a impromptu luncheon with Donna at The White Oak in Cookham – what an amazing find – a beautifully served 2 course luncheon for only £12.00 – I now have to take Selb there too !

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Some tantalizing shots from our recent photo shoot.

 

  
   
Dirty BBQ Pulled Pig, Clean Pig and Salsa Verde and the Muchas Gracias Amigo with Slaw. Thank you to Zan from the Sandhurst Bakery for getting the buns to my high spec’.

Next week she will wring my neck when I need her to make Pan Cubanos for my Salt Beef, Pickles, and Swiss Chess experiments.

Street food van coming soon and the mojo is fluente once more!
The Great Food Company loves sharing.

Great Food, Great Company, Great People!!!!

Sticky Ribs

Although there are many variations of BBQ sauce in the United States, there are generally 4 main styles. These are South Carolina, Memphis Tennessee, Kansas City and Texan.

These are not exhaustive and sub styles include St. Louis, Alabama and Kentucky.

Apart from the meat which is cooked in these different areas the style of sauce varies greatly

South Carolina BBQ Sauce – Carolina barbecue is well known for its slow cooking mode. They usually grill beef, chicken or lamb at their barbecue. A traditional rub consists of salt, sugar, brown sugar, ground cumin, chili powder, black pepper, cayenne pepper and paprika. The sauce is made by first heating distilled white vinegar and cider vinegar, and then adding sugar, hot red pepper flakes, salt and ground pepper.

Kansas City BBQ Sauce – In Kansas City, they usually like ribs at their BBQs. Their traditional rub is made by mixing brown sugar, paprika, black pepper, salt, onion powder, cayenne, garlic powder and chili powder. The Kansas City sauce falls under the Heavy tomato sauce category. It is prepared by boiling oil in a sauce pan and frying garlic until its brown. Then add ketchup, water, vinegar, brown sugar, olive oil, paprika, chili powder, garlic and cayenne.

St. Louis BBQ Sauce – This is a tomato and vinegar based sauce. It is not as sweet and thick as Kansas City-style and not as spicy and thin as Texas-style. A St. Louis barbecue always includes lots of sauce.

Texas BBQ Sauce – The Texas style of rub and sauce are pretty famous in the South Western U.S., where they usually cook Briskets at BBQ. A typical rub consists of mixing paprika, salt, garlic powder, onion powder, black pepper, cayenne pepper, ground cumin, ground coriander, dried oregano, chili powder and dried parsley. The Texas style sauce consists of tomato sauce, vinegar, Worcestershire sauce, brown sugar, dry mustard, margarine, Tabasco sauce, garlic cloves, chopped onions, salt and pepper to taste, chopped and de-seeded jalapeno peppers.

At The Great Food Company we use a home made BBQ sauce for our ribs, the following is a great base to which you can add spices and chillies to your own taste.

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Home made BBQ Sauce

400ml Ketchup

250g Dark Brown Sugar

100g Mustard

200ml Dark Soy Sauce

100ml Red Wine Vinegar

Tabasco to taste

Combine all ingredients and warm through but do not boil,…it can be explosive!

 

 

 

No Pig at “The Pig”

In April 2015 myself and Clarissa went for an adventure in the New Forest.

“A restaurant with rooms” is one of the strap lines on the clean, tidy and easy to navigate website.IMG_0949 (2)

The Pig in Brockenhurst is a glorious former hunting lodge (once owned by the Bowes-Lyons, cousins of the Queen) which has been fashioned into a quirky shabby chic establishment which prides itself on a 15 mile menu, 95% of the ingredients are from the local area and they also have an extensive kitchen garden.

As we approached up the drive there was a sense of warmth and calm even on that grey and chilly spring morning.  We were greeted by a huge boar statue in the grounds and the smell of wood smoke as wisps of grey curled from the clay chimney pots.

Two stone lurcher’s eyeballed us at the entrance as we entered through the open door into the hall and reception.

As part of the Limewood group, the interior was much to be expected.  Pots of herbs here and there, threadbare rugs, portraits in oversized frames, retro light bulbs, log baskets, lots of books, watering cans, “gone fishing”.  It’s like steeping back in time, in a good way.

Not only is this a place to bring a loved one for some TLC but also a group of friends would benefit from the snug surroundings. I can imagine the cast of the The Big Chill, Jeff Goldblum, Kevin Kline, William Hurt, Glenn Close and co’ sat in the drawing room reminiscing over full bodied wines and pork scratchings.

The bedrooms were without fault, luxurious bedding, roll top bath, power shower, plenty of toiletries and soft towels. Even though our room was in the courtyard, this didn’t matter as the sun made an appearance, so we sat in the walled al fresco dining area with an outside open fire place to boot. We sipped on cocktails before an afternoon nap.

I was excited in the early evening on passing a near capacity restaurant and looking forward to our 9.15 table. When the time came we entered the restaurant to be greeted by a scene from the Mary Celeste, all be it bar another family of 4. When asked where everybody had gone I was told we were in the second sitting, the first had finished.

This I found hard to bear considering that there were non residents in the first sitting. As a full paying resident I would expect to be given priority booking at the restaurant, however there wasn’t space for us any earlier.

I came to order and requested the pork chaps. “Sorry Sir the chaps have all gone”.  How on earth is it acceptable for an establishment like this to run out of their signature dish, especially when you pay to stay and eat.

So there we sat like two corks bobbing in the Atlantic Ocean. We shared a main course of some mediocre fish, finished a bottle of wine and retired feeling a little like we had outstayed our welcome.

All in all this is a lovely place to stay, the staff were casually dressed but attentive and well mannered. The grounds were a pleasure to stroll around and while we walked in the herb garden there was a certain buzz as both Gardener and Chef were busily choosing the freshest produce. They were making up a picnic to be picked up the following day by a certain Rick Stein.

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The Great Food Company at Ufton Court

Ufton Court is a stunning Grade I listed manor house set in acres of picturesque grounds and woodland. Its 16th Century timber-framed Tithe Barn provides a blank canvas for you to create your dream Gothic Angel Wedding.

FAQS2The girls in the office were very excited in the fall of 2014 when Claire Pettibone released her Gothic Angel Collection

“Gothic Angel” couldn’t be a more perfect name for Claire Pettibone‘s latest bridal collection. Pettibone’s wedding dresses are always designed with her distinctive signature style full of the most feminine and ethereal elements that are quite simply impossible not to be charmed and captivated by. For 2015, the queen of bohemian bridal couture looked to the heavenly skies for inspiration, naming her new and beautiful gowns after iconic cathedrals like Notre Dame, Westminster Abbey and St. Patrick.

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Clarissa and Martina think Pettibone is bang on trend for 2015 and are looking forward to this years weddings.

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Gothic Wedding Favours

Trending 2015

At The Great Food Company we believe we have been pioneers in driving the popularity of family style dining, something we were doing in the company’s infancy over 12 years ago. Guest interaction is a big goal for today’s couples. And nothing gets a conversation started quite like a meal served family style, with guests passing beautifully plated entrées and sides. It’s relaxing and works well with both upscale and laid-back settings. At the moment its our most popular wedding breakfast

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Tasting Stations have taken over the evening buffet, with couples showing off their favorite foods in manageable portions. From oyster shucking stations and mac ‘n cheese bars, to make-it-your-own taco stands and trays of bowl food from curries to singapore noodles to local food trucks pulling right up to the patio, the idea is to surprise your guests with an unexpected assortment of party food.

Watch this space for more ideas soon!

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Kevin Browne Photograpy