When our locally-based team had the idea of producing an ebook to showcase South Devon’s wonderful food and drink, we wondered whether we should broaden our focus beyond the borders of our little region.
But as soon as we began comparing notes on our favourite eateries and food and drink brands, we realised that the size of our local area wouldn’t present a problem at all: the scale and variety of South Devon’s food economy turned out to be much greater than we could have imagined.
In fact, our biggest challenge would be to squeeze the essence of South Devon’s delicious food and drink into one manageable serving!
From the award-winning wines and creamy cheeses produced at Sharpham to the wholesome vegan soups and sauces made by Tideford Organics, there are inspiring stories behind every successful South Devon brand. Some companies, like Riverford Organic Farmers and the Well Hung Meat Company, started as one-person operations and have become major national suppliers of high-quality, ethically-sourced produce. Others fill a unique niche, like the South Devon Chilli Farm, which counts TV’s Jamie Oliver amongst its fans.
And let’s not forget the fantastic cafés and restaurants that make South Devon such a favourite with foodies. With locally-based chefs such as Mitch Tonks and Jane Baxter, both of whom have contributed to our cookbook, and stylish waterside restaurants like Dick and Wills, who also provided us with three delicious recipes, South Devon offers something for everyone – whatever the time of day, and whatever the occasion.
To give you a fuller flavour of the contents of our cookbook, we’ve picked out three heavenly highlights in the form of locally-sourced recipes for breakfast lunch and dinner. Remember, this is just a starter – get the full cookbook here.
Figs baked in honey, lemon and cinnamon
Recipe by Riverford Organic Farmers
Figs are great cut into wedges and added to salads, or stuffed with ricotta and wrapped in an air-dried ham before roasting until soft and the ham crispy. Or try this baked version. Great on its own for breakfast with a dollop of thick yoghurt and granola too if you like.
Serves 2-3, but will easily scale up
You will need
- 6 figs
- 25g butter
- 2 tbsp clear honey
- 1 tbsp lemon juice
- 2 good pinches of ground cinnamon
- Thick Greek yoghurt & granola (optional for breakfast), to serve
- Preheat oven to 190˚C/Gas 5.
- Cut a cross in the figs, about ⅔ of the way through, keeping the base intact. Grease a small baking dish or ovenproof pan with a little of the butter.
- Lay the figs in the pan.
- Try to keep them as upright as you can.
- Pop the rest of the butter in a separate small saucepan, with the honey, lemon juice and cinnamon.
- Heat gently to warm the honey and melt the butter, then pour it over the figs.
- Bake for about 10-15 minutes, until the figs have just softened.
- Serve drizzled with the cooking syrup, with a good dollop of thick yoghurt and if using, sprinkled with granola.
Recipe by Mitch Tonks www.mitchtonks.co.uk
Make the best of our fresh crab, it is after all the best in the world and it’s not as expensive as the more elite shellfish. You can use any number of herbs and flavours mixed in with the meat but the olive oil and lemon are a must – one sets the other off.
Serves 4 as a light starter or snack
You will need
- 200g fresh white handpicked crabmeat
- Good olive oil
- 30g cucumber chopped
- 1 tbsp chopped dill
- Salt & pepper
- Juice of 1 lemon
- Half an avocado cut in half then chopped or shaved in strips
- Slices of sourdough or crusty bread
- Grill the bread, then mix the crab with the dill, cucumber and avocado.
- Season, then add lemon juice and olive oil to taste.
- Heap on the bread and serve.
Miso Glazed Roasted Vegetable Tart
Recipe by Tideford Organics www.tidefordorganics.com/
You will need
- 3 tbsp Tideford Organics Fresh Red Miso or Fresh White Miso
- 1 courgette, trimmed, chopped into medium-sized pieces
- 1 small head fennel, fronds trimmed, finely sliced
- 1 red onion, sliced
- 2 garlic cloves, peeled & crushed
- 4 tbsp olive oil
- 10 cherry tomatoes
- 3-4 sprigs fresh thyme
- 320g/12oz sheet ready-rolled puff pastry
- Plain flour for dusting
- 150g/5oz tofu (vegan option) or goats cheese (vegetarian option)
- Salt and freshly ground black pepper
- Mix the olive oil, thyme, garlic and miso together.
- Put the tomatoes, courgette, fennel and onion into a roasting tray and drizzle over the miso glaze, then mix to coat all the vegetables. Roast in the oven for 20 minutes at 200C / Gas 6, or until the vegetables are just starting to go tender. Set aside to cool slightly.
- Lay the ready-rolled sheet of puff pastry onto a lightly floured baking tray.
Scatter the roasted vegetables inside, leaving a 2 cm border, and dot with cubes of tofu or goats’ cheese.
We hope these three heavenly highlights have whetted your appetite for delicious South Devon-sourced meals. Download your copy of the South Devon Cookbook for a whole week’s worth of irresistible recipes.