January in the Castle Kitchen

Yorkshire forced rhubarb is now in season.

January in the Castle kitchen is a good month as things slow down after the busy Christmas period, we get a bit of time off to chill out and work on dishes for the re-opening of Castle Bow on the 30th of January.

Hugh has gone back to his motherland (Australia) for the month and everyone is getting back days owed from a very busy festive period. The dark days of winter are beginning to bite. However, produce in January is surprisingly exciting and is one of my favourite times of the year with hearty comforting foods. Pheasant or Partridge Pies or Roast Mallard with Swiss chard are my January game favourites.

Forced sea kale and Yorkshire rhubarb are now in full season. We have a fantastic Custard Tart with Forced Rhubarb and Nutmeg Ice cream – it’s a beautiful classic dish which I’ll post next week. If you have a chance to make it, do. It’s a bit of work but the perfect end to a winter meal. Yorkshire rhubarb is grown under candlelight the colour is vibrant pink and can turn any dessert into something a little bit special.

Seville and blood oranges are in excellent condition right now and squeezed for their juice make for a healthy breakfast. Otherwise, cut the segments out of the orange and serve them with sea bass and citrus vinaigrette or in a hollandaise as a sauce with sea kale. Blood orange juice also makes a wonderful jelly or refreshing sorbet. Seville oranges for me produce the finest marmalade and our legendary breakfast chef Gerry is getting the years stock of breakfast marmalade under way. After the custard tart I’ll put up pictures and the recipe for Gerry’s marmalade.

All the best for the new year and until next month take care.

Liam Finnegan

Liam and the Kitchen team

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