nene local | helen dawson


Category: Cookery & Food

Summer Cooking is Here

With the Summer Holidays quickly approaching we have some new Bake-Off boxes (the official subscription service from Great British Bake Off) ready to order for delivery in July and August. Details of the boxes below 😊 They are the perfect school holiday activity!


The Bake Off Box | The Official Great British Bake Off Product Range

The Bake Off Box (@bakeoffbox) • Instagram photos and videos

Strawberry & Vanilla Sandwich Biscuits (delivered July) Available to buy until 23:59 on the 30th June

Strawberry & Vanilla Sandwich Biscuits

Vegan Double Chocolate Sundae for Valentine’s Day


200g Ritter Sport 61% Fine Dark Chocolateritter

2 scoops of vegan ice cream (vanilla, chocolate or caramel)

200g sugar

50g cacao powder

200g flour

200g apple sauce

100ml coconut oil

200ml plant-based milk

Handful almonds

  1. Preheat your oven to 180°C and mix all the dry ingredients in a big bowl
  2. Melt the dark chocolate in a water bath or microwave. Save yourself a few spoons for the Sundae drizzle.
  3. Add the melted chocolate, plant-based milk, apple sauce and oil into the big bowl to the dry ingredients. Mix well until you get a smooth texture.
  4. Lightly oil your muffin pan (20x25cm), sprinkle some cocoa powder all over the pan. Fill pan with brownie dough.
  5. Bake for 25 minutes (time will depend on the height of your brownies).
  6. For the Sundae you’ll need: 2 Brownies, 2 scoops of vegan ice cream (vanilla, chocolate or caramel, use one or two different flavours) and some extra squares of Ritter Sport 61% Fine Dark Chocolate.
  7. For toppings you’ll need: toasted almonds and melted Ritter Sport 61% Fine Dark Chocolate for drizzle.
  8. Assembly: Serve in a glass or bowl of your choice. Top your brownie with 1-2 scoops of your favourite non-dairy ice cream. Drizzle generously with melted Ritter Sport 61% Fine Dark chocolate. Sprinkle with toasted almonds and add 3 squares of Ritter Sport 61% Chocolate on top. Enjoy!ritter

Ritter Sport 61% Fine Dark Chocolate is available for purchase from selected NISA & Spar Stores for £1.79


Preparation time: 15 minutes

Cooking time: 25 minutes

Total time: 40 min


Save your Kitchen and Save your Sanity this Christmas

Save your kitchen and save your sanity this Christmas

It’s the most wonderful time of year, where we can eat drink and be merry and this year more than ever it is a great time to be enjoying time with our family.

One of the downsides of all that eating, and drinking is it requires a whole lot of time in the kitchen preparing festive treats as well as all the inevitable cleaning up afterwards.

This Christmas, whether you want to prepare some festive treats as gifts, make a delicious eggs benedict Christmas brunch, or impress with your turkey dinner- the Thermomix can help save your sanity and save your kitchen this Christmas.

What is the Thermomix? thermomix

The Thermomix is all your kitchen gadgets in one, combining an incredible 20 features – you can whisk, caramelize, brown, chop, steam, sauté, blend, boil, knead, emulsify, mill, grind, grate, and knead all at the touch of a button.

Even the most reluctant chef will be drawn to the design of the sleek, compact unit with easy to use touch screen features. With smart technology your Thermomix constantly gets better with new updates and new functions to make life in the kitchen easier.

Unlimited recipes

Using the built-in Wi-Fi connectivity you can access Cookidoo with 40,000 recipes at the touch of a button or you can use the guided cooking function to see step by step instructions to create everything from festive cocktails to delicious bread or even help with Christmas dinner itself.

There are so many recipes to inspire you and help you get creative in the kitchen. You can even cater for allergies or dietary requirements.

An extra pair of hands in the kitchen

When your time is precious you do not want to be spending hours slogging away in the kitchen. The machine has the speed of having an extra pair of hands alongside you.

There are automated functions to let the Thermomix do the work for you. Whether you use the built-in scales to weigh out your Christmas cake ingredients all at once or setting a pulled pork to slow cook for your Christmas buffet.

It’s like having a professional chef next to you as you create restaurant quality food in minutes, at the touch of a button and all with minimal effort and minimal mess.

No need to use every pot, pan and appliance

One of the downsides of a big Christmas dinner is the inevitable mess that is left in the kitchen from all the dishes and appliances. It all needs to be cleaned and packed away, just at the point when you want to put your feet up.

You can clear your cupboards and workbenches of your blender, juicer, slow cooker, electric mixer and much more. The Thermomix combines all your appliances into one. It even weighs and measures your ingredients as you go.


Not only can it help with all the jobs that you would need multiple appliances for, but it even has a self-cleaning function.

Yes! By filling the mixing bowl with water and washing up liquid and setting the unit to the built-in self-cleaning function you can finally put your feet up.

Being able to enjoy being in the kitchen and create delicious festive food to spread joy can really save your sanity this Christmas. The only downside of the Thermomix is that next Christmas EVERYONE will want come to your house for dinner.

Get in touch to book your FREE no obligation demonstration where I can show you the Thermomix can make a big difference to your Christmas.

Book your demo or follow us here:

Hawkwell Herbs April Recipe

Tasty Bites for April laziness –  with the Herbs!


Spring is sprung and many people are out in the garden ‘doing stuff’!  If, like me, you prefer being outside to being in the kitchen, then this is the month to bridge that gap between slow cooking of hot, warming, food and the ease of a quick BBQ!  In Spring, I always go for tasty bites. Warm. But quick to make.


I am a great believer in not using supermarkets if you can, and instead supporting the amazing small food businesses that we are lucky enough to have in and around Northamptonshire. And this month I would like to introduce you to Waterloo Cottage Farm ( You will know that I am a huge believer in only eating  meat that has been ‘kindly lived and kindly killed’ and this amazing place meets those requirements for me. And, being an ex environmental lawyer, organic is the way to go for me.  So off I popped for a visit and returned with enough goodies to make my first Tasty Bites for Spring!


Pork and Garlic Chives bites


What do you for each person?

1 large cabbage leaf,  some butter/oil/lard,  a slice of pork,  a few Garlic Chives.  And a pan!


How do you make it?

Wilt your cabbage leaf so that it is malleable enough to use as a wrapping.  In your choice of butter/oil/lard, gently cook your pork in the pan.  Chop a few Garlic Chives (if you don’t have Garlic Chives, use garlic and onion – you will see now why Garlic Chives are so great as they avoid all that peeling and chopping!). Place your cabbage leaf on a chopping board,  place your cooked pork in the middle of it, with your Garlic Chives on top.  Wrap it all up in the cabbage leaf. Cut it in half. Welcome to your very tasty bite (or 2!)



A home made ‘lemonade’

Would you like something refreshing with that, to quench your thirst after all that outside work? Try making your own ‘lemonade’ using Lemon Balm (or Lemon Verbena or both!).   There are a number of different ways of making it depending on which herbs you have, how intense  you like the taste, and whether you would like to add sweetness.

lemonade hawkwell herbs

  1. Simplest way is to make some herbal tea with your Lemon Balm, leave it to cool.  Drink it as a cold tea.  Add Lemon Verbena or Lemon zest (if you have a lemon but the point about this drink is that you can substitute Lemon flavoured herbs for lemons) if you wish as part of the tea making brew.   Add sugar, (or Sweet Cicely or Korean Mint which are great sugar substitutes) if you have a sweet tooth.


  1. Or, for a little more of an intense flavour – take a pint of water, add about 10 long stems of Lemon Balm/Lemon Verbena to the water, bring it to the boil and then gently simmer it for about 10 minutes to get a more intense flavour than with the tea.  Add sugar if you wish or the sugar substitute herbs already mentioned (I don’t as I prefer a tarter lemon flavour than a sweeter one). Make sure you don’t let it burn dry! Then let it cool. Drain it to remove the leaves. Add some fizzy water (for those of us of a retro era, the good old Soda Stream comes in handy here..) to taste.


I always make too much, and let it go cold, and then put it in freezer cubes.  Ready to add to fizzy water on another occasion.


And, if you are ready for that gin and tonic at the end of your gardening exploits, add some to your gin and tonic for a burst of ‘lemoniness’…


Did you know?

Herbs are great for lazy cooks! Like me… I lose the will sometimes to peel and chop garlic and onions (a combination I love) so I always grow Garlic Chives which combine both flavours.  And sugar substitutes such as Sweet Cicely and Liquorice/Korean Mint are great for that sweetness of taste if you don’t have sugar to hand.


This month’s herbs encourage laziness!  Garlic Chives, Common Chives,  3 types of Lemon Balm. No more chopping, peeling and, in the case of lemons, having to go and buy some!   You can find them listed here:  and you can buy them at the Farmers’ Markets here during April:


 Where can you find the herbs this month?


Market Harborough Farmers’ Market – Thursday 4th April

Thrapston Farmers’ Market – Saturday 6th April

Olney Farmers’ Market – Sunday 7th April

Oundle Farmers’ Market – Saturday 13th April


And look out for the new cookery courses coming up in Sudborough soon!

More Information

Hawkwell Herbs

07970 597 017


Twitter: @hawkwell_herbs