Days from my Kitchen and Garden - How I cook and grow through the seasons by the sea.
Cornwall and my life by the sea where the hawthorn and gorse blossom grow on the rugged coastline with the ever changing weather against the magical Cornish light. As days draw in, shorter, somewhat greyer as we reflect on the golden days of summer and as autumn passes we look forward to another season ahead, a new chapter of the year with a great sense of excitement and joy. A chance for child-like nostalgia and of course the promise of Christmas, a time of year I absolutely love. I am so happy to be here with you and I hope to inspire you with recipes and how I cook and how I grow.
Emily pictured above using Mushrooms Tote Bag from the Bistro Collection by Whistlefish
Colour from the blooms of late summer to the burnished gold autumn palette that appears in my garden, the gradual changes that give hues that fill me with a new energy of what I will harvest from my garden and the ingredients to cook with. Fennel reaching for the sky with the flowers going to seed the high note herbs slow down as the more earthy winter herbs seem to awake. Sage, rosemary, oregano, marjoram and bay.
I begin to think about the comforts of one-pot suppers and heartier dishes to see us through the colder months as winter draws us in. I love the slower days and enjoy seeing my garden as it wraps itself up against the elements. Appreciating the changes and all they bring always with a sense of hope and wonder. I think for me the word 'hope' sums up my newfound love of being in the garden and cooking what I grow.
Emily Scott in her garden with homegrown herbs wearing Blackberries Apron from the Bistro Collection by Whistlefish (£17.95) >
Kitchen garden - Ingredients to look forward to this time of year.
● Green Tomatoes I usually have a glut of tomatoes that just refuse to turn red so I always pick them and make Green Tomato chutney which sees me through the winter delicious and served with cheese and bread, perks up a sandwich or a spoonful added to a winter stew is delicious. Or leave them at room temperature and they will slowly ripen over time. See the recipe for Green Tomato Chutney >
● Runners (just keep giving) I have had a particularly successful year with runner beans and they are very forgiving. A great tip if like me you have had more beans than you can eat at once prepare your beans and then blanch and refresh them in iced water to retain their colour, drain and pat dry and place in sealed bags and freeze and use when required.
● Courgettes (the last of the summer) courgettes/zucchini are wonderful plants to grow, they are relatively easy and hardy.
● Purple sprouting broccoli
● Damsons (pick and make jam and jellies)
● Quince (gnarly and slightly misunderstood, if you have a Quince tree in your garden you are in for a treat)
● Citrus fruits
I am relatively new to growing something that has slowly become part of my days, the wonders of planting a seed and watching it appear and with a little love and nurturing the triumphant feeling of cooking what I have grown. Work in progress and learn as I go. I have a very small space, two raised beds, and a very small greenhouse (not sure I can even call it a house but somewhere I can propagate seeds and keep them warmer than leaving them to the wrath of the Cornish weather which is not always forgiving). I would encourage you to have a go and however small your space, find a way to grow herbs and vegetables, in pots, small beds, containers or planters. One way I have been very successful is by using vintage wooden crates as planters. Courgettes, broccoli, aubergines, cavolo nero (black cabbage) and cucumbers have been particularly fruitful.
How I cook is always by drawing inspiration from each season as it unfolds. Cooking and using ingredients makes perfect sense to me by using what nature has to offer at a certain time. Planning, writing a list, a little thought about provenance, shopping locally and supporting your grocer, butcher, fishmonger and farmers market.
Ingredients you will always find in my kitchen this time of year are some that I have been successful growing or others from my local grocer, farmers market or friend with greener fingers than myself.
Emily presenting her Easy homemade fig tart wearing the Figs Apron from the Bistro Collection by Whistlefish (17.95) >
For me, the table always comes first, a place with family or friends we gather come rain or shine. A constant, however busy our diaries are. The one thing I always prioritise is what we will eat for supper and sometimes, a week for me, will be worked around what Sunday lunch will look like. The best conversations are always around a table, a way to communicate in this ever-fast world whether catching up on our days or simply being together with good food and always a glass. Detail is important as is the art of keeping everything I do as simple as possible. From laying my table with mismatched cutlery, french tumblers, candles, flowers cut from the garden and favourite seasonal touches that make my house my home.
Wishing you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year x
Emily Scott has lived and trained as a chef in London and France, but Cornwall is where she calls home. A successful chef, author of 'Sea & Shore: Recipes and Stories from a Kitchen in Cornwall' and creative director of her restaurant 'Emily Scott Food' located at the stunning Watergate Bay on the North Coast of Cornwall.
Emily takes pride and passion in serving simple, seasonal and effortlessly stylish food. In 2021 Emily was commissioned by the Cabinet Office to curate a special dinner for Royalty and World Leaders at the G7 summit at the Eden Project. She was the first woman to cook for leaders of the western world; a stand-out career-defining moment for Emily and the rest of her team. Emily is also a familiar face on BBC's Saturday Morning Kitchen.
Emily released her first cookbook titled 'Sea & Shore: Recipes and Stories from a Kitchen in Cornwall' in 2021. For your chance to win a signed copy of Emily's book plus a homeware set from the Bistro Collection by Whistlefish Enter the instagram competition at @emilyscottfood and @whistlefish before 23.11.22. (This competition is now closed)