Letter from ‘The Ferns’ veggie B & B chatting about ‘Shroppie Pie’, porridge and home-made Limoncello

‘Shroppie Pie’

I recently discovered that one of my neighbours has her own business supplying vegetarian nut roasts all around the UK and also to Eire.  The company is called ‘Thank Goodness‘ and the aim of the company was originally to supply the odd member of the family who is a vegetarian with, say, a nut roast for an occasion where  there may be difficulty  sorting out a recipe for a non meat eater when the rest of the family are choosing meat as their main course.luxury-nutroast

Above is is one of her nut roasts. In December  I shall be reviewing her vegan nut roast, but today shall be looking at her new offering  – ‘Shroppie Pie’

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So lets have a taste! In the oven for c 20 mins …..

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The pastry was so light. You can see its crammed full of onions, celery carrots and adukis – those are the little round red coloured  beans that you can see. This was really a delicious pie.  I like to bake my own pies and nut roasts, but I shall be having some more of these as I cant make pastry like ‘Thank Goodness’ does it.  I shall be getting mine from The Green Fields farm shop at  Donnington or Priorslee, Telford  in the future. see   and Bernadette’s website is     Thank Goodness

Details of where to purchase the products are here too.


I make my porridge using fine oatmeal rather than porridge oat flakes. I am, intending to have porridge on the menu in the winter time at my B & B.

So here is my very easy method of making it.. . .


Take a tablespoon of oatmeal. I buy mine from Sherwood Wholefoods in Market Drayton

here is the link to their site  Sherwood Wholefoods


Stir in the dairy or soya milk. Water is OK but doesn’t make a creamy porridge. Start heating but keep stirring until it thickens



Once thickened, just leave on a low heat for 2-3 minutes


Serve with sugar, golden syrup or black treacle (to get extra trace elements and minerals) Beautiful!!



At this time of the year I sometimes  tell my readers about a  drink that I have been making as a ‘winter warmer ‘ or Christmas present. Today its the turn of Limoncello. The recipe is my sister’s. It is very easy to make and delish! The recipe is so easy that I haven’t  done any photos to illustrate. So here’s the recipe for Pam’s Limoncello

6 oz (plus more if you need it sweeter) sugar                   150 ml water

zest and juice of 6 unwaxed lemons                                        700ml vodka


Put the sugar and the water in a pan and boil for 3-4 minutes until syrupy. Then cool. Add the zest and lemon juice and the vodka. Bottle and shake daily for a month or so.

If you like, you can refine the drink by taking some of the zest out of the drink – this will settle in the bottom and so is easy to remove. You can see that in my photo  here, the left hand bottle is not as clear as the right hand bottle, where I have taken more of the zest out. It’s up to you! I have also done some nice home made labels in the shape of lemons to go with the bottles as they are going to be gifts


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It is best served from the fridge which gives it a bit of edge. I buy mine my bottles at Newport Cookshop





Letter from ‘The Ferns’ chatting about cashew pate, Green Monkey and a hairdryer

‘Thank Goodness’  Honeyed Cashew Pate

This Christmas we tried the ‘Thank Goodness’ Honeyed Cashew Pate. We had had it frozen, and was easy to get out and defrost for a Christmas buffet.

cashe pate 1

Well this was an interesting product to review – something a bit unusual.  Just to remind my readers I am working my way through the products of ‘Thank Goodness’ a local Newport, Shropshire company who chiefly produce nut roasts. I reviewed the Luxury Vegan Nutroast in my December 2015 blog; a really great product!

I now embark on the Cashew Nut Pate with Mike, Richard and Kelly.  We didnt all agree about this product but the gist was: The flavour was quite sweet but not alarmingly so.  The texture was a cross between a dip and a pate. Personally I prefer something a bit more solid. The texture worked well on crackers, but probably not  as a sandwich filling.We couldnt taste the orange liqueur,  but we could, the honey.


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So we thought it unusual and something a bit different – perhaps for a special  occasion. Also, I need to tell you from where you can buy this pate. Our local store is Greenfields Farm Shop Donnington, but have a look at the ‘Thank Goodness’ website for other suppliers.

‘Green Monkey’ at Joules at Market Drayton

Another local business which is of interest to vegetarians and vegans who feel a bit iffy  about drinking wines and beers with finings  / isinglass in them (the swim bladder of fishes, usually sturgeon). Isinglass enables the drinks to be manufactured more quickly. However, Joules brewery at Market Drayton, about 30 minutes from Newport,


The brewery tap at Market Drayton The Red Lion

now have a lager type beer which is called ‘Green Monkey‘ . It  is not pasteurised or artificially carbonated. Green Monkey is  lagered for up to four weeks. This method develops a naturally carbonated drink and it contains no artificial ingredients, preservatives or additives such as finings. gm

Once a month they also do brewery tours

You can find their pubs anywhere in the region from Birmingham to Chester

Here in Newport we have The New Inn, on Stafford Road. See below

new inn1new inn2


My last bit of news is that I now have a  PAT tested hair-dryer in the guests bedroom! Hurray!

hair dryer

Happy New Year to all!