Decorating Cupcakes and Food Styling



Beautiful photographs by photographer Jemma Watts at a very productive Around the Table session with family carers at Hillside Community Centre, Stowmarket.

Edible flowers and foliage were used to decorate the delicious cupcakes that cook Lindsay Wright had bought in for the group to get creative with. Background materials and props were used as Jemma Watts instructed the group on how to do some food styling and set photography. Thank you Lindsay and Jemma.

Jackie’s recipe for delicious Pork Dumplings

Theses are so delicious!!

You will need:

Pork Filling
600g Pork
45g Ginger finely chopped
4 tbsp chopped Chives
3 tbsp Oyster Sauce
2 tbsp Sesame oil
1/4 tsp bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp cornflour
Packet of Imperial Dragon
pancake wrappers / Gyoza wrappers


1 dumplings ingredients

Vegetarian Filling
Shitake mushrooms x 10
(Hydrate for 15 mins,
keep water for stock)
Fresh oyster mushrooms x 10
5 Spring onions chopped
3 garlic cloves
Add salt to taste



Dipping Sauce
1 tsp Sesame oil
2 tsp light Soy Sauce
1 tsp Chilli Oil


There are many different types of
folds you can do.
(Star, Pleat, Rosebud, Basic,
Envelope) For an online tutorial –
For folding instructions  ‘6 ways to fold a
dumpling’ on You Tube.



  • keep pancake wrappers under cling film to prevent wrappers drying out.

Vegetarian Dumpling
Always keep dumplings & wrappers under clingfilm to prevent
wrappers drying out. Fry, soften garlic and ginger by frying gently
in mix of sunflower and sesame oil. Add finely chopped mushrooms. As
water is evaporating add a pinch of salt and chives. Now your filling is
ready to use. Add 2 tsp to your wrappers and fold according to tutorial
mentioned above.
Pork Dumpling
Fry, soften garlic and ginger by frying gently in mix of sunflower and
sesame oil.Add pork, bicarbonate of soda, cornflour, pinch of salt and
chives. Stir in oyster sauce. Now your filling is ready to use. Add 1-2 tsp to
your wrappers and fold according to tutorial mentioned above.




Vegetable Soda Bread

100g white bread flour

50g brown bread flour

1/2 tsp baking powder

1/2 tsp bicarbonate of soda

pinch of salt

teaspoon of either parsley, basil, oregano, coriander, thyme

150g grated vegetable of your choice or a combination

Some ideas – pepper, aubergine, carrot, tomato,  courgette, parsnip, celeriac, olives

Nuts – pistachio, sesame


Set Oven to 200°C

Mix flour, baking powder, bicarbonate of soda, salt and 150g of the grated veg.

Add 80ml milk – this could be soya or almond.

Pour into a well in the middle of the mix, don’t handle too much as this will prevent dough rising. Mould into a loaf shape.



Bake for approximately 30 mins.

Quantity can be doubled or smaller rolls can be made.


How to make Dukkah


Dukkah Base

1 tsp Cumin

1 tsp Coriander

2 tsp Sesame seeds

2 tsp Any dried seeds and nuts

Add chilli and play with your flavours, dried rose petals can be used or you could add mint or thyme.

Serve with bread and extra virgin olive oil.

See post above for food artist Leo Burtin’s vegetable soda bread, this goes so well with Dukkah!

Dukkah is served across the Middle East since the age of ancient Egypt. Translated from the Arabic, it means “to pound.”

Brazilian Ham, Cheesebread and Angel Hair!

Below are 2  special festive Brazilian recipes for you to try. Taught to us by Daniela Paiva. These two delicious dishes go so well together! See below for list of ingredients and method. You can find most ingredients on online stores. Just search sour starch or manioc starch.
Cheese Bread (Pão de queijo)
250 g of Sour Starch (Polvilho azedo) + 250 g Manioc Startch (Polvilho doce)
150 ml milk
150 ml water
2 medium egs (more eggs if the batter gets dry)
100 ml vegetable oil
2 cups, approximately 150 ml, grated cheese (i used Parmesan)
Mix the sour starch and the manioc starch with a bit of salt. Warm the water (do not boil). Add the water to the mix. In a pan, boil the oil and the milk. Use your hands to mix the starch with the water. Add the oil and the milk to the batter. Add the eggs. Mix. Add the cheese. Mix with your hand pulling the batter towards yourself and using the tip of your fingers until it becomes a dough. Butter a tray. Make round balls (you can freeze some of them. Just put them in a plastic bag). Bake in the oven for 180 degrees for about 15-20 minutes.
img_2207 (1)
1 litre Coke
Garlic, onion, red wine vinegar and cloves
Season the ham with garlic, onion, red wine and cloves spiked/pressed into the ham overnight night.
On the next day, put on a tray and add 1 litre of coke. Bake it until soft, about 60 min. Open the door and brush it with the coke every 20 mins.
Angel hair (Fios de ovos) 
(Yellow strands you can see in photo above, so delicious!)
3 dozen egg yolks
1 kg sugar
3 cups of water
You could use a funnel .
Separate the egg yolks from the white. Put the egg yolk in a sieve and let it drip. Break the eggs with the shells.
Boil the sugar with the water. Drip the egg yolk inside the syrup, let it cook a little and take it off gently with a large spoon. Place it on a bamboo surface (ideally). Every time you repeat this process, add water if you need and let it boil again. When finishing the egg yolks, let the syrup boil and simmer. Mix with the angel hair and let it sit for a day in the fridge. You can put them into glass jars and freeze it.

‘ Recipe for Home’

Mother’s dumpling cooked in an iron saucepan

Gammon hock

Peanut butter balls

Carob powder and honey

Mother’s beef pudding

Grease proof paper and cloth over it

Cooks for hours –

remember to top the water up

Mum and Dad, Yorkshire pudding –

One big one, they always had the corners

I had the middle

Roast beef, father worked at Smithfields

Horse radish, roast potatoes,

homemade Yorkshire pudding

Grandma’s steak and kidney pudding

Fresh veg out the garden – parsnip, swede

Individual Imparda Goyara – that’s just a chicken and pork pie!

Puff pastry, olive, cheese, egg, heart of a palm tree

Afraid egg sandwich

A frayed egg sandwich

A Friday egg sandwich.


Poem written by the Around the Table group, Lowestoft with local poet Dean Parkin


poem written on coloured paper



Lola De Mille’s Labneh Balls

Lovely chef Lola De Mille taught us how to make these fantastic treats … to find out more about Lola here is her webiste

You will need:

16-20 oz thick Greek-style yoghurt ( I used Fage)

Kosher salt to taste (I used a pinch…and added some to the oil)


Seasonings to taste: sprigs of herbs looks nice

thyme, basil, oregano, fennel, cilantro, caraway, chile flakes, dried onion, chives

smoked paprika, garlic


Oil: Extra-virgin olive oil



Place yoghurt in a bowl with salt and stir to combine. Use a muslin, coffee cloth clean cloth or tea towel. Place yoghurt in center. If using coffee filters, divide yoghurt in several filters then gather up muslin sides and tie with string/rubber band.


Labneh yogurt

You can suspend the ball over a bowl by tying the string to a wooden spoon or if using coffee filters, slip a kebab skewer through the rubber band and suspend on top of a large bowl, allowing the ball to hang down. Leave to drain in the fridge for 3 days. Use the whey that has drained out in other dishes….I used some of the whey when I made some hummus, or in mashed potatoes. Remove the yoghurt cheese balls to a plate and form small balls of cheese (walnut or smaller size. Place on a flat plate.

Labneh balls

You can refrigerate for 3 hours to dry out, if you like… I didn’t. To a sterilised jar, add herbs/seasonings and most of the oil. Mix. Add the yoghurt balls and enough olive oil to cover.

Since most of the seasoning has the tendency to settle at the bottom , I like to “roll” the closed jar gently or turn upside down a few times to redistribute the seasonings. Leave to marinate for about 24 hours. Keep for up to 1 week or so.




Serve alongside a mezze platter with olives, roasted bell peppers, hummus, baba ganoush, etc. and some warm pita bread.


Serve as a tasty and classy appetizer with toasted bread/baguettes/crackers or with pita bread. Drizzle with some of the seasoned oil for even more flavor.


What to do with all the leftover oil?:

Use it to dress some boiled pasta dish…linguine, penne. Use it when sauteeing some shrimp or chicken…scampi style.

Use a bit of it in salad dressings. Try adding some balsamic vinegar and using it as a dip for crusty bread…yet, another appetizer.

Mike’s Apple Pies and Super easy pastry!

Follow this super easy recipe for delicious apple pies.


85g Butter

1 tbsp Sugar

160g plain white flour




Mix the following into a pyrex bowl

– 3 tbsp water, 1 tbsp oil and 1 tbsp sugar

Add the butter (roughly chopped)

Put the bowl of ingredients into the oven for 15 mins at 200oC until melted.


Pour in flour and mix.

Hey presto! You have made an easy pastry!

Press a thin layer of  your pastry into a tartlet case and cool in the fridge for 30 minutes. Cooling the pastry helps it keep it’s shape when baking.

Apple Puree

Peel apples and cook in a splash of water and a little sugar on a high heat and cover.

Mash or puree with a food processor.

Put a layer of puree and then a thin layer of apple slices.



Brush sides with butter.

Shake over spices.

Bake at 200oC for 20 mins.



Thank you for the beautiful photos Caro!


Cyanotypes with Caro Gervay

After we had pickled our Herring our group in Lowestoft made cyanotype prints with Caroline Gervay, we used a mixture of photographic processing solutions and painted the liquid onto paper. We laid objects such as lemons, herbs and spices to create these beautiful prints below. Once the paper is exposed to the light and washed you get wonderful white silhouettes….


Thank you Caro! We had great fun making these!

For more info on Caroline’s photography practice follow this link:

Mike and Caro’s Homemade Roll Mops.



Home made Roll Mops

For the pickling liquid:

75mls Cider

150 ml Cider Vinegar

1 tsp Sugar

Aromatics such as:

Mustard Seeds, Pink Peppercorns, Bay leaf, Star Anise, Fennel Seeds, Cloves, All Spice, Coriander Seeds, Dill (these all look beautiful in your pickle jar)


  1. Chop red onion finely
  2. Very Fresh Herring gutted and filleted
  3. Put vinegar, cider, 1 tsp sugar and aromatics on a medium heat, bring to the boil and then turn off the heat until sugar is dissolved, stir)
  4. remove Herring pin bones, head and tail.
  5. Soak in brine for 2 hours (to make brine whisk 120g salt into 1 litre of water)
  6. 6. Put 4 X fillets per small 200ml jar and cover completely with pickling liquid.


Herring can be kept in fridge up to 3 days. Enjoy!



Caro^  🙂

Thank You Mike for the Herring and Caro for the gorgeous photos! and both for a lovely stroll on the beach!


For more info on what Mike might be up to with his company Blanch and Shock follow this link: