Venton Vean recipes

Foodies Philippa and David left London to open a B&B in Penzance, Cornwall. Here, they share two of their most popular recipes for Logarty readers to try.

Strawberry and passion fruit jam

This is a luxurious soft-set jam. Commercial strawberry jam often tastes like boiled sweets and this is the best recipe we have found/adapted. The passion fruit and added lemon or lime juice enhance the strawberry flavour and provide a wonderful acidity. The passion fruit seeds also add texture.

Our strawberry and passion fruit jam is sublime with a cream tea or in a Victoria sponge. Open within six months of making, refrigerate after opening and then use within four weeks.

The quantities given in this recipe will fill four 225g (8oz) sterilised jars.

What you need

900g (2lbs) strawberries
9 passion fruit
Juice of 1 lemon or 2 limes (whichever you prefer)
700g (1lb 8oz) granulated sugar with added pectin (jam sugar)

How to make it

1 Hull the strawberries (remove the green bit) and cut them in half, or quarters if they’re big.

2 Put them in a jam pan (or a large heavy-bottomed saucepan if you don't have a jam pan).

jam recipe3 Halve the passion fruits, then carefully scoop out the flesh, juice and seeds and add them to the strawberries.

4 Juice the lemon (or limes) and add this juice to the fruit.

5 Stir in the sugar and heat gently to dissolve it.

6 Once the sugar is completely dissolved, turn up the heat and bring the mixture to a rolling, or rapid, boil.

7 After five to seven minutes, test to see whether it's reached setting point. We find the best way to do this is as follows:
  • put a saucer or small plate in the freezer when you start to make the jam
  • take the saucer out when you want to test the setting point and put half a teaspoon of the jam on it
  • leave for 30 to 60 seconds then push your finger through it
  • if the jam wrinkles as you push it and doesn't run back, it is ready: if not, boil for another three to five minutes and try again.

8 Once the jam has reached setting point, turn the heat off but wait for 10 minutes before spooning it into warm sterilised jars. This ensures that the strawberry pieces and passion fruit seeds are evenly suspended in the jam and don't rise to the surface.

Brown sugar shortbread

We usually serve homemade cake when guests arrive during the day, but when they get here in the evening and just want to head to bed with a cup of tea, these shortbread biscuits are perfect and go down really well. They are also dead easy to make and will keep for four or five days in an airtight tin.shortbread recipe

The quantities given in this recipe will make 10 to 14 biscuits.

What you need

110g (4oz) lightly salted butter, chilled and diced
50g (2oz) light brown sugar
160g (5½oz) plain flour
Extra butter for greasing the baking trays
Demerara sugar for rolling

How to make them

1 Whizz the first three ingredients together in a food processor/mixer – crumbs will form and then the mixture will start to stick together into a dough.

2 When you have a dough, sprinkle your work surface with demerara sugar and roll the dough into a sausage shape, coating well with the sugar.

3 Chill the dough overnight or indeed for several days if you are super organised (we often stick it in the freezer if we’re short of time, but make sure it doesn't freeze!)

4 When you're ready to bake the shortbread, preheat the oven to 140°C/285°F (fan oven) or 160°C/320°F (ordinary oven).

shortbread cutting5 Grease two baking trays.

6 Cut the dough sausage into 1cm (just under ½in) discs (you should get around 10 to 14) and lay them on the greased baking trays.

7 Put the trays in the preheated oven for about 30, or maybe 35, minutes until the biscuits are just starting to colour.

8 Loosen the biscuits from the trays and leave them to cool.

Find out more about how Philippa and David started their B&B

Fancy a B&B break? Check out Venton Vean.

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Just made these biscuits.

Just made these biscuits. Such a simple recipe: making the dough only took a few minutes, then I stuck it in the freezer for half an hour before baking. Within minutes of coming out of the oven, they had all been eaten. Delicious! Perhaps I'll make twice as many next time…

They sound gorgeous! I've

They sound gorgeous! I've promised to make them for my lot at the weekend.

Quick, easy and melt-in-the

Quick, easy and melt-in-the-mouth gorgeous, this brown sugar shortbread was pronounced 'best shortbread I've ever tasted' by my other half. Can't argue with that: he's done his research.

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