22 May 2013

Betty's at Malton Food Festival

On Saturday, whist at the food festival, I had booked myself into the cookery school marquee for a lesson with Betty's. I was pretty pleased to have booked early and got a place, as I have since heard that the demand for tickets was so high that the event could have easily sold out ten times over. I've been wanting to book myself into one of Betty's courses for a while now, but I've been stuck in trying to pick exactly which one to go on; so this was a good introductory taste.

I think that there were about ten of us in all, and I was partnered with the lovely Anne, who was also new to the Betty's school experience. We spent an hour cheerily working through together, helping each other out with juggling pans over the hob and passing around our ingredients. The lesson was hosted by Amy and Lisa, both senior tutors at Betty's Cookery School in Harrogate. I'd actually met Lisa back in November when she was doing a demonstration at the Country Living Christmas Fair. They both guided us all through the dishes step by step, checking up on us all the way, so that nobody was left behind, or with anything other than delicious results.

We made potato rösti and pikelets, which are like a flat crumpet. The rösti were absolutely, mouth wateringly gorgeous, filled with Gruyère cheese and special Betty's bacon lardons. My Father got hold of my finished rösti, and before we'd even left the tent it had shrunk in size considerably! I won't be sharing either recipe, since I don't believe that they are publicly available, but a tip for the rösti is to partially boil the potato the night before, and not to be shy with the butter -this is not the most healthy of dishes!
The pikelets were lovely too; I'm not entirely sure exactly how they differ in terms of ingredients to crumpets, but since they don't require extra equipment like crumpet rings, they are much less fuss to make; simply needing to be poured in small batches like pancakes onto a pan, ideally a crepe pan if you have one. We were each given a pot of Betty's own lemon curd for the pikelets, along with a recipe card to make our own. I am really pleased about this, as I can honestly say that it was the best lemon curd that I have ever tasted; full of flavour and with a decent kick of sharpness to it. I ate a couple of my pikelets warm the next day, slathed with the lemon curd and served with fresh strawberries, which was heavenly.
I thoroughly enjoyed the session, and I will certainly be looking into booking myself a full day's course with Betty's in the future. The whole team ensured that the session ran smoothly despite the atrocious weather on Saturday, and helped to make the event a really enjoyable experience. If you ever find yourself in the North Yorkshire area, do try and book yourself in for a lesson, or afternoon tea at on of Betty's Tearooms. You won't be disappointed.
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