Mark Hix recipes: Our chef gets creative with produce from Lyme Regis's Food Rocks festival

Mark Hix has long championed Black Cow, and quite often collaborates with them. Here are his favourite ways to use their lovely products...

I'm currently gearing up for our annual Lyme Regis Food Rocks festival, so my mind is full of the names of all the different chefs and foodies giving talks and demonstrations.

But more than that, I am also thinking about some of the less serious events we'll be running at this September's festival, like our Dorset Knob-tossing game and, my favourite, the Black Cow cheese rolling competition. If you remember the original, long-established Gloucestershire cheese rolling – with those giant wheels of cheese that were often want to crush the odd spectator – you may be worrying for our attendees.

Fear not, though, we are using child-friendly 200g truckles – and the only place they'll be rolling is along the communal gardens; after all, this cheese is too good to waste.

I've long championed Black Cow, and quite often collaborate with them. Tom Barbour, the west Dorset farmer who founded the brand, makes the most wonderful Black Cow vodka, which is made entirely from milk, and his cheese is equally as good, too. Here are my favourite ways to use Barbour's lovely products. Don't worry if you can't get his cheese, though – use cheddar instead.

Black Cow fondue with Dorset knobs

Serves 4

I get the distinct feeling fondue is catching on again. We always try to have a fondue of some description on the menu. Anything from Welsh rabbit fondue to chocolate fondue with marshmallows – with this dish, the possibilities are endless.

250ml double cream
200g Black Cow cheese, grated
80-100ml Black Cow vodka, more if you wish
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
6-8 Dorset Knobs (a hard, savoury, biscuit), carefully cut into four pieces

Black Cow fondue with Dorset Knobs Black Cow fondue with Dorset Knobs (Jason Lowe)
Put the cream, cheese and vodka into a bowl over a pan of simmering water, stir every so often, until the cheese has melted and the mixture is a thick sauce-like consistency that has reduced by half. If you have a fondue set, then simply put the ingredients into the pot, light the burner and stir every so often. Season to taste and add more vodka if you wish. To serve, carefully skewer each piece of Dorset Knob on to a fondue skewer or wooden kebab stick and get stuck in.

Dorset Black Cow salad

Serves 4

This is a take on a Greek salad; you can vary the ingredients according to what's around.

4 cucumbers, quartered lengthways, seeds removed and cut into 1-2cm chunks
1 large red onion, peeled, halved and chopped into rough 1cm dice
A handful or two of cooked broad beans
40-50 stoned black olives
20 tomatoes, cut into chunks
A couple of handfuls of mint leaves, torn
4-6 leaves of cos lettuce, cut into rough 2cm squares
1x 200g Black Cow cheese, cut into rough 1cm chunks
250ml olive oil
The juice of 3 lemons
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Dorset Black Cow salad (Jason Lowe) Dorset Black Cow salad (Jason Lowe)
Mix the olive oil and lemon juice together and season well. Mix all of the other ingredients together. Now toss some of the cheese into the salad and season.

Quinoa, summer herb and Black Cow salad

Serves 4

It is often mistaken for a grain, but quinoa is actually a cereal seed – and one of great versatility, too. It serves as a good replacement for couscous or rice. It's only really been a staple of mine for a year, but it's certainly a popular item in the Hix household.

60g quinoa, soaked in cold water for an hour
80g peas, cooked
80g broad beans, cooked
10-12 green beans, cooked
4 spring onions, trimmed and finely chopped
A couple of good handfuls of parsley, chopped
A couple of good handfuls of mint, chopped
100ml olive or rapeseed oil
The juice of 1 lemon
Salt and freshly ground black pepper
1x 200g Black Cow cheese, cut into rough 1cm cubes

Quinoa, summer herb and Black Cow salad (Jason Lowe) Quinoa, summer herb and Black Cow salad (Jason Lowe)
Cook the quinoa in simmering, lightly salted water for about 20 minutes, or until the seeds open up and are tender. Drain in a sieve and leave to cool. Meanwhile, cut the green beans into rough ½cm pieces and remove the tough outer skins of the larger broad beans if you wish.

Once the quinoa has cooled, mix it with the beans, chopped onions and all the other ingredients and season.

Summer bean salad with Black Cow fritters

Serves 4

Deep-frying little nuggets of cheese gives a salad a great texture – they end up playing a similar role to croutons, but are much tastier. You can use as many types of bean as you wish, even yellow wax beans, if you can get your hands on them.

150-200 mixed beans, broad, runner, bobby
1 x 200g Black Cow cheese, cut into rough 2cm cubes
2tbsp flour for dusting, seasoned
1 egg, beaten
3-4tbsp fresh white breadcrumbs
Vegetable or corn oil for deep frying
A couple of handfuls of small salad leaves like rocket, land cress, red mustard leaf, bulls blood
A few sticks of fine chives, cut into 3-4cm lengths

For the dressing

1tbsp tarragon vinegar
2tsp Tewkesbury mustard
1 clove of garlic, peeled
2tbsp rapeseed oil
3tbsp vegetable or corn oil
Salt and freshly ground black pepper

Summer bean salad with Black Cow fritters (Jason Lowe) Summer bean salad with Black Cow fritters (Jason Lowe)
First, make the dressing. Put all of the ingredients into a clean bottle or jar. Give them a good shake and leave to infuse for an hour or so, or overnight at room temperature.

Now prepare the beans: thinly slice runners on the angle, if you are using them, otherwise cut as you wish.

Cook in boiling salted water for a few minutes until tender and then refresh in cold water.

Preheat about 8cm of oil to 160-180C in a large thick-bottomed saucepan or electric deep-fat fryer.

Carefully roll the cheese in the flour, shaking off any excess, then pass through the egg, again shaking off any excess, and finally through the crumbs.

Fry the cheese in a couple of batches for about a minute, or until the crumbs are golden, then remove with a slotted spoon and drain on some kitchen paper.

To assemble the salad, toss the beans with the salad leaves, cheese and dressing and season. Now scatter on the chives and serve.

Black Cow and ham crumpets with a fried duck egg

Serves 4

This makes a great breakfast, brunch or snack. You can use any egg really, but a duck egg tends to have a larger yolk, so makes for a richer dish.

4 crumpets, cut in half vertically
4 thick slices of good-quality cooked ham
4 x ½cm-thick slices of Black Cow cheese, cut vertically
5 ducks' eggs
A little rapeseed oil for cooking

Black Cow and ham crumpet with a fried duck egg Black Cow and ham crumpet with a fried duck egg (Jason Lowe)
Toast the crumpets on what was the outer side. Preheat the oven to 180C.

Put the ham and cheese on the bottom layer of the crumpets, place the tops on and warm through in the oven for about 8-10 minutes, or until the cheese melts.

Meanwhile, fry the ducks' eggs in the oil, lightly seasoning them as they are cooking. Serve the crumpets immediately with an egg on top.

Food Rocks 2014 takes place on 6 and 7 September at the Lyme Regis Marine Parade Shelters. For more details visit hixrestaurants.co.uk and Twitter: @foodrocks2014

Arts and Entertainment
The Doctor and Clara have their first real heart to heart since he regenerated in 'Deep Breath'
TV
Arts and Entertainment
Jeremy Clarkson, left, and Richard Hammond upset the locals in South America
tvSpoiler alert: It has been talked about for months
Arts and Entertainment
James Hewitt has firmly denied being Harry’s father
arts + ents
Arts and Entertainment
Jamie Oliver
filmTV chef Jamie Oliver turned down role in The Hobbit
PROMOTED VIDEO
Life and Style
ebookNow available in paperback
ebooks
ebookPart of The Independent’s new eBook series The Great Composers
News
news
News
Sir James Dyson: 'Students must be inspired to take up the challenge of engineering'
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Man of action: Christian Bale stars in Exodus: Gods and Kings
film
Life and Style
Apple showed no sign of losing its talent for product launches with the new, slightly larger iPhone 6 making headlines
techSecurity breaches and overhyped start-ups dominated a year in which very little changed (save the size of your phone)
Arts and Entertainment
Catherine (Sarah Lancashire) in Happy Valley ((C) Red Productions/Ben Blackall)
TV
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

ES Rentals

    iJobs Job Widget
    iJobs Food & Drink

    Recruitment Genius: Accounts Administrator

    £16000 - £18000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an exciting opportunity...

    Recruitment Genius: Personal Trainer / PT - OTE £30,000 Uncapped

    £25000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: The fastest growing fitness cha...

    Investigo: Finance Analyst

    £240 - £275 per day: Investigo: Support the global business through in-depth a...

    Ashdown Group: Data Manager - £Market Rate

    Negotiable: Ashdown Group: Data Manager - MySQL, Shell Scripts, Java, VB Scrip...

    Day In a Page

    A timely reminder of the bloody anniversary we all forgot

    A timely reminder of the bloody anniversary we all forgot

    Who remembers that this week we enter the 150th anniversary year of the end of the American Civil War, asks Robert Fisk
    Homeless Veterans appeal: Former soldiers pay their respects to a friend who also served

    Homeless Veterans appeal

    Former soldiers pay their respects to a friend who also served
    Downfall of Dustin 'Screech' Diamond, the 'Saved By The Bell' star charged with bar stabbing

    Scarred by the bell

    The downfall of the TV star charged with bar stabbing
    Why 2014 was a year of technological let-downs

    Why 2014 was a year of technological let-downs

    Security breaches and overhyped start-ups dominated a year in which very little changed (save the size of your phone)
    Cuba's golf revolution: But will the revolutionary nation take 'bourgeois' game to its heart?

    Will revolutionary Cuba take 'bourgeois' golf to its heart?

    Fidel Castro ridiculed the game – but now investment in leisure resort projects is welcome
    The Locked Room Mysteries: As a new collection of the genre’s best is published, its editor Otto Penzler explains the rules of engagement

    The Locked Room Mysteries

    As a new collection of the genre’s best is published, its editor explains the rules of engagement
    Amy Adams on playing painter Margaret Keane in Tim Burton's Big Eyes

    How I made myself Keane

    Amy Adams hadn’t wanted to take the role of artist Margaret Keane, because she’d had enough of playing victims. But then she had a daughter, and saw the painter in a new light
    Ed Richards: Parting view of Ofcom chief. . . we hate jokes on the disabled

    Parting view of Ofcom chief... we hate jokes on the disabled

    Bad language once got TV viewers irate, inciting calls to broadcasting switchboards. But now there is a worse offender, says retiring head of the media watchdog, Ed Richards
    A look back at fashion in 2014: Wear in review

    Wear in review

    A look back at fashion in 2014
    Ian Herbert: My 10 hopes for sport in 2015. Might just one of them happen?

    Ian Herbert: My 10 hopes for sport in 2015

    Might just one of them happen?
    War with Isis: The West needs more than a White Knight

    The West needs more than a White Knight

    Despite billions spent on weapons, the US has not been able to counter Isis's gruesome tactics, says Patrick Cockburn
    Return to Helmand: Private Davey Graham recalls the day he was shot by the Taliban

    'The day I was shot by the Taliban'

    Private Davey Graham was shot five times during an ambush in 2007 - it was the first, controversial photograph to show the dangers our soldiers faced in Helmand province
    Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

    Revealed: the best and worst airlines for delays

    Many flyers are failing to claim compensation to which they are entitled, a new survey has found
    The stories that defined 2014: From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions

    The stories that defined 2014

    From the Scottish independence referendum to the Ice Bucket Challenge, our writers voice their opinions
    Stoke-on-Trent becomes first British city to be classified as 'disaster resilient' by the United Nations

    Disaster looming? Now you know where to head...

    Which British city has become the first to be awarded special 'resilience' status by the UN?