Archives for category: camping

It’s that time of year when we decide what to do and where to go on holiday. Do we go away, do we stay local?

One place that sprang to mind was a camping holiday in France. Having visited there a twice in the past few years to see family, we have fallen in love with the Brittany countryside and especially the food from the region.

One of my favourite memories of our first trip to the Brittany region of France was when Martin’s uncle, Philippe, took us to the Chanson in Nantes. That evening, we went to a small restaurant that specialised in galettes and crepes. I’d never had galettes before, but they have quickly become one of my favourite things to have when we go to France. Martin and I loved them so much that we purchased Farine de blé noir, the flour that makes them so special, and brought it back to England so we could try making them ourselves. (Turns out, it’s just buckwheat flour, so we can still make them anytime we like even though our special French flour has long gone.)

Since we’d been talking of France so much, we decided to make a special meal of galette complète to remind us of our visits to the galette place in Nantes (I can’t recall the name of the amazing restaurant) and also to the Le Chat Botté in Clisson.

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To make a special meal for two, you will need:
For the galette/crepe -

  • 145g Buckwheat flour
  • pinch sea salt (sel de Guérande, if you’ve got some!)
  • 1 egg
  • 250ml semi-skimmed milk

Filling for the complète:

  • ham
  • strong cheese like cheddar, comte or Gruyere, grated
  • 1 egg for each person
    • In a medium-sized bowl, mix the flour, salt
    • Make a well and add the egg and a bit of milk to form a smooth paste.
    • Then add the rest of the milk, mixing thoroughly.
    • The batter should be smooth and have a ribbon-like consistency.
    • Leave to sit at least 30 minutes.
    • In the meantime, heat a large non-stick skillet over medium-high heat. Ladle a spoonful of batter into the centre of the pan and tilt it so that the mixture spreads easily over the hot surface. Make sure that you have a very thin layer of batter.
    • Cook the galette for about 2 minutes or until the edges curl up and the bottom begins to brown.
    • Flip and cook the other side. Continue this process until you’ve used up all your batter. Makes approx 4 galette/crepes.
    • To fill, melt a pat of butter in the skillet and heat the galette on one side for about 15 seconds.
    • Flip the galette over and scatter almost all of the cheese around the crepe. Let the cheese melt then add the ham, sprinkling on the rest of the cheese.

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    • Crack the egg over the ham. Gently fold each side of the galette so that the filling is sealed. If the yolk doesn’t seem cooked enough, break so that it runs slightly, and cover with a lid until the egg is cooked.

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  • Alternatively, to cheat… scatter the cheese over the galette, add the ham and then add a sunny-side up fried egg on top, fold the sides of the galette in… et voila! You don’t have to worry if your egg cooked or not.

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Serve with ice cold brut cidre, from Brittany of course.

We’re going to keep researching our holiday, in fact a few places have caught our eye like Thomson AlFresco La Grande Metarie campsite in Carnac, but until we make it back to Brittany, we’ll have to keep the memories alive with the taste of our home made galettes.

*This is a sponsored post, although the recipe (and opinion) is my own*

Although this is a little belated, going camping the first time with my family was one of the highlights of my summer. I have fond memories of camping as a child at Folsom Lake and hoped to introduce the same joy to my son. I didn’t want anything fancy, nothing with ‘holiday park’ in the name or a place that heavily featured caravans. All I wanted was something in the woods with a water source nearby (lake, river, pond, sea) and a flushing toilet.

I hopped on the Cool Camping website and happened across Haddon Grove in Derbyshire. It ticked all of the boxes, was VERY reasonable… none of this deposit melarky or two night minimum. (I don’t really get the two night minimum thing, why is it so hard to get that we only want to camp for one night. There is only one night in the weekend, really. People work on Friday and they have to work on Monday, all we want to do is set up camp on a Saturday morning and break it down on Sunday… anyway, rant over.)

So, having chosen our destination, we borrowed the necessary gear from my in laws and tried our hands at camping. Thankfully, the weather worked in our favour!

home sweet home

Haddon Grove is two fields away from Lathkill Dale. If you’re into panoramic and dramatic views, this place is incredible.

At the top of the mountain

We decided to descend into the gorge, searching for rocks and minerals, and also to see the river that ran through.

Heading Down Into Lathkill Dale

G Hikes Lathkill Dale

After a long hike, there’s nothing better than relaxing by a river. This one happened to be closer in town. As I had never been to Derbyshire before, we took the opportunity to explore the local area. Bakewell is definitely one of my new favourite towns.

By The River Derwent

S’mores are synonymous with camping. I recently introduced G to the wonders of S’mores on Bonfire night, but it is a must for camping. Unfortunately, the top of Lathkill Dale can be a bit windy so our little disposable BBQ wasn’t going to do the job. Instead, we made do with the gas cooker to toast the marshmallows.

roasting marshmallows

G tucks into a smore

The next best thing about camping is breakfast. I love sitting out in the fresh air sipping coffee as the world wakes up and nothing beats bacon sandwiches cooked in the outdoors.

Camping bacon

Bacon and egg sarnie for breakfast

As we packed up to leave on Sunday, I snapped the view through the trees from the place we called home for the weekend.

View from our campsite

From our camping experiment, we discovered that yes, The Whiteman 3 are definitely campers. In fact the next weekend we went out and bought our own tent! Haddon Grove is the perfect place for us and we’ll definitely be back. If only the weather would co-operate!

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