Foodie penpals – July 2014

20140729-211305-76385135.jpgI was really starting to worry about foodie penpals this month: I received my parcel from Caitlin in Cornwall towards the middle of the month, but it took nearly two weeks for my parcel to Kadri to arrive in Switzerland … luckily it arrived just in the nick of time for Kadri to enjoy my treats.

So for the first time, all three of us are bloggers. You can read Caitlin’s blog over at The Pocahontas Files, and Kadri writes at Mumsfilibaba.

As usual, I explained to Caitlin that I love to receive local goodies which do not contain mushrooms, rocket or marzipan, and she obliged with a gorgeous package of treats from Cornwall, plus a recipe for Cornish pasties which my boyfriend has demanded that I make for him as soon as possible! Recipe to follow once I have given it a go.

Caitlin explained why she chose each of the goodies in a lovely card, which I read whilst my colleagues looked on jealously. Often my penpals say that they share something I sent them with their colleagues, but that is not the way I do things (apart from last month because even I couldn’t eat a whole box of homemade cookies before they went stale). I open up the parcel and crow over each item, and then pack it all away and take it home so that I can enjoy it all at my leisure. I only share with Andrew (and even then begrudgingly!).
Beautifully packedSo first out of the box was a package of strawberries and cream fudge – completely perfect for this time of year, and already scoffed! Then a jar of black pepper mustard from Cornwall, which Andrew piled on his plate with the sausages we had for dinner the other night: not only does he love mustard but he also loves black pepper, so I don’t think it will last too long in our house!

Continuing the Cornish theme, next out was a tin of pilchards. Caitlin said she was a bit nervous about sending me pilchards (little sardine-like fish in tomato sauce … in fact they might well BE sardines) but I love them – I used to have them on toast at my Nan and Grandad’s house for Sunday tea when I was young. I’ve kept the tin in my drawer to have on top of salad for lunch one day … the smell is one thing I will share with my colleagues – hah!

Then I took out a Cajun seasoning pack for potato wedges, which Caitlin said reminds her of her home country of the USA, and also a packet of culinary lavender which she said she had picked up on a recent trip to the States. I actually hadn’t realised that you needed to have a culinary version of lavender, so I was glad to get that from Caitlin as otherwise I would just have used what grows in the garden. What to make though? I am not sure. I have heard of lavender shortbread, truffles and panna cotta. Does anyone have a good recipe to share with me?

And last but not least, a Get Fruity bar – an excellent way to contribute to your 5 a day quota without actually eating a piece of fruit. A healthy indulgence which I appreciated.

What a lovely, thoughtful parcel – I was really delighted, so thanks Caitlin!

Yorkshire goodiesI hope that Kadri was equally pleased with my parcel … when it finally arrived. I had chosen a Yorkshire theme for Kadri’s package because I was recently in Yorkshire to see the start of the Tour de France and I wanted to share some regional goodies with her. The parcel included:



  • Luxury butter fudge
  • Yorkshire tea loaf from Bettys tearooms (grammar police: there is no apostrophe)
  • A Swiss chocolate coin from Bettys (maybe a bit risky to send to a Swiss lady, but Kadri said it was delicious – phew)
  • A wheel of Wensleydale cheese
  • Pork scratchings

Kadri emailed to thank me for the parcel and said that she had already eaten the chocolate and half the tea loaf. She politely didn’t mention the pork scratchings – they were a bit risky but I hope she likes them!

If you want to participate in the wonderful Foodie Penpals then pop over to This is Rock Salt to find out more. You never know, if you sign up you might get a pack of pork scratchings from me one day!

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