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October 13 

Saint of the day:

Saint Edward the Confessor

Saint Edward the Confessor's, son of King Ethelred III, Story

married to his Norman wife, Emma, daughter of Duke Richard I of Normandy.

He was born at Islip, England, and sent to Normandy with his mother in the year 1013 when the Danes under Sweyn and his son Canute invaded England. Canute remained in England and the year after Ethelred's death in 1016, married Emma, who had returned to England, and became King of England. Edward remained in Normandy, was brought up a Norman, and in 1042, on the death of his half-brother, Hardicanute, son of Canute and Emma, and largely through the support of the powerful Earl Godwin, he was acclaimed king of England. In 1044, he married Godwin's daughter Edith. His reign was a peaceful one characterized by his good rule and remission of odious taxes, but also by the struggle, partly caused by his natural inclination to favor the Normans, between Godwin and his Saxon supporters and the Norman barons, including Robert of Jumieges, whom Edward had brought with him when he returned to England and whom he named Archbishop of Canterbury in 1051. In the same year, Edward banished Godwin, who took refuge in Flanders but returned the following year with a fleet ready to lead a rebellion. Armed revolt was avoided when the two men met and settled their differences; among them was the Archbishop of Canterbury, which was resolved when Edward replaced Robert with Stigand, and Robert returned to Normandy. Edward's difficulties continued after Godwin's death in 1053 with Godwin's two sons: Harold who had his eye on the throne since Edward was childless, and Tostig, Earl of Northumbria. Tostig was driven from Northumbria by a revolt in 1065 and banished to Europe by Edward, who named Harold his successor. After this Edward became more interested in religious affairs and built St. Peter's Abbey at Westminster, the site of the present Abbey, where he is buried. His piety gained him the surname "the Confessor". He died in London on January 5, and he was canonized in 1161 by Pope Alexander III. His feast day is October 13.





Edward the Confessor’s shrine in Westminster Abbey




Roast Venison Loin with Pumpkin & Sichuan salt


  • 1 small pumpkin or squash, peeled and seeds removed, then sliced into wedges

  • 8 sage leaves

  • 60ml maple syrup

  • 3 banana shallots, peeled and sliced lengthways

  • 40g butter

  • 600g venison loin, fat and sinew removed

For the Sichuan salt

  • 10 Sichuan peppercorns

  • 1 tbsp flaky salt

  • 1 tsp chopped rosemary


  1. Heat oven to 190C/170C fan/gas 5. Put the pumpkin, sage, maple syrup and shallots in a roasting tin and give it a good mix with your hands, making sure you coat everything in the syrup. Add half the butter and sprinkle with salt, then roast for 45 mins or until the pumpkin is tender.

  2. While the vegetables are roasting, heat a frying pan, add a splash of oil and the remaining butter. When foaming, add the venison and sear as quickly as you can. Remove from the heat and set aside. Once the vegetables are soft, lay the loin on top and return the tin to the oven to cook for another 15-20 mins.

  3. While the venison is roasting, put the Sichuan peppercorns, salt and rosemary into a pestle and mortar and grind to a coarse seasoning. When the venison is cooked, remove from the oven and rest for 10 mins. While it’s resting, brush with the glaze from the pan and sprinkle over a generous pinch of the seasoning. Serve the carved venison with the pumpkin and shallots.





Creamy pumpkin & lentil soup


  • 1 tbsp olive oil, plus 1 tsp

  • 2 onions, chopped

  • 2 garlic cloves, chopped

  • approx 800g chopped pumpkin flesh, plus the seeds

  • 100g split red lentil

  • ½ small pack thyme, leaves picked, plus extra to serve

  • 1 L hot vegetable stock

  • pinch of salt and sugar

  • 50g crème fraîche, plus extra to serve


  1. Heat the oil in a large pan. Fry the onions until softened and starting to turn golden.
    Stir in the garlic, pumpkin flesh, lentils and thyme, then pour in the hot stock.
    Season, cover and simmer for 20-25 mins until the lentils and vegetables are tender.

  2. Meanwhile, wash the pumpkin seeds. Remove any flesh still clinging to them,
    then dry them with kitchen paper. Heat the 1 tsp oil in a non-stick pan and fry the
    seeds until they start to jump and pop. Stir frequently, but cover the pan in between
    to keep them in it. When the seeds look nutty and toasted, add a sprinkling of salt and a pinch of sugar, and stir well.

  3. Whizz the cooked pumpkin mixture with a hand blender or in a food processor until smooth, then add the crème fraîche and whizz again. Taste for seasoning.

  4. Serve with a spoonful of crème fraîche, a few thyme leaves and the toasted seeds scattered on top.





Pumpkin Challah


  • 1/2cup warm water

  • 1 1/2packets active dry yeast

  • 3cups white flour

  • 1cup whole wheat flour

  • 2teaspoons pumpkin pie spice

  • 1teaspoon salt

  • 1cup pumpkin puree (canned or homemade)

  • 1/4cup vegetable oil

  • 3eggs- 2 for the dough and 1 for glazing


  1. Mix the yeast into the hot water water in a bowl to form a slurry.
    Leave it for 10 minutes to dissolve. While the slurry is forming, mix the flours, pumpkin pie spice and salt together in a large bowl.

  2. In the bowl with the slurry, whisk in pumpkin, 2 eggs, oil, and honey. Make a well in your flour mixture and add in the pumpkin mixture to form a dough. Add more flour if your dough is sticky. Knead your dough for 5-10 minutes.

  3. Put your dough in a warm, dry bowl and cover with saran wrap. Put in a warm place to rise for about 1 hour until tripled in size.

  4. Form your dough into a braided challah. For a three strand braid, divide your dough into three parts and braid up starting in the middle and securing at the ends. Then put the challah on parchment paper and cover with saran wrap for another 45 minutes until it doubles in size again. While it is rising, pre-heat your oven to 350 degrees F.

  5. Wash the challah with an egg yolk and bake for 35 minutes until golden brown.

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