Writer to the manor born

IMAGINE growing up at Pashley Manor, a stately English home with more than four hectares of award-winning gardens including a 500-year-old oak tree. British journalist Hattie Klotz had such a childhood, and daily enjoyed the bounty of the manor's beautiful walled Victorian kitchen garden. This garden supplies fresh herbs, salads and vegetables to the estate's Garden Room Cafe.

In From the Garden, Hattie provides more than 100 recipes featuring the core ingredients from the garden, and celebrates the British garden, the British countryside, and fresh, healthy food.

From the Garden: Fresh Seasonal Cooking by Hattie Klotz, published by New Holland Publishers, RRP $49.99.

Blueberry cheesecake


For the crust:

230g gingernut biscuits

115g butter

30g demerara sugar

For the filling:

55g icing sugar

1 tbs honey

230g plain cream cheese, room temperature

175 ml cream

175g blueberries

1 heaped tsp gelatine (you can also use agar-agar)

115g crab apple or quince or red currant jelly


Preheat oven to 190C.

Put your gingernut biscuits in a plastic bag and bash it until you have crumbs, or whizz the biscuits in a food processor. Melt the butter and add it, with the sugar, to the crushed biscuits. Stir well and press the biscuits into the base of a 23cm loose-bottomed pie tin. Bake for about 10 minutes. Set aside to cool.

Stir the icing sugar and the honey into the soft cream cheese. Then beat the cream and incorporate this too.

Separate about half of the blueberries and squeeze a few in your fingers. Leave others whole. Then incorporate these into the cream cheese mixture. You might need to use your hands to do this.

Fill the cooled ginger biscuit pie shell with the blueberry cream cheese mixture. Cover the surface with blueberries in a pretty pattern. Put it in the fridge to cool for at least two hours.

Once cool and firm, melt the gelatine in whichever jelly you are using in a saucepan over low heat until just dissolved. Once it has melted, set aside until it begins to thicken slightly.

Now, work quickly. Remove the blueberry cheesecake from the fridge and pour the jelly glaze over the top. Return to the fridge to set.