Christine McFadden Cookery and Food Writing
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Christine McFadden with students
Barbecued Lobster with
New Potatoes, Watercress
and Chives
Blackberries with Sweet
Spiced Ricotta
Candied Seville Orange
Peel in Syrup
Celeriac Steaks with
Mushrooms, Parmesan and
Sizzled Sage
Celery and Barley Soup
with Seeds
Coconut Flour Pancakes
with Lime
Deep-Fried Egg
Easy Curry
Fennel, Orange, Olive
and Red Onion Salad
Globe Artichokes
Glorious Green Stir-Fry
Gooseberries with Orange
and Bay Syrup
Goose Egg Frittata with
Potato, Onions and
Piquillo Peppers
Greengage and
Cobnut Crumble
Guinea Fowl with Peppercorn
and Kaffir Lime Leaf Butter
Japonica Jelly
Korean Roasted Roots
Medlar and Ginger Creams
Medlar and Rosemary Jelly
Meringue Roulade with Strawberry, Cucumber
and Mint Filling
Mexican-Style Cabbage Soup with Pork and Beans
Moroccan Goat Tagine with
Apricots and Almonds
Oxtail, Celeriac and Carrots
Pan de Higo
(Spanish Fig Bread)
Pan-Fried Cauliflower with
Lovage Crumbs and Lemon
Parsnip and Ginger Cupcakes with Tangerine Drizzle
Pasta Con Le Sarde
Peach and Almond Ricotta
Peaches in Strawberry-Rose Syrup
Pear and Chestnut Tart with
Rosemary and Orange Syrup
Quince Compôte
Quince and Ginger Sorbet
Rabbit with Potatoes,
Peppers and Lemon
Roasted Parsnip and
Cumin Soup
Roasted Squash and
Chilli Soup
Roasted Swede, Ginger and
Spiced Black Bean Soup
Rosemary Sorbet
Rhubarb and Angelica Sorbet
Rhubarb Tart with Star Anise
and Orange
Salted Sevilles with Star Anise, Coriander and Chilli
Sea Bass Parcels
with Fennel and
Preserved Lemon
Sea Buckthorn, Apple
and Ginger Cake
Seville Orange Ice Cream
Sicilian Sesame Bread
Spiced Medlar Tart with
Walnut Pastry
Spiced Poached Pears,
Walnuts and Sheep’s Cheese
Spiced Roast Quince with
Honey and Clotted Cream
Spring Lamb and Barley Pie
with Lemon, Rosemary
and Mint
Strawberry and
Black Pepper Ice-Cream
Strawberry Compôte with
Tarragon and Orange Zest
Steak and Kidney Pie
Sweet Pepper Tarte Tatin
with Black Pepper Caramel
Turkey Egg Frittata with
Roasted Red Peppers
Two-Cherry Yogurt Ice
Venison Vindaloo
Warm Duck Breasts with Peppery Leaves, Radishes and Walnuts
Warm Salad of Partridge,
Pears and Walnuts
Watercress and
Mushroom Pâté
Watercress cookery recipe development Christine McFadden
Waterecress soup health recipe development Christine McFadden

Watercress and Mushroom Pâté

A pretty green-flecked pâté with a delicate, slightly peppery flavour and a hint of spice from coriander seeds. It’s fine to leave these out if you prefer, or use cumin seeds instead. Check out my cook’s notes below for tips on how to get the best flavour. Serve the pâté chilled on thin toast or crackers.
Serves 3–4 as a snack or starter

unsalted butter 25g
spring onions 3 large, green parts included, chopped
portabella mushrooms 85g, chopped
coriander seeds 1 tsp, crushed
sea salt
freshly ground black pepper
watercress 2 good bunches, coarse stems discarded
curd cheese or cream cheese 100g

1) Heat a medium-to-large frying pan over medium-low heat. Add the butter and heat until sizzling, then add the chopped spring onions. Gentle fry for 5 minutes or until the onions are soft but not starting to brown.

2) Raise the heat to medium-high. Add the chopped mushrooms, and stir for 2 minutes until softened and beginning to release their juices. Season with the crushed coriander seeds, sea salt and freshly ground black pepper. Go easy on the pepper, bearing in mind the pepperiness of the watercress.

3) Add the watercress and quickly fry, stirring, until just wilted. Remove the pan from the heat and set aside for a few minutes to cool down.

4) Tip the contents of the pan into the bowl of a food processor. Add the cream cheese and whiz to a purée. Check the seasoning, then scrape the mixture into a bowl, cover and chill.

Cook’s notes
For the best flavour use large spring onions – those with a big white bulb, sometimes called salad onions. If small thin spring onions are all you can find, double the quantity.

Be sure to use large flat portabella mushrooms rather than small white ones. The flavour is rich and meaty and a good balance for peppery watercress. Chestnut mushrooms would be a reasonable substitute.

It’s well worth buying bunched watercress rather than a bag of trimmed sprigs. The flavour is punchier and the fleshy stems can be saved to use in soups.

Curd cheese is similar to cream cheese but has a lower fat content and a tangier flavour. It’s usually found on the deli counter in a bowl rather than pre-packaged.

Recipe © Christine McFadden from The Farm Shop Cookbook published by
Absolute Press/Bloomsbury

Watercress and Leek Soup

A satisfying soup with a slightly peppery flavour. To preserve the brilliant green colour, add the watercress and milk mixture just before reheating and serving.
Serves 4-6

watercress 1 bunch weighing about 100g
leeks medium, weighing about 450g, trimmed
butter a large knob
potatoes 3–4 medium, weighing about 450g, cut into small chunks
vegetable bouillon or mild chicken stock 800ml
whole milk preferably organic, 300ml
sea salt
freshly ground black pepper
lemon juice a squeeze

1) Cut the tips from the watercress stems and discard. Set aside a few sprightly sprigs to garnish the soup, then roughly chop the rest.

2) Quarter the leeks lengthways, washing off any dirt trapped between the layers. Slice crossways into smallish chunks.

3) Melt the butter in a large saucepan. When it sizzles, add the leeks and potatoes. Cover with a lid and gently cook for about 10 minutes until beginning to soften.

4) Pour in the bouillon and bring to the boil. Simmer with the lid askew for about 20 minutes, or until the vegetables are tender.

5) Meanwhile, whizz the watercress and milk together in a food processor or blender. Pour into a jug and set aside.

6) Decant about two-thirds of the soup into food processor or blender, making sure you have a mixture of liquid and solids. Whizz to a purée, then pour it back into the saucepan and mix with the unpuréed soup.

7) When ready to serve, stir in the watercress and milk mixture, and reheat gently. Season to taste with sea salt and freshly ground black pepper, bearing in mind the pepperiness of the watercress. Add a squeeze of lemon juice to sharpen the flavour.

8) Ladle into serving bowls and garnish with a watercress sprig.

Recipe © Christine McFadden from The Farm Shop Cookbook published by
Absolute Press/Bloomsbury

    Photography: Christine McFadden    
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