Garden News Magazine recipes for December

If you’ve received your copy of Garden News Magazine this week, here’s the recipes I mention in my column. Above is the summerhouse where I write my pieces, and where I sit and make my cherry marzipan chocolates.

The recipe link for Cherry Marzipan Chocolates is here :

They are very quick to make and children love creating them. They make tasty home-made presents for Christmas.

I also write about Chocolate and Orange Panettone. Start saving your tins now to make these delicious treats. They are very easy to make and look beautiful. Get the children to make potato stamp labels. Be as creative as you like. Everyone can get involved.

Here’s the link:

I write about turning my satsumas from the greenhouse into a liqueur. The recipe comes from Bob Flowerdew, replying to me on twitter when I asked what I could do with this year’s prolific harvest. It’s been a good summer for growing citrus. Bob always has great suggestions for what to do with produce from the garden, and is generous with his advice.

Here’s Bob’s recipe for Satsuma Liqueur :

And finally, I was talking on the radio last week, when I mentioned I was making Sloe Gin. Here’s the recipe, with thanks to garden writer Barbara Segall, who inspires me on a daily basis to try something new.

Sloe Gin

450g sloe berries -or whatever you can find. If you only have 300g, use those.

350g caster sugar

710ml gin

Kilner jar or lidded jar

Place the ripe sloe berries in the freezer to break the skins. Add all ingredients to a large kilner jar. Swirl the contents every day for a week, every week for a month, and every month for a year. Strain the gin. Use the berries for cakes or trifle.

It’s wonderful to have a bottle on the north-facing kitchen windowsill. Mine has changed colour now and it’s a joy to see. Almost like a stained glass window.

Barbara Segall has written many garden books, all highly recommended. One of my favourites is The Christmas Tree. A beautiful stocking-filler. Find out more here :

For more suggestions on books, I also recommend The Creative Kitchen by Stephanie Hafferty. I reviewed the book here:

Here’s a link for Georgie Newbery at Common Farm Flowers for growing cut flowers, floristry and Christmas wreath workshops and courses, in person, and on-line. Vouchers make a great present for any gardener.

Thanks for reading! Have a great week.

14 thoughts on “Garden News Magazine recipes for December

  1. Is ‘satsuma’ the designation for that type of fruit? When I grew citrus, ‘Owari Satsuma’ was one of the several cultivars of what I knew as Mandarin oranges, or simply Mandarins. Those that are developed in the Americas are known as tangerines.

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  2. Dear Karen, thank you for your lovely words about me and Sloe Gin… you are an inspiration to me… so it is mutual! Please do let any of your lovely readers know that if they would like to purchase a copy of The Christmas Tree it is available from this link on eBay :
    I must remember to swirl my Sloe Gin around later today…. thanks for the reminder..

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  3. Karen La Casa de Verano is a multi-purpose, year-round house: I love it! In it you write for Garden News and make your cherry marzipan chocolates: thank you very much for the recipe link, they look very delicious. The Chocolate and Orange Panettones are lovely in their tins with reindeer and ribbons: thanks for the recipe link. Your satsumas are divine, I love them; Converted into liquor it must be delicious, although I don’t drink alcohol: thanks for the recipe link. Sloe Gin, another liquor recipe, great: thanks for the link. Karen your article in Garden News is going to be a hit with the fantastic and tasty recipes you write about, I love it. Karen thank you very much for recommending books and giving us your links. “The Christmas Tree” by Barbara Segall. “The Creative Kitchen” by Stephanie Haffenty. Thank you very much for the link for Georgie Newbery. Karen your blog is wonderful. Health, strength, encouragement, positive thinking, hope and much love for your whole family, Mr B and for you. Loving caresses to the Three Musketeers. Hugs and lots of love for everyone. Best regards from Margarita xxx😘💟🥰🤗✨✨✨🎄

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    • Thank you Margarita. Thanks for all your enthusiastic and happy retelling of my posts. I’m just decorating the field gates- the gales blew all the wreaths away the first time, but today, I’ve added more foliage and a lot more string! The three musketeers are keeping me company. Have a lovely day. Lots of love from us all. Affectionate greetings. Karen xxx 😘


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