Private Chef Cornwall | Chef Fiona NZ | Fiona Were

Private Dining and Catering for Luxury Holidays in Cornwall

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Award winning private chef, Fiona Were, private chef services for luxury private dining and events

Recipes and other bits

Blueberry and Orange Polenta Cake

Blueberry and Orange Polenta Cake.jpg

This deliciously moist gluten free cake is perfect for anytime of the year. It’s especially good in the summer when blueberries are at their best. I’ve transformed this one into a dessert with goat’s milk yoghurt sorbet and Tregothnan raw honey but a thick slice on it’s own with your favourite cuppa is a perfect afternoon tea treat!

Number of servings: 12

Time to prep & Time to cook: 10 minutes to prepare; 50 minutes to cook

You will need:

200g Unsalted Butter, softened

200g Golden Caster Sugar

3 St Ewe Free Range Eggs, Lightly whisked

Finely grated zest 2 oranges

200g Ground Almonds

100g Fine cornmeal

1 tsp Baking Powder

120g Blueberries

1 Tbsp Golden Caster Sugar

Method steps:

  1. Lightly butter and line an 8inch square or round cake tin with baking parchment. Preheat the oven to 170 degrees Celsius

  2. Cream the butter and sugar together in a medium sized bowl

  3. Gradually add the eggs, beating all the time until well mixed and fluffy. Add the orange zest.

  4. Fold in the ground almonds, cornmeal and baking powder.

  5. Then gently fold in the blueberries being careful not to crush them.

  6. Spoon the cake mix into the prepared cake tin. Smooth the top with the back of a spoon.

  7. Evenly sprinkle over the extra sugar, then place the cake in the oven.

  8. Bake for 50 minutes or until puffed, golden and a skewer inserted in the middle comes out clean.

  9. Remove from the oven and cool. Serve alone or with thick yoghurt.

Festive Meringue Wreath

Festive Meringue Wreath.jpg

A light dessert alternative for those who don’t love Christmas Pudding!

Number of servings: 8 to 10

Time to prep & Time to cook: 20 minutes to prepare, 1 hour to cook, 2 hours to sit in the turned off oven and cool; 15 minutes to decorate

You will need:

6 St Ewe Boost the Roost Egg Whites

300g Caster Sugar

1 tsp Vanilla Paste or essence

1 tsp Cornflour

1 tsp Cider Vinegar

For the topping:

300ml whipping or double cream

1 Tbsp Caster Sugar

1 tsp Vanilla paste or essence

Berries – Blackberries, Blueberries, Raspberries, Cranberries, Pomegranate Seeds etc

Icing Sugar for dusting


  1. Set oven to 130 degrees Celsius. Line a large baking tray with baking parchment

  2. Using a pencil, draw a 30-35cm circle onto the paper, using a plate or bowl as a guide. Then use a smaller bowl/plate as a guide and draw another circle inside the large circle to form a ring. You want the meringue wreath to have a hole in the centre of approximately 10cm diameter.

  3. Put the egg whites in a super clean bowl and beat either with a hand beater or food mixer, using the whisk attachment to reach stiff peaks

  4. Gradually add the caster sugar a tablespoon at a time and keep beating until the meringue is glossy.

  5. Add the vanilla, cornflour and vinegar. Beat to mix.

  6. Turn off the mixer and remove the bowl.

  7. Spoon the meringue onto the prepared tray into a ring between the circles you have previously drawn

  8. Using the back of the spoon, form a channel in the meringue all the way around. This will help hold the cream when you decorate it.

  9. Place the wreath into the oven and cook for 1 hour.

  10. Turn off the oven and leave the wreath in there until the oven is cool.

  11. Whip the cream with the second measure of sugar and vanilla to soft peaks

  12. Pile on top of the wreath and garnish with berries. Dust with Icing sugar and serve.

Honey Gingerbread Marshmallows



Number of servings: Makes about 50 pieces

Time to prep & Time to cook:2 minutes to prepare. 20 minutes to cook. 1 hour chilling time

You will need:

440g Golden Caster Sugar

2 Tbsp Runny Honey (I used Heather Bell Cornish Wild Flower Honey)

9 large leaves of gelatine

110g St Ewe Liquid Egg White

1 tsp Vanilla Extract

2 tsp Mixed Spice

Icing Sugar and Cornflour for dusting, sifted together


  1. Measure the Sugar, Honey and 200ml of water into a heavy based saucepan.

  2. Place over medium high heat and bring to the boil. Keep cooking the syrup until it reaches 126 degrees Celsius on a sugar thermometer.

  3. While the syrup is cooking, put the gelatine leaves in half and place in a bowl. Add 140ml of water and set aside for the gelatine to soften.

  4. Measure the egg whites into a clean, grease free bowl. Whip using an electric food mixer to stiff peaks.

  5. When the syrup reaches the desired temperature, add the gelatine and water. Mix to combine; it may bubble up so be careful to not burn your self.

  6. Transfer the syrup and gelatine mix to a heat proof jug.

  7. While the egg whites are still whipping, slowly pour the syrup onto them. Once all of the syrup is added, add the vanilla, then keep beating on high for 6 minutes.

  8. While the marshmallow mix is beating, prepare the tray. Dust the base liberally with a mix of sifted icing sugar and cornflour.

  9. When the marshmallow is ready, spoon half of the marshmallow onto the prepared tray, gently spreading so it is even. Scatter over the raspberries, then spoon over the remaining marshmallow, gently spreading once more to cover.

  10. Place the marshmallow in the fridge to set for an hour or so. Once it is set, ease it out of the tray with a spatula onto a chopping board and serve straight away, or store in an airtight container for up to 3 days**. If you want marshmallows that keep for longer, leave out the fresh raspberries*.

They are delicious when skewered onto sticks and quickly toasted on an open fire. For real indulgence, dunk them in melted chocolate.

* Have fun experimenting with different flavours using essences, spices or other fruits.

**If you find you have far to many marshmallows, put into plastic tubs and freeze for up to 2 months. De to the hight sugar content they freeze very well.

Spring Onion Feta Frittatta .jpg

Spring Onion, Spinach and Pea Frittata with Feta and Seaweed

Number of servings: 6 to 8

Time to prep & Time to cook: 10 minutes to prepare, 20 minutes to cook

You will need:

1 Tbsp Olive Oil

350g cooked new potatoes, sliced

50g frozen peas

4 spring onions, sliced

2 handfuls of spinach leaves

6 St Ewe Eggs

100g Feta, cubed

Salt and Pepper

1 tsp seaweed flakes

Method steps:

  1. Preheat the oven to 200 degrees Celsius

  2. Place a medium sized non-stick frying pan over medium heat and add the oil.

  3. Once the pan is hot, add the potatoes and sauté until they start to colour.

  4. Add the peas, half the spring onion and spinach, cooking just until the spinach starts to wilt

  5. Whisk the eggs with seasoning to taste

  6. Pour into the pan and gently mix through, ensuring the ingredients are evenly distributed in the pan. Crumble over the feta and scatter over the remaining spring onion. Sprinkle over the seaweed flakes.

  7. Once the egg starts to cook on the bottom, place the pan into the oven and cook for 15 minutes or until the egg is puffed, golden and set.

  8. Remove from the oven. Leave to sit for 5 minutes or so and then invert onto a plate. Using another plate placed on top of the frittata, flip it the right way up.

  9. Either eat immediately cut into wedges or allow to cool before serving.

A little seasonal something for the weekend

Forced Yorkshire Rhubarb is super delicious and so vibrant now. Why not have a go at making my very delicious variation on the classic bakewell tart using this wonderful seasonal ingredient?

Rhubarb Bakewell, Rhubarb Margarita

Rhubarb Bakewell, Rhubarb Margarita

Rhubarb Bakewell Tart

You will need:

1 flan tin 30cm* diameter approx,preferably with a removable base, buttered and floured

Preheat oven to 180 degrees Celsius



125g unsalted butter, cubed

250g plain flour

50g caster sugar

a pinch of sea salt

Cold water to mix


For the frangipane

3 free range eggs

200g soft unsalted butter

200g ground almonds

150g caster sugar

1 tbsp Brandy


300g forced rhubarb, sliced and cooked until soft with 100g caster sugar



  1. First make the pastry. Blend the butter, sugar, sea salt and flour in a food processor until the mix resembles fine crumbs.

  2. Using the pulse button, carefully add enough cold water to until the pastry just starts to hold together. Remove from the bowl of the processor and press together to form a smooth dough. Set aside while you prepare the remaining ingredients.

  3. Clean out the food processor bowl and place in all the ingredients for the frangipane.

  4. Process on continuous until light and fluffy.

  5. Roll out pastry to fit the flan tin, and make sure it over hangs generously. This will then get trimmed off once the tart is cooked. Press the pastry in well to the tin.

  6. Spread the rhubarb 'jam' on top of the pastry.

  7. Then either pipe or carefully dollop the frangipane over the top. Spread to cover the rhubarb.

  8. At this point you can scatter over some flaked almonds should you wish.

  9. Place onto a baking tray and into the oven and bake for 20 minutes, then check it. If the tart is colouring up too much drop the temperature to 160 degrees and continue cooking until the pastry is golden and the frangipane is nicely coloured and cooked, which will probably be about 45 minutes in total, depending on your oven.

  10. Remove from the oven when it is ready and set aside for 15 minutes.

  11. Carefully trim the pastry so it is flush with the edge of the flan tin.

  12. Unmould from the flan tin once cool and serve simply with clotted cream or really make the most of the rhubarb season and treat yourself to some different rhubarb components such as candied rhubarb and a rhubarb margarita.


*If you're feeling adventurous, you can make individual rhubarb bakewells using a muffin tray. These should only take about 20 minutes to cook.


I love tasting menus!


So much fun cooking a whole range of flavour explosions for a tasting menu. It is all about the food experience through a culinary journey to excite the senses. I was fortunate enough to be able to cook for some guests last week over several days and it was tasting menus at the ready. The brief was about full on flavour, with no carbs or nuts. They even trusted me to match the wines for each, which was a real treat. I had to throw a couple of non conformist matches in there with a cider and ale pairing, which was incredibly well received. I thoroughly enjoyed foraging some key ingredients for a couple of the dishes to give real interest and a seasonal focus. Here is a wee selection of some of the dishes they had, but just too many to put into a pic mosaic. Lots of seasonal local goodies from Jon Tonkin's Crab and Lobster, to Duchy Charcuterie Wagyu Bresaola,  Curio Samphire infused Gin, Duchy Game Venison to new season autumn truffles and crab apples. The list goes on... All the menus I do are created for each client's own, specific wants and desires. It's a wonderful way to celebrate a special occasion or just to indulge in a real foodie treat...

A weekend of feasting in September

A weekend of feasting in September



It's a picnic time of year!  My bespoke picnics are full of delicious flavourful goodies. From scrumptious mini crab sandwiches to wonderous salads, ready to eat Lobster and much much more. The sun is shining! It's time to chill you favourite tipple and enjoy some fabulous food without having to worry about washing up or cooking (unless you fancy a little of course). Picnic hampers also make a fantastic gift idea.  Get in touch to find out more about how we can get a super picnic delivered to you! 

A Summer picnic order, all in compostable packaging

A Summer picnic order, all in compostable packaging

The annual pilgrimmage to the Devon County show would not be complete without indulging some delicious Gray's Farm Cider. The family have been making their real cider for over 300 years with their own apples. I believe they have a website coming soon so it will be available to buy online. This stuff is fabulous! Medium is my favourite. If you are flying up the A30 to Exeter, take a wee detour to their farm at Tedburn St Mary. 

Gray's Cider at the Devon County Show. Ruth Gray created this beautiful floral display.

Gray's Cider at the Devon County Show. Ruth Gray created this beautiful floral display.

Recipes from Porthleven Food Festival

I'd like to say a huge heart felt thanks to everyone who came along to my demo at the Porthleven Festival. What a fantastic weekend! As promised, here are some recipes for you try at home. Cornish Duck is quite possibly the best free range, hand reared duck you will taste! It is available to buy every Saturday at the Truro farmer's market and at certain food festivals and markets throughout the county. You can also contact Roger and Tanya direct through their website  I hope you enjoy cooking with delicious Cornish Duck and Eggs as much as I do X

Hay Smoked Cornish Duck

Smoking food is a simple, yet effective process, producing delicious results. I like to lightly cure the duck first. This stage is not crucial but it firms up the texture of the duck and enhances the flavour. To cure 2 Cornish duck breasts, trim the breasts and score the skin. Combine 2Tbsp of seasalt with a Tbsp of white or brown sugar or honey. Rub this all over the duck breasts. Set aside for a couple of hours, even over night, although half an hour will do.  Then rinse the mix off the duck. If you leave the duck over night, it is a good idea to soak it for half an hour just to ensure it's not too salty. Pat the duck dry with paper towels

Place a pan over medium heat and add the duck, skin side down. Cook until the skin is rendering down really well and colouring, then turn over. You want the duck to cook to rare as it will cook further when you smoke it.

Once you are happy with the duck and the crispiness of the skin, get the smoking gubbins organised. Find an old oven tray and line it with foil. This will mean that washing up after the smoking process will not be such a chore. Put a good handful of hay in the bottom of the tray. Position a rack over the top then the duck onto the rack. Make sure you have a large piece of foil big enough to cover the smoking tray. With a lighter or a blow torch (if you're feeling courageous), set fire to the hay. You want it to burn slowly, so make sure it's not burning too quickly, carefully fanning the hay. Once you are happy the hay has caught, foil the tray and set the tray on the stove top (turned off) or a pot trivet, or even outside. Leave it to smoke until all the hay has been burnt, which will take a few minutes. It's a good idea to check the smoking progress after about 5 minutes. Once the smoking process is complete, leave the duck in the tray for a few more minutes to allow resting time, then serve as desired. I served the smoked duck with some griddled purple sprouting broccoli, black garlic and hay ash emulsion, but smoked duck is so versatile and goes with loads of other delicious ingredients. 

Daphne Skinnard looking a little concerned by my hay smoking technique, but it's all under control.... honest - pic by Toni Dowrick

Daphne Skinnard looking a little concerned by my hay smoking technique, but it's all under control.... honest - pic by Toni Dowrick


Duck Eggy Bread

Serves 4

2 Duck Eggs 

Zest of half an orange

A day old ciabatta loaf, or other bread if preferred *

Unsalted Butter and Oil for cooking

Cornish Wild Flower Honey to serve


  • Whisk the eggs with the orange zest in a bowl

  • Slice the bread to desired thickness

  • Preheat a non stick frying pan over medium heat

  • Add a little oil and butter to the pan

  • Dunk the slices of bread into the egg mix, wipe off excess egg mix on the side of the bowl and then pan fry until golden on both sides

  • Once cooked, serve the slices of eggy bread with your accompaniments of choice. I served it with a sweet Dukkah, some extra honey and Duck Egg Nog for dunking.

* Gluten free bread can be used to produce delicious duck eggy bread

Duck Eggy Bread Concentration...pic by Toni Dowrick

Duck Eggy Bread Concentration...pic by Toni Dowrick


Duck Egg Nog

Serves 4 to 6

2 Duck eggs ( I use Cornish Duck Eggs)

400ml (cow's, goat's or nut milks are all delicious)

Cornish Wild Flower Honey to taste

Alcohol of choice, to taste

sprinkle of freshly grated nutmeg


  • Whisk the eggs and honey until light and thick

  • Bring the milk just to the boil

  • Remove the milk from the heat and gradually pour onto the egg mix, whisking all the time

  • Add alcohol to taste, then pour into your drinking vessel of choice

  • Grate over some nutmeg and serve




Copenhagen - A Scandi Escape! April 2016

Epic tasting menu luncheon at Amass. Icelandic Lamb Neck; Phenomenal dish Carrot with aged Feta and Pickled Fennel Seed Pods; Charred Bread made with 10 day fermented Potatoes; Smoked Tea Ice Cream with dehydrated and burnt Citrus- just some of the highlights from this incredibly delicious and very clever meal. I loved it!! Matt Orlando is a genius and he even served the food!

Epic tasting menu luncheon at Amass. Icelandic Lamb Neck; Phenomenal dish Carrot with aged Feta and Pickled Fennel Seed Pods; Charred Bread made with 10 day fermented Potatoes; Smoked Tea Ice Cream with dehydrated and burnt Citrus- just some of the highlights from this incredibly delicious and very clever meal. I loved it!! Matt Orlando is a genius and he even served the food!

Some culinary highlights from Relae, Torvellarnekbh and Hija de Sanchez Copenhagen.

Some culinary highlights from Relae, Torvellarnekbh and Hija de Sanchez Copenhagen.

108@Noma The salt baked celeriac with hay cooked whey was monumental (top row second in from left) Sour dough with whipped cream! Sheer deliciousness!

108@Noma The salt baked celeriac with hay cooked whey was monumental (top row second in from left) Sour dough with whipped cream! Sheer deliciousness!


I had a fantastic afternoon on Thursday cooking Thai with two lovely chaps on holiday in Mousehole with their families. Right click on the link below for more detail. This is what we made...

Flavours of Thailand


Thai Chicken Cakes

Sweet Chilli Dipping Sauce

Rice Paper Spring Rolls with Spicy Pork and Peanuts

Lemongrass spritzer

Duck Massaman Curry with Aubergine and Sweet Potato

Sticky Jasmine and Crispy Shallots

Pad Thai Noodles with Kimchi and Choy Sum

Fresh Ruby Grapefruit, Pomegranate and Fennel Salad

Glazed Coconut Milk Custard with Chilli, Mango and Passionfruit