Ok, no roots were harmed in the making of this recipe. However, as ’tis the season of Christmas parties we couldn’t resist the opportunity to give you the ‘root to restaurant’ of a favourite canapé of ours: cheese on crackers.

Peel’s Head Chef Rob has just taken on the challenge of creating an afternoon tea fit for a discerning foodie- and that’s no mean feat! His dishes are inspired by childhood memories and homemade classics, so expect takes on the sausage roll with homemade ketchup, crab baby gem lettuce and XO sauce, and (our personal favourite) ‘cheese on crackers’. Here he’s sharing the secrets to his dish so that you adventurous foodies can create these sumptuous little morsels at home. Those in-laws will have to find something other than your canapés to critique.


125g strong flour

2g salt

22g butter

45g milk

10g sugar

10g onion seeds

1 egg beaten

To start, combine all the ingredients except the egg and seeds. Weigh 12g of the beaten egg and add. Mix until you have a firm-ish dough that leaves the bowl clean. Rest for 30 mins in the fridge. To bake, roll out with a pasta machine on the thinnest setting (about 1mm), place on a baking sheet, brush with the leftover egg, and sprinkle with the seeds. Bake at 160oC for 10-12 mins until golden.


200g grated mature cheddar

2 x 6minute boiled eggs shelled

250g cream

salt to taste

Put the cheese and boiled eggs into a blender. Then put the cream in a pan and bring to the boil. Turn on the blender, and slowly add the boiled cream to the cheese and egg. Blend until smooth. Season with salt to taste. Pass through a fine sieve and put into a piping bag to cool in the fridge.



1 banana shallot, peeled and sliced into

2mm thick rings

25g white wine

25g sugar

25g water

50g white wine vinegar

1g salt

Put the sugar, salt, and water in a pan and bring to the boil until the sugar is dissolved. Take off the heat, add the wine, vinegar and shallot rings, and leave to cool. Place in an airtight container and store in the fridge ‘till needed.

Assemble your merry trio as desired and show us your successes @HamptonManor #RootToRestaurant.

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