Summer is finally here…


Last Saturday saw Thorpeness Country Club host the first ever Thorpefest. There were hundreds of people that attended making the day a success and raising money for charity. It wasn’t easy trying to organise the food that we required as it was a bit of an unknown event. We didn’t really know how many people were going to pitch up, the sun shining would play a huge factor in this. Lets just say I didn’t run out of burgers and sausages and that they have been on my specials board all week. Everything went off with out any troubles which resulted in lots of happy faces and lots of dancing. Somethings to change for next to make the event even bigger and better, and that all important date to put in your diaries is Saturday 8th July. At The Dolphin we are already excited for next years event.

tomatoesWe have been getting some great veggies from John’s allotment once again this year. The sweet and juicy cherry tomatoes are stocked up in the fridge and now accompany the whole bream. There will be loads more coming my way so finger crossed for the sun.


The multi coloured beetroot is back again which is great to see. These will be going in my salads for The Country Club. From field to my kitchen within a matter of minutes, you really cant get fresher than that.

We are really gearing up for summer now in the kitchen. This coming weekend will see us start our new lunch and dinner menus for the summer. Just finishing off a few bits of preps like chutney etc and then we’ll be ready. We are hoping for another super busy summer.

We are now open all day everyday too so there is no excuses for not having time to pop in for a pint!!

It might be early in the year but all of our Christmas menus are now available online at and on here at the tab above. Christmas is a really really busy time for us so if you do wish to dine with us at all over the festive period then it is best to book early!!

saladsThe summer programme has kicked off at The Country Club and along with it is a brand new website and a fantastic looking programme of events. Once again we are doing the catering there this summer. We have used last years experience as a learning curve and have changed up a few things. This year we have some super fresh and exciting salad that you can just pick up and go with. Fresh everyday along with the sandwiches, cakes, muffins and of course Thorpeness Village Stores famous sausage rolls. The country club also now offers daily membership rates so you can pop along when ever you feel like without having to dig deep for a whole weeks membership.

The weeks seem to be flying by at the moment so I’m sure it will feel like a blink of an eye before September is here but we are holding out for a long, hot, busy summer. Hope to see a lot of you in the next few weeks as the school finish breaking up for the school holidays.

Keep up to date on Twitter @funky_banana @the_dolphininn and on instagram @christheobald04 @the_dolphin_thorpeness

The summer is rolling in…

12662548_1095719623801297_3937377524724381490_nIt’s been a while since I last updated, however time just gets away from you and the weeks soon turn into months. But let me tell you, they have been packed with lots of stuff. Planning a summer season in Thorpeness isn’t a ten minute job. Once again we are heavily involved with the Country Club. The summer season kicks off there on 5th July. It will once again be packed with activities to keep the younger members of the family busy for the whole summer. Don’t worry there is stuff to do for the adults too!! The biggest event happening at The Country Club this summer is Thorpefest. On 2nd July The Country Club hosts their very own music festival. A day packed full with live music. With tributes to TakeThat, Coldplay, The Everley Brothers, Pink, Lady GaGa and many more there is plenty on offer for all ages – Bring the whole family!! Ticket can be bought on the website And to make the day even better The Dolphin is catering the whole event – what more could you ask for? Keep up to date with them on Twitter too @thorpefest2016. Next week all the sign boards should be appearing on the sides of roads country wide so keep your eyes peeled.

Hever castle

I managed to squeeze a week away which saw my National Trust membership get its monies worth. I spent a few days down in Royal Tunbridge Wells, Kent. I visited lots of castles – it’s surprising how many are down in that part of the country. Maybe built to defend against foreign invaders?!?! I had a fantastic time away, just the dog and I, spent lots of time walking taking in a walk along the white cliffs of Dover. During my time off I also visited Kew gardens in London for the second time. An amazing place for anybody who has the smallest interest in plants. A whole day spent wandering ensures that your legs are sore at the end of it. Unfortunately the memory card in my phone decided to pack up and I lost all of the pictures I had taken during the day, so that’s my excuse for going back again soon!!  I also spent time in my own garden which has seen the clay top soil removed and fresh new top soil and turf laid. Being a brand new garden I had a blank slate to begin with so I have really been able to put my mark on it. Now things are growing well and flowers slowly coming out I am really pleased with hoe it has turned out.


My newest menu started a few weeks back and is going down well. Our popular Lobster and crayfish linguine is going down as well as ever. Today I received my first catch of native lobsters. Before I was buying Canadian ones until the waters became a bit more suited for catching lobsters from the Suffolk coast. The steaks from Gerard of Salter and King butcher in Aldeburgh always go down well and fly out of the door. Our vegetarian sweet potato and chick pea burgers are also really popular with grilled halloumi and mushroom topped with a tomato salsa. You can check it out on the menus tab at the top. I have almost finished my new summer menus which will be featuring lots of produce from the allotments here in Thorpeness. As always there is great dishes for gluten free and vegan diets and we’ll always do everything we can in the kitchen to accommodate the most unusual requests. Watch this space for the new menu coming soon.

Ready meals

Another thing we have to get ready for in the kitchen is the influx of people who visit Thorpeness wanting to have night off from the cooking. This means we need to make sure that the freezers are brimming with ready meals. Fish pie is always really popular and I can’t make enough of them to keep up with demand. A surprising favourite has been the muntjac casserole. I wasn’t expecting this to sell very quickly but again it is going down a storm with holiday makers and locals. Other ready meals available lasagne, sausage casserole, pasta bake, game pie, plus what ever else I’m asked for as requests are often taken at the kitchen door.The logistics of making them isn’t the easiest as we have no special equipment to make life easier. Firstly making, in large batches, the food it self. Then it has to be portioned up between the tin ready meal containers. Cool as quickly as possible before adding the lid and sealing. Whilst they are cooling I am busy in the office creating and printing the labels that will adorn the ready meals. Once the lid goes on they are stickered up and frozen in the deep freeze. This week I begin in earnest in making them having already made oxtail casserole last week. Watch out in the shop as the freezer fills up.

Bakewell tart

Last week saw us provide catering for the T and A collection Team Awards. Cooking for 101 people in a single function is not something I have done for quite a few years so was quite the challenge. Though one I think was easily met. A starter of pressed chicken and tarragon terrine, smoked bacon and bourbon jam with crisp bread followed by plaice fillet, tender stem broccoli, spinach, new potatoes, confit cherry tomatoes and brown shrimp seemed to go down pretty well. Though with the sauce to complete the dish is was a bit frantic getting all the components of the dish on to the plate at a good pace. Alas we got there and everybody enjoyed it. Dessert was bakewell tart with creme anglaise. A nice moist bakewell is a favourite of mine and goes down brilliantly with anglaise. It was well received.

Newspaper article

As well as everything else I have been doing another article was also in  the paper a few weeks ago. I am lucky enough to be one of a handful of chefs that share a weekly article in which we all get to write bi-monthly. Covering readers questions, seasonal food and a recipe from our menu it makes quite an eclectic read.

The Dolphin has a new website that has finally gone live. Check it out here

You can get updates from Twitter @funky_banana and also now on Instagram @christheobald04 or just click the follow button below.



Flippin’ Shrove Tuesday…


Another Shrove tuesday has come and gone and another successful one it was at The Dolphin too. What once we did as a one off has turned into an annual thing as we raise money for the church on the day before lent starts. Jamie had the unenviable task of making around 200 pancakes and apart from 4 which I did he flipped the lot! My job was set to making the toppings and fillings. With past years seeing the savoury topping moving pretty slow I opted for just those with a sweeter taste. Strawberries, bananas, blueberries, stewed apple, raspberries sorted the fruit side of things.. sauces included chocolate, toffee, double cream, fruit coulis, fruit compote, honey, maple syrup and yogurt. And to finish.. of course there was sugar but also chopped nuts, and fresh lemon.
The restaurant and bars were full of people, young and old who were all digging deep and giving to the church before they got their hands on pancakes. Im sure if Shrove Tuesday was in a warmer month we would pack the garden out too. But alas, we can only look forward to another successful event next year.. put the date in your diaries (next years diary)…  Tuesday 28th February 2017!!


A bit of home baking…

Tomorrow sees my grandad turn 80 with a party of his friends and family in toe. Therefore alot of us have been put to task with preparing some food.


Quiche is standard, and even more standard – quiche lorraine. My house is not really set up for baking. The only time i properly cook at home is when i have people over for dinner.


Therefore some new bits and pieces needed to be bought.. quiche tins.. mixing bowls and more. I opted for a gallete style pastry too. A sheet of puff pastry baked in the oven. Topped with a red pepper pesto, serrano ham, sun blushed tomatoes and mozzerella. Drizzled with olive oil, salt and pepper and baked back in the oven for a few minutes…. Delicious!!


Another i topped with an onion chutney and some pre roasted tender stem broccoli and asparagus. Crumbled stilton was added before going back in the oven for a few minutes again.
Chocolate brownie was next up.. luckily i had asked for some new baking trays for christmas so they had their first proper use last night.


I guess , as they say, the proof is in the tasting. With the party tomorrow night we shall see.
Follow on Twitter for updates from my kitchen at work..