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Suffolk on a plate with Jim Allen

PUBLISHED: 10:14 21 January 2016 | UPDATED: 10:14 21 January 2016

Anatomy of a dish - chef Jim Allen cooks a dish using exclusively local ingredients. Kenton Hall Estate, Kenton, Stowmarket.

Anatomy of a dish - chef Jim Allen cooks a dish using exclusively local ingredients. Kenton Hall Estate, Kenton, Stowmarket.

We are rightly proud of our reputation as one of the nation’s leading food producing regions. In a new feature we celebrate Suffolk’s plentiful supply in dishes prepared by local chefs and food enthusiasts. Words: Frances Hopewell Smith, photos: Gregg Brown

Anatomy of a dish - chef Jim Allen cooks a dish using exclusively local ingredients. Kenton Hall Estate, Kenton, Stowmarket.Anatomy of a dish - chef Jim Allen cooks a dish using exclusively local ingredients. Kenton Hall Estate, Kenton, Stowmarket.

Jim Allen is an energetic young man who really enjoys his work. Born and bred in Suffolk, he spent seven years in the Royal Marines before taking up a job in the private security sector. It’s demanding, he says, unpredictable and exciting. But what excites him most is his work managing deer in rural Suffolk. Although part time, it is definitely his mainspring. True to his belief that animals must be respected and valued, Jim has learnt butchery as part of DEFRA’s ‘deer initiative’ and now does all his own. He’s taught himself to cook too and likes to use local ingredients in his simple recipes. This dish, prepared at Kenton Hall Food Hub, captures a selection of the seasonal bounty Suffolk has to offer.

His recipe is centred round venison – naturally – this time a haunch (back leg) cooked with diced vegetables and a red wine and herb gravy. It’s served with mashed potato, cavolo nero and homemade rosehip and quince jam.

Roast haunch of venison from Jim Allen at Discover Venison

Diced carrots and onions from Maple Farm

Potato (Maple Farm) mashed with crème fraiche from Marybelle

Cavolo nero from Kenton Hall

Braised in butter and apple juice from High House Farm

Red wine from Shawsgate Vineyard: Venus 2010 (save a lot for drinking!) and herb sauce (herbs Kenton Hall)

Quince and rosehip jam, foraged locally

Plate by Soendergaard Design, Fressingfield


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