About Patricia

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044August bank holiday weekend is a very important date in the Bolton calendar each year, from the 22nd to the 26th of August the Bolton food and drink festival takes place in the town centre and I was thrilled to be asked this year to promote and talk about Grandmas Antique Recipes as part of the event in the lead up to this very exciting festival.



Stall holders from all over Europe visit my hometown of Bolton and bring with them cuisine and beverages of all manner from their respective countries to sell on the stalls at the Bolton food and drink festival.

The event takes mammoth organisation from everyone involved and is carried out like a military operation but, the effort always pays off and the evidence is reflected in the crowds of people who come along to support it.




Varied and delicious food at the Bolton Festival.


This year the festival had the greatest number of visitors ever, keen and enthusiastic people came along in their thousands to enjoy the varied cuisines and beers and beverages from European countries.

The weather was glorious, warm and sunny much to the delight of the visitors and organisers and the three day festival was the biggest success it has ever been


Scrumptious chocolate stall.


Here are some photos of the marvellous and amazing continental food and drink on offer to the public for the splendid, three day,  feel good event.




Delicious pastries from France


 Here’s to next year when I have no doubt that The Bolton Food and Drink Festival will once more be a great success in bringing people from different cultures together once again to enjoy a weekend of fun, food and festivity.

Patricia Matthews







At the Book Signing with a difference.


On Thursday the 21st August,  I held my first Book Signing at the Bolton Museum and Library,   it was a success and a sell out, more than 60 people attended.

Myself, and Bolton Library’s local history librarian Julie Lamara, events organiser Melanie Graaf and the ladies from the museum who are all keen bakers, made various savoury and sweet recipes which feature in Grandma’s Antique Recipe Book.

Lemon cakes, Vinegar cake, Cocnut Ice and Sausage Rolls adorned the Lecture theatre to compliment the talk and genre of the event and the book buying public enjoyed  sampling the goodies along with a cup of tea or coffee.

 Recipes from Grandmas Antique Recipe's

Delicious food from the Afternoon Tea from Bygone Times.

Reporter Vickie Scullard and Nigel the photographer from The Bolton News and a roving reporter from Bolton FM radio station came and interviewed the audience on their thoughts and opinions about their afternoon at the book signing with a difference.

After I introduced the book and how I came to get it, and why I wrote it, the afternoon developed into an enjoyable,  informal couple of hours whereby people chatted to each other, swapped recipes and tips, sampled food from a Bygone age and generally relaxed. the whole afternoon was thoroughly enjoyed by all who attended the event at the Bolton Museum and Library.


Patricia Signing books for the delighted guests.


All the comments and feedback we received from the audience I am pleased to report were enthusiastic and warm, all the books were sold and copies were signed, and everyone really enjoyed theAfternoon Tea from Bygone Times’.

Patricia Matthews event 21st August 2014

63 people attended!

“Fantastic event”

“Very enjoyable and interesting.

“Very enjoyable, friendly & entertaining.”

“Great to see a book all about Grandma Sarah!! Pat was entertaining as always!”

“Very enjoyable & entertaining.”

“Very entertaining afternoon, very funny lady.”

“Very good.”

“This was a lovely entertaining afternoon. Myself and my mum really enjoyed ourselves.”

“Very enjoyable, friendly and informative.”

“Absolutely brilliant.”

“Found it very interesting.”

“It was interesting, brought my childhood back when Gran used to bake at weekends.”

“Very well organised.”

“Very enjoyable –nice humorous touches and very down to earth. Nice and informal.”

“Very entertaining and humorous. Excellent.”

Really well organised and delivered. Room was excellent –nice to see the walls decorated with artefacts from the book.”

“Very interesting, relaxing and entertaining.”

Absolutely fabuloso! Well done Pat and thanks for teaching me what mother never had the chance to –PASTRY!

Absolutely FAB. Good laughs and nice people.”























Patricia on the radio

Patricia on Bolton FM

Hi everyone,

Here I am once again at our local radio studio at Bolton FM, chatting to the producers of the programme on ‘Community Corner’ about GAR and our exciting event linked to the Bolton Food and Drink Festival, which is taking place on the 21st August at 2pm, in the Bolton Museum and Art Gallery.

If you are able to log on to The Bolton FM website at 96.5 and click on the link to the programme ‘Community Corner’  Grandmas Antique Recipes talk at 7pm, you will be able to listen to the interview as it went out live.
The tickets for the event at the Bolton museum are being booked at a steady rate and we are expecting a good amount of guests.

Food and Drink Festival

Food and Drink Festival

The Bolton FM team are going to be present at the event to interview people about their thoughts on the event and will ask their opinion of the Grandmas Antique Recipe Book, I’m confident that the comments will be favourable for both.

We are all very excited about the forthcoming event and we are confident that the afternoon will be a great success.

I will let you know how it goes.

Patricia Matthews.

Listen to the podcast here >>>


Here I am with the lovely ladies from the Bolton Museum. Julie Lamara (historian) and Melanie Graaf, (events organiser)

Here I am with the lovely ladies from the Bolton Museum. Julie Lamara (historian) and Melanie Graaf, (events organiser).

Last week I met the organisers of the ‘Bolton Food and Drink Festival’  and for those of you who don’t know, this is the biggest event in the Bolton calendar and I am thrilled to be asked to be a part of it this event, which takes place on Thursday 21st August at 2.30pm onwards.

International stallholders from Europe come to visit Bolton and sell their various cuisines and produce from their individual countries to the food loving  public. The Festival takes place on the town hall square, and the air is filled with the smell of exotic take-away dishes, spices, breads, and pastries and cakes from Europe.

There are also beers on sale from Germany, and wine from Italy and France and all sorts of cakes and yummy sweets, the atmosphere is amazing everyone has a good time eating and drinking and trying all the different foods from all over Europe.

As well as the busy bustling market, famous Chefs are such as Gino de Campo, James Martin, Paul Hollywood and The Hairy Bikers are invited to carry out demonstrations for the public.

Julie Lamara and Melanie Graaf, are also baking enthusiasts.

Julie Lamara and Melanie Graaf, are also baking enthusiasts.

For my part, I am invited by the organisers to the lecture theatre in the Bolton Museum and Arts building, there, I am intending introduce to the guests, the GAR book, and how I came to get it, and why I wrote it,  I am hoping that, the afternoon will develop into a nice informal couple of hours, whereby people will chat to each other, swap recipes and tips, have a cuppa and a piece of bygone cake, buy the book a have it signed and generally relax and I am really looking forward to the afternoon meeting and chatting to the people

I will let you know how it goes.

Patricia Matthews.


Grandma Sarah’s Piccalilli

I know that piccalilli is relatively inexpensive to buy but, I am sure that when you have tasted this recipe you will be surprised how scrumptious it is.

This recipe is delicious, easy to make and very versatile. It is a tasty accompaniment to lots of different cold meats, pork pies, and cheeses. It is perfect for barbecue’s to accompany sausages, steak and beefburgers as a spicy relish.

This old fashioned recipe is easy to make with it’s own unique taste and I’m sure you will find it a must have in your kitchen to use at any time.

You can also add one or two table spoons of the piccalilli 5 mins before the end of cooking to sausage casseroles and meat stews, to give the dish that extra spicy taste, these are delicious served with mashed potato for a good nourishing meal for all the family.

This recipe will make four medium sized jars of piccallili.

Heat the oven140C fan/120Cgas

Wash the jars in hot soapy water and rinse them well, Place the jars onto a baking sheet and put them in the oven for about 5 mins.


Another classic serving from the Grandma Sarah collection

Carefully take them out and place upside down on a tea towel with the lids and set aside.

For the piccalilli you will need:

250g/8ozs small pickling onions peeled or 1 small jar of silverskin onions

250g/8ozs cauliflower cut into florets (small pieces)

250g/80zs cucumber diced

250g/8ozs courgette diced

1 large red pepper diced

1 pint of white vinegar


1 teasp salt

1 heaped teasp of English mustard (ready mixed is also fine to use)

1 teasp ground ginger

1 teasp of tumeric

1 teasp ground cumin

1 teasp coriander

1teasp black peppercorns

2 heaped teasp cornflour to thicken.

In a large pan put the vinegar, salt, spices and the vegetables bring to the boil and simmer for 5 mins until the vegetables are just cooked through.

Mix the cornflour with a little water and add to the pan and stir thoroughly until the pickle mixture thickens and simmer very gently for 2 minutes.

Take the pan off the heat and leave to cool for a minute.

Spoon into the jars making sure they are filled up to the top with the hot pickle, seal with the lids and leave to cool.

Store for at least a week before eating to allow all the spices to infuse.

This piccalilli will last for a month if stored in a cool dark cupboard.

Delicious! Manchester Tart

Delicious! Manchester Tart

This is a good old fashioned sweet recipe, it’s so easy to make and a perfect treat for everyone it can be served with ice cream or fresh whipped double cream.

Delicious. !!!

Manchester Tart

For the pastry base.

8 ozs Plain flour

3 ozs lard

200 mls water.

Rub together the fat and flour until the mixture resembles breadcrumbs.

Add the water little by little, until a firm dough is formed.

Set aside in the fridge for 15 mins.

or 1 sheet ready-rolled short crust pastry

575ml full-fat milk

3 tablespoons of raspberry jam

3 tablespoons custard powder

1 teaspoon vanilla extract

4 tablespoons caster sugar

Preheat oven to 200 C / Gas 6.

Line a 24cm/10in round baking tin with pastry. Prick the base with a fork. Lay a sheet of baking parchment on top and top with dried beansand bake in preheated oven for 20 minutes remove the beans and baking parchment and let the pastry base cool.

The good old fashioned sweet recipe that's so easy to make

The good old fashioned sweet recipe that’s so easy to make

Meanwhile, make the custard. Place milk, custard powder, 2 tablespoons sugar and vanilla extract into a pan, whisk/stir untilsmooth and all the custard powder is thoroughly mixed in with the milk and other ingredients. Gently heat until thick and set aside to cool slightly, sprinkle the custard mix with icing sugar or cover with a lid to stop a skin forming on the top.

Spread plenty of jam over pastry case base and sprinkle with half the coconut (and sliced banana optional) Pour in custard mixture and set to one side.

In a small pan put the remaining coconut in and dry roast until golden brown.sprinkle the pie with the toasted coconut (slice a banana and arrange it around the top of the pie (optional)

Chill in the fridge for at least 2 hrs (overnight preferably)

This pie is just as delicious with or without the added fruit if preferred.


Decorate the top of the Manchester Tart with a circle of banana followed by a circle of raspberries and serve with pouring cream.


Home Baked Egg Custard Pie

Home Baked Egg Custard Pie

This recipe was a very popular nutritious sweet in the north of England and still is today. I have eaten this many times at Grandma Sarah’s when I went to visit her accompanied by mugs of hot tea and endless chats. It is economical to make therefore it was perfect for large families although it can be made as a large or as small as you like.

In the picture I have tried to suggest a couple of different ways to serve the Custard Pie from the normal plain way it was always eaten. Either way, I’m sure you will enjoy it.



Basic sweet pastry

225g/8oz plain flour

110g/4oz of butter or ½ butter and ½ lard

Pinch of salt

80g/3oz sugar (castor, icing, or granulated sugar, will do fine)

1 large egg

For the egg custard filling:

4 eggs

100g castor sugar

2 teaspoons of vanilla essence

500 ml milk

Nutmeg. ( whole nutmegs finely grated make all the difference) or dust with icing sugar if preferred.

Preheat the oven to 200C/Gas 6

Lightly grease the cake tin with butter.

In a large bowl rub together the flour and fat until the mixture resembles fine breadcrumbs.

Add the sugar, salt and the egg and mix until a dough is formed and place in the fridge for 5 mins.

Home Baked Egg Custard Pie

Home Baked Egg Custard Pie

Roll out the pastry and place into the tin, making sure that the pastry fits snug around the tin. The pastry may feel a little soft so it’s best to handle it very carefully, pressing it by hand into the base of the tin and around the sides, be careful not to stretch the pastry or it will shrink away from the tin when cooking and the custard mixture could then seep underneath the pastry and the bottom of the pie will be soggy.

For the filling: In a bowl mix together the eggs, sugar and vanilla essence then add the milk and stir well pour into the tin and sprinkle with grated nutmeg.

Place the tin on a baking tray (this will make it easier to handle) and bake in the oven for about 45 mins until the custard is set, or until a skewer comes out clean.

In the picture I have tried to suggest a couple of different ways to serve the Custard Pie from the normal plain way it was always eaten. Either way, I’m sure you will enjoy it.

Patricia Matthews

Simnel Cake

Simnel Cake

Here is another lovely comment which was posted on FB from a lady who bought the GAR book and made the Simnel Cake recipe from the book for her family at Easter.

Me: Hiya, hope your cake turned out. Ok.

It did Patricia…..delicious!!!! Took it over to our Sons today and he loved it along with his wife and our four granchildren. Need to make another one for when our daughter comes home on tues to see how Claire likes it ( I am sure she will if I get it right)!!!

Your delicious Easter Cake!!!! Learning good old fashioned, tasty cooking and baking all over again because of you Patricia and I can’t thank you enough………you are a gem!!!! xxx

Sandra Robinson.

Some pics from a visit to the Rivington Hall.

You can get more info from this very, very impressive establishment at the following website link: http://www.rivingtonhallbarn.co.uk/

Chatting to some bikers

Chatting to some bikers

Here I am at Rivington Barn, chatting to some of the Bikers discussing some of the recipes in the GAR Book

Outside the Rivington Hall Barn

Outside the Rivington Hall Barn

Astride a Harley Davidson bike

Astride a Harley Davidson bike

Inside the gift shop

Inside the gift shop

Inside the gift shop

Inside the gift shop

The Gift Shop and Café (above)

This stunning establishment is situated to the north of Bolton, set in magnificent countryside, the upper and the lower barns are very popular locations for visitors all year round  Rivington Barn is a popular venue for weddings and all manner of events. The charming Gift Shop at the lower barn (as it is known locally)  have kindly agreed to stock the Grandma’s Antique Recipes book in their shop, where it also sells a wide selection of delightful gifts for all the family and all occasions.

The splendid Tea Shop sells delicious food and snacks with lovely home made cakes and coffee, the whole place is buzzing with atmosphere and the local people are very friendly, it really is well worth a visit.

Showing my book to a biker

Showing my book to a biker

Astride a Harley Davidson bike

Astride a Harley Davidson bike…with my book

The bikers at Rivington Hall

The bikers at Rivington Hall

The bikers at Rivington Hall

The bikers at Rivington Hall

Please visit the website of Rivington Hall:


'The proof of the pudding is in the eating'

‘The proof of the pudding is in the eating’

These pictures and links were forwarded to me by a someone who has bought the book and tested out the recipe’s in Grandma’s Antique Recipes book.

First of all she tried out the recipe for Grandma’s Short Crust Pastry and then the recipe for Grandma Sarah’s Potato Pie.

I am pleased to say that she was delighted with the results of both recipe’s and she has forwarded these pictures on to me as proof.

Once again confirming that ‘The proof of the pudding is in the eating’.

Patricia Matthews

Trying out the recipes from the book

Trying out the recipes from the book