Did you know that cycling is the third most popular recreational activity in the UK? Every month just over three million Brits hop on their bikes, and go for a cycle.
Whether it’s to boost fitness, help the environment or save money, cycling in the great outdoors is an activity that can be enjoyed by all, particularly during balmy long summer days.
Here at Llansantffraed Court, we are blessed with having miles of beautiful countryside right on our doorstep. Whether it’s speeding along rural biking trails through lush valleys, or finding majestic castles, idyllic riverside picnic spots and hidden beauty spots, Monmouthshire is perfect for those who enjoy exploring Wales on two wheels. And if you fancy pedalling a bit further afield, a 35-minute cycle will take you to the border of the Brecon Beacons where you can discover all the national park has to offer.
Cycling all those miles can be hungry work, so if you’re planning on jumping on a bike and heading a long way this summer, it’s important to eat a hearty meal beforehand – or have a delicious tea to look forward to. Here our Head Chef Mike Hendry shares his favourite seasonal treat to give you that extra ‘oomph’ when pushing up the steepest of hills.
Trio of Lamb, Asparagus, Wild Garlic (Serves Two)
1 lamb loin, portioned to 150g
100g lamb sweet breads, floured
500g wild garlic
1 potato diced
400ml chicken stock
For lamb kofta
100g lamb mince
20g cumin powder
10g diced shallot
1 garlic clove
Sauté shallots, garlic, herbs and spices and then mix with mince. Mold into balls that weigh approximately 40g each for the lamb koftas. Fry in a little hot oil until cooked through.
Cook in butter and 200ml chicken stock emulsion until tender.
Place loin in hot pan, skin side down and sear for 3 minutes until golden. Turn and seal until all flesh has a little colour. Add some butter and cook for a further 3-4 minutes. Take off pan and leave to rest. Meanwhile, add sweet breads and kofta into another hot pan and cook until golden brown in a little butter.
For wild garlic puree
Sauté wild garlic in butter until soft and then set some aside. Add 200ml chicken stock, bring to boil quickly then blitz in food processor until smooth.
For crispy potato
Deep fry diced potato in hot oil at 180 degrees.
Spoon some puree onto the plate, arrange the sautéed wild garlic on top. Place the lamb loin, kofta, sweetbreads around and garnish with asparagus and crispy potato.
So, what are you waiting for? Pick a route, get your bike out of the shed and start enjoying the many benefits that cycling has to offer. Mike’s delicious lamb recipe will make sure that you have the necessary pedal power, no matter how challenging the ride.