Doing the Hokey Pokey

All dressed up and ready to go

So this is a recipe inspired by a rather brilliant pudding we had on Friday night at The Churchill Arms in the Cotswolds, a lovely little 17th century pub in the tiny honey coloured village of Paxford near Chipping Campden.  Pubs may be dying out at a depressing rate around the country but this place has got it right: real ales, a smart wine list and really good food.  We arrived late on Friday night and got stuck into a proper pub supper which finished with a particularly inspired bringing together of splinters of glinting honeycomb, vanilla ice cream and hot chocolate sauce. Now really, what’s not to like?

So, upon arriving back in London today I thought I’d have a crack (pardon the pun) at making honey comb – or hokey pokey – if you’re Cornish (I’m not).  It’s really quite ridiculously easy to make.  And if you wanted to be really clever, you could dip the broken shards in molten dark chocolate



200g caster sugar
5 tbsps golden syrup
2 tsps bicarbonate of soda
1 tsp vanilla extract

Line a 20cm x 20cm baking tin with baking paper (you could grease it too just to be extra smart)

In a large, heavy bottomed pan mix together the golden syrup, caster sugar and vanilla extract over a low heat then turn up the heat and stop stirring.  Let the mixture come to a steady boil and leave like this for around 5 minutes. If you have a little glass of cold water by the pan you can test when the mixture is ready by dropping a little bit into the glass of water. If it cracks then it’s ready, if it’s still pliable, let it boil a little longer.  You could you a fancy sugar thermometer but I don’t have one of them and besides I don’t think you need it

Froth and bubbles

Remove the pan from the heat then chuck in the bicarbonate of soda. Whisk it in really well and be quick as it will make the mixture foam up like a volcano. If you don’t mix it in properly it will end up tasting a bit salty and strange in places. Pour it immediately into the tin and then just let it cool

Once cool you can go at it with a rolling pin and break it into beautiful golden shards.  Then either sprinkle it over ice cream or if you were a generous soul, pop it in a pretty bag, tie it with ribbon and give it to someone you love x

et voila!
Image: The Churchill Arms, Paxford



The Churchill Arms
Chipping Campden
GL55 6XH
+44 (0) 1386 594

Image: The Churchill Arms, Paxford
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