Meet the Chef – Ashleigh Farrand

The Kingham Plough is the quintessential Cotswold Inn combining an outstanding award-winning restaurant alongside a perfect village pub.

They continually champion the very best local and seasonal ingredients, showcasing their incredible suppliers through the pub’s ever-popular menus.

This month, we sat down with Ashleigh Farrand, Head Chef, to find out a little more about her journey in the culinary world, what she loves and hates in terms of ingredients and food and she shares her gorgeous recipe for her signature dish, chocolate and Coconut Delice with miso caramel and coconut sorbet.

Why did you decide to become a chef – what inspired you?

I’ve loved food and cooking for as long as I can remember and it’s something I knew I wanted to pursue as a career.

Where did you train?

I trained at Ellenborough Park whilst doing my GCSEs and A Levels, later going full time and completing Level 2&3 NVQs in professional cookery with HIT.

What is your own personal signature dish?

Chocolate and coconut delice, miso caramel, coconut sorbet

What is your favourite cuisine to cook?

I love experimenting, at The Kingham Plough we have traditional British dishes as well as French, and Mediterranean dishes with the odd dish inspired by Asian flavours here and there.

What influences your menu?

Our produce, we have a fantastic list of local suppliers and I like to work with them, when they say they have some fantastic figs or tomatoes, I think of a dish to use that ingredient.

Favourite ingredient?

Vinegars – they balance a dish perfectly and give a lift at the end.

Ashleigh Farrand The Kingham Plough

Your favourite season to cook in?

I love Autumn, the temperature starts to drop, it’s the beginning of the game season, and there are still some berries and apples and a whole lot of vegetables, cauliflower, pumpkin, radish, and mushrooms just to name a few

What’s the next ‘big thing’ in cooking?

The older traditions of fermenting are getting a lot more public interest and are easier to access. Such as miso, sauerkraut, kombucha , making fruit vinegars with scraps. This also helps with zero waste which we should all be focusing on as well.

What’s your personal go-to dish when short of time?

Risotto, we always have rice in the dry stores, easy to make seasonal depending on what fresh produce we have in the fridge, and stock is something we always have or are in the process of making.

You have your idol coming to dinner at your home, what do you serve?

I’d probably light the bbq, you can’t replicate the flavour you get from cooking over open coal. Then have big platers of ribeye, seabass and prawns, with fresh salads on the side.

Favourite British fruit and vegetable?

Rhubarb and asparagus, although I guess that’s 2 vegetables so strawberry and asparagus!

Is there anything you hate and/or won’t eat – dish or ingredient?

Banana, it’s a no from me!

Is there a recipe you could share with us?

My signature dish – Chocolate and coconut delice, miso caramel, coconut sorbet.

Chocolate and Coconut Delice with miso caramel and coconut sorbet


Coconut Dacquoise

  • 135g ground almonds 135g desiccated coconut
  • 270g icing sugar
  • 300g egg whites
  • 100g caster sugar

Chocolate Ganache

  • 725g dark 54% chocolate
  • 450g cream
  • 100g butter


  • 75g cream
  • 112g sugar
  • 90g water
  • 38g cocoa powder
  • 18g glucose
  • 3 leaves gelatine, soaked

Feuilletine base

  • 300g feuilletine
  • 500g milk chocolate
  • 80g butter

Coconut Mousse

  • 1kg coconut puree
  • 850ml double cream
  • 10 leaves gelatine, soaked
  • 135g caster sugar
  • Juice ½ lemon

Salted caramel

  • 750g caster sugar
  • 300g water
  • 450g butter
  • 450g cream

Coconut sorbet

  • 1 ltr coconut puree
  • 1 ltr UHT coconut milk
  • 950g caster sugar
  • 1200g water
  • 100g glucose


For the chocolate dacquoise

  1. Mix the almonds, coconut and icing sugar together in a bowl.
  2. Whisk the egg whites to soft peaks and slowly add the caster sugar, whisk until you have stiff peaks,
  3. Gently fold into the coconut mixture, and pour into a lined shallow gastro.
  4. Bake at 160 fans 3 for 30 -35 minutes.

For the chocolate ganache

  1. Bring the cream to a boil, meanwhile dice the butter into small 1cm cubes.
  2. Pour the chocolate and butter into the pan with the cream and let sit for 2 minutes.
  3. Stir to ensure all the chocolate and butter are melted.


Once the sponge and ganache are made, line a plastic gastro with 2 layers of cling film.

Trim the sponge to fit and place it in the bottom of the tray. Then pour over the ganache and place in the fridge whilst you make the mousse and glaze.

For the coconut mouse

  1. Heat 200ml of the puree and add the gelatine to dissolve. Add the remaining puree to the puree and gelatine mixture to temper it. Pass to ensure all the gelatine has been combined.
  2. Softly whip the cream with the caster sugar.
  3. Add the puree to the cream and the lemon juice. Fold to combine.
  4. Then pour over the ganache and return the bar to the fridge to continue setting.

For the glaze

  1. Add all the glaze ingredients, except the gelatine, to a pan and reduce by 1/3.
  2. Add the gelatine and allow it to cool to blood temperature.
  3. Pour over the mousse and put the whole tray into the freezer to set overnight.
  4. Portion the bar into 8.5cm x 3.5cm pieces, store in the freezer and defrost in the fridge for service when needed.

For the feuilletine base

  1. Melt the chocolate and butter together, and stir through the feuilletine. Roll out on a silicone mat and leave to set in the fridge.
  2. Remove from the fridge when set, and leave for 15 minutes before portioning into 8.5cm x 3.5cm rectangles.

For the coconut sorbet

  1. Make a sugar syrup with the sugar, water and glucose.
  2. Add to the puree. Chill and churn.

For the salted caramel

  1. Heat the water and sugar till a deep amber colour, do not stir
  2. Turn the heat off, and slowly add the cream. Then whisk in the butter slowly.
  3. Add 350g miso and allow to chill in the fridge.

The Kingham Plough