"To Maynard, Benedict & Freya
Thank you for such an amazing experience. It was great to learn so many different techniques & plating up skills. Hopefully I will be able to take them home and successfully practice and improve my skills. The setting also adds to the experience, such a beautiful house & surroundings makes for such an enjoyable stay. Hopefully one day I will be able to come back and do the advanced course.
Kind regards"
Melbourne, Australia
June 2015

Walnut Grove Recipes

Smoked Maple and Black Pepper Bacon

Around 1.2kg bacon

  • 1.3kg pork belly
  • 120g brown sugar
  • 6 tbsp maple syrup
  • 50g coarse salt
  • 2 tsp ground black pepper


1. In a bowl mix all of the ingredients, rub over the pork belly and put each piece of pork belly into a zip lock bag. Evenly distribute the marinade/rub in each bag so each piece of pork belly as the same amount of rub covering it, seal the zip lock bags.

2. Place on a tray in the fridge and leave to marinade for 2 weeks, turning the bags over every 3 or 4 days.

3. After 2 weeks, remove from zip lock bags and either smoke in a smoker at 100°C until until the core temperature of the pork belly reaches 65°C, or the un-smoked version, oven method is to bake it in the oven at 100°C until core temperature is 65°C (round 2 to 3 hours).

4. Alternatively you can cheat by using liquid smoke (usually hickory) follow the oven method, then baste the cured & baked bacon with liquid smoke, covering all the surface using a pastry brush and airdry for an hour.

5. Slice on a meat slicer and cook as normal - and enjoy!!!

Serving Suggestions

What do we need to say - bacon is great with pretty much anything! You could try our Roasted Bacon & Avocado recipe, put it in a sandwich, bagel, baguette - or have it with a traditional English breakfast!

Cooking courses and gourmet vacations available at 


Walnut Grove cookery courses - a dream vacation - in wonderful surroundings


Experience the reality of gourmet cooking yourself. There is only one way to learn and that is to do it! Top chefs, luxury accommodation, set in France - the home of gourmet cuisine; what more could you ask for?

Your hosts and tutors are acclaimed chefs Maynard Harvey and Emerson Farrar, two modern chefs who use the freshest ingredients with an emphasis on distinct flavours and clean, meticulous presentation. Their passion and enthusiasm for cooking will stimulate your own love of food, and their expertise will help you gain confidence and perfect your technique in the kitchen.

To find out more about our holidays, courses, accommodation and location deep in the heart of the 'real' French countryside, please look around our site. For further information, contact us.