All posts by Devstars

As a mark of respect for Her Majesty The Queen our store will be closed on Monday 19th September.
May she Rest in Peace.

We love supporting our local schools and the bread week project is one of our favourites. At St Anne’s Heath junior school in Virginia Water 60 Year 5 children took part, we supply all of the ingredients and the pupils create and bake their products as well as calculating the costs and profit and designing a presentation and advertising materials. This really is a great learning experience for them and best of all, we get to try all of them when we judge the winners!

The winners this time were The Fruity Smooth Bread Company, who came into our store and sold their products making a profit of £20 for the schools fund-raising.

At St Francis school the winning team were SSSKD who sold their rolls in our Ascot store raising £35 for their school charity.

It really is a pleasure to work with these children and we are consistently impressed by the quality of the work from all of them – it was really hard to pick the winners and well done to all involved.SAH Bread SF Bread

The freshest fish

T&J Fisheries was established in August 1989 and have been supplying quality fresh fish and seafood in the local area ever since. It is a company which prides itself on their range, the sustainability of their fish and most of all the quality.

“The fish we deliver to Maloney’s Budgens is caught off the Cornish and south coasts, and brought to the store in just over 24 hours, thus ensuring its fabulous freshness.”

This week, (from Thursday 26th March), we have the following in store:

  • cod fillets
  • halibut fillets
  • hake fillets
  • natural haddock fillets
  • salmon fillets
  • tuna loin
  • plaice fillets
  • raw & cooked king prawns
  • trout fillets
  • scallops
  • samphire



Maloneys Budgens is delighted to be teaming up once again with celebrity chef Giancarlo Caldesi to host their ninth seasonal lunch which will take place at Caldesi in Campagna, Bray on Friday 13th November at 12.30pm.

This is a great partnership and an extremely popular event that showcases how ingredients from the store can be created into delicious dishes to be enjoyed by all the family.

Giancarlo walks the Maloney’s Budgens stores in Ascot and devises an 8-course taster menu using many of the products available in-store. Vince and Dennis then donate the selected quality ingredients to enable Giancarlo and his team to serve a mouth-watering 8-course taster menu for an incredible £20 per head.

Said Giancarlo: “I want to treat customers to a wonderful lunch full of education and fun. I enjoy sharing my way of cooking with fresh, quality ingredients from Maloney’s Budgens, to show the journey from store to plate.”

Said Vince: “This is a winning formula as the numbers of guests continues to grow. Last time the restaurant was booked out for this lunch with over 60 guests; it’s great fun with a wonderful atmosphere.”

As one contented guest commented: “This is a lovely event, and another delicious meal!  We shall look forward very much to the next one!”

To book your place on the Maloneys Caldesi lunch please call the restaurant on 01628 788500 – but do hurry as places are strictly limited and the event is very popular!  Keep an eye on the website here where we will post the menu once Giancarlo has confirmed details.

Congratulations to our food hamper raffle winners, Beth from Ascot and Richard from Shepperton, both of whom were the lucky recipients of a food hamper worth over £100, from Ascot Hampers, when their tickets were pulled out of the hat at the close of our recent competition.

Both were delighted with their win, achieved by simply completing a form in store with their name and email address.  The hamper contained a mouth-watering combination of goodies that we stock, including premium chocolates, quality nuts, wine and spiced apple tea.

We shall be running more hamper competitions again this year, so do keep an eye out in store, visit for many unique gift and picnic hampers.


Why not start your year with trying to recreate some more recipes devised by our friend and celebrity chef Giancarlo Caldesi?  Below we have detailed a few more dishes that he has shared with us and you – buon appetito!

Sugo Finto (Roman tomato sauce and soup)
This is so called as originally it was (and can still be) made with pork fat and meat stock so it is a false or “finto” meat sauce. It is delicious but as I don’t usually have small amounts of fat and stock lying around I tend to make it without. This does make a rough textured sauce but you might like it like that or you can put it through a passatutto (food mill) or blend with a stick blender to make it smooth and velvety. If you do blend it, it will turn quite bright orange in colour so don’t be alarmed. It’s very pretty on pasta or as a soup like this decorated with basil leaves and Parmesan shavings.  For a soup simply add more water or stock to dilute it.
Serves 6

1 celery stick
1 medium white or red onion
1 carrot
6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 garlic clove, finely chopped
Large sprig basil and parsley, if you have them
Freshly ground black pepper and salt
3 400g tins of whole plum or cherry tomatoes

Finely chop the celery, onion and carrot by hand or in a food processor taking care that the pieces are small, even tiny, but not pureed. Heat the oil in a medium saucepan and add the soffritto. Fry over a medium heat until soft, this should take around 10 to 15 minutes. Add the garlic, herbs and pepper and salt and fry for a couple of minutes more so that the garlic softens. Add the tomatoes and use a potato masher to mash them down. Wash the tins out each with half a tin of water and add this to the saucepan. Heat the tomatoes until they start to bubble then turn the heat down to simmer and leave the sauce to cook for around 30 to 40 minutes, stirring frequently. Remove the herbs. Taste the sauce and add more seasoning if necessary. The sauce should be sweet from the carrots and balanced well with the salt and pepper.

Carciofi alla Romana (Roman Artichokes with Mint)
The Romans use mentuccia, a mint with small furry leaves that we call lesser calamint, but other types of mint will work equally well. This recipe first appeared in my book The Italian Cookery Course and was given to me by Gino Borella who worked as a chef in Rome for many years. Gino’s cooking is always rich and full of flavour so I see no reason to alter his recipe now.
Serves 6 as a starter

12 small artichokes
1 fat garlic clove, finely chopped
15 large mint leaves, finely chopped
small handful of parsley (approx. 7 g/1/4 oz), finely chopped
3 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
100 ml (31/2 fl oz) water
salt and freshly ground black pepper

First clean and prepare the artichokes. Begin by pulling off the tough outer leaves; be brutal when removing them as tough leaves won’t break down during cooking and you want the artichokes to be soft throughout. Trim the remaining leaves with a sharp knife, cutting roughly a third off the top. You can do this with a sharp paring knife. Cut the end off the stalk leaving approximately 5 cm (2 in) of stalk still on the artichoke. Cut away the dark tough outer parts of the remaining bit of stalk, exposing the paler inner stalk, and slice off the base scales of the artichoke with a knife. If the artichokes are young, and they should be, there shouldn’t be a fluffy choke inside, but if there is remove it with a spoon.

In a small bowl, mix together the garlic, mint and parsley, and stuff the mixture into the artichoke centres.

Get a lidded saucepan just big enough to snugly hold all the artichokes in when they’re stood up in the pan with the heads down and stalks sticking up. You want the artichokes to be quite closely packed together when you add them to the pan, so that they won’t fall over while cooking. Place the saucepan over a medium heat and add the olive oil. Gently place the artichokes in the pan, heads down and stalks up.

Pour in the water and if you have any leftover herbs you can add these too. Cover with a lid and leave to cook at a simmer for 45 minutes until tender. Shake the pan frequently to make sure they don’t stick and add a little hot water if they look dry. Serve warm with any juices from the pan.

Buon Appetito!


Soft sienese biscuits
This recipe calls for a mixture of sweet and bitter almonds, which are available in Italy. If you are unable to locate either of these, you can use plain almonds instead.

75g plain flour, sifted
300g ground sweet almonds
50g bitter almonds
250g icing sugar
1 teaspoon baking powder
40g caster sugar
6 large egg whites

Preheat the oven to 150°C. Cover the baking sheet with greaseproof paper and set aside. In a large mixing bowl, mix together the caster sugar, flour, almonds, half the icing sugar and baking powder.
In a medium sized bowl, whisk the egg whites until stiff adding the caster sugar as you go. Fold into the almond-sugar mixture.
Take 2 spoons and form quenelles (raised oval shapes) bu pushing the mixture between two spoons and then dropping them gently into a bowl of the remaining icing sugar to coat them.
Remove each quenelle and place on the baking sheet, spaced apart.
Bake for 10 to 15 minutes or until golden brown. Remove from the oven and leave to cool on a wire rack before serving. They can be stored for up to a week in an airtight container.

Salsa ai Formaggi Dimenticati
Sauce with forgotten cheeses
Generous pinch of salt
200g of cheeses such as Fontina, Gorgonzola, Pecorino, Asiago, Taleggio
150ml double cream
Freshly ground black pepper to taste
1 tablespoon grated Parmesan, to garnish
Dried pasta
Fill a large saucepan with water. Add the salt and bring to boil over a medium-high heat.
Place the pasta in the water and boil until al dente.
While the pasta is cooking, slice the cheese into small pieces and place in a large saucepan.
Add the cream and bring to a gentle simmer over low heat. Add pepper to taste. Simmer, stirring often until the cheese is melted and the mixture is smooth.
Drain the pasta. Stir in the cheese mixture. Transfer to a serving bowl, garnish with Parmesan and, if desired, more pepper to taste.


Venice by Katie and Giancarlo (Hardie Grant, £25.00) Photography: Helen Cathcart

To celebrate this fabulous time of year and as part of our ongoing commitment to working with our local schools, we enjoyed launching another Christmas Colouring competition with children in our local neighbourhoods.

We were delighted with the fantastic entries we received and you too can enjoy them by popping along to our stores in Ascot and Shepperton where you will find all their artistic contributions displayed in store!

Details of our winners and runners up, who all receive WHSmith book vouchers from Vince and Dennis Maloney are as follow:


St Ann’s School Virginia Water: 
                    1st Prize               2nd Prize 
Year 3            Charlie                    Annabella
Year 4            Georgina                Mae
Year 5            Ernie                       Kaashui
Year 6            Lily                          Kodi


St Francis School Ascot:
                       1st Prize        2nd Prize
Reception          Elsie                    Cerys
Year 1                John                     ——-
Year2                 Charlie                Poppy
Year 3                William               Charlie
Year 4                Daisy                   Ciara
Year 5                William               Aidan
Year 6                Coaimhe             Grace


Saxon School, Shepperton:
                        1st Prize                2nd Prize 
Reception         Roxanna                     Elena
Year 1               Caitlin                         Reham
Year 2               Grace                         Hannah
Year 3               Ruby                           Ayaana
Year 4               Emily                           Bronwyn
Year 5               Mollie                         Joshua
Year 6              Chloe                           Sophie

Congratulations to everyone who entered!

Why not have a go yourself at recreating some of Giancarlo’s favourite recipes, some of which he presented at the last Maloney’s Caldesi’s seasonal lunch? Keep an eye on the website – more recipes to follow!:

Rotolo di melanzane ripino di ricotta e menta in salsa al pomodoro
Stuffed aubergines rolls with ricotta and mint in tomato sauce
Serves 6
2 aubergines, sliced into 1cm lengths
3 to 4 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
Freshly ground black pepper and salt
250g ricotta
Small handful chives, finely chopped
Small handful mint leaves, finely chopped
10g Parmesan cheese, finely grated

1 quantity of tomato sauce (see recipe below)

Preheat the oven to 180˚C. Brush a little oil over the oven tray and lay the aubergines in a single layer over it. Brush the tops of the slices sparingly with the remaining olive oil. Scatter over some salt and pepper to your taste. Bake for 20-25 minutes until soft and lightly golden. Remove from the oven and allow to cool for 15 minutes.

Meanwhile mix up the rest of the ingredients to form the stuffing. Season to taste and when the aubergines are just warm to the touch put a dessertspoonful of the stuffing onto the thin end of the aubergine slices. Roll them up and put them seams down into a lasagne dish. Spoon a little tomato sauce over each roll and bake for 20 minutes or until the sauce is bubbling hot and just starting to brown. Serve warm with salad leaves.


La nostra salsa di pomodoro preferita
Our favourite tomato sauce

Serves 6 to 8

6 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
1 red or white onion, peeled and finely chopped
1 large clove of garlic, peeled and lightly crushed
2 x 400 g cans whole Italian plum tomatoes
1 large sprig of basil
1–2 teaspoons caster sugar
1 level teaspoon salt
Good pinch of freshly ground black pepper
12 ripe and flavourful cherry tomatoes, diced
550 g long or short pasta, to serve

Heat half the oil in a frying pan and fry the onion and garlic slowly over a medium to low heat. After 7 to 10 minutes, when soft, add the canned tomatoes. Wash out the can with a few tablespoons of water and add this to the sauce. Add the basil, sugar, salt and black pepper, and continue to cook over a medium heat for about 15 minutes. Use a potato masher or fork to break up the tomatoes. Next add the cherry tomatoes. Cook the sauce for a further 15 minutes, taste and adjust the salt and sugar if necessary. Stir in the rest of the olive oil and your sauce is ready to mix in with your chosen pasta.


School children at St Anne’s Heath Primary were the latest to celebrate our British Food Fortnight Colouring competition.

Working with pupils from Years 3 to 6, our competition celebrated the fantastic British food availably at Maloney’s Budgens store.
Choosing the winners proved a very tough job, but in the end the winners were selected as follows:
Year 3                Mu Xin                   Bella
Year 4                Mae                       Isabelle
Year 5                Elizabeth               Charlotte
Year 6                Lolo                        Kodi

Our delighted winners will all be awarded Book Tokens in recognition of their fantastic achievements.
Congratulations to everyone who entered – and thank you!

We thoroughly enjoyed our latest joint school project with children from South Ascot Village School.

Working with pupils from Years 1 and and 2, we ran a Colouring Competition to celebrate British Food Fortnight and were astonished at the artistry apparent in the many entries we received!
We are delighted to announce the winners:
Year 1 First Prize went to Ella, Second Prize to Kyra
Year 2 First Prize went to Joshua, Second Prize to Bavithra

Our delighted winners will be awarded Book Tokens at Assembly next week.
Congratulations to everyone who entered – and thank you!