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Eat, Sleep, Drink, Eat

Chard, Bean & Lemon Soup

Tray Chic

 Chard Bean Lemom Souo

The Tray Chic series comes to us from Thyme: a rural idyll which offers a place to pause for thought run by the Hibbert family.

A bucolic retreat of rooms, luxury and rest offering a range of workshops, treatments, events, and some of the most delicious food in the county at the Ox Barn. Each month Chef Director, Charlie shares a simple seasonal recipe, shown on a tray styled by sister, Milly, in Bertioli linen – designed by Thyme’s founder, Caryn.  

Charlie Hibbert’s Chard, Bean & Lemon Soup

With a chill in the air and the nights drawing in, heartier dishes take centre-stage on our menus in the Ox Barn and the Swan at Southrop. This is a simple and delicious soup, a take on something my mother Caryn makes. The addition of preserved lemon makes it feel a little different and special. Super quick to rustle up, plus it keeps for a day or two in the fridge.

Serves 4


  • 2 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 1 clove of garlic, peeled and sliced
  • The rind of ½ a preserved lemon, diced
  • 4-6 leaves of chard, stalks and leaves separated, stalks sliced on an angle, leaves roughly chopped
  • 250g butter beans or cannellini beans (drained weight) – either soaked and cooked or from a tin or jar
  • 800ml liquor (either the broth the beans have been cooked in, vegetable stock or even water)
  • ½ a lemon, juiced
  • Maldon salt flakes & pepper

To serve:

  • Crusty bread


  • Put a large pot on a medium heat. Heat the oil and sweat the onion and garlic for five minutes or until soft and translucent.
  • Add the preserved lemon rind and stir.
  • Then add the chard stalks with a splash of water and cook until they are soft.
  • Next, put the chard leaves into the pot and cook for a few minutes until tender and any water the leaves have released has been cooked out.
  • Add the beans and the cooking liquor, stock, or water.
  • Finally, add the lemon juice and season.
  • Serve with crusty bread.


The Dahlia flowerscape is all the rage now, especially with the likes of Charlie McCormick and Sarah Raven championing its cause. Caryn has drawn some heavenly blooms and we’re thrilled with the result – ‘Dahlias’ are a part of Bertioli’s latest collection, Autumn Leaves, which launches on the Autumn Equinox – Friday, 23 September. The collection includes aprons, placemats, napkins, and tablecloths. Available online and at Thyme.

Thyme’s Happenings

Milly Hibbert

Thyme meanders through the seasons like the river Leach in its ever-evolving water meadows. September marks a distinct change, and the cookery and floristry classes at Thyme reflect this. Whether it’s rustic Italian, Middle Eastern, seasonal suppers, Spanish tapas or regional French, ingredients come from Thyme’s gardens and September has much to offer. There’s great excitement for 30 September when Helena Lee (Features Director at Bazaar and Co-Editor Bazaar Art) meets with the Evening Standard Magazine’s Executive Editor, Dipal Acharya to discuss Helena’s book East Side Voices – a collection of essays celebrating East and Southeast Asian identity in Britain. 21 September sees practitioner Caz Hitchcock talking about the Gravity Technique, which has given her and her clients the tools to deal with chronic joint pain. Visit the website for more information.


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