Stovax Eco Design Compliant

Whilst browsing through the Stovax website, watch out for the following symbol. 

Heralding a new era of ultra-green technology, Stovax Ecodesign wood burning and multi-fuel stoves and fires feature advanced combustion systems that burn so cleanly they are compliant with future 2022 flue gas emission and thermal efficiency standards.
Designed to meet or exceed Ecodesign standards, Stovax’s compliant stoves and fires ensure substances present in smoke emissions such as Carbon Monoxide (CO), nitrous oxides (NOX), organic gaseous compounds (OGC) and particulates (PM) are minimised – making them some of the most eco-friendly stoves in the world.
The future of solid-fuel heating, Ecodesign stoves and fires offer an even greener heating choice than standard appliances, without sacrificing flame visuals or heat output.

The Inconvenient Truth or The Misinformed Reader?

How many of you read the following article in the Daily Mail this Saturday?  Did it get you wondering whether looking into having a wood burner installed was the right thing to do?  Has it scaremongered  you away from purchasing that wood burner  you have always wished for?   Perhaps you should be playing it safe and choosing an electric stove instead or perhaps just placing a ghastly dried flower arrangement in your fireplace opening?

STOP!  Don't Panic!

That’s why we at W & H Supplies are here!  To help give you the complete picture, the vast options that are there waiting for you.... and yes!  You can still safely have that wood burner you always wanted thanks to the expert manufacturers that we have the pleasure of being your sole, expert dealer for.

So firstly, the link to the Daily Mail article: Mail Online

And now time for a few ideas!  These are just some of our suggestions - we can of course discuss far more with you face to face in the showroom, looking through brochures, showing you working product whilst drinking a nice cup of coffee in a relaxed and friendly atmosphere.

1.  The Stovax Elise.  

Stovax has always strived to create products that minimise environmental impact. Their advanced clean burning stoves and fires have been the result of over 34 years of experience and development, with the majority of their products designed to operate in smoke control areas.

But producing DEFRA exempt appliances is only the beginning. The real challenge is to create environmentally friendly products that not only comply with local restrictions, but also pave the way for a global, sustainable future. With this in mind, Stovax have developed the Elise as a fully compliant Eco-Design fire – way ahead of the 2022 mandatory EU particulate emission levels. Not content just to achieve the proposed emission reductions, Stovax have created an ultra-green fire that goes far beyond them.

Featuring an advanced combustion system, the Elise is able to reduce particulate emissions to an absolute minimum, making it one of the most environmentally friendly fires on the market.

2.  The Chesney Milan 4 Passive

The Milan 4 Series Passive incorporates all the usual features that have come to be associated with a Chesney's stove, offering an efficiency rating of 80%, smoke exempt status and outstanding build and design quality.  Additionally, the Milan can be installed in unusually close proximity to combustible material enabling its use in situations where other stoves cannot be used.

The performance, efficiency and versatility that the Milan 4 Series Passive stove offers is further enhanced by an entirely unique feature. The growing requirement for efficient energy conservation in new house building is well documented and in response to this both house builders and buyers are exploring the air tight option. Building regulations now prescribe that new build houses must achieve air permeability of no more than 5 cubic metres. The Milan 4 Passive makes a unique contribution to this process as it is the only stove independently tested that can be safely installed in an air tight environment.

Using a dedicated external air supply to the stove, fresh air is automatically introduced to create a curtain of air that seals the stove chamber when the door is opened for re-fuelling. In independent tests the stove door remained open for up to three minutes and during this period emissions of only 2 parts per million of carbon monoxide were recorded. By contrast when re-fuelling of a conventional stove takes place carbon monoxide emissions into the room are completely unchecked.

As an alternative to these wood fired suggestions (and just two of many wood burning, low emission, clean burn appliances that we have to offer you), why not take a look at gas?  If you don’t have mains gas why not take a look at LPG?  Either 19kg or 47kg bottles on a hard standing will suffice to run a very realistic looking log effect gas fired stove.

Creating a centrepiece in your home has never been easier with a Gazco gas stove.

Inspired by its solid fuel counterpart, their selection of contemporary and traditionally styled gas stoves are available in a range of colours, sizes and either log or coal effects.

No chimney?  Don't worry, Gazco offer most of their stoves as a balanced flue option so as long as you have an outside wall, you can have a beautiful Gazco stove as your focal point.

These highly efficient gas stoves are available as manual control or can be upgraded to remote control versions giving you maximum enjoyment at the touch of a button.

ESSE gas stoves are hand-built in Britain and offer many features such as impressive energy efficiency, sophisticated styling, quality and craftsmanship second to none.

ESSE Stoves are available with remote control , just sit back and relax whilst lighting your stove from the comfort of your chair!

ESSE also offer a range of flueless gas stoves.  Using catalytic technology - giving 100% efficiency

Whichever style you choose, you’ll enjoy a realistic log effect and flame pattern that gives the look and feel of a contemporary woodburner.

The Daily Mail are correct in saying that wood burners can be bad for the environment; old wood burners using old technology, new wood burners fitted incorrectly, any wood burner used wrongly - they are all bad for the environment.  If you really want a wood burner because you want to enjoy the flames, you don’t want a lot of trouble trying to light it and use it, you want to help the environment and you don’t want to “add to an ever thickening cloud of smog” as reported by the Daily Mail, then don’t cut corners, buy a HETAS Approved Appliance, buy a Clean Burn appliance, ask what the emissions are, burn the proper fuel and always use the appliance as it has been intended and as per the manufacturers instructions.

We, here at W & H Supplies are proud to be a HETAS Approved Retailer as well as a HETAS Approved Installer, we can give you all of the information that you require to help you make an informed purchase so come in and see one of our experienced sales staff.

Don’t forget, we are GasSafeRegistered too - with a huge array of gas fires and stoves on live display - we can talk you through all of your options, whether you require LPG or don’t have a chimney - our experienced sales staff are sure to have something that will suit your situation!

Christmas Pudding Recipe

I have to say that I always follow the same recipe and my Christmas Pudding never fails to impress.  It's not a heavy Christmas pudding and not too rich.  When I make my Christmas pudding mixture I always make enough for two, one for this year and one for next, and the one I keep is always the best one!

I have the wonderful Delia to thank for my Christmas Pudding recipe, I shan't tell any porkies here and pretend that it is my own recipe!  Every pudding comes out differently of course though!  So, thank you Delia, here is the wonderful recipe and ingredients list.  I have also added in how to make the gluten free version.

Traditional Christmas Pudding


This recipe makes 1 x 2 pint Christmas Pudding

Begin the day before you want to steam the pudding
Take your largest, roomiest mixing bowl - ("no kidding - you need a really huge one!") and start by putting in the suet and breadcrumbs, spices and sugar.  Mix these ingredients thoroughly together, then gradually mix in all of the dried fruit, peel and nuts, followed by the apple and the grated orange and lemon zests.  Don't forget to tick everything off as you go to make sure that nothing gets left out ("especially if this is your first time!")

Next, in a smaller basin, measure out the rum, barley wine and stout, then add the eggs and beat these thoroughly together ("nope - this isn't a curious hangover cure!").  Next pour this over all the other ingredients and begin to mix very thoroughly.  It's not traditional together all the family round, especially the children, and invite everyone to have a really good stir and make a wish! 

The mixture should have a fairly sloppy consistency - that is, it should fall instantly from the spoon when this is tapped on the side of the bowl - if you think it needs a bit more liquid then add a drop more stout!

Cover the bowl and leave overnight.

Next day stir in the sifted flour quite thoroughly, then pack the mixture into the lightly greased basin, cover it with a double layer of baking parchment and a sheet of foil and tie it securely with string.  It's also a good idea to tie a pice of string across the top to make a handle.  Place the pudding in a steamer set over a saucepan filled with simmering water and steam the pudding for 8 hours.

Do make sure that you keep a regular eye on the water underneath and top it up with boiling water straight from the kettle about halfway through the time.  When the pudding is steamed, let it get quite cold, then remove the baking parchment and foil and replace them with some fresh ones, again make a string handle for easy manoeuvring.

Now your Christmas Pudding is ready for Christmas Day - Keep it in a cool place and away from light.  Under the bed or in an unheated spare room is ideal.

Christmas Day Preparation

Fill a saucepan quite full of boiling water and put it on the heat, when it comes back to the boil again place a steamer on top of the pan and turn it down to a gentle simmer.  Put the Christmas Pudding in the steamer, cover and steam for 2 hours and 15 minutes.  You will need to check the water from time to time and may be top it up with boiling water from the kettle.  When you are ready to serve the Pudding, remove it from the steamer, remove all of its wrapping and slide a palette knife all around the Pudding, then turning it out onto a warmed plate.  Garnish it with a suitably sized sprig of holly on top.  Warm some brandy in a ladle over direct heat, and as soon as the brandy is hot ask someone to turn the flame off and set light to the brandy with a long match.  Don't pour the brandy over the pudding until you reach the table, and then slowly pour the brandy all over the pudding and watch as the flames roll down the sides and across the top of your Christmas Pudding whilst listening to your well earned cheers and rewarding claps!

Serve with traditional brandy or rum butter and sauce - or even good old custard!

To make this recipe just replace the breadcrumbs, suet and flour with Gluten-free versions. Replace the Stout and Barley Wine with the same amount of Sherry.  You will require a pinch of baking powder added to the Gluten-free white flour.


110g Shredded Suet
25g Whole Candied Peel, finely chopped
25g Whole Almonds (skin on is OK)
1 Small Cooking Apple, cored and finely chopped
Grated Zest 1/2 Large Navel Orange
Grated Zest 1/2 Large Lemon
2 Tablespoons Rum
50g Self Raising Flour
110g Breadcrumbs (White)
1 Level Teaspoon Ground Mixed Spice
1/4 Level Teaspoon Freshly Grated Nutmeg
Good Pinch of Cinnamon
225g Soft Dark Brown Sugar
110g Sultanas
110g Raisins
275g Currants

And if it doesn't quite go to plan? Well at least these little fellas will keep you smiling!

Stir Up Sunday

 💭 So, what is this Stir Up Sunday all about then? 💭

So here it is, it all started back in the Victorian times when it wasn't just poor old mum in the Kitchen - oh no!  Everyone got stuck in and took it in turns to stir the Christmas Pudding mix, in fact there were 3 rounds, and on each round you made a wish and out of your 3 wishes 1 would come true.   If you had servants they would take part too! 🎄  

Stir Up Sunday is the last Sunday before Advent and the closest to St Andrews Day.  The opening words of the Book of Common Prayer, read on this Sunday at Church are
'Stir up, we beseech thee, O Lord'
And so the tradition stands that this is the day we all get together in the Kitchen and Stir Up our Christmas Pudding  🌟

Keep following our blogs for more interesting
Christmas facts, hints, tips and yummy recipes!

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ESSE Cooker Demonstration Tomorrow!

The wonderful Daniel Blewitt from ESSE Cookers, is joining us again for another of his amazing, fun and informative cooker demonstrations.  To tempt you tomorrow, Thursday 10th November, we have succulent glazed Gammon, warming Mulled Wine and tasty Pepparkakor (Swedish Gingerbread).  How is that for a nice, warming feast on another chilly Autumn day?

Top AGA Christmas Tips

Top AGA TipsRemember the AGA 80:20 rule: 80% of your cooking should take place in the ovens, 20% on the hotplates, typically these are things which take less than seven minutes to accomplish.
When cooking a lot of food requiring a high temperature in the roasting oven, avoid using the simmering plate apart from essential tasks such as heating milk and making sauces. Keep the simmering plate insulating lid down as much as possible.
If the simmering oven is completely full of food cooking, allow a longer composite cooking time than for when cooking just a couple of pans, especially in the case of root vegetables. The cooked food will keep hot without spoiling.
Use AGA mini muffin trays to make double the quantity of baby mince pies – roll the pastry slightly thinner.
Get ahead
To cook ahead, pre-roast the potatoes and parsnips the day before, until they just start to colour. Drain off the fat, cool and then keep covered in the refrigerator till the following day. Bring back to room temperature for several hours before finishing off on the floor of the roasting oven for 20-30 minutes. Don’t place cooked roast potatoes in the simmering or warming ovens or they will not remain crisp. Instead, place the filled ovenproof serving dish on the AGA toaster on the floor of the roasting or baking oven, with a cold plain shelf above to prevent them over browning.
Get Ahead
Most vegetables can be prepared the day before: peel potatoes and keep covered with water in the fridge, with carrots and parsnips in polythene bags. Shred cabbage and trim tiny Brussels Sprouts – remove any discoloured leaves, then store in a polythene bag with a little water in the refrigerator overnight.Dotted _line
How large a turkey will fit in an AGA oven?The AGA is known for its large ovens.  The roasting oven is big enough for a 13kg (28lb) bird.
Allow 450g (1 lb) per person, weighed when plucked and drawn
Allow 225g (8 oz) per person, for boned and breast-only roasts
Allow 900g (2 lb) per person, weighed when plucked and drawn
Allow 450g (1 lb) per person, for boned and breast-only roasts
This allows for second helpings and a manageable quantity of leftovers that can be safely used up within two to three days. If you are short of refrigerator space, a car boot in December may be cold enough for the safe storage of an uncooked bird once you have taken delivery of it from your butcher. Alternatively, consider using an unheated room or an animal-proof shed or garage.Dotted _line
I've pre made my AGA Christmas pudding, but how do I heat it up on the day?To re-heat your Christmas pudding on Christmas Day you don't need to re-steam it in the conventional way. Simply wrap the china, plastic or foil pudding basin in several layers of foil and place in the simmering oven all morning, next to the turkey if necessary. Over several hours it will slowly heat through ready for serving piping hot at the end of your meal. Custard and brandy sauce may be made towards the end of the morning and kept hot until wanted, covered, in the warming or simmering ovens. Dotted _line
How can I cook more than two Christmas puddings at once in my 2-oven AGA? I have eight to do!There is an AGA utensil that will do this for you, and one of the reasons it is in the range is for exactly this kind of project.
The AGA 9 litre stainless steel stockpot is tall with a lid with the usual AGA recessed knob, so that it will fit in the height of the simmering oven.  And at 24cm in diameter, two will fit in, one behind the other, with 2 cm to spare.  Using two of these pans you can cook four 1½ or 2 pint puddings.  In each pan you have one pudding sitting on a trivet. Onto this place a circular wire cake cooling rack and then sit the second pudding on top of this.  In this way the lower pudding is strictly being boiled, and the upper pudding is classically steamed; the end result will be the same.
Pour boiling water in to come half-way up the base of the lower pudding.  Bring back to the boil on the boiling plate and then cover and move to the simmering plate and partially offset the pans here so that they slow boil for 30 minutes.  Then very carefully transfer the pans to sit on the floor of the simmering oven to cook for 12 hours or overnight.  No topping up will be required.
Don't forget, once you have mixed you pudding mixture, it will happily sit in its bowl covered in a cool place until you are able to make second and third night steamings until all your puddings are made.
Note:  If you were to use an old AGA aluminium preserving pan, add half a squeezed lemon of half a cup of vinegar to the water to prevent discoloration of the pan. Dotted _line
How can I keep a lot of plates warm ready for serving?If you have a lot of plates and serving dishes to heat, fill your dishwasher with all your china and put it on a heat only (drying) cycle, or on the shortest wash option.
Do a dummy run beforehand if necessary to time the length of the programme, and then you can set the dishwasher off at just the right time to result in hot dry dishes ready for your Christmas meal. This tip never fails to impress onlookers. It is especially useful if you are cooking for more than ten people with a 2 or 3 oven AGA - the simmering oven can then be used exclusively for cooking and keeping food hot.
Vegetable tureen lids and gravy boats are best warmed at the back of the top plate of the AGA where they heat through without the handles getting too hot. Protect the enamel by using a cloth, chef's pad or piece of kitchen paper.  Dotted _line
Why are my ovens loosing their heat?When cooking a lot of food requiring a high temperature in the roasting oven, avoid using the simmering plate apart from essential tasks such as heating milk and making sauces. Keep the simmering plate insulating lid down as much as possible.
If the simmering oven is completely full of food cooking, allow a longer composite cooking time than for when cooking just a couple of pans, especially in the case of root vegetables. The cooked food will keep hot without spoiling.
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