We spent a wonderful weekend at The Lost Music Hall, in Ipplepen, Devon.†

The house is set at the end of a beautiful long, tree-lined drive and inside, The Lost Music Hall is breathtaking. We first walked into the open-plan downstairs living area, what would originally have been a music hall, where the parquet floors and panelled walls create a striking atmosphere, gleaming in the bright sunshine that floods through the large windows. The bedrooms are all spacious and full of light, the white walls and high ceilings oozing with calmness.

The sun shone throughout our whole stay, so we spent a lot of time in the extensive gardens. I loved all the space there was to explore, with the wild garlic and flowers in bloom that I picked to use with dinner. We found a spot and sat under a tree by the river to enjoy the warm spring sunshine, baby lambs and geese frolicking in the field opposite; it really felt like a scene out of a novel.

Later, we headed back to the house to start dinner, a floral pasta with lemon, mint and ricotta, using the spring edible flowers I picked from the garden.

Floral pasta with lemon, mint and ricotta


- 300g of Tipo 00 flour

- Three medium eggs

- A selection of organic unsprayed edible flowers (optional)

- 250g of ricotta

- 60g of pecorino

- One lemon

- Black pepper and salt

- Five tablespoons of butter

- Fresh mint leaves


Start by sifting the flour on the table into a mound, using your hands to make a well in the centre. Crack the eggs into this well and with a fork start mixing the eggs. Mix until a paste is formed then start bringing in a bit of flour from around the edge (a little at a time until it's combined), before using your hands to mix the rest and knead it into a ball. Add more flour if the dough is too sticky or a few drops of water if itís too dry. Knead the dough for five minutes until you have a smooth ball. Cover and leave to rest for 25 minutes.

Press the dough flat with your hand, sprinkling with flour so it doesnít stick, then roll through a pasta machine. Take the dough and fold in half, roll through the machine again, then fold the dough again and roll through once more. Do this three times on the widest setting before turning the width down to the next setting. This ensures the dough will be silky smooth and an even width.

Put the dough through the machine, turning down the setting each time until you reach a beautifully thin dough (around the second to last setting that your machine goes to).

Place a sheet of pasta flat on the table and arrange some thin mint leaves (stems removed) and a few edible flowers, if you wish, and fold the rest of the dough over. Turn the machine back up to two width settings, then roll the pasta through again until thin.

For the filling, add the ricotta into a bowl, mix in the grated pecorino, some salt, pepper and grated zest from half a lemon. Taste and add more lemon or seasoning to taste.

Cut circles of pasta with a round cutter, then add some filling. Wet your finger and run it around the edge before folding the pasta in half to make half-moon shapes. Keep like this or fold the edges in to make tortellini.

Bring a pot of salted water to the boil, add the pasta and cook for about 3 minutes.

Meanwhile, add butter to a pan and gently brown it, moving it around so it doesnít burn.

Once the butter starts to turn a nice golden colour, remove it from the heat and add a squeeze of lemon juice. Drain the pasta (reserving a little of the pasta water) and add the pasta and two or three tablespoons of the water into the pan with the brown butter. Add some mint leaves and toss them together.

Serve with some grated pecorino and lemon zest.

Words and images by Aimee Twigger.