Knowing where my food comes from and the imminent return of Billy to our markets!

Blossom in full bloom

Howdy Cuffuflers

Since I’ve been doing the farmers’ markets in my hometown of Birmingham, I have been privileged to have met many wonderful people who care about what they sell, grow their own produce, know where their ingredients are from, cook with love and look after each other. Two of my favourite people I have got to know through the markets are Penny from Old Sandlin Fruits and Billy of Augernik Fruit farm. Continue reading “Knowing where my food comes from and the imminent return of Billy to our markets!”

Something just for me and Nelson

After making a batch of Spicy tomato chutney and a good old fashioned no frills Red Tomato chutney, I had a load of tomatoes left over. ‘What to do?!’

A rich tomato sauce – I had great fun making the Stirchley Sauce for Love Stirchley festival and I remember having made a roasted tomato ketchup from a River Cottage recipe a while back.

Yummy tomatoes ready to roast.

So – I roasted the tomatoes with some onions, garlic, olive oil and some lemon thyme from my garden. They roasted on a lowish heat (around 170°C) for about an hour and a half.

Continue reading “Something just for me and Nelson”

Saucy Sauce

Howdy Cuffuflers!

I am lucky enough to have been commissioned by LOVE STIRCHLEY FESTIVAL to create a tomato sauce or a ‘love apple’ sauce. Tomatoes historically are considered to be aphrodisiacs, hence to love apple name! They are good for the heart and considered to be one of the healthiest foods on the planet. During the festival period – at least £1.00 of every purchase price will be donated to Love Stirchley Festival. After that if I continue to make the sauce, 50p of every purchase price will go to the festival. Continue reading “Saucy Sauce”

Working with beautiful produce

I’ve had a bumper week or 2 – what with my birthday and fruit and veg galore coming to my house…….

When I can’t get local, I get organic – gorgeous fruit and veg from Vegetropolis.

Organic sevilles are now marmaladed – ready to be entered into the marmalade awards 2013! http://www.dalemainmarmaladeawards.co.uk/

The smell was devine
After all this chopping – my hands hurt but my heart was shining 😉

Then came the tomato chutney…..

Tomato chutney ready to cook up…
Tomato chutney jarred up….

Onion marmalade x 3 batches….. DONE. A new Spicy tomato chutney…… DONE

And today It’s all been about the Pear – Gorgeous pears from Penny at http://www.kingsnortonfarmersmarket.co.uk/ Old Sandlin Fruit, Malvern – a farm I intend to visit once I have a motorised vehicle http://www.hfmg.org/producers/sandlin_fruit.htm. Some of the delicious pears are now in a new creation – Spicy Pear chutney, the rest will be made into my Pear and Lime jam (once I get to the markets to get some nice limes). I’ve also got lovely eating apples from Penny – they will be turned into one of my best sellers – spiced apple chutney – a rich sweet chutney – sweet from dates and eaters rather than stacks of sugar!

Laters

Rachel xxx

Fine line between love and hate

Howdy Cuffuflers!

Well – up until yesterday I didn’t like marmalade – I would go so far as saying I hated it, but I definitely didn’t love it. So…… on getting a stack of organic Seville oranges, I started on creating a recipe that I would like. I’ve done 3 batches so far – 2 containing alcohol – one of which includes basil (it seems I am addicted to adding herbs to my concoctions!) and one is a very traditional recipe.

Deluxe as it has booze and basil in it!

So…… now to get more luscious oranges to work with. I’m fired up and raring to go. I do however need to keep a check on the experimentation and actually make some up for sale! But I can’t help it – I’ve got so many ideas….. ginger, lime, lemon, clementines, satsumas, grapefruit, more booze, more herbs and combinations of all of the above. Oh my…… and I need to get on with making more chutneys and cordials too.

When I get more sevilles I will try and curb my excitement and take more pictures of the process but……. not having smellivision, you won’t get the benefit.

Many thanks go to my lovely friend Bee Robertson for giving me her Gran’s recipe and helping me with the juicing etc.

Laters

Rachel xxx

More new friends and 2 top market days

Howdy

Well, I’m recovering from a highly successful and busy weekend of fun, farmer’s markets and vegans! Saturday saw Cuffufle Preserves and Trishul Chocolate at West Midlands Vegan Festival in Wolverhampton http://www.veganmidlands.org.uk/festival/home.html

Shamefully we were so busy that no pictures were taken! If I had have taken photos, I do not have the photography skills as yet to capture the loveliness of the festival and the great atmosphere that I felt privileged to be part of.

Sunday saw a very slow bike ride to mac for the mac  for their regular last Sunday of the month food fair. http://www.macarts.co.uk/event/mac-food-market

You have no idea how heavy my load was - the rucksack alone nearly floored me!

The mac was lovely Continue reading “More new friends and 2 top market days”

Up a hill with a heavy load to Kings Heath Farmer’s Market

Howdy.

I managed to get up the hill to Kings Heath Farmer’s market – laden down with stacks of produce. I was slightly ‘puffed’ to say the least!

My trusty steed
Full trailer, panniers and rucksack – very very heavy indeed. Wasn’t so heavy on the way back mind! YAY!

Market was a success with lovely weather and even lovelier customers. My load was thankfully significantly lighter on the way back down the hill.

http://www.kingsheathfarmersmarket.org/ – 1st Saturday of every month

I did however add to the load with stacks of luscious raspberries from Billy at www.augernikfruitfarm.co.uk. He is fast becoming a favourite friend for Silly Sarah and I. In fact we’re going to become Billy’s Bitches – with Sarah using his gorgeous cobnuts in her raw chocolate goodies and me getting rather excited about his raspberries! We’re off to visit the farm over the next couple of weeks.

LUSCIOUS!
Raspberries and Rosemary about to be combined with sugar, then bashed/squashed a tad, left over night and then jam making ahoy!

Laters

Rachel xxx