Time for the weekly food shop. We all know the story, down to the local supermarket, oooh mangoes 2-4-£1, beef half price and milk £1 for 4 litres!
Okay foody environmental and ethical issues have been brought to light in the media recently, with numerous angles to consider. Air miles from overseas produce buuut importation creates diverse economy and jobs. Deforestation. The horsemeat scandal (I’ll never look at IKEA meatballs the same….)
However I am not here to preach/judge or anything of the sort. You guys can totally make your own decisions on each topic. I’m just here to tell you about off the beaten track stuff, and I’m afraid to say supermarkets are definitely ON the beaten track.
So if not the supermarket, where else? I hear you ask!
Basically on a jolly down to Cornishland I took a trip to both Rick Steins (a large consumer of food produce and creator of taste bud tingling cuisine) and Cornish Gouda (keeper of happy cows and supplier of milk & Gouda cheese).
Rick Stein (@Rick_Stein) has a few cheeky chomping shacks down our way.
He sources from local suppliers, the mackerel used in the cookery school we nipped along to were so fresh they were stiff as boards! Rick endeavours to use fishmongers that receive day boat, hand line and hand dived fish to maximise sustainability. It’s not just the fish! They source the best in local produce from Warrens meat to Roddas cream, the local economy is supported.
Down at Cornish Gouda (@CornishGoudaCo) the Speirings family own and run a dairy farm, where the cows have access to everything from water beds to a robot milker (which the cows choose to go into, they love it!). Son Giel has set up ‘Cornish Gouda’, a self sufficient cheese making business which utilises 1/5th of the milk the farm produces.
After receiving a tour of the farm it was apparent how passionate Giel is about his cheese.
From the ingredients…..
To the way the cheese is made (using an eco friendly wood burner, plus the only electricity consumed is a 15 minute a day cooler and the lights!)
It also made me feel naff that in many cases supermarkets pay less for milk than its costs the farmers to produce it! So let’s totally embrace any farmers markets, local shops etc. we can, lets support these guys whose livelihood depends on our custom.
So to London! Here is an overview of farmers markets and local shops. Next time you think supermarket shop, take a little time considering the guys that supply the big cheeses, and let’s support them.
London Farmers Markets WITH MAP!
Wednesday: Swiss Cottage (NW3)
Saturday: Balham, Ealing, Notting Hill (W8), Parliament Hill (NW5), Pimlico Road (SW1), South Kensington (SW7), Twickenham, West Hampstead, Wimbledon (SW19), Hampstead Community Food, Stoke Newington (N16), Broadway Market (E8), Oval (SE11), Stepney, Partirdges Food Market (SW3)
Sunday: Blackheath (SE3), Brixton (SW9), Islington (N1), Marylebone (W1), Parson’s Green, Queens Park (NW6), Walthamstow, Alexander Palace, Brick Lane Sunday up-market (E1), Last of each month Dulwich (SE21), Herne Hill (SE24), 1st & 3rd Sunday Swaffam (PE37), Chiswick (W4),
OH! and I know how we all enjoy restauranting. So take two secs to ponder where the food you’re served comes from. Do you know? Would you like to? Its something I will try and think more about now!
Finally this year due to a dry June and now it’s gone a bit wet, the hedgerows are fruit galore!!! Get picking those blackberries (anywhere there are brambles), apples, sloes, damsons and elderberries!
Blackberry and Apple Jam
http://www.rickstein.com/Food-Heroes.html – Producers Rick has visited, categorised by food type and region.
Talvan Farm, Lanreath, Cornwall
01503 220 194
Reporter: Aspen Glencross (@Gollumcrackcorn)