Well summer is finally here & the wheat field outside my kitchen window is slowly changing to a yellow green. No doubt it won't be long until we can see the pheasants again once the harvest has taken place! One result of the weather conditions this spring, late frost & lack of water, is that some summer fruits are extremely short in supply. Rhubarb dried out 6 weeks early & gooseberries are like gold dust. I normally freeze approx 120lb gooseberries & 200lb rhubarb to see me through he winter months, & I have 3lb of rhubarb & 50lb of gooseberries. Plums look as though they maybe hit as well with many of the fruits that survived the late frost falling from lack of water. It is one of the facts of seasonal based businesses that these things happen & a challenge to explain to our customer bases. It does give customers a chance though to try new flavours they may not have tried before if their favourites have disappeared for the season!
I have been experimenting with Blackcurrant & Liquorice Jam. Inspired by the childhood sweet flavour I expected a deep sweet sticky flavour of liquorice to come through. However the liquorice gives a fresh almost mint type flavour to the jam. It is now on sale on the stall.
In conjunction with Manor House Stables at Martin nr Lincoln we are running courses over the next few months. July & September there are jam making courses, October celebrates the good old English Apple with a day of apple preserving & November is a day of Christmas Preserves & Gift Making ideas. Click on the courses tab for more details.
Fenberry Fruit at Bicker, who supply all our berries & currants, have planted 2 new exciting crops that will come to life over the next couple of years. The first is Jostaberries which is a cross between blackcurrants & gooseberries & the second is Honeyberries which is an edible honeysuckle native to America.
Woodlands Organic Farm at Kirton, with whom we work closely for a lot of our produce, has an open day on 24th July. Why not pop along for a day packed fun on fun, animals & activities for all the family. See www.woodlandsfarm.co.uk for more details.