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Marlborough Food Assembly

Sam Bertram

7 June 2017

We’re setting up a Food Assembly in Marlborough to put local consumers in touch with local food. We do need at least 150 members before we can launch, so please sign up so you can shop at the assembly. We’d love you to join us in supporting our local foodies and help you discover some amazing food right on your doorstep. So, what is a Food Assembly? In a nutshell as a Food Asssembly member you can shop local produce online and go to the same venue every week to meet the producers and pick up your pre-ordered local produce. We’re going to be holding the Marlborough Food Assembly at The Rugby Club on Thursdays from 4.00pm to 6.00pm. We’re hoping to have some other fun things going on at the food assembly like talks from some of our producers and cooking demonstrations from local pubs. We’ve got some other fabulous non-food unique independent Wiltshire businesses on www.localuncovered.com too so we’re also looking at fun ways to include them. So why should you join? 1. It’s a convenient way to shop as you can plan your food in advance, and a quick, easy stop to pick it up. That’s why we love the rugby club as a venue as it’s easy for parking but also convenient to the centre of town. 2. If you’re interested in the quality of food and its provenance then the Food Assembly is for you. We’re talking to local producers to get them on board and are hoping to have produce come from no more than 25 miles away – even more local if possible. You’ll get to chat to producers about the food you’re eating and know more about the food you eat. 3. People say the problem with the modern world is the loss of our communities. Community is at the heart of The Food Assembly connecting neighbours to farmers and neighbours to each other. We’re hoping the assemblies themselves will be an event you look forward to. 4. Reducing waste is key as farmers and food makers know exactly how much to deliver in advance and food miles are decreased. 5. You’re supporting your local economy. Did you know for every £1 spent locally, 90p stays in the local economy? That’s got to be good for the place you live and call home.   What are you waiting for? Sign-up and to become a member and help us build the best Food Assemblies out there. You can do it Marlborough! Launch date tbc. Marlborough - https://thefoodassembly.com/en/assemblies/10229    

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Marlborough Food Assembly

Sam Bertram

7 June 2017

We’re setting up a Food Assembly in Marlborough to put local consumers in touch with local food. We do need at least 150 members before we can launch, so please sign up so you can shop at the assembly. We’d love you to join us in supporting our local foodies and help you discover some amazing food right on your doorstep. So, what is a Food Assembly? In a nutshell as a Food Asssembly member you can shop local produce online and go to the same venue every week to meet the producers and pick up your pre-ordered local produce. We’re going to be holding the Marlborough Food Assembly at The Rugby Club on Thursdays from 4.00pm to 6.00pm. We’re hoping to have some other fun things going on at the food assembly like talks from some of our producers and cooking demonstrations from local pubs. We’ve got some other fabulous non-food unique independent Wiltshire businesses on www.localuncovered.com too so we’re also looking at fun ways to include them. So why should you join? 1. It’s a convenient way to shop as you can plan your food in advance, and a quick, easy stop to pick it up. That’s why we love the rugby club as a venue as it’s easy for parking but also convenient to the centre of town. 2. If you’re interested in the quality of food and its provenance then the Food Assembly is for you. We’re talking to local producers to get them on board and are hoping to have produce come from no more than 25 miles away – even more local if possible. You’ll get to chat to producers about the food you’re eating and know more about the food you eat. 3. People say the problem with the modern world is the loss of our communities. Community is at the heart of The Food Assembly connecting neighbours to farmers and neighbours to each other. We’re hoping the assemblies themselves will be an event you look forward to. 4. Reducing waste is key as farmers and food makers know exactly how much to deliver in advance and food miles are decreased. 5. You’re supporting your local economy. Did you know for every £1 spent locally, 90p stays in the local economy? That’s got to be good for the place you live and call home.   What are you waiting for? Sign-up and to become a member and help us build the best Food Assemblies out there. You can do it Marlborough! Launch date tbc. Marlborough - https://thefoodassembly.com/en/assemblies/10229    

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Gastronomic B&B & meeting venue

Sam Bertram

7 October 2016

Overtown Manor is a fantastic B&B & meeting venue in a gorgeous rural location near Swindon with delicious homemade locally sourced food. We spoke to owner Nancy Lawson. What do people love about Overtown Manor? ‘People like the space and quiet – the fact we’re out in the countryside yet only a mile from Swindon.  Our big thing is supporting local businesses - our milk and butter is from a local dairy and our eggs are from the neighbours. We buy our bread from a traditional bakery in Lambourn and our cheese and yoghurts come from Brinkworth. Even our flowers come from Purton. We get lots of compliments about our food. We also use our own produce – beef from our farm and vegetables from the garden. I’ve just made  Raspberry Jam, Elderflower cordial and runner bean chutney. Next up I’ll be making crab apple jelly. All other meat comes from a local butchery and we even try to source all our drinks – beers, vodka and cider from local companies using traditional methods.  Our breakfasts are really popular – I often make homemade banana bread and granola. We also offer fruit salad and yoghurt and our approach to our cooked breakfasts is to offer a good wholesome locally sourced breakfast. Our guests are often business people and they want to have a decent breakfast, coffee or tea and get going.  So we keep it simple and don’t do anything fussy. Business people don’t want to have to eat out every night so we keep constant stock of some home cooked meals from Cook in Marlborough. A guest can have a meal in their room on a tray with a pudding. They love the fact they can relax without feeling like they need to go out again.’ You’re also a venue for business meetings – tell us about that ‘We can host business meetings for up to 14 in the drawing room (for a more relaxed meeting on sofa’s with flip charts) or dining room (Boardroom or U-shape layout).  Most meetings run for the day and we serve them homemade food at various intervals. Meeting attendees love the change from boring old sandwiches found in company boardrooms. They also like relaxing in our garden during breaks. An example meeting lunch menu is cottage pie and peas and almond tart. Mid-morning we serve homemade chocolate chip cookies and flapjacks and in the afternoon chocolate brownies.  We can cater for any dietary requirements – celiacs, vegans, dairy free etc. Any future plans? ‘We’re currently re-decorating three of the bedrooms and have exciting plans for the garden.   I’ve also got another idea that I’m keen to test. The B&B is currently open Sunday to Thursday and we don’t have people to stay at the weekend. However, we do have someone who comes at the weekend on a room only basis and helps herself if she wants breakfast. There are so many people locally who don’t have space for their family but they just need a place to sleep. It would be a special rate for a room only and they could come and go as they please. We’d love to know what people think of it.’ http://www.overtownmanor.co.uk/  

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Christmas recipes with a twist

Sam Bertram

6 October 2016

We spoke to The Wiltshire Liqueur Company’s Tiffinie Pride about her favourite recipes & cocktails using her liqueurs, and why we should be stocking up for Christmas. Why should we be buying your liqueurs? ‘They are incredibly versatile – they are great on their own but also brilliant as a basis for cocktails and in cooking. We have lots of cocktail and recipe ideas on our website - they’re perfect to keep drinks and food interesting through the festive season. My favourite cocktail is one I conceived after a hard day’s slog in the office. It’s still my go to drink after a long day.  ‘Damson in Distress’ has Damson Vodka, Ginger Ale and Ice and if I’m feeling flush I add a mint leaf. My favourite recipe is a bit summery but it’s just so delicious I have to share. At a fair someone once told me they mix Blood Orange with Olive Oil and mustard to make a salad dressing. We’ve eaten it with fresh peas, mozzarella and Parma ham and it is so yummy.  Perfect for dinner parties as a light starter. Craft is a bar in Greenwich in London that stock our liqueurs. They make a delicious cocktail called SE10 made up of our Wild Strawberry, Gin, honey and black pepper. It is amazing!’ What should we be cooking up for Christmas? ‘Christmas cake soaked in Blood Orange rather than brandy is so good. People are starting to make their Christmas cakes at this time of year so if you’re looking to do something different this could be the answer. You just feed your cake with Blood Orange in the same way you would with brandy. We’ve also got a great Nigel Slater recipe on the website.  Pheasant and Sloe Gin – really good and perfect with the shooting season upon us, and lots of winter entertaining to be done. On Christmas day serve any of our liqueurs with Champagne.  We have a name for every combination – Sloepagne, Damshame, Bloodyfizz & Chamberry. And it doesn’t just have to be Christmas day it could be Christmas Eve or Boxing Day or indeed any time you’re drinking during the festive season! Another Christmassy treat is Sloe Gin or Blood Orange chocolate truffles. Really yummy and they make great homemade presents to thank someone for their hospitality or serve with coffee. I’m thinking of having a gift box at fairs which has some small liqueur bottles and truffles. So if you see me at any fairs please do ask about them and tell me what you think.  Everything else is available to buy online so you can get it anytime and even better the price includes postage and packaging. There’s no excuse for not getting creative in the kitchen this season!’ And Christmas Gifts? ‘All our full size bottles can be ordered online and have personalised labels at no extra cost. We’ve had some funny requests for labels. The one that sticks in my mind the most is ‘Kevin loves pink ponies’. I didn’t like to delve too deep about what that was about! Most people put a name and there are lots of puns on the word sloe ‘for your Sloe investment’ or ‘Drink it Sloe-ly’.  Our gift packs of smaller bottles are only available at fairs. We can be found at Marlborough Feast of Food, Beaufort Hunt, Highclere Castle and a couple of school Christmas fairs like Pinewood and St Francis in Pewsey. Check our website to see where else we’ll be. Our liqueurs are also extremely popular for corporate gifts. You could give every employee a bottle with their name on the label – we’ve done that in the past and it went down a storm. Or give them to clients with your company name on the label or a cracking phrase to show your creativity! http://www.wiltshireliqueur.com/  

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