How to make the perfect bacon sandwich

“Is the humble bacon sandwich the nation’s favourite dish?”

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It’s essential to use the best bacon possible. Dry cured to give you a beautiful firm texture.

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We are really excited to introduce our first batch of limited edition bacon and ham. This is the result of our collaboration with Jon, at Lancing College Farm – who traditionally rears his rare breed pork – and Dave, from Calcot Farm, who is our expert at smoking and curing. Our bacon has been hand prepared – dry cured for a week and smoked over apple and oak chips for a sweeter depth of flavour.

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Highest welfare bacon means that from start to finish, the whole process brings together humane, ethical farming and expertise at preparation.  The bacon is firm and keeps its shape and texture when cooking….no residue of nasty, fatty white liquid that comes from industrially produced bacon.

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 P-E-R-F-E-C-T B-A-C-O-N S-A-N-D-W-I-C-H

Crispy, pan-fried bacon would pair nicely with a tangy sour bread loaf. The firm crust, and the soft, chewy interior, making the ideal bouncy sandwich bread.

SourDough

METHOD:

  1. Cut fairly thick slices of a sourdough loaf into portions – if eating in a group.
  2. Grill approximately 2 rashers per person and thinly slice 200g of brie.
  3. Fill each of the sandwiches with the bacon and cheese.
  4. Put them on a baking sheet. Cook in the oven for 5 mins, until the bread is crisped up and the cheese is beginning to melt.
  5. To serve, top each with a dollop of apple cider chutney.

 

3 Top Bacon Recipes:

Photo of The Ultimate Bacon Macaroni Cheese

 

The Ultimate Bacon Macaroni Cheese.

See more>>>

 

 

Photo of BLT Pasta Skillet

 

BLT Pasta Oven Baked.

See more>>>

 

 

Chicken & Bacon Tart

 

 

Chicken and Bacon Tart.

See more>>>

 

 

 

 

Light Salad Recipe:

Avocado and bacon salad

 

Avocado and Bacon Salad. What a great match!

See more>>>

 

 

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How to make the perfect bacon sandwich

The Ultimate Guide – Raw Apple Cider Vinegar

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Apple cider vinegar has a distinctive fruity taste and not only packs a big nutritional punch, it’s really useful in a whole variety of ways.

To start with, if you have some festive dinners planned, this recipe for Beurre Blanc could be great to keep up your sleeve. It’s quick, uses minimal ingredients and tastes a million dollars.

Take a look at this stunning recipe tutorial. It uses wine and wine vinegar, but we would recommend subbing cider vinegar and fruity Silly Moo Cider to make it really multi-functional if you’re feeding veggies, vegans and omnivores alike. The cider version has a richer, softer flavour that doesn’t drown out delicate veggies or white meats.

 

You don’t have to be Victoria Beckham and drink it straight to benefit from ACV’s amazing properties. Raw enzymes promote good bacteria in the digestive tract and it’s said to stabilise blood sugar and boost metabolism.

For centuries, cider vinegar has been a household staple for cooking, cleaning and medicinal needs.  It’s an effective beauty product and all round essential…from treating itchy eczema to shiny hair.

Professional chefs always keep a bottle to hand as seasoning in soups, stews or puddings and vinaigrettes.

It’s generally acknowledged that raw cider vinegar has the most potent effect.  Our cider vinegar has travelled just 30 miles from Ringden Farm, on the Kent/Sussex border, where they make Yellowcoate Raw Cider Vinegar with Mother.

‘With Mother’ is the slightly peculiar term for unfiltered cider vinegar which is in its natural state. Cheaper pasteurised vinegars are made quickly and filtered to be crystal clear, removing all the beneficial living enzymes. The cloudiness can look a little bit offputting, but that’s where you gain the most benefit.

 

7 Effective Uses of Apple Cider Vinegar in Cooking:

  1. Salad Dressing
  2. Sauce to add piquancy
  3. Chutneys
  4. Boiled Eggs (to prevent eggs cracking whilst boiling – see more>>>)
  5. Marinades to tenderise tough meat fibres
  6. On your fish and chips!
  7. Good as a raising agent in Vegan cooking

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AROUND THE HOUSE

Another great use for Apple Cider Vinegar is a natural cleaning ingredient!

  • Cider vinegar is a wonderful natural cleaner and leaves your rooms smelling of apples.  Pour cider vinegar into the toilet and leave it overnight.  You can also mix 1 part vinegar to two parts water and use as a multi-surface cleaner or cleaner for mirrors and windows.
  • It is also reputed to help repel dog fleas.  Use the one part vinegar and one part water solution and spray onto the pet’s fur (avoiding their eyes).  Be generous with the mixture and continue every few days to get rid of a flea infestation.  However, it won’t treat carpets or furnishings but is a good natural treatment for your pet.
  • Use a spot of vinegar on a cloth to clean your keyboard.  It cleans them, helps kill bacteria and leaves them shiny.
  • Clean your kettle by boiling 750ml of vinegar for 5 minutes then let sit overnight.  Rinse in the morning before anyone accidentally uses the water.
  • Clean water stained furniture with cider vinegar to remove.
  • Clean scissors with vinegar not water, which can lead to rust.
  • Use instead of bleach on mildew around the bath or shower.
  • Revive rugs by spritzing with a water/vinegar solution and leaving for one hour before vacuuming.
  • Remove carpet stains by adding 2 tablespoons of salt to vinegar and rubbing onto the stain.  Leave to dry then vacuum.
  • Use straight vinegar to clean stainless steel.
  • Make a natural wood cleaner by mixing 60ml of vinegar with 500ml of water and 2 tablespoons of olive oil and using as a polish to shine.

 

HEALTH AND BEAUTY USES

  • Make your hair shine. Fill an old shampoo bottle with half a tablespoon of cider vinegar and 250ml of filtered water.  Pour the solution through your hair after shampooing.  Do this every wash for best results.
  • Raw cider vinegar can regulate the pH of your skin. Dilute the vinegar with two parts water and dab over your face to replace toner at night and in the morning before applying moisturiser.
  • Apparently a dab of cider vinegar on the skin at night can help fade age spots and acne scars.
  • For warts, soak a cotton ball in raw cider vinegar then fasten to the wart with a plaster. The skin might swell a little as it reacts but the wart should fall off.  Once it has disappeared, continue the vinegar/plaster treatment to make sure it doesn’t return.
  • Keep the pearly whites clean and remove red wine or coffee staining by rubbing with cider vinegar and rinsing.
  • Apparently adding 250ml of cider vinegar to a cool bath and soaking for ten minutes can help the discomfort of sunburn.
  • Tired feet can be revived with a massage of cider vinegar.
  • Apparently, mixing 2 teaspoons of raw cider vinegar with 500ml water and sipping throughout the day is a powerful detox drink.  Studies have suggested it boosts circulation and help detoxify the liver.  Furthermore, it regulates the body’s pH which helps maintain the ideal alkaline balance for fighting infection.
  • Research also suggests that cider vinegar can help with allergies because of its ability to reduce mucus and congestion.  Again, a powerful mixture of cider vinegar and raw honey is suggested to help hayfever.
  • Natural remedy experts suggest that a teaspoon of cider vinegar followed by a glass of water can relieve heartburn.  Seems strange but cider vinegar boosts alkalinity.  NB. this would not be recommended if have a stomach ulcer.
  • Sipping the water/vinegar mix is also reputed to relieve symptoms of yeast overload such as thrush or candida which can lead to sugar cravings, poor memory or fatigue.
  • There are loads of ways to use raw cider vinegar to treat fungal nail in this post here from home remedies for life.

 


Elderberry Immune Boosting Vinegar

Elderberries have been used for centuries as an immune boosting ingredient in traditional medicine throughout Europe and the Americas.  Probably, as studies have shown, they are have wonderful anti-inflammatory properties and are rich in vitamins and minerals.

Jane, one of our famous Hedgewitches, combines raw elderberries with cider vinegar and stevia to create her beautiful immune boosting vinegar.

Raw and preservative free, a spoonful of this a day should keep the lurgies away.

It’s great to toss into salads. They can be used to make a delicious tea or syrup. They can also be added to baked goods such as muffins and pancakes, as well as herbal remedies.

 

Image result for elderberries

 

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The Ultimate Guide – Raw Apple Cider Vinegar

Sussex Fresh Raw Honey

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Brighton & Hove’s honey is raw – so not pasteurised and retains all the minerals and health benefits. It’s delicious and a healthier alternative to sugar.

Mickelmus Blackman started beekeeping from one hive in his garden in Hove and quickly developed to a few hives before starting his ethical, sustainable beekeeping enterprise.

From his hives dotted around Brighton and Hove, we have the wonderful raw honey – both set and runny.

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From his work with other farms in the Sussex area, Mickelmus also produces English Heather Honey and English Borage Honey.

Honey is a sweet, thick liquid made by honeybees. The bees collect sugar – mainly the sugar-rich nectar of flowers – from their environment. It is low in minerals and vitamins, but may be high in some plant compounds.

Honey contains many important antioxidants. These include organic acids and phenolic compounds like flavonoids.

Eating honey may lead to modest reductions in blood pressure, an important risk factor for heart disease.

When applied to the skin, honey can be part of an effective treatment plan for burns, wounds and many other skin conditions. It’s recommended as a natural anti-bacterial face wash instead of soap and a shampoo to help ease dandruff – although these remedies sound a bit sticky, we’re fans of ditching sudsy shampoos so will keep you posted as to how this works – here’s the recipe.

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Runny Honey, Raw Honey, English Heather Honey

See More >>>


Muir’s dad, always relied on a Victorian cough syrup remedy passed down from his mother. It sounds awful but tastes amazing and really does work without resorting to chemical cough soothers for these mid-season colds.

Method:

  • Chop an onion and put in a layer in a tub
  • Mix a spoonful of honey into the mix
  • Leave for a few hours 
  • The sugars from the honey will draw out the onion juices – just take a spoonful as and when needed to soothe sore throats and coughs

No chemicals necessary here but have to mention that you shouldn’t give raw honey to a baby under a year old.

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Healthy Honey Recipes

Honey-Mustard Chicken Salad

 

Lauren Grant’s honey mustard chicken salad, packed full of flavour thanks to a quick fix honey mustard. Instead of using mayonnaise, use yoghurt as a low fat alternative. See more >>>

 

 

Sticky soy & honey pork with Asian noodles

 

Sticky soy and honey pork with Asian noodles. Stir-fry mix of egg noodles, sweetcorn, sugar snap peas and peppers. See more >>>

 

 

 

Amanda’s grilled spicy honey lime chicken kebabs. Perfect healthy meal with some sweet potato fries. See more >>>

 

 


Raw Cider Vinegar and Elderberry Vinegar

Elderberry Vinegar 

Elderberries have been used for centuries as an immune boosting ingredient in traditional medicine throughout Europe and the Americas.  Probably, as studies have shown, they are have wonderful anti-inflammatory properties and are rich in vitamins and minerals.

Jane, one of our famous Hedgewitches, combines raw elderberries with cider vinegar and stevia to create her beautiful immune boosting vinegar.

Raw and preservative free, a spoonful of this a day should keep the lurgies away.

It’s great to toss into salads. They can be used to make a delicious tea or syrup. They can also be added to baked goods such as muffins and pancakes, as well as herbal remedies.

Image result for elderberries

Raw Cider Vinegar

Raw (unpasteurised cider vinegar) containing the vinegar mother.  Produced and bottled by Ringden Farm at Flimwell, East Sussex.

Cider vinegar is well known for health properties, cleaning and washing.  The health benefits of using raw cider vinegar are improved by using vinegar containing the vinegar ‘mother’ – the cellulose produced by harmless vinegar bacteria.

Most manufacturers pasteurise the vinegar before bottling to remove this as it is ‘unsightly’…although it’s a natural part of the fermentation and contains useful enzymes.

Ringden Farm have been harvesting apples and making fresh juices from their orchard for 50 years now and is managed by Chris and his son, John Dench.  Bentley’s is their new name created to celebrate Bentley Dench who established the farm half a century ago.

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Come and visit us at

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Sussex Fresh Raw Honey

Pumpkins Are Not Just For Halloween

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If you think pumpkins are just for carving jack-o-lanterns, then think again because they are actually one of the most nutritious vegetables available.

These vegetables have a lovely, earthy, rich flavour and are not as tricky to cook as you might think. They come in all different shapes, sizes, colours and varieties.

Round, with smooth, slightly ribbed skin, and deep yellow to orange coloration. They taste like the most heavenly piece of creamy squished juicy nectar of the Gods all lavished in beautiful orangery goop sprinkled with decadent love.

For the best pumpkin go for ones that feel heavy for their size, with a smooth, firm skin. Smaller pumpkins tend to have more flesh.

They are particularly good source of fibre, as well as a range of vitamins and minerals. 80g of pumpkin counts as one portion of your five-a-day.

Pumpkin contains vitamins C and E, as well as beta-carotene, all of which have been found to play an important role in the health of our skin.


See More>>>


How to prepare a pumpkin?

Preheat oven to 190°C

  1. Cut the pumpkin in half, from top to bottom (not side to side), then remove the seeds and stringy bits (keep the seeds to toast, if desired).
  2. Place both halves cut side down on an aluminum foil lined baking sheet and place in a preheated oven for about an hour and 15 minutes or until soft. Remove from oven.
  3. When cool, use a scraper to scoop the flesh from the skin of the pumpkin. Place in a bowl and keep refrigerated until ready to use in recipes, such as pies, muffins or desserts. Easy peasy, pumpkin squeezy!

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3 Top Pumpkin Recipes:

 

Chunky pumpkin soup recipe. Satisfyingly desirable soup format, than cubes, coins and ribbons of vegetables intermingling in a broth. By Chocolate and Zucchini More>>>

 

Sausage, chicken and squash traybake

 

Hairy Bikers sausage, chicken and squash traybake. Serve with a big pile of wintery greens, such as Savoy Cabbage. More>>>

 

 

Pumpkin pie

 

Anthony Worrall Thompson’s pumpkin pie. Use dense sweet pumpkins for best results! Serve with cream. More>>>

 

 

 

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Come and visit us at

www.finandfarm.co.uk

Pumpkins Are Not Just For Halloween

Sussex Biodynamic Red & Dutch White Cabbage

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The purple hue of a red cabbage is always the most striking piece on the dinner plate. Commonly, cabbage is braised or pickled, but it’s great finely shredded in Autumnal salads and coleslaw.  Simply steamed, it can just about accompany most dishes.

Our biodynamic cabbages are grown by Toos in Cuckfield just north of Lewes tucked away at the leafy foot of the South Downs.

Red cabbage is packed full of vitamins (A, C, K), minerals and antioxidants, even eating it raw is said to provide a fantastic boost to ward off colds in this wintry season.

When shopping or harvesting a red cabbage from your garden, find the best cabbage – these will be the ones densely packed and heavy in weight with firm outer leaves.

Red cabbages are pretty hardy and are happy to be stored in the cool, dark place for a week to ten days without going rubbery.  Keep on a piece of kitchen roll to absorb condensation or moisture from the fridge.

Red cabbage tends to lose its colour when cooked. To keep it rich and gorgeous, just add a touch of apple cider vinegar in the cooking water to stop the lovely deep purple hue from running.

 

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Now white cabbage is beautiful and shouldn’t be ignored – sweet, lightly crunchy and earthy.  White cabbage benefits from uncomplicated cook techniques such as steaming or stir-frying and can even be its own recipe.43027518_217885108926906_6305715519055986688_n

White cabbage deepens in flavour through the winter season as it loves our cold English soils – so should be a staple for stir fries, Colcannon and warming suppers.

Again, looking at the cabbage it should be heavy rather than light. The outer leaves should show no sign of bruising or variations in colour.

Steaming is a popular method because both texture and nutrients are kept intact.

White cabbage is the main ingredient in a traditional coleslaw, it can be used in healthier Asian coleslaws without dairy and with spicier dressings.  The meltingly soft texture is a natural partner for bacon.

Cabbage with Caraway & Bacon

White cabbage works perfectly with bacon.

Ingredients:

100g Smoked streaky bacon 

1/2 Biodynamic White Cabbage, shredded

1 tbsp caraway seeds

Ringden’s apple cider vinegar 

Handful of fresh parsley 

Method:

  1. Cook smoked streaky bacon cut into narrow strips across the width of the bacon/ known as lardons in a little bit of Mestó olive oil, until lightly brown.
  2. Add the caraway seeds and cook for another minute. Tip in the cabbage and stir for a few minutes to wilt.
  3. Turn the heat down and cover the pan. Leave cooking for 5 minutes on a low heat.
  4. To finish, season well, sprinkle with a little apple cider vinegar and freshly chopped parsley.

Another 3 Top Recipes:

Nigel Slater's Sausage Cabbage Fry Recipe

 

Nigel Slater:

Nigel Slater’s Sausage Cabbage Stir Fry Recipe. A quick and easy fry up that includes a boost with some greens. See More >>>

 

 

 

Cabbage and pot barley soup with whipped feta

Yotam Ottolenghi:

Cabbage and pearl barley soup with whipped feta for a more elaborate, sophisticated soup. See More >>> 

 

 

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Nigella Lawson:

Nigella Lawson’s Red Cabbage Recipe, great for supper with a little red wine spicing up the veggies. See More >>>

 

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Come and visit us at

www.finandfarm.co.uk

Sussex Biodynamic Red & Dutch White Cabbage

Sussex Saltmarsh Beef & Vegetable Casserole

Image courtesy @BBC good food

A recipe to cook on the weekend, for those colder months. If you fancy something earthy or rich, and want to enjoy the warmth of a homemade stew, this is the recipe for you.

You can make a stew from almost anything, fruit, meat, vegetables, fish, grains…

Jamie Oliver has created a list of meats and what they work with in stews:

  • “Pork loves apples, onions and juniper berries.
  • Beef loves bay, rosemary and olives.
  • Lamb works brilliantly with ground cumin and coriander, dried apricots and fresh ginger.
  • Fish loves fennel, tomato and chilli.
  • Beans and green vegetables work beautifully with fresh soft herbs like basil, parsley and mint.”

Ingredients:

2 celery sticks, thickly sliced

1 onion, chopped 

2 big carrots, halved length ways then very chunkily sliced 

5 bay leaves

2 thyme sprigs, 1 whole and 1 leaves picked 

1 tbsp rapeseed oil 

1 tbsp Sussex butter

2 tbsp plain flour 

2 tbsp tomato puree 

2 tbsp Worcestershire sauce 

2 beef stock cubes, crumbled 

850g stewing beef, cut into nice large chunks

Method:

Heat the oven to 160C and put the kettle on for stock.
Put the sliced celery sticks, chopped onion, sliced carrots, 5 bay leaves and 1 whole thyme sprig into a casserole dish, and add 1 tbsp of vegetable oil and 1 tbsp of butter into the dish.
Next, soften for 10 minutes, then stir in 2 tbsp plain flour, until it doesn’t look dusty anymore, followed by 2tbsp tomato puree, 2tbsp Worcestershire sauce and 2 crumbled beef stock cubes.
Slowly stir in 600ml hot water, then tip in 850g stewing beef and bring to a gentle simmer.
Cover the dish and put in the oven for 2 hrs 30 mins, then uncover and cook for 30 mins. Check the dish to see whether the meat is tender and the sauce is thickened, if not, cook for a little bit longer.
Add herbs and the picked leaves of what’s left of the thyme sprig to the top of the dish as a garnish.
Wa-lah a tasty, warming dinner!

 


Come and visit us at

www.finandfarm.co.uk

Sussex Saltmarsh Beef & Vegetable Casserole

Mumbai potato wraps with minted yogurt relish

Image courtesy @good food

Full of fresh flavours this a cheap and affordable lunch that uses up leftovers. This is a quick and easy healthy wrap can be adapted for vegan or meat diet.

Do you want something to eat that has a low carbon foot print and fat content. Great for fitness and food lovers alike on a suppose on a carb diet.

Ingredients:

2 tsp rapeseed oil

1 onion, sliced

2 tbsp medium curry powder

400g chopped tomato 

750g waxy potato (Nicola), diced 

2 tbsp spiced mango chutney, plus extra to serve

100g creamy natural yoghurt

chopped mint

8 small plain chapatis

coriander sprigs, to serve

Method:

Firstly you need to heat up the rapeseed oil in a medium/ large saucepan and fry the diced onion for 6-8 minutes on a medium heat. Stir in 1½ tbsp curry powder (you can add any spices in the mixture or even a Balti curry paste), cook for 30 secs, then add the tomatoes and seasoning. Simmer, uncovered, for 15 mins.

Next, add the potatoes and ½ tbsp curry powder to a pan of boiling salted water. Cook for 6-8 mins until they are soft, but not too soft. Drain, reserving 100ml of the liquid. Add the drained potatoes and reserved liquid to the tomato sauce along with the mango chutney. Heat through.

Whilst you are waiting for it to heat through, mix together the yogurt and mint sauce, and heat up the chapattis following pack instructions.

To serve, spoon some of the potatoes onto a chapatti and top with a few sprigs of coriander. Drizzle with the minted yogurt relish, then roll up and eat.

Recipe can be found on this site: https://www.bbcgoodfood.com/recipes/234609/mumbai-potato-wraps-with-minted-yogurt-relish
Mumbai potato wraps with minted yogurt relish

More than Maris Peer: a brief heritage potato guide

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Love potatoes? These South America native tubers have been growing and enjoyed in Britain since 1586. They’ve lifted Western Europe out of famine, allowing the populations to prosper well into the 20th century. This delicious tuber is positively a part of our heritage!

There are over 5,000 potato varieties worldwide, and 3,000 of which are only found in Peru. In the UK and across Europe, hundreds of years of enjoyment have led to an  incredible, array of beautiful and mouth-watering varieties. British supermarkets, however, may lead you to believe otherwise…

Ever been in a supermarket and only found Maris Peer? That’s definitely enough to kill your enthusiasm for a potato dinner…

So, what happened to heritage?

In the first half of the twentieth century, heritage potatoes were grown, loved and cooked in households across the UK. But after the second world war, a devastated country was pressured to bypass the growing of potatoes for delicious nuances. The goal was, instead, to feed a hungry country. Crops were prized for their yield rather than colour and flavour. As commercialism took over and supermarkets began their reign, profit over produce became the commercial mantra.

Why are heritage varieties so good?

With modern breeding practices aiming to make the potato as profitable and uniform as possible, the charm and palatability found in many heritage varieties is by-passed. Heritage potatoes, therefore, are often found with colours, shapes, sizes and textures  missing from their commercial cousins. Hmm, no wonder heritage potatoes are so prized! But, with their shorter growing seasons, enjoy heritage potatoes while they’re here…

 

POTAD
A 1960s potato advert – when there was still more variety commercially!

Waxy ←→ Floury

From waxy to floury, potatoes come in a spectrum of textures. These texture make certain varieties suited to particular dishes and styles of cooking, so it’s always good to know the texture of the variety your buying. Floury potatoes have a high starch content and low water content, with a dry texture that falls apart easily and soaks up flavour. Waxy potatoes are so for their low starch and high water content that can be intense in flavour but not soak up any additional flavours so well. All-purpose fall somewhere in-between.

But, waxy or floury, our heritage potatoes are always delicious. (Move over Maris Peer…)

A QUICK FIN & FARM POTATO A-V. 

Arran Victory 1918arranvic

Bred on Scotland’s seventh largest (and very beautiful) island, the Arran Victory 1918 was created to mark the end of World War One. Round in shape, and with deep blue-pink skin and white fluffy flesh, this potato makes the perfect mash, pie topping or a delicious bake.

Highland Burgundy Red 1936

This red skinned, red fleshed potato was bred to add a shock of colour to the meals of the Duke of Burgundy. Long oval in shape, sweet in flavour and floury in texture, Highland Burgundy Reds are excellent for striking roast potatoes, chips, crisps and baked potatoes. Keep the skin on to better retain colour!

Inca Belle 

INCABELLAFrom a variety of potato still popular today in the Andes, the Inca Belle is a beautifully golden, oval potato. It’s nutty flavour, smooth flesh and unique cooking properties (it’ll cook much quicker than the varieties you’re probably used to!) make it a cook’s favourite. Best for roasting – hands down as we did the heritage roast test ourselves!

Mayan Gold

The first potatoes in the UK bred from the indigenous Phureja potatoes of Peru, this beautiful variety is a real treat to experience. With golden flesh and skin, a wonderfully moreish flavour, and fluffy texture, this potato is perfect for roasting, mashing and baking. 

Mayan Twilight

With pink and white skin, firm waxy texture and moreish flavour, this quick to cook potato is a treat in the kitchen. Best for salads and stews with it’s slightly sweet, nutty flavour and smooth texture.

Pink Gypsy

With pink and white skins and fluffy white flesh, these beauties are ideal for roasting, baking and mashing. 

Red Duke of York

Originally found in a Dutch crop of classic Duke of Yorks, this potato quickly became popular. With fluffy, creamy flesh, sweet taste and gorgeously red-hued skin, this heritage potato is a fabulous all-rounder. However, these beauties are perfect for roasting as they get deliciously crispy skins.  

Shetland Black

With light buttery, sweet flesh and floury texture, this indigo skinned potato is a ktichen delight. While the origin of this particular variety is a mystery, it’s been grown in the Shetland Islands since at least the early 1900s. Bake the shetland black whole, in it’s skin, for warming, crisp potato deliciousness.

Violetta

violetta

These small, flavourful potatoes have a deep indigo skin and and intensely purple flesh. They are, visually, perhaps the most striking potato we’ve seen here at Fin and Farm. With a floury texture, it’s best to leave the skin on these potatoes to help retain colour when cooking (plus, it’s tasty and more nutritious!). Best for roasting, baking and mashing for an eye catching twist on some classics!

**not an extensive list of our potatoes! Explore varieties here.**

A Potato Experiment

While these potatoes have their ‘best for’ uses as determined by how floury or waxy they are – don’t be afraid to experiment! Small, waxy potatoes can be delicious roasted whole for intense, crisp flavour bites, thrown into stews, or crushed with oil, herbs and garlic. These wonderful potatoes deserve to be enjoyed any way you like – so let us know what you think each variety is best for and what you’ve been cooking with them!

Bonus! Did you know…?

The potato certainly caused a stir when first introduced to this part of the world, and was treated, at first, with a mix of love and fear. Over in North America, during the gold rush when nutritious food was scarce and gold abundant, there was a time when potatoes were worth more than gold!


Image 1: New Spuds  for Dinner by cskk/ Flickr (CC). Image 2: 1967 Food Ad, Campbell’s Potatoes by Classic Film/Flickr (CC).

More than Maris Peer: a brief heritage potato guide

Purple Potatoes: What’s the Deal?

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Potatoes comes in many, many varieties – much more than a glance of a British supermarket would have you believe. But none could be more distinct than the Vitelotte. With it’s deep purple-black skin and bright blue-violet flesh, this potato has a stunning vivid colour, and distinctive, chestnutty taste.

What makes them purple?

Purple potatoes are packed full of anti-oxidants – and, primarily, the anti-oxidant ‘anthocyanin’, the flavinoid that gives red, purple and blue fruits and vegetables their distinctive colour. Revered for both it’s use as a dye and for it’s health promoting benefits, purple-hued plants have been cultivated for thousands of years for this wonderful antioxidant.

Did you know that purple produce was one of the predicted trends for 2017? With the health and wellness movement taking the world by storm – we’re not surprised! (Plus, purple foods are delicious…)

Why is this so good?

Antioxidants are essential to counter the effects of oxidants (i.e. ‘free-radicals’) in the body. In an antioxidant scarce diet, oxidants are free to cause cell damage, increase inflammation and contributing to disease progression. Purple potatoes, fortunately, have much more than antioxidants than their paler potato cousins – hence the vivid hue.

Anthocyanins are, in fact, antioxidant superheroes and are a potent force of health in the body, as demonstrated by a plethora of in-vitro and participant studies. For example, one study found that adding purple potatoes to the diets of overweight, middle aged subjects reduced their blood pressure by five points within a month. Just by adding potatoes! (And who doesn’t love the idea of eating more potatoes for health?) And, the purple cherry on top: despite the calorie increase, none of the subjects gained any weight. Purple potatoes truly are superior…

What to do with them?

Purple potatoes definitely taste different to your usual supermarket yellow and white varieties – and that’s a good thing! With their nutty taste and magnificent colour (even when cooked), you can use these delicious potatoes in any potato recipe you desire for a twist. Whip up a salad and add vitelottes for a striking visual element; slice, drizzle with olive oil and herbs and roast for some truly spectacular and flavoursome french fries, or how about this recipe for a striking autumn gratin?

Recipe:

You’ll need:
5 medium vitelotte potatoes, sliced
1 festival squash, peeled and cubed.
1 leek , sliced
A generous bunch of spinach
A handful of sage
A handful of thyme
4 cloves of garlic, crushed
1 good tsp black pepper
1 cup of Sussex cream
5 oz Sister Sarah cheese

Method:
Preheat the oven to 180c. In a baking dish, layer the leeks, spinach, squash and potatoes, finishing with a layer of purple potatoes for the top layer. Sprinkle each layer with garlic, herbs and pepper. When layered, pour over the cream and top with the Sister Sarah cheese.

Cover with foil and bake for about an hour and half – or until the potatoes and squash are cooked.

purp1

Want to try some interesting, unusual and downright delicious potato varieties, grown in Sussex? Take a look at our range now! 

Have you tried vitelotte potatoes? What do you think? What’s your favourite heritage potato? Let us know in the comments or on our social media! (@finandfarm)


Recipe inspired by Autumn Potato Gratin by Better Homes and Gardens.
Image 1: Luscious Potato Plant Flowers by Laura Ferreira/ Flickr (CC)
Image 2: Purple Peruvian Potatoes by Pim Techamuanvivit/ Flickr (CC)

Purple Potatoes: What’s the Deal?

7 Delicious Things To Do With Squash

squashes

Cozy jumpers, golden leaves, crisp sunny days and the first pumpkins appearing in shops and on doorsteps: autumn has officially arrived. And, what better way to dive into autumn delights than by eating the colours of the season with mouth-watering, locally grown squash.

With their warm, earthy colours perfectly fitting with the season and sweet, starchy flesh, these gourds are the ultimate healthy comfort food to carry you through the cooling season.

And, if you think squash varieties are limited to butternut and pumpkin – think again!  From crown prince to red kuri to sweet dumpling, there are so many delicious varieties to enjoy…

But, what to do with them? Well – we’ve got a few ideas!

1. Roast.

This is the most simple, fool proof way to cook squash. Simply roasting allows you to truly enjoy the unique flavour of each squash variety for the ultimate veggie appreciation. There’s no need to peel (thank goodness, as peeling a squash can prove laborious!), as the skins become tender and tasty with cooking.

Whole, sliced in half, diced, cut length ways – any shape will do. Drizzle with Mesto olive oil, a good sprinkling of herbs (how about rosemary, cumin and crushed garlic?), seasoning, and bake for approximately 45-90 minutes (or until the squash is tender and golden).

squash1

You can add roast squash to any number of dishes for a more intense, sweet squash flavour. But we love to eat roast squash accompanied by other  winter foods for a sweet-savoury accompaniment to a weekday dinner. Cut into lengths, roast squash even makes a healthy alternative to fries!

2. Add to curries and stews.

Peel, deseed and dice, and add to your hearty and wholesome stews and curries. You’ll be amazed at the sweet, delicate dimension squash will add to your dishes. Why not try an easy and aromatic red lentil, squash and coconut curry?

3. A delicious twist to a classic quiche

Did you see Muir’s Easy #EatSussex Quiche recipe? Use whatever vegetables and squash varieties you like – and we promise it will still be delicious! How about using butternut for a classic?

4. Step up your pasta

Squash and pasta might just be the most heavenly combination. The sweet creaminess of seasonal squash can lighten and enhance the flavour of a comforting pasta dish. Try Pumpkin Pasta, or even add to macaroni and cheese to revel in the true magic of these scrumptious winter veg (a plant-based version here).

Want to take it to the next level? You can leave out the pasta altogether and have actual squash-pasta! Spiralized butternut squash makes a surprisingly tasty spaghetti alternative. How about a herby goats cheese butternut-noodles? In lieu of a spiralizer, nature has provided us with spaghetti squash – simply roast and scoop out the flesh for a pasta alternative.

squash-pasta-flickr-e1506413934849.png

5. Mash

A flavoursome side dish, mashed squash and be as simple or elaborate as you like – from simply steaming and mashing with whatever seasoning you care for, to dishes such as this garlic and sage squash mash.

6. Cool weather soups

A fail-safe ingredient for a delicious, sweet, naturally creamy soup to satisfy even the fussiest of eaters. How about trying this superb squash soup by Jamie Oliver?

7. Desserts

Yes, really! Winter gourds are so versatile. Step out of the box of using veg only for savoury dishes and add a little wholesome sweetness to your life. How about a Japanese kabocha squash pie? Or fragrantly spiced squash-molasses cookies?

squash pie

Any of our unusual squash varieties can replace the squash used in these recipes. Let us know your favourite way to each squash in the comments! Don’t forget to like and share if you enjoyed this cooking inspiration.


Feeling inspired to cook with this magical veg? Check out the local, unusual varieties of squash that we sell! More varieties are on their way as we head deeper into Autumn…

Don’t forget to use the hashtag #EatSussex so we can see your divine seasonal squash pictures and home-cooked treats on social media…

 

7 Delicious Things To Do With Squash