A group of us (Ann and her husband Ian, Bev, Helen, Penny and Rod) are going to eat local, seasonal food for six weeks from 9 January 2012. We agreed:

* ‘local’ means within a 30-mile radius for veg, fruit and meat
* ‘local’ means within East Anglia for other things (includes Lincolnshire)
* to allow ourselves up to five things that can’t be sourced locally (e.g. coffee, bananas, chocolate)

What will it be like during the winter when the lovely, luscious autumn fruits and vegetables are just a memory? Here we chart our progress and our successes and challenges along the way.

Homemade pasta from local ingredients

This week we decided to try something different, as we wanted a change from potatoes and rice, and we were missing our favourite pasta dishes. So Ian had a go at making pasta (local flour, rapeseed oil and local eggs). It wasn’t quite like shop-bought pasta, but tasted good, and went very well with a sausage and onion sauce. (Sausages from Burwash Manor and onions from the Sunday Market). We’ll certainly do it again!

 

 

 

 

 

Posted by Ann and Ian

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Friday’s meal

We had a delicious meal on Friday, and Ian’s experimental approach worked very well! The chicken pie (made with leftover roast local free range chicken, and a pastry crust made with rapeseed oil) was accompanied by a layered vegetable dish cooked in a bowl in the microwave (grated carrots, grated red cabbage and some finely chopped sprouting broccoli) and washed down with local Gladiator Beer.

Posted by Ann and Ian

 

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Shopping for local food

This is the second time I have tried to eat locally. The previous 6 weeks were in the autumn, so there was plenty of fruit available. This time I am finding the lack of fruit harder. Continue reading

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Fast food, treats and disappointments

winter delights!Well, in the last week I’ve made a few discoveries, good and bad, but first I’ll tell you about this lovely picture – much of the veg comes from Simon’s Sunday market stall and is all grown in Littleport near Ely and the rest is a present from Dave Fox, who runs Trumpington Allotments – he gave me the squash and the fir apple potatoes Continue reading

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Week 2 of the Eating Local winter challenge

We’re getting into the swing of things this week, although the shopping takes longer, and means trips to various different places rather than a walk down the road to the Co-op and the butchers. Continue reading

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Spectacular soup and partridge casserole!

I really sorted myself out with the stock for my latest soup.

My stored cox's - aren't they beautiful?!

I often make a very popular orange soup (orange, red lentils etc) but I normally put veg stock cubes, tinned tomatoes and fresh lemon juice in it. I was determined not to make another anaemic soup like that potato and leek one, Continue reading

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Game stew and winter salads + a confession

In the last few days I have managed pretty well with eating locally. I had a really nice game stew (packet of mixed game from Radwinter Game in Saffron Walden, bought at the Farm Outlet Shop on the corner of Lensfield Road and Mill Road) with carrots, onion and celeriac (my winter staples!), seasoned with salt, marjoram, ginger and turmeric. Continue reading

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Making a start on eating local

We have joined the project this week, although we are still eating up leftovers from the festive season, especially cheese. Onion tarts, the pastry made using rapeseed oil, were a great success! Continue reading

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Jan 5th – the real, real start!

At last I managed to get to Arjuna to buy some Suffolk cider vinegar,

At last! Local gluten-free oats!

so I can really start today without anything non-local at all! AND my gluten-free oats from Glebe Farm near Huntingdon arrived very promptly – I will be so happy to have porridge oats and honey for breakfast from now on. (And that’s Newmarket honey in the photo!) Continue reading

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Six weeks eating local, seasonal food: the Rules

We agreed:
* to allow ourselves up to five things that can’t be sourced locally (eg coffee, bananas, chocolate)
* ‘local’ means within a 30-mile radius for veg, fruit and meat
* ‘local’ means within East Anglia for other things (includes Lincolnshire)

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So why eat local food?

There are several reasons why eating local food is a good idea:

Reducing greenhouse gas emissions Continue reading

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The search for porridge oats!

Roast potatoes in goose fat are absolutely magnificent! I also had some delicious purple sprouting broccoli – the first of the season for me. Finished up the lettuce (which I think Simon only managed to grow because it was so mild in December – he doesn’t always have lettuce at this time of year), still using the wine vinegar – hopefully I can get to Arjuna tomorrow to get some more of the Aspalls cider vinegar from Suffolk. Continue reading

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The importance of being organised!

Well, I sort of started today (Jan 2nd) but I couldn’t go shopping because it was a bank holiday and I hadn’t got myself organised  enough to replace the cider vinegar and butter. I also had more leftovers from the end of December – mainly they were made with local ingredients anyway, but did include black pepper, and I don’t want to squander one of my precious opt-outs on that! (There were also a few raisins in the spicy red cabbage….) Continue reading

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Jan 1st – to start or not to start?!

I was fully intending to start my six weeks of eating local seasonal food today, as January 1st is traditional for resolutions, but now I’m not so sure. The problem is that we are still eating up all that Christmas food and I hate waste! Today I discovered three rather squishy (but still perfectly edible) bananas, two slices of gluten-free bread (definitely not local – I have sadly never discovered a source for that!) and various odds and ends of delicatessen things like artichokes and red peppers in oil, so I ate them up and decided to start tomorrow!

Posted by Bev

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Exciting opportunity to join our Eating Local blog on Jan 1st!

After the usual excesses of Christmas and New Year we thought it would be a good time to get our Eating Local project going again, this time in the winter! So, if you want a New Year’s resolution that you have a good chance of keeping for six weeks, do join us from January 1st! Continue reading

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