Pumpkin Day at Riverford Organic Farm – Sutton Scotney

Amazing! I just loved to see the amount of people interested in organic produce last month. Its awesome! Whether they are regular buyers or just curious to the farm day out at Riverford, seeing that many people that care about what they consume was truly comforting.
It was eye opening for me to see where most of our weekly budget goes and the kids just adored the animals and variety if squash all around. After admiring the first glimpses of the farm site and browsing the stalls we walked outside where they were doing carpenrary, it was inspiring to see that it was a hit with the older children and I hope one year upon returning my boys will be at the level they can fully appreciate it and have a go for themselves. Passing many adorable and magical looking squash we stopped and the boys got to see an Owl up close that opened his beautiful wings and really showed off his cheeky personality. Next to him were some sleepy ferrets looking so snug and cozy and alongside them were more ferrets awake and ready to race! We took a stroll down to check out the worm dig with intentions to later return and along the path were the most delicious silky lettuces I have ever tasted…so good to see where they grow!
After checking out the whole place and working out what was where we showed the boys the beautiful Horses that help humans by pulling a wagon cart. I had promised the children animals and taking a trip in the cart seemed a perfect way to show them how humans and animals work together as well as enjoying a bumpy ride. They really enjoyed being on the wagon and adored the little dog that was on board with the driver. The horses were so graceful and did indeed look grand standing next to the boys.
It was lovely for the boys to stand next to and observe the size of a real tractor and amazing for us all to see the sheer size of the enormous combine harvesters.
We admired the face painting and did plan to get some done but it was so busy and we could think of much more things to do than que up for over 30 minutes so we opted out and indulged in some amazing chocolate and courgette (dairy and gluten free) brownies, wow, they were good! We really wanted to try the worm dig so we headed back outside to spend some time helping discover different breeds of worms! The kids loved having a dig with the shovels and even let Mummy have a go and in total we found about 7 worms and one was large enough to identify as a dark tipped worm.
We stayed for a while, got covered in mud, cleaned up and just as we reached the top of the field thee ferrets were getting ready to rave. Awaken from there sleepiness four ferrets, Taz, Tiz, Ivy and Fern were lined up waiting to go out. A couple were showed around nd the boys got to stroke them and say hello. We placed a bet on the green caged ferret called Fern and although she didn’t win it was a cute experience for the kids and roaring fun for the lively parents.

 After the race we considered the pumpkin carving and it was rather busy and the boys were slightly restless so we purchased a large pumpkin and headed back inside. We had another wander around and it was packed full of people in the warehouse, happy vibes! My friend really enjoyed the cheese stall and purchased some goat’s cheese and I admired the ‘give a pet a holiday’ team and found out how I can get involved. There were so many beautiful veggies everywhere and some absolutely stunningly crafted items for sale.

We decided we would go over to the lady carving wooden pencils and my friend said she would love to buy some for the boys so her and my eldest joined the que there. It was my turn to buy the next refreshments, my youngest boy and I headed off to get some cake and upon reaching my friend I remembered the stall selling hot Apple juice which we had earlier tried and I had previously thought if the mulled wine is anything like the Apple then it is a must. Upon reaching the stall it dawned on me how much of a good idea it would be to actually get some so we did and it was amazing, so delicious, mouthwatering and tasting, so comforting and warm. Just what a busy woman needs after a mission with 2 young boys! For the pencils the lady scorched the names required into hand carved pencils, they were very beautiful and a great idea! We gave thanks, admired the beautiful abundance of produce and organic people and made our way back outside.

 

It was indeed a packed event with thousands of people who attended and the queues reflected this.

 

I buy weekly from Riverford and will continue to do so until I have my own patch.

Thanks to everyone for a wonderful day out. We will definitely be back next year!

Organic Sweet Squash Radicchio Recipe



This, being the first time I ever tried the wonderful veg that is Radicchio, I was filled with excitement of discovering a new and, as promised, tasty dish.
The farm I buy my organic produce from is simply divine and gives out recipes with each box you purchase.
I have major intolerances to certain foods, garlic (really…did it really have to be garlic?!) and sugar being two of the most irritating, therefore the recipe gifted along with the Radicchio was out of the question. Nevertheless I was not about to give up there; this magical veg was going to be enjoyed!
The sauce in the Farm recipe was rather a sweet one to say the least and I decided to stick to that theme when adapting this dish to my own requirements, simplifying it majorly using ‘safe’ ingredients that I had available.
In fact I didn’t even use one ingredient listed and just yielded the inspiration to get creative!
My boys were having Crown Prince Squash Cake for dinner (which again I cannot consume due to nearly all the ingredients, bar the tatties and squash, setting my stomach off in agony), I adore squash too and that’s when I decided to join it with the radicchio. I am so glad I did this, it was amazingly delicious and the ingredients complimented each other beautifully, sitting perfectly together.

To create your own version of my recipe you will require:

1/2 head of Organic Radicchio
1/4 Organic Crown Prince Squash
2 tablespoons Organic Balsamic Vinegar
1/4 teaspoon Pink Himalayan Sea Salt

The method:

1) Bring a pan of water to the boil.
2) Section the squash and remove the skin. The skin is quite a tough one so I recommend cutting it away with a sharp knife rather than trying to peel it. Dice the whole quarter and place it in the water. Cover the pan and reduce the heat. Simmer for about 15 minutes.
3) Cut a fresh radicchio in half and then section it into quater slices, length wise.
4) Turn on the grill and cook until both sides of radicchio have browned.
5) Remove the squash from the pan and mash or blend until puréed.
6) Measure out the balsamic vinegar and salt, add it to the squash and purée a little more until it is as smooth as it can be.
7) Plate up the radicchio and top it with the sweet squash.

There you have an absolutely mouth watering plate of food that is quick and simple to make and a joy to devour.