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Traditional Quality Beef and Pork straight from the heart of Hertfordshire

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  • What’s in season

    Seasonal food is important for extra freshness, value and flavour, find out ‘what’s in season’ this month and how to make the most of seasonal flavours from our Farm shop. 

    February –

    Cabbage

    The cabbage, or brassica, family is huge, and includes everything from the familiar red, white or green varieties with tightly packed leaves, to cauliflower, broccoli, Brussels sprouts as well as pak choi, popular in Asian cookery. This round, leafed Savoy cabbage and the pale, lozenge-shaped Chinese leaf are considered to be two of the best to cook with. The flavour of cabbage varies from type to type, ranging from savoury to gently sweet, but one thing they all have in common is a rank smell if overcooked, so brief blanching is best!

    Parsnip

    A sweetly flavoured root vegetable, parsnips resemble a bulky, beige carrot, they are usually treated in much the same way as the potato, great roasted, mashed, or made into chips or crisps.

    Carrots

    The carrot, with its distinctive bright orange colour, is one of the most versatile root vegetables around – a result of its sweet flavour, which means it can be used raw or cooked, in sweet or savoury dishes. Carrots should be firm, with unblemished, bright orange skins,  look out for young, thin carrots with their feathery greens still attached – they’re particularly tender and sweet.

    Grass-Fed Beef

    Our cows are reared to the highest standard and this time of year the cows are grass-fed! Whatever cut of beef you decide to cook always ask your butcher for advice how to cook the perfect cut of beef!

    Mutton

    As sheep mature they become mutton, a word that has suffered from a negative  image. Mutton is not just a clapped-out piece of old lamb but a different product altogether. Definitions of when lamb becomes mutton have long varied. However, it is now generally agreed that the animal should be aged two years or more, and hung for at least two weeks: the result is a juicy, well-flavoured meat, firm but not tough.

    Celariac

    With an ugly appearance and uninteresting, knobbly root, celeriac has inner beauty. The flesh crispy when raw, silky smooth when cooked, has a delicate taste with the flavours of celery and parsley with a slight nuttiness. Try it mashed with potatoes and garlic as a side to any meat or fish dishes.

    Leeks

    A member of the onion family,  leeks are a versatile early spring vegetable that, chopped and combined with carrot, celery and onion, makes a great base for soups or stews. Its mild, sweet flavour also partners well with butter and cream in sauces, soufflés and gratins.

     

    Forced- Rhubarb

    Buying fruit and vegetables during their natural season rewards you with the best flavour and quality. Rhubarb is the exception – it’s the ‘forced’, out-of-season variety that will give your kitchen a rosier glorious glow. Depriving rhubarb of light makes the stems shoot upwards, searching for light, which makes for a more succulent, sweet-tasting product. Unlike sturdier outdoor-grown stalks, delicate forced rhubarb has an elegant sourness that needs only very light cooking – but it does need tempering with sweetness.

    Blood Orange

    Although grown mostly in Mediterranean countries, blood oranges have a distinctive dark-red rind and flesh and taste tarter than regular oranges, great used for baking, jams and in winter salads.

     

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