Horses’ Nostrils, Giant Pink Bananas and a Recipe for Success

The days are long enough now for me to finish feeding my livestock in daylight after market on a Thursday. I hate trying to carry bales of hay over electric fences on soft ground in the dark, it's a recipe for disaster but I like finishing work in the twilight because we are on a … Continue reading Horses’ Nostrils, Giant Pink Bananas and a Recipe for Success


Gothic Seethed Beef

This is a good meal to cook on a cold, wet day, because you can keep going indoors to check on it. At breakfast time, crush some star anise, either in a pestle and mortar or with a rolling pin, (pieces will shoot all over the kitchen. Don't worry, this is normal,) and break up … Continue reading Gothic Seethed Beef

Jews Ears and Dragons

Today I have been picking Jews'-ears (also known as Wood Ears or Jelly Ears - ed). This is not some nasty anti-Semitic habit; "Jews'-ears" is the name of the lovely velvety-brown fungus that grows on Elder and dead Elm. They are my daughter's favourite mushroom and the important thing to know about Jews'-ears is this: … Continue reading Jews Ears and Dragons


Try Veganuary For a Healthy New Year

Last year saw an upsurge in people becoming vegan, and this month is Veganuary - an opportunity for many more to give veganism a try. For anyone unsure what vegan actually means, it involves making a change from the typical Western diet to one which avoids all animal products. A step beyond vegetarianism, in addition … Continue reading Try Veganuary For a Healthy New Year


Just Add Water

I stopped writing these articles because I suspected that nobody was reading them, but I was told today at the market that I have in fact a reader. So I have settled down with my wife's laptop in front of the fire on this chilly night, to the accompaniment of Shaun Rafferty on the radio … Continue reading Just Add Water


Taunton Farmers’ Market is Not Closing

You may have read in the Somerset County Gazette on 8th November 2017 that the Panier Market in Taunton High Street is set to close at the end of the year. As it states in the article, this development affects only the general market, which takes place on the High Street on Fridays and Saturdays … Continue reading Taunton Farmers’ Market is Not Closing


A Bird for All Seasons

It's a standing joke that any new or exotic meat we try 'tastes like chicken'.  This is no doubt due to chicken's mild taste and uniform texture. It makes it a natural bench-mark for when we have nothing else to compare new tastes to. It also makes it a blank slate for use in many … Continue reading A Bird for All Seasons


Tales From Toby

This has been a brilliant growing year, and it's not over yet. There are heaps of silage bales everywhere and the lawnmower has barely had time to cool down. We have pumpkins the size of... well, pumpkins. But big ones. I feel very privileged to have been born in a part of the world where … Continue reading Tales From Toby


Farmers Markets: The Dos and Don’ts

Shopping at a farmers market is an experience. For those who do it regularly, it's a weekly trip out and a chance to chat to friends they can buy food from. However, for those of us whose weekly shop resembles Formula 1 racing with a shopping trolley - grocery list for a map - it … Continue reading Farmers Markets: The Dos and Don’ts


A Postcard From Toby

Camping in the Purbecks and, gosh, how I miss Taunton Farmers' Market! The only local food we managed to buy here was a "rock salmon" which is a posh name for a dogfish. We made a lime sauce, which was nice, but really it needed lots of ingredients that I could so easily have got … Continue reading A Postcard From Toby