Gold! Always believe in your oranges

| 20th July 2021

You know that we love to produce our own food and can’t wait to get busy preserving fruit and vegetables when in season, allowing us to enjoy them all year round. We’ve harvested all our broad beans, many of which are now in the freezer and have just finished the first batch of broad bean & mint hummus – delicious!

All our garlic has been harvested, we have a large braid of it hanging to dry in the garage, and I’m checking on the peaches and figs everyday so that we pick them at the perfect time.

Whilst I love making pickles and preserves with our late summer harvests, I do need to source my fruit from further afield if I want to make marmalade. For many years now, we’ve been making marmalade each January using organic oranges from Spain. Alongside the batches that we’ve made to sell, we’ve also been running courses, in person and online, teaching guests the skills that we’ve developed over the years.

Last year we decided to enter our pots into the World Marmalade Awards and were very pleased to win not one but two Bronze awards, read all about it here. So after reading the judges comments, decided to up our game, refine our recipe and hope that we could scoop a silver badge. We were literally jumping for joy when we received the email saying ‘Congratulations – you are a Gold winner!’

‘We have always been so proud to champion quality artisan producers, and this year it has been more important than ever. Small businesses have been hit incredibly hard by the pandemic, but I think it has made people realise how vital good, local food is, and I hope that Hen Corner will have huge success with their marmalade both locally and further afield. The quality of artisan marmalade has never been higher and I am so proud of our Award winners this year.’

Jane Hasell-McCosh, Founder of the Marmalade Awards

I’ve since discovered that the overall ‘Best in Show’ prize went to 9 year old Flora Rider from the Isle of Wight, huge congratulations Flora – keep persevering with preserving!

Fortunately, we made a good stash of the stuff back in January and whilst we sold quite a bit at the recent Chiswick Cheese Market, we still have plenty available for those who would like to try it.

As we progress into the British harvest season, we will be making our usual chutneys, pickles and jellies, why not come and join us for ‘Pick and Pickle’ Preserving Course on Tuesday 31st August?

Other news:

  • Bees are making so much honey, one of the hives is nearly falling over!
  • We’ve got fruit and veg in 20 beds down at the allotment – planning for a home grown Christmas dinner…
  • Our Summer Holiday family courses are filling up nicely

Jobs for the week:

  • Extract more honey and get it potted up
  • Strim down more weeds and grasses at the allotment – they’ve been growing high with all this rain & sunshine
  • Get the chickens ready for our Urban Hens course next week – Wednesday 28th July

Enjoy the sunshine!


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KAREN STOTT 20th July 2021 at 5:54 pm

That’s brilliant news over your Gold Award
Keep up the good work.
Best wishes Karen (Mins mum in Huddersfiel)

Sara Ward 29th July 2021 at 9:15 am

Ah! Thank you so much Mrs Stott

iamthesunking 20th July 2021 at 6:36 pm

So have standard supermarket garlic bulbs (the white ones we’re used to seeing) all been dried?

Sara Ward 21st July 2021 at 9:13 am

Most garlic available to buy will have been dried off (not dried like raisins) and stored in a cool dry place to avoid mould growth and/or sprouting. The whole year’s harvest is collected in one go and then needs to be stored for the year ahead…

Janice Micke 21st July 2021 at 2:39 pm

Congrats on your marmalade award.

Sara Ward 21st July 2021 at 4:36 pm

Thanks so much


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