We went to the Van Hage Garden Centre ostensibly to have a look around. I saw far too many lovely things as usual.
They also have a food department (what a shock) and as I am concentrating on the food side at the moment that was where my primary focus was today. I am nearly there when it comes to the food apart from the fresh stuff and the meat. We enquired whether they still did Stinking Bishop cheese (we both like this) and they do so hopefully will be able to order some. They do but did not have any in today. I did come away with some different jams - ones that I have not tried before and so if I like them I will be looking for a recipe/recipes and also different flavoured ciders, some different bread flours, including a French Bread mix that can be used in the breadmaker and also and apple and cinnamon bread mix and a seed mix and the Easiyo yogurt mixes.
So when I go back to have another look I will primarily focus on some lovely decorations that I saw there. They really had some beautiful displays. Proper traditional displays. There were one or two things I would quite like but will have to see. They will blend in very well with items I already have.
They had a lot of Cottage Delight preserves and goodies as well as a large meat selection, deli counter, cheese counter. Wine and mead, lots of Easiyo yogurt mixes, with different flavours to what I have seen before. Tiptree preserves lots of interesting mixes. They have also stepped out into flavoured gin production as well. Raspberry, Damson and Little Scarlet are the flavours that I saw today and they are about £19 a bottle. The bottle is about the same size as M and S Liqueurs.
One of the things that does get my goat is that you pay through the nose for things at Christmas on the packaging. So tight wad as I am I tend to save pretty tins or if I locate them new and I like them. I buy a few and add to the collection and then you can add your own stuff to them and you only pay half the price. I do this throughout the year. Comes in very useful.
One thing I forgot to mention is that yesterday I picked up two hamper baskets from Waitrose made of wood in which to package Christmas produce. They were £5 each which when I have seen other packaging for far more is very reasonable for the price.
The other thing I tend to do is look what producers are doing and providing for the customers and then I go looking for recipes and pop them up and then when it comes to next year I have a ready made list of things to make and add to the pantry. However yet again I do not pay through the nose for it.
I also sent for my meat curing bits and bobs last night. Thank you Dawn you helped a lot. So hopefully should be able to get some meat curing in before Christmas as well.
I also need to look at the sausage and salami side as well as the biltong and jerky.
I also bought a couple of little nets of chestnuts yesterday as well. I love these roasted but these are designated to be turned into Marrons Glace. I just need to source some glucose syrup.
Catch you all later.