Ledbury Celebration on 10th July – full programme available

The Ledbury Celebration on Sunday 10th July celebrates the local food and drink of Herefordshire and its neighbouring counties with an added menu of music, poetry and our historic heritage.


This year’s event brings an outdoor market to historic St Katherine’s, Ledbury next to the 15th century Master’s House, and just off the High Street. The event runs from 11am to 5pm with entertainment from midday.

Local produce will be on sale either to eat and drink “on the go” or to take home to savour in slower time.

Producers this year include:

• Case for Cooking
• Chock Shop
• Gun Dog Gin
• Hay Charcuterie
• Jus
• Kitchen Flowers
• Kontext Koffee
• Little Bento Box
• Little Marcle Organic Produce
• Miniyaki’s Japanese Street Food
• Myrtle’s Kitchen
• No Frickin Chicken
• Orchard Grove Preserves
• Rayeesa’s Indian Kitchen
• Seb’s Cider
• Tuston Market Garden
• Vicenta’s Empanadas
• Wykeham Gardens

In addition you will find:

• Sustainable Ledbury – find out about avoiding food waste
• Jayne Parry Ceramics
• Karen Tacey Ceramics
• CUP Ceramics – Pottery demonstrations
• Kid’s Kitchen – food activities for younger children
• Eat like your Ancestors

Ledbury Poetry Festival has lined up special “al fresco” poetic performances during the event featuring:

Dave Pitt – “Now more than ever, our world needs the raw anger of poets like Dave. Importantly, we also need the laughs he brings”
Emma Purshouse –“Her talent is in taking the most mundane situations and bringing them alive.”
Leena Batchelor – Pixie Muse – “Calling herself a “poetic minstrel with living in her veins”, Leena writes passionately about everything that strikes her mind and heart”

Poetry performances at 12.45pm, 1.45pm and 2.45pm


And More…

Beth Calverley, will be present with her magical Poetry Machine. This is your chance to experience poetry, created in response to your thoughts, feelings, ideas, and discoveries.

And a feast of musical entertainment…

Performances hourly:

Ledbury Community Choir – Ledbury’s own massed voices. Join in if you know the words (and the tune! At 12 noon.
Keith Baldwin, guitarist and singer, frontman of the band Rubble, will entertain from 1.10pm.
The Ledbury Singers will serenade you with their own smooth music style from 2pm.
• One-of-a-kind Voices Unlimited – rocking out their unmistakable “VU Wall of Sound” raises the tempo at 3pm.
Gruig, a rip roaring foot stomping band from Gloucestershire bring their sing-along Irish songs, jigs and reels to get you dancing at 4pm.

A special event at 1pm – Ledbury’s Community Art Project, “The Tale of the Bird and the Tree”, will reach its conclusion when the Bird will take flight and soar over to join the Tree accompanied by music.

And you can visit Ledbury’s heritage sites, or book in for a session of poetry with Ledbury Poetry Festival on the last day of the festival.

This event is organised by Ledbury Food Group in partnership with Ledbury Poetry, Ledbury Fringe and Ledbury Town Council.

Recipes for June 2022

GREEN LENTILS, ASPARAGUS AND WATERCRESS

200g. green lentils
120g. watercress, thick stalks removed
40g. parsley
150mls. light olive oil
400g. asparagus spears
100g. pecorino cheese
4 lemon wedges,
salt and black pepper

Wash the lentils in cold water, then place in a saucepan with plenty of fresh water and bring to the boil.  Simmer for 15 minutes or until the lentils are just cooked.

While the lentils are cooking, put half of the watercress, the parsley, olive oil, vinegar, garlic and some salt into a food processor.  Blitz until smooth and pour into a bowl.

As soon as the lentils are cooked drain them well and mix them while still hot with the watercress dressing.  Taste and adjust the seasoning.

Break off the end of the asparagus spears and discard.  Cook the asparagus in simmering salted water for 2 – 3 minutes, drain and cut the spears into roughly 6cm. long segments.

You can serve the salad warm or at room temperature.  Toss together the lentils, asparagus and most of the remaining watercress.  Add pieces of cheese as you plate up and garnish with the reserved watercress.  Serve with wedges of lemon.

NOTES

I think this salad would be lovely served with a piece of roast chicken or salmon with a salsa verde sauce for the chicken or salmon.  To make a salsa verde sauce you need 1 large bunch of mixed herbs (parsley, basil and mint say), 1 clove of garlic, 2 tbsps. of capers, 3 gherkins, 2 – 3 anchovy fillets, 1 heaped tbsp. of french mustard, 4 tbsps. olive oil, 1 – 2 tbsps. red wine vinegar and salt and pepper.  Chop all the herbs, capers, gherkins and mix with the rest of the ingredients.

Alternatively, you could add a cooked breast of chicken or salmon to the salad, omit the cheese, and make it a more substantial dish.

STRAWBERRY LABNEH

500g. thick (not low fat) Greek yogurt
400g. strawberries
1 ½  tsp. caster sugar
2 tsps.rosewater
3 tbsps. good honey

Mix yogurt and 50g. of icing sugar and set over a basin lined with muslin or a clean J-cloth.  Put in the fridge and leave to drain overnight (12 hours is best).

Hull and quarter the strawberries and mix with the sugar and rosewater and leave to macerate for a few hours.

Gently fold the honey into the labneh which, by now, will resemble cream cheese.  Puree a quarter of the strawberries, pile the rest on top of the labneh and drizzle with the pureed strawberries.

NOTES

This can be served with poached fruits such as plums or rhubarb, or raspberries rather than strawberries.

To make savoury labneh mix 500g. of thick Greek yogurt with 1/2 tsp. of salt and leave to drain overnight as before.

Make the labneh into balls by rolling between your hands to shape them and then leaving on a clean cloth lined tray.  They can be marinated in olive oil (4 tbsps. for this quantity), some dried oregano or fresh thyme leaves (about 1 tbsp.), the zest of a lemon and a few chilli flakes.  Store in the fridge and serve with flatbreads as a starter or nibble. 

The Ledbury Celebration is coming on 10th July – can you help?

We will post more about next month’s Ledbury Celebration annual food festival with added music, poetry and heritage shortly…but you can put the date in your diary – 11am to 5pm in St Katherine’s Car Park, Ledbury on Sunday 10th July.

But these events don’t happen by chance – we are looking for help with stewarding the event as a general steward or helping on the Food Group stand. We are looking for an hour or two of your time between 11am and 5pm. You won’t be on your own, and there will be professional stewards on site to help.

It’s a day when Ledbury receives many visitors and we want to put on a good show.

If you can spare an hour or two please contact David at 01531 634033 or Griff on 01531 633637

and…

If you know someone who likes putting up or taking down gazebos – please send them our way.

Recipes for May 2022

Quick Rhubarb Chutney with Cardamom

Makes 2 x 500g. jars

200mls. cider vinegar
400g. soft light brown sugar
100g. raisins
2 red onions, chopped
2cm. piece of fresh ginger, peeled and grated
seeds from 20 cardamom pods
4 – 5 star anise
grated zest of 1 lemon
1 tsp. salt
1kg. rhubarb, cut into 3cm. lengths

Put all the ingredients except the rhubarb into a large, heavy based pan, bring to the boil and boil for 5 minutes.  Add the rhubarb and bring back to the boil.  Reduce the heat and simmer for 15 minutes, stirring occasionally.

Cool slightly and spoon into dry, warm, sterilised jars, (you can sterilise them in a very hot dishwasher, or boil them in a pan of water for 10 minutes.  Cover with a wax disc, then seal and label with the date.  This chutney can be eaten straight away.  Once opened it is best stored in the fridge, and will keep for up to a month.

TIPS

You can use this chutney in the usual way with bread and cheese, or alongside cottage pie, but it is also good heated through and served with roast pork, duck or grilled mackerel. 

I sterilise my jars in the oven, at a low temperature, for about 15 minutes.

Fillet of Salmon with Sweet-Sour Beetroot and Dill Crème Fraiche – Serves 6

For the dill crème fraiche:

200g. / 7ozs. crème fraiche
2 tbsps. grain mustard
1 ½ tbsps. chopped dill

For the beetroot:

500g. / 1lb. cooked beetroot
50g. / 2ozs. unsalted butter
½ tbsp. oil
2 red onions, finely sliced
2 tbsps. caster sugar
1 ½ tbsps. red wine vinegar
salt and pepper

For the salmon:

30g. / 1¼ozs. unsalted butter
1 tbsp. oil
6 x 175g. (6oz.) salmon fillets
good squeeze of lemon juice

 

To make the dill crème fraiche simply mix the crème fraiche, mustard and dill together and refrigerate until you need it.

Cut the beetroot into small pieces.  Season and taste for sweet/sour balance, you may want more sugar or vinegar.  Set aside and reheat before serving.  Heat the butter and oil in a frying pan and cook the onions until soft.  Add the beetroot and increase the heat.  Cook for 2 minutes, then add the sugar and stir until beginning to caramelize.  Add the vinegar and let it bubble.

Heat the butter and oil in a large frying pan.  Season the salmon on both sides and cook over a medium heat, flesh side down, for 1½ – 2 minutes or until golden.  Turn over and cook for 1½ – 2 minutes.  Reduce the heat and cook until done but still moist.  Squeeze on some lemon juice.  Serve with the beetroot and dill crème fraiche.

TIPS

We had this dish for lunch and I used vacuum packed beetroot which worked well.  Just pat it dry before cooking.  I also used dried dill, about 1 tsp., as fresh dill is often hard to come by.

I served it with new potatoes.

Another Date for your Diary – Ledbury Celebration 2022

Ledbury Food Group with its partners Ledbury Poetry Festival and Ledbury Town Council invite you to join us at this year’s Ledbury Celebration on Sunday 10th July.

This year’s event will again be held in the historic setting of St Katherine’s, Ledbury by our very special 15th century Master’s House – it worked well in 2019!  The event will include:

  • An outdoor food and drink market featuring the best of local produce and street food from the Three Counties for you to enjoy at the event or take home. We hope for as good a show as last time
  • “Al fresco” poetic entertainment provided by the Ledbury Poetry Festival
  • Outdoor musical entertainment featuring local musicians
  • Kids Kitchen, Cup Ceramics and a number of craft stalls

It’s the last day of Ledbury Poetry Festival so there’s lots going on, and our heritage buildings will be open for a visit.

The event will run from 11am to 5pm with entertainment from 12 noon.

As in previous years the Ledbury Celebration will be a free public event.  The event has received funding from the Herefordshire Council Festivals and Events Discretionary Grant. This grant scheme supported events impacted by Covid-19 and was funded by the Additional Restrictions Grant provided by the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy.

If you are a locally based food producer using local produce and are interested in a stall at the event please contact our organiser Hannah Day at hannah@hannahday.co.uk.

Please contact us if you would like to help us setting up, stewarding or setting down after the event at Griff – 01531 633637.   Your help makes these events smooth-running and successful – even an hour or two helps.

More information about the food market and the performance schedule will be available on this Food Group website nearer the event.

  

April 2022 Recipes

EASY LEMON TART – Serves 6

Pastry:

125g. plain flour
100g. melted butter
3 tbsps. icing sugar, sieved

Lemon Filling:

150mls. whipping or double cream, not single
50g. caster sugar
2 large eggs
2 large lemons, juiced and the rind of 1

  1. Mix the flour and sieved icing sugar in a bowl.  Melt the butter and press the dough into the base and sides of a 7 inch / 18cm. diameter pie tin (I used a sponge tin with a loose base).  Bake blind for 20 minutes at 190 degrees.  Cool.  Reduce oven temperature to 150.
  2. Whisk all the filling ingredients together and pour into the pastry lined tin.  Bake for another 35 – 40 minutes until set.  Allow to cool before slicing.  This would be lovely served with some raspberries / blueberries and some coulis.  It does not require more cream in my opinion.

TIPS

Baking blind stops you getting a soggy bottom.  I have special baking (ceramic beans) but you can use rice or any dried beans.  Just line the tin with baking parchment so that the base is weighed down.

I didn’t refrigerate my tart and it lasted for 3 days.  Keeping it out of the fridge stopped the pastry going soggy.  It was beautifully crisp the first day, not quite so crisp the following day but still very good.

Pour the filling into the tin whilst it is in the oven and on a baking tray then you won’t have to carry it across the kitchen – use a jug for the purpose.

SLOW COOKED SHOULDER OF LAMB WITH ROSEMARY AND ONION SAUCE – Serves 4 – 6

 

6 garlic cloves
5 sprigs of fresh rosemary
10 bay leaves
2 – 2.2kg. shoulder of lamb
salt & pepper
250mls. red wine

For the rosemary and onion sauce

50g. butter
1 onion (about 200g. finely sliced)
2 tbsps. plain flour
500mls. milk
2 tbsps. cream or creme fraiche
1 tbsp. finely chopped rosemary

Preheat the oven to 160/ gas mark 2-3.  Place the unpeeled garlic in the bottom of a large roasting tin with the rosemary and bay leaves.  Sit the lamb on top and sprinkle with a little salt and pepper.  Roast in the oven for 2 hours, then pour in the wine and roast for a further hour.

To make the sauce, melt the butter over a low heat, add the onion and saute until soft.  Stir in the flour and then add the milk gradually, stirring all the time.  Cook on a low heat for 5 minutes, add the cream and rosemary and cook for another 5 minutes, again stirring all the time.  The sauce should not be too thick so add the little more milk if necessary.  Season with salt and pepper.

Take the lamb out of the oven and transfer to a warm plate.  Cover in foil whilst you make the gravy.  Discard the rosemary, bay leaves and garlic and spoon off all the fat.  Put the tin over a medium heat and add a little water (or vegetable water) and bring to the boil, stirring to make a gravy.  Arrange the lamb meat in chunks on a serving plate, pour over the gravy and serve with the rosemary and onion sauce.

“Blossomtime is back!”  News from the Big Apple

The Big AppleThe buds are starting to burst on the apple trees, last autumn’s cider is getting ready to be tasted, and the time is fast approaching for Blossomtime in and around Putley where the Big Apple has been welcoming visitors for thirty years.  Having cancelled this spring event in 2020 and 2021, the community organisation behind the Big Apple is delighted to be able to invite them back again on Sunday 1st and Monday 2nd May

“When we were able to hold our autumn event last October, visitors were enthusiastic about the opportunity to enjoy being out and about in the countryside”, says spokesman Jackie Denman.  “Our cider and perry community responded so positively when we managed to arrange a delayed Big Apple Cider and Perry Trials in July 2021.  Now we can bring it all together again, with a Grand Cider Tasting at Putley Parish Hall, time spent under the apple trees at Dragon Orchard, and one-off events at Court Farm Aylton and Pixley Festival Church.  The full programme is available online at www.bigapple.org.uk.  We can’t wait to get back!”

As well as opportunities to taste a whole range of entries to the Cider and Perry Trials, cider and perry on sale will include Artistraw Cider and Perry, Bartestree Cider, Gregg’s Pit Cider and Perry, Halfpenny Green Cider Company and Pope’s Perry.

Highlights include:

  • ‘#RethinkCider’, a talk from Jane Peyton, the UK’s first accredited ‘pommelier’ and founder of the School of Booze.
  • The Elmley FoundationDrop-in printmaking with Laughing Betsy, supported by the Elmley Foundation, using ‘kitchen lithography’ and inspired by objects and images on loan from local families associated with cidermaking and apple growing.
  • Three guided walks each day will tell the stories of the orchards in and around Putley – will it be Norman’s Gap, Dorothy’s Delight or Nigel’s Pride? 
  • And, of course, there will be the usual delicious lunches and teas (and this time a brunch) provided by local community groups.