Easter Farmers’ Market on the Cobbles

A BIG thank you to everyone who visited the market inside the Witham last month. We enjoyed a successful busy day accompanied by some great acoustic folk music and song. This month we’re back on the cobbles on Saturday 4th April. Plus, we’ll be holding our annual Easter Treasure Hunt with the chance to win a luxury farmers’ market hamper. Definitely not to be missed!

March in the Witham

Writing on a cold, wet day in February and just a sleep from the third month of the year, already I’m feeling comforted by the prospect of a second farmers’ market held inside the Witham. This morning (while evacuating the bantams to forage free in the garden), the wind was cold enough to burn your face. Holding a mug of black tea, I watched rain turn to sleet and quickly decided shorts and wellingtons would not be appropriate on this day.

Back in the kitchen, eggs boiled, soldiers buttered, the children who booked fully inclusive, enjoyed the simple pleasures of a Sunday morning breakfast.

My style of cooking will always please more than impress. Based on simple, home cooked fare with few ingredients, sourced from local, quality produces including those found at the farmers’ market and independent traders on the high street, I seek the finer things by way of taste.

For example, take the leg of lamb purchased from Westholme Farm in Marwood, at last month’s market. Westholme Farm produce quality, locally reared beef and lamb. The end pleasure of such simple delicious roasts always include squashing second helpings of potatoes into congealing lamb fat and gravy. With the leftovers we enjoyed a light evening supper by way of tagine of lamb and apricots. Yes I am 15 stone.

Good food also has a strong way of shaping memories. Just like treading old paths they’re able to reduce complexities of life adding calm and peace.

So even if it doesn’t feel like it, spring is almost here bringing fresh flavours and the promise of new produce on our plates. Visit Barnard Castle Farmers’ Market this Saturday 7 March inside the Witham on the high street and prepare your larder.

It would be amiss of me not to mention the unit of a man who balances the fulcrum of the market at the top of the high street, to that of  I further downhill. Just William’s Seville Orange Marmalade received Gold at the World Marmalade Awards at Dalemain, Cumbria. His new bling gold labels and posh certificate will be on show in the Witham during the market. Go and give him a big Paddington Bear hug from me!

Facebook

Just a quick note to say the Facebook page for Barnard Castle Farmers’ Market was suspended over the Chritsmas period for no apparent reason. We have sent a letterhead proving we are who we say we are, but still haven’t received a reply. This is directly affecting the sales and lively hood of our 34 stall holders.  If you have a Facebook page we would appreciate comments on your own page regarding this issue to support our cause.

 

Farmers Market inside the Witham Hall

The first farmers’ market of the year takes place Saturday 7 February inside the newly refurbished Witham Hall, Barnard Castle. Relax in the comfortable  Dispensary Café Bar for lunch or afternoon tea, as we tempt you with some of the finest, locally produced food and drink from across the region. It promises to be a wonderful day and a real feast for food lovers.

 

First farmers’ market in 2015

Barnard Castle Farmers’ Market  will be held inside the Witham during February and March, first Saturday of the month, normal time of 9.30-3pm. 

Merry Christmas

Stall holders and volunteers from Barnard Castle Farmers’ Market wish all our customers a very happy Christmas and prosperous New Year. We look forward to seeing you all again indoors in February. Also please note our Facebook page is down, so please visit the website for news and information.

Christmas Mini Markets at Raby Castle

Taste of Teesdale Christmas Market at Raby Castle

 

Don’t miss Taste of Teesdale’s Christmas Market at Raby Castle, Sunday 30th November. Held in the magnificent grounds of Raby Castle, Taste of Teesdale offers the very best food, drink and craft ideas from around the region.

Delicious autumn


While birds consult their migrations and trees present intensified hues filtered through a lemony light of November sun – almost warm… but not quite. Now is the time to indulge in all things good.

A shrewd move is to befriend any acquaintance owning fruit trees. At this time of year, pears and apples are a treat and our larder testifies to a careful selection of folk with orchards. Include Just William, who on a balmy day in October patrolled his fruit trees in agitated silence. Watching, from a safe distance whilst sipping tea from a vintage mug, I observed flecks of russet, jupiter and pippin beginning to disappear. A voice suddenly boomed from within the boughs, “do you ever move?” yelled William, cupping his hands in an unnecessary attempt to amplify his voice. Considering this a rhetorical question I sank deeper into my chair.

Whilst on the note of apples I would like to congratulate the lucky winner of October’s Apple-day market who took home a luxury hamper by way of our kind benefactors.

Along with fruit, autumn also delivers an abundance of rich game meats complemented by hearty root vegetables.  Squash in particular are both satisfying and warming. Consider, soup, risotto, pie, pasta or simply roasted.

Venison with its rich, lean composition has a flavour reminiscent of beef and makes regular appearances at our dinner table. It’s November so I’m duty bound to mention bangers?  Also include the deep, rich flavours of game birds, roast partridge and pheasant wrapped in bacon and you have every reason to make a visit to Barnard Castle Farmers’ Market a must for November 1st. Stalls will be awash with the delicious tastes and smells of autumn. We start and 9.30am and finish at 3.00pm

Apple Day at Barnard Castle Farmers’ Market

Think how fruit has changed our modern language when you consider the number of companies and brands (especially in the technology industry) adopting names of fruit. BlackBerry, Orange, Raspberry, Cherry Corporation even a Papaya Studio. Now being the time for harvesting apples, I feel it only appropriate to write this column on my Apple?

This links nicely to the topic of this month’s farmers’ market in Barnard Castle. Perched high on our promontory above the Tees and the walls of an ancient castle, our historic market town puts on a fabulous show to celebrate Apple Day.

True to tradition, the farmers’ market will be holding our own Apple-Day Treasure Hunt with the chance to win a fabulous autumn hamper. Let the children loose this Saturday to search for as many varieties of apples they can find hidden in our stalls. It’s free to enter, simply pick up a form from Just William’s Hedgerow Preserves and start collecting those apples.

Plus, bring your senses alive as we offer you the opportunity to buy, taste and take home a variety of locally sourced delicious food and drink. From game to gammon, from cakes to curry. Our market provides some of the most diverse assortment of food and drink anywhere in the north.

The market opens at 9.30 and runs until 3.00. The winner of the hamper will be drawn from the hat at 2.00. Good luck and happy Apple-Day.