cheese at Stroud Farmer's Market

cheese at Stroud Farmer's Market

I am visiting my family in the Cotswolds for the weekend.  I have left N with his dissertation research, two naughty bunnies, and the rugby to keep him occupied.  After having a rather blonde moment and ending up four junctions down the motorway too far and nearly in Bristol (I have done this trip a million times so there’s no excuses) I finally made it down on Friday for lunch with my parents. 

Visiting my family in the Cotswolds always feels like I’m coming home, I just feel so relaxed and at ease here.  By the time I was 18 I had lived in over twelve houses, been to about four or five different schools, and lived in the USA, but this is my home, the place I will always come back to. 

home

home

This morning I dragged my mom and little sister (not so little anymore, nearly 16 as she likes to keep reminding us) to Stroud Farmer’s Market.  I visited this renown farmer’s market for the first time last summer and it was fantastic.  It is in the heart of Stroud, set throughout the small ancient streets and offers a huge variety of goods.  I was struck by the choice, which is often so limited at farmer’s market, especially by the stalls selling vegetables. 

extra virgin olive oil from Eleon

extra virgin olive oil from Eleon

Despite being a rather chilly and blustering early Spring day, we had a lovely morning and came home with a basket of goodies.  We weren’t there to do our weekly shop, although I wish I lived close enough to do my weekly shop here, so just bought some ‘treats’.  We also tried some scrumptious olive oil and cheese.  The little sister tried a lot of cheese. 

delicious cheese from Shepton Mallet

delicious cheese from Shepton Mallet

My basket contained: Monmouthshire air dried ham from Trealy Farm

charcuterie from Trealy Farm

charcuterie from Trealy Farm

…a Jammie (like a jammy dodger but made with shortcrust biscuits and homemade blackcurrant jam – I will be trying to recreate these at home) from Hobbs House Bakery

Jammies from Hobbs House Bakery

Jammies from Hobbs House Bakery

…a piece of Morn Dew (cow) cheese and a Little Rachel (goat) cheese made by a man in Shepton Mallet (this is the best cheese I have tasted in a long time); a bottle of organic whole milk from Jess’s Ladies Organic Farm Milk (I dream about this milk when I’m at home in Cheshire – it is to die for and how all milk should be)…

milk and yoghurt from Jess's Ladies

milk and yoghurt from Jess's Ladies

and a Mixed Berry Doughnut (yes I said doughnut) made by Pippin Doughnuts

doughnuts from Pippin Doughnuts

doughnuts from Pippin Doughnuts

Mom’s contained: a bunch of locally grown purple tulips…

locally grown flowers

locally grown flowers

…two Mixed Berry Doughnuts and a Cinnamon and Brown Sugar doughnut from Pippin Doughnuts

cinnamon and brown sugar doughnuts

cinnamon and brown sugar doughnuts

a loaf of bread from a lovely bakers whose name I can’t remember…

lovely bread - bottom left

lovely bread - bottom left

…an Organic Cotswold Brie from Simon Weaver (check out their website for some delicious sounding recipes); a Black Nancy (rolled in charcoal) and a Trickle both from the Shepton Mallet cheese man.  The little sister also polished off a vegetable samosa.

bread, brownies and hot cross buns from Hobbs House Bakery

bread, brownies and hot cross buns from Hobbs House Bakery

The afternoon was spent at the local garden centre where I picked up a couple of small trays of lettuce (oakleaf and red little gem) and some purple sprouting broccoli plug plants.  I will plant them down at the allotment and cross my fingers that the wild bunnies don’t annihilate them. 

All in all I have had a pretty perfect day – food and gardens – and my family thrown in for good measure.

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