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The Organic Farm Shop near Cirencester in Gloucestershire was one of my first experiences of a farm shop.  It is my ‘local’ farm shop when visiting my family, and stopping off here on the journey is a sign that we’re nearly there. 

As you turn off the road and down the long tree-lined drive to the farm shop, you pass piggies in a field and a market garden sized field of fruit buses and pollytunnels, before you reach the farm shop nestled amongst a grove of trees.  There is something lovely about seeing the produce growing in the fields before you enter the farm shop, something reassuring – and a great reminder about where a lot of the produce you buy in the shop comes from. 

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In addition to the farm shop (which is stocked with fantastic goodies) there is a cafe serving delicious, home-cooked vegetarian food.  Meat-eaters do not be detered by the veggie menu, it is scrumptious food and you won’t sit there wondering where you steak is.  If N can cope, anyone can.

As it was my birthday weekend, we decided to treat ourselves to lunch in the cafe.  It serves daily specials and have a standard menu which comprises of a variety of baked potatoes and omelettes.  Most meals are served with a selection of salads, which are displayed on the counter. 

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You can pick and choose which salads you want – N and I turned down the mung bean, red cabbage and cauliflower salad, but were really surprised by salad of celery, cucumber, fennel and sunflower seeds.  I was also converted to the true potential of polenta – an ingredient that I have had disastrous-throw-in-the-bin results with – these were crisp, cheesy ‘croutons’ that topped off our salad.  Yum yum.

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So N opted for a selection of salads topped with melt-in-the-mouth goats cheese (he had eaten his before I had a chance to take a snap).  I chose from the specials board and tasted my first asparagus of the season – an asparagus and cheese tart with salads.  This tart was so good and would really like to recreate, or at least try to!

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As you can see it didn’t take us long to finish it all off.  I am also coming to the realisation that I am a bit obsessed by taking photographs of empty plates (those that are empty because the food that previously was on them has all been gobbled up).  I was so tempted to take a photo of the table next to us after the family had left, there was something fascinating about the empty plates, cutlery, cups and crumpled napkins strewn across the table.  N gave me such a look at the suggestion that I quickly put the camera away.

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