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Today when Mr Rigg and I went to do some food shopping in Chorlton we discovered that the Manchester Markets were set up outside the library.  Of course, I couldn’t resist a quick snoop.

There were a couple of meat companies, a greengrocer, a sweetie stall, a bakery, and a number of cake stalls.  I bought a lovely moist piece of gingerbread from one stall (I think they were called Peach Pie…) and then my eyes fell upon a stall with large glass jars filled with multi-coloured macaroons.

Now I’ve seen the trend for these pretty sweets all over the internet – they seem especially popular in the US at the moment – dainty coloured macaroons sandwiched together with a thin layer of something scrummy in the middle.

The girl selling macaroons today is currently making them from home and has called her little business The English Rose Bakery – which I think is a lovely name.  Having never tasted these kinds of macaroons, I decided today would be my first taste.

I came away with a little tissue paper bundle of macaroons in chocolate, raspberry and salted caramel flavours.  We have devoured the chocolate and raspberry ones, with the salted caramel one left for later.  An after dinner sweet morsel – what a treat!

The two we’ve tried so far were delicious – the chocolate macaroon with a thin layer of chocolatey filling, and the raspberry one I think was spread with raspberry jam. 

If you live in Manchester and fancy a sweet treat for a party, as a gift, for your wedding, or just to indulge yourself, visit their website: www.englishrosebakery.co.uk


Above image: The English Rose Bakery 

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I completely forgot to tell you that our lovely Little Heath Farm were featured as one of the producers on last week’s Great British Menu. 

Their pork was used in Aiden Byrne’s main course of oak-roasted middle white pork with broad beans and wild mushrooms. 

Sadly Aiden didn’t make it through to the final – it would have been great to see one of our local producers have their produce cooked for the Prince of Wales.

Abbey Leys Farmers Market :: Cheshire ::

I am still defrosting after spending the morning in a draughty barn at the local farmers market.  I am a volunteer with the Campaign to Protect Rural England (CPRE) and am the sole volunteer responsible for their local food work.  I had a stall at a number of farmers markets in Cheshire over the summer, handing out leaflets and gathering nominations for a ‘Buy Local’ food awards we have been running. 

This time I was helping with a project that is being piloted round the country called Mapping Local Food Webs.  It sounds confusing and it is quite – but in brief it’s researching and documenting the relationships between farmer/producer, retailer and customer, and if there are any challenges.  If you’re interested more information can be found at http://www.makinglocalfoodwork.co.uk/.

The pilot project in the North West is being centred around Knutsford (if you’re reading this and from Knutsford (!) and are interested in getting involved please leave me a comment).  We had a great map of Knutsford and the surrounding area of about a 15 miles radius.  We asked people to put a coloured sticky dot on the map to show us where they had come from.  It was really interesting to see where people had travelled from – from the really local who had walked down the road, to those who had travelled over 15 miles and had to stick their coloured dot on the edge of the map. 

For me, I consider ‘local food’ to be food that is grown/produced within about 10 miles of where I live.  Nationally I believe it is defined as food that is produced within 30 miles of you, which is actually quite a distance if you look at it on a map.  It was a pretty quiet market today, the first of the year, but we are aiming to go back in a month when it should be back to its busy self, and hopefully the map will come with us and we should start to build up a really interesting picture of where people travel from to visit the market.

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Eat the Earth

I love food, especially locally grown and seasonal food. This is my place to share my food finds and the food I like to eat.

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All pictures are my own unless stated. I would kindly ask that you don't use them elsewhere unless you ask permission first. Many thanks x

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