There’s no easier time of year to enjoy a diet full of produce grown close to home, with the offer available from the UK in general, and the North West especially, hitting the peak of its season as we enter mid July.
There is a brilliant range of new potatoes on offer in the shop right now. Ulster Prince, Nicola, Bard and the red-skinned Manitou varieties are all available from Duncan Gielty’s Lyncroft Farm Ltd in Ormskirk. Nick Bagthorpe Farm has been sending us some lovely Accord and we will soon be receiving our first delivery from the always popular Newfields Organic Produce.
We get many questions at this time of year regarding the best potato for mashing. We know this may be an unpopular thing to say but we do not recommend mashing new spuds! These earlier crops have a higher moisture content and less starch, so they all tend to keep their shape when cooked. There’s a precious window of time before the skins cure and we move on to the later varieties. Embrace the fleeting new potato season and cook to their strengths – roast into a traybake, steam or boil for a salad. New spuds taste particularly good at room temperature so you can cook them ahead of time too if you’re feeding a crowd.
Also deserving of special mention are the staggeringly beautiful aubergines being sent to us from Libby Flintoff a paragon of ratatouille perfection and almost too good to eat! There’ll be a direct pallet of Lincolnshire brassicas coming from Will Edwards at New Farm in Lincolnshire mid week, his broccoli and caulis have been fantastic quality and incredibly fresh. Props too to the one and only Pam Bowers at Strawberry Fields, whose ever interesting offer of herbs, salads and celery extends to include Crookneck squash and golden and chioggia beetroots.