The sizzling summer of ‘16

The sun has been shining this year and I know as a farmer I am never happy with the weather but, I have laughed a lot this summer, after a winter of people complaining about the cold and the rain, we are now moaning that it is ‘just too hot’ - having said that making hay this year was flipping hot, great weather if you have your speedos on, but a tractor with no air conditioning was more than a little sticky! 

When the sun comes out so do the BBQ’s and boy do I love a BBQ, the simplicity of good meat and summer salads, nice and easy but delicious. Sitting out in the evening with a nice cold local beer and a taste sensation on my plate. When I say simple the one thing I don’t mean is boring – how could I with a shop full of wonders at my disposal, and I have to say this summer I have been spoilt for choice. I do love the Stokes ketchups and sauces that we serve in the coffee shop, there is something very different about them and once you try them there is just no going back to any other sauce. Having said that you can’t beat a bit of beetroot ketchup on your burger (Fliss is not a fan of beetroot but she loves it too so it must be good!) This year 

The Foraging Fox have released a smoked beetroot and hot beetroot ketchup too which adds a lovely kick to any dish, not only that they say beetroot is one of these all singing, all dancing, good for you foods, so I am able to enhance my way of life as well as my burger! 

It has been great outdoorsy weather, which is always nice, meaning long walks around the county and a very happy dog that has been spoilt for choice with walks this summer. Having Mara and Harriet with us has made us even more aware about making sure we drink enough while out and about. One way we have been doing this is by starting each day with one of the coffee shops smoothies, as we have some great flavours, we even have some involving whey protein, for all those gym bunnies out there. So I don’t miss out on a Sunday I have been making my own smoothies at home with the frozen Field Fare fruit and smoothie mix, it is so simple just a handful of fruit and some apple juice and boom – ready to go on another adventure. 

As soon as the harvest is away we will be lifting potatoes again, this year we were really lucky, as we changed our variety of spuds and were selling big bags of our potatoes until early June, I wonder if we will have enough to get us the whole way through next year? – I do love a challenge. 

Some of you will have noticed that Shoots at Roots moved from it’s potting shed to the flower cart and has now said goodbye to the farm, this is because we have lost Stuart and Shoots to a role in education, so we have taken the Potting Shed back in house and have some beautiful blooms waiting to be planted in your gardens. As we were buying these Fliss called me Mr. Bloom with a smile – for anyone with children they may have heard about or seen Mr. Bloom – I am not sure about Harriet enjoying this but have a feeling it maybe many mummies guilty pleasure!! 

As usual we are busy, busy, busy so I best get back to it, but before I do I can’t go without mentioning Brexit – I am not going to get all political, but as you will know I have always been a fan of supporting local and I would think it is more important now than ever before, so I will share with you a quote we have outside the shop – If every adult in the UK spent £5 per week in their local shops and businesses, instead of online, at supermarkets or with huge multinationals, it would be worth £16.8 Billion going directly back into our towns. Which means real jobs, better facilities and nicer places to live. Makes you think doesn’t it? – Shop local, Live local, Invest local. 

See you soon at Roots

George x

Don’t forget our harvest festival on Saturday 24th September, this year we are raising money for a number of local charities. Don’t miss out! We will see you there.