What a lovely evening, in the middle of no-where – certainly was a ‘secret supper club’…
Last night Sue and I ventured into the middle of rural Kent near Favesham and Sittingbourne according to the map, but this was a location that even the ‘sat nav’ stuggled with!
We found ourselves in the middle of apple orchards and greeted by Simon the owner of Monks Farm. We were in time to join a tour of the orchards which was very worthwhile. Brambley, Braeburn, Gala, Cox, Jazz apples were laiden on the trees, as picking has just started.
about Amelias apple. Monks Farm and the other Farms that were represented in the group are contributing to a major part of the British apples stocked by M&S. Monks Farm and owner Simon Bray winning ‘Britain’s Tastiest Apple’.
Back at the Marquee we had local cider, apple and pear juice or a delicious apple and pear cocktail which had a secret little kick to it! Canapes were parma ham and apple, cheese and apple, and biscuit with pear.
There was live music and a really nice atmosphere with about 50 other guests. As mentioned the other guests were a number of local farm owners who also provide their pears and apples to M&S, food bloggers and local ‘foodies’.
Supper was an Autumnal menu designed and cooked by Marcus Bean and his team from Brompton Cookery School. Marcus is a Shropshire based Chef, winner of Channel 4 Iron Chef and has his own cookery school and premises in Shrewsbury. He accompanied us round the orchards (in his Hunter wellies) and was a nice guy to chat too, down to earth and passionate about food, particularly British! To find more about Marcus click here
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My supper was a duck pizza (made to order on a wood fired oven) accompanied by some delicious, fresh and flavoursome salads: crunchy coleslaw, potato and apple, feta and watermelon and I must not forget to mention the hummus with Sweet potato and chick peas! Dessert was apple and pear fool cobnut crumble & honeycomb. I sat surrounded by apple farmers, talking about Smitten apples, Piqa Reo pears and P’apples. I listened to so many interesting topics to the effects of weather to the trials and tribulations of employing fruit pickers.
Outcome was I am much more knowledgeable on apples. I will make every effort to buy British and particularly hunt down some of these more unusual, exclusive names in M&S. This weekend my plan is to do some cooking for friends with all the beautiful fresh fruit I have ready to eat!