Easter Tidings & Business Update

I know I’m late.  But I have not had the internet connections that would have allowed more timely greetings.  The Llangollen and Montgomery Canals have been utterly delightful but lacking in this regard.  This is not necessarily a bad thing.  Remote can be good.

This trip has marked the first time we have been out on Wand’ring Bark since my decision to officially go into the preserve making business.  In the run up to going away, I have been awash with legislation, registration and administration.  And I’m not entirely sure I’m sorted yet.  Actually, let me correct that.  I am entirely sure that I am NOT sorted yet!  You would not believe the complexity involved in selling a jar of jam.  However, all this red tape is designed to protect us and I really do not want to poison anyone so it’s all fine.  No really it is.  As well as tedious stuff, there has also been lot’s of exciting things – coming up with a name, ordering jars, planning a website, discussing logo design, booking fairs etc.

However, it really has been delightful to get away and get on with the actual making.  After all, that is kind of what I really want to do.  It’s been delightful to see the hedgerows waking up after winter and finally being able to dust off my maslin pan to make the most of their harvest.  Within days I had used up all the jars I brought with me so bought a dozen more.  These too are now full so I am hanging up my kit until we’re home when I have some boozy sloes that will need taking care of.  My boat cupboard is now full of Primrose Preserve, Dandelion Jelly, Primrose & Dandelion Jelly, Spiced Wild Garlic & Carrot Chutney and Wild Garlic & Apple Jelly.

At least I now have some products to sell!  Hopefully, my website will be live soon and details of how to buy will be available there.  Exciting times 🙂

Eviva España!

Back at the end of October, the Captain and I went on a foraging walk with Jayne of Edible Eastside along the Digbeth Branch canal.  We had a splendid afternoon that was only cut short by my knackeredness.  I wrote about it at the time, as did the Captain and Jayne and I have maintained contact through Twitter ever since.  Much to my delight.

You see, Jayne has been involved with a two year EU funded project looking at women in the food sector and working with five other European partners.  As part of this, she has to take a group of women to visit León, in Northern Spain, to visit food co-operatives and businesses in the area.  I feel immensely privileged to have been accepted onto the trip and cannot quite believe my luck.  Having been invited to go, it would have been rude to refuse.  No, really it would.

Today we met for the first time.  I am going to be in very illustrious company.  There was Birgit and Lisa from Change Kitchen; Rachel from Cuffuffle Chutney; Rosie from Digbeth; as well as Jayne and myself.  Two other potential members were unable to be there so the exact group has not yet been finalised.  But it is going to be a treat.  A foodie delight.  An exhausting, exhilarating, opportunity not to be missed.  I can barely wait.

I shall be picking brains, hanging on words, assimilating information, acquiring contacts, making friends, having fun.  Oh and eating, did I mention that there will be eating?  I have it on good authority that food is going to be involved.  Oh yes.

Roll on March!