[Scholar Green, Cheshire] Rode Hall Farmers Market

It’s a bit of a drive away, so we only go a couple of times a year, but it’s well worth it.

One trader sorted us out with lamb chops and and a half shoulder of mutton (I see curry in my near future). Another had samples of his delicious pork sausages to try (all from Gloucester Old Spot) - we got a couple of packs of plain (breakfast) and a pork and caramelised onion. A third sells their own beef, everything hung for 28 days - braising steak looked good enough to eat.

Mrs Bourne was there - the old gal (or Mr B) seems to popup at every market we go to. Can’t resist the mature Cheshire cheese. There was cheese (and onion) in one of the pies we bought from the Great Northern Pie Company. We got a steak and ale one as well. The Bourne’s Cheshire may well get grated over a breakfast oatcake - Rode Hall is just up the road from the Staffordshire/Cheshire border, so it seemed almost local food. They had maple syrup pikelets as well - another breakfast, may be.

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Mutton is just something we never, ever see here.

We were back this morning for their Christmas market. Good fun - they had their own silver band playing andf there were Morris dancers. It was packed in the two barns, where moist of the stalls are.

We got more Bourne’s Cheshire and stocked up on oatcakes. And the sausages I mentioned in the OP proved excellent - we bought more and a big pack of sausage meat. The latter has already been mixed with breadcrumbs, pepper and grated lemon zest and frozen away in golfball sizes, ready for roasting with the Christmas turkey. We also bought arancini (also to freeze) - ragu in one lot, smoked haddock & prawn in the other. And a sticky toffee pudding - I was seduced by the samples - rich and sweet - impossible to resist. And there was damson jam made at Rode Hall home farm - and an orange marmalade made from oranges grown in their own greenhouse, so something of a rarity value.

My only regret was not getting the usual bacon butty - but the queue was easily ten deep and I’m just not waiting that long.

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“Food is a pretty good prism through which to view humanity.”

― Jonathan Gold