Happy New Year!

I am not one for new year resolutions, it’s not that I am against them or for them I just don’t make them. But there certainly is something about the new year that seems to encourage change. Maybe it’s having passed the shortest day and being on the trajectory to better weather and longer days gives a feeling of hope. Maybe it’s the over indulgence and excess of the Christmas period. Maybe a little niggling feeling that’s been there all along just bubbles closer to the surface.

For the farm it marks at least on paper the start of a new season, the planning begins and the seeds must be selected and the rotation planned. I am always a little bemused at how long ago the start of the last growing season was and at the same time how fast time passes. It is one of those mysteries of getting older, I guess. It’s very difficult to make plans anymore. For the farm last year we were a little too ambitious with our planning, we planned and grew too many crops. This year we are taking a more sensible approach and scaling back a little of certain crops and a growing a little more of others. That being said, the winter has been benign, mild and not too wet and the crops remaining in the fields are in good order and we have plenty to harvest over the coming months.

Whilst there has been plenty of good hearty vegetables consumed here over Christmas we have also had our fair share of chocolate. I am guessing that there will have been few houses or few people in the country who did not encounter a box of ‘Milk Tray’ during this festive Season. Growing up they were the main stay of our family evening, and my mother for some reason never trusted me with them, I can still hear, “only one Kenneth” every time I see a box. That instruction was always reserved for me and never aimed at my siblings strangely enough. These sweets today seem to be a far cry from the sweets I remember as a child.

If you happen to have a box lying around take a look at the ingredients. I didn’t recognise most of them. Apart from sugar I couldn’t say yeah that’s in our cupboard. The result of course is not good, the food itself is now a synthetic engineered product from ultra-cheap and highly processed ingredients. Sugar is the first ingredient, followed by palm oil as the second, for those that don’t know, ingredients are listed in the order of quantity. Then there is the cheap waste by products from the milk industry and more. The intention it seems has been to make the product as cheap as possible and to sell as much as possible for maximum profit, with scant regard for taste or quality. This unfortunately is a common approach to many foods today.

Compromising on taste and quality never leads anywhere good. This race to the bottom can end up costing us our health and the planet too pays a high price for these unsustainable cheap ingredients. So, while I do not embrace the idea of new year resolutions, the one that I come back to every single year without fail is to “Eat more fresh fruit and veg”. I know too that I won’t have to worry about my mum’s mantra of “only take one”! as I reach for another apple.

Have a great new year, thank you for all you have done for us. We are back with our normal deliveries next week. Take care.


Simple, Real Food

Yesterday my daughter Ella went down the fields and harvested a big bunch of kale she wanted to make kale crisps. I was impressed, who am I to stand in the way of a child who wants to voluntarily eat kale, I thought to myself!

Mostly though it is the other way around, often getting our kids to eat more vegetables can be a struggle, why is this? Why isn’t eating an apple, (or indeed kale crisps) instead of a chocolate bar easier? Why is doing the right thing sometimes so difficult? 

Why is our food system not better, healthier, kinder to us and our planet. How did we get ourselves into this crazy retail race to the bottom and how come it is so hard to value and want to eat real food? 

Both questions are linked. I did a stent in a major pharmaceutical company in the US as a research scientist. A friend of mine at the time worked in the food division, occasionally she would bring cookies to lunch for us to try that had been engineered in her lab to within an inch of their lives. Texture, flavour, taste, and crumbliness had all been optimised in the lab to allow just the right amount of sugar fat and salt to hit our taste buds in the right way at the right time to make them irresistible.  

Many of the processed foods including health bars and vitamin drinks that line supermarket shelves are about as healthy as eating spoonful’s of sugar, generally they contain high amounts of processed apple juice or conventional cereal and sugar substitutes. They rely on wonderfully creative science and marketing to make us believe how good for us they are, and of course they taste amazing.

We are sold the idea of free choice, but the reality is that nearly all of the big brands on our shelves are made by 10 giant multinational conglomerates. An industry built on cheap commodity products wrapped and packaged and sold as healthy, driven by profit, derived from a complex unsustainable food chain produces most of our food and it is damaging our health and destroying the planet.

So how is this system fair? How is it that these processed products have taken centre stage and are often seen by us the consumer as a prized food that can be sold for maximum profit? This is the carefully constructed reality we have been fed, it is not our fault it is just the way it.

It is simple, cheap commodity ingredients are processed and packaged to be sold as healthy alternatives to real food, that achieve maximum profit for manufactures and retailers. 

Deciphering what is good for our health and the planet is next to impossible these days. But it doesn’t have to be so complicated. 

There is one extremely straightforward step any one of us can take right now to revolutionise our food choices, the principle is simple: 


We cannot eat too many vegetables and vegetables in all their guises are good for us. That’s pretty simple right?

So, choosing fresh organic locally grown food and working more fruit and veg into our daily routine is a magnificent way to improve how we feel and our long-term health, not to mention the benefits for the planet. 

So, Ella, go for it, all the kale in the world is yours!


Get a box of real, simple organic food delivered to your door anywhere in Ireland or Northern Ireland here.

Scramble, Kale Pesto & Miso Mushroom Toast

Weekends are for brunching and here is one of our favourites. The combination of fresh, vibrant green pesto, soft, wobbly scrambled tofu and juicy, umami mushrooms is just perfect!

You can make your own pesto very easily if you have a food processor or blender – I used my kale and pumpkin seed pesto that I’m making on repeat this time – or you can of course use a ready made one for ease. We sell a few organic jars of pesto in the grocery section of our shop. The scramble is simply a gently sautéed pack of organic silken tofu seasoned with salt, pepper and some chopped sun-dried tomatoes. And those gorgeous, meaty mushrooms are marinated with our new packs of umami paste then grilled.

What’s your favourite brunch? Are you a sweet or savoury person? Let us know in the comments.

Liz x

Ingredients (serves 4)


  1. Cut bread and pop it in the toaster ready to go. Heat up a griddle pan (or fire up the grill in your oven).
  2. Slice the mushrooms in half and mix them with the umami paste and a drizzle of olive oil in a bowl. Then push them onto skewers and place them in a hot griddle pan (or on a tray under your grill) to cook whilst you get on with the scramble.
  3. Heat up a knob of butter (or tbsp of olive oil) in a medium-high heated frying pan. Open your pack of silken tofu, drain off any excess liquid and then pop it in the pan. Break it up gently with a wooden spoon or a spatular.
  4. Season the scrambling tofu with salt and pepper and then add the chopped sun-dried tomatoes. Keep the scramble moving and cook it for 5 minutes or so until it’s warmed through, but don’t break it up too much. It’s nice when there are still some larger pieces.
  5. Meanwhile turn the mushrooms in the grill to cook the other side and then toast the bread.
  6. Spread the toast with a thick layer of pesto, then divide the scramble and mushrooms between the plates.
  7. Enjoy whilst hot!