Posts Tagged vegetables


Fresh from the field and then scrubbed, grated, baked, printed, modelled, told … all in the life of a shillingford vegetable


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Full Pot!

Take one very large stew pot, a collection of vegetable stories and an enthusiastic Priory Primary School, mix them all up and finish up with soup for 170, a retelling of stories and four rather beautiful banners.
This was an interesting brief from DAISI to link the SEAL theme of “Good to be me” with healthy cooking and storytelling over two days of workshops. I had a thoroughly good time. We explored how a school is made up of individuals who all have their own special qualities in the same way that a soup is made up of vegetables all with their own stories and properties.

I was impressed with the way Year 1 and 2 chopped, grated, scrubbed and peeled enough veg for the whole school, the Year 6 rap version of the story of Antoine Parmentier, the speaking and singing carrots of Year 6, the retelling of the “Old Woman and the Pumpkin” by Year 3 and 4 and foundation class’ enacting of the “Tortoise the Hare and the Squash Field. So much sharing, creativity and teamwork. Fantastic. I hope to post the lyrics of the two songs soon.
I am intrigued by the way that food and stories can be linked, cooking and telling, sustaining body and mind. I feel I need to get researching and collecting snippets of story and fact to add into the recipe. It can be tricky finding the right stories to enhance and draw out a theme without being too contrived. There is a real lot of learning to do!

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Stories at a Seed Swap!

Exeter Seed SawpThere are sometimes when an event just clicks and the Exeter Seed Swap was one of those times. Held at St Sidwell’s Community Centre. Why was that? The event certainly wasn’t packed with people and the weather was full of drizzle and damp however there was a quality of conversation and interaction that made it come alive. I was there with the Love Local Food stall and to tell some seedy stories 😉 There was a real mix of ages demonstrating that a good story works regardless and the telling was interspersed with questions and discussions. Thanks to Zion for the organising and the image on the left. I am looking forward to planting my turnips and cabbage! Next step wormery …

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Chickens, tunnels and seeds!

Visits to the farms are go! We discovered that FACE was able to offer free coach travel for schools to visit farms during March. Suddenly March has got rather busy.

A series of weekly visits have started with St Davids Primary in Exeter. I am taking small groups out to The Barton every Monday to explore the farm and discover how it changes over the seasons. So often visits are Summer based one offs and whilst highly enjoyable rather give the impression that the farm is always green and growing. This project aims to gives a more balanced view. We fed the chickens, explored the polytunnels, dug the earth, planted seeds, sorted potatoes, talks to the farmers and generally had a very interesting 2 hours.

Also coming up is investigating soils, discovering orchards and managing 140 Year 7s around one farm. Should be fun!

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Flying Start, Carrots and the Love Local Food Van!

Love Local Food is developing its outreach work with children’s groups exploring vegetables, healthy eating and farms through cooking, creating and stories. I am working with Jo on a series of sessions in partnership with the Flying Start Children’s Centre visiting lots of groups across Central Exeter. Today we braved the snow and ice and dropped in on the St Davids Church Toddler Group. Great fun! It was so good to work with very young children’s attention and interest. Piling up carrots, washing and chopping them, printing, soup making (very welcome on a cold day!) and a little story about the colours of carrots. I am looking forward to seeing this project develop. This is a rather nice image from Wikipedia just in case you thought that all carrots were orange!
Carrots of many colours

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looking closer and creating playfully

sukkaThe Barton, home of Shillingford Organics, hosted a visit from Denbury Primary who were following up their morning visit to the Synagogue with a celebration of food! Whilst Jo, my wife, took half the group visiting the packing shed, poly tunnels and compost heaps I worked the others on a sculpture project.
The project started with a link to their morning visit with an introduction to the Sukka, the shelter made as part of the Jewish harvest festival of Sukkot, then led into observational drawing of leaves up and down the farm and concluded with willow and fabric shelter sculptures.
It was so good creating work outside surrounded by the source material of your work. Our field became full of work areas and our shelters expanded as we dodged the showers, designed in pastel and paint and constructed in willow! A lovely counterpoint to the OFSTED inspection at St Davids in morning.

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