Monday, September 23, 2013

Gifts of Spring

We love the notes we receive from hilbarners. Here's one: three words that came at exactly the right time when Time's see-saw says daytime and night-time are equal now. We welcome Spring and the gifts it brings: strawberries, asparagus, snow peas, broad beans.... not quite there yet, but tantalisingly close.

And this one from a hilbarn grower who stuck it on a label on the outside of a black plastic bag filled with freshly picked silverbeet. Thank you Alan - we love your art.

Thank you to Peter from Wilmot who sent us a pack of exciting seeds in the post - lamb's lettuce (also known as corn salad). Such a treat for us to sow.

And this is what bud burst looks like on a chardonnay vine in the Jansz Tasmania vineyard. Coming relatively soon, we hope, to a flute near you.

Thursday, September 19, 2013

NEW! September hilbarn store produce box - Southern Selection

We invited food curator Jo Cook (one of the market managers at MoMa, MONA's super cool summer market) to choose a few of her favourite items from the south for this month's hilbarn store produce box. 
Price: $90. Packaging & Postage: $25 (flat rate Australia-wide).
Delivery free to hilbarn pick up points in Tasmania. To order, email Orders close at the end of September for delivery in the first week of October.

Photos from left to right: 
Diemen Pepper Native Pepper from Woodbridge 
Aromatic, piquant & unique. Use sparingly in the kitchen or on the table 
Olli-Bella Bloody Hot Sauce 
From former Californian now Hobartian Gabriel Laborico who grew up making Mexican food with his dad
Coaldale Pickled Walnuts from the Denings in the Coal River Valley
Serve on crackers with hard or soft cheese or as part of a ploughman's lunch. Gold Medal Winner at the 2012 Hobart Fine Food Awards

Ashbolt Farm Elderflower & Olive Oil Salad Dressing
All natural, made from Tasmanian extra virgin olive oil and elderflower concentrate from Plenty
Willie Smiths Organic Apple Cider (500ml bottle) from the Huon Valley 
Made from apples hand-picked & organically-grown in an orchard first planted in 1888 by William Smith
Wellington Apiary 'Hobart Wildflower' Honey
Raw, unheated, coarse filtered honey made from nectar collected from the diverse gardens of Hobart  

Bruny Island Food Mustard from Ross O'Meara In Lunawanna
Made with the flavour of a Dijon and the heat of a hot English mustard 
Richmond Walnut Farm Walnut Oil 
Only a limited number of 100ml bottles of this premium walnut oil available


Sunday, September 15, 2013

Packing tonight with yams & parsley

We love it when a box starts coming together.  When we both commented at the same time how the organic roquette from York Town smelt so fragrant and peppery we were reminded why we do what we do. Who remembers ever smelling roquette in a supermarket? And when it turned out that they're weren't enough Jerusalem artichokes for everyone we were quite relieved when we found Lisa and her yams from Burnie. Tim and Anne's bouquets of parsley were also begging to be photographed, reminding us of an old growth forest. So we hope you enjoy playing with this week's box as much as we have enjoyed pulling it together. It's especially hard at this time of the year as the seasons change from one to another, tentatively. But it won't be long before we see peas, strawberries and new season potatoes appearing in hilbarn boxes. Looking forward to that!

Thursday, September 12, 2013

August hilbarn store produce - North West

We collected provisions for hilbarn's August store produce box on a beautiful spring day in the state's northwest. Now we're busy putting together September's selection - this time from the South - chosen by Hobart-based 'food curator' Jo Cook. We'll introduce you to Jo and her personal selection next week. In the meantime, we thought we'd share a few phone snaps from our most recent road trip to Mole Creek, Kindred, Spreyton, Latrobe, Christmas Hills, Deloraine, and Bridgenorth. 

Organic Leatherwood Honey from  R. Stephens Apiary in Mole Creek (spot the snow remnants on the Great Western Tiers in the background). The Stephens family has been making honey here since the 1920s. We found them busily painting bee hives ready for their journey to the West Coast rainforest for the summer.

 Here's Ziggy from 40 Degrees South Salmon & Ginseng Wetlands Farm near Deloraine. We love their salmon products.  And now we love their ginseng spice too.

Raspberry jam from Christmas Hills Raspberry Farm - where, really, every day must be Christmas. 

Mural artistry in the playground at the Cherry Shed, Latrobe where we found the delicious cherry liqueur for this month's hilbarn store produce box.

It's always a test travelling west to try and tell what's growing in the paddocks. Here, in Kindred, are fields of oats, turned into rolled oats by Lauren, Henriette and family at Kindred Organics.

 Damien from Spreyton Cider serving freshly pressed ciders on tap at the tasting room in Spreyton. 

 Last stop, Rocky Gardens, where we were chuffed to see country ways still working. "We'll leave it on the fence post for you!" said Patricia. And there it was at the end of a long day just as the sun was going down behind the gum trees.

Taken on the side of the road in Moriarty. Last time we stopped here the paddock was full of poppies (and a little red tractor). Wondering what it will be this summer?