The excellent Anna Jones (who created the recipes for our new family recipe book, Hungry?) came along with me to Jamie Oliver’s Feastival on Clapham Common last weekend to talk about the book, make some recipes with kids and dust off the old Blendavenda smoothie bike.
Here we are before the carnage ensued
Fruit prepped, ingredients laid out and head mikes donned, we got kids making the old bread and squashed tomato salad and fruit mess recipes from the book and then followed it with a bun fight to see who got to pedal the smoothie bike first
Though the fighting was mainly amongst all the mums and dads trying to have a go.
Thanks to everyone who came along, squashed, pedalled and ate the results.
Hopefully we'll be going along to more things like this over the summer and we'll be sure to give you plenty of warning the next time we do
Julian, Neil and Tim
We had a tour of the beautiful gardens and grounds from Neil (including the mushroom house) and then Tim gave us an introduction to bee keeping.
Tim has 8 hives at Hanbury Hall which this year yielded 250 jars of honey. He taught us how to hold a frame, how a hive works and how to mark a queen bee when you spot her.
Then it was on with the bee suits
Julian got to wear the suit as paid for by the proceeds of Buy One Get One Bee whilst I had to wear a suit for a 10 year old as there were no adult bee suits left.
Once suited, we then got to inspect the innocent hive and meet
The innocent hive
After meeting the bees and asking more home beekeeping questions, we all got given a jar of Tim's honey
And then Julian and his wife, Nicky went off for a proper afternoon tea (though sadly the chocolate potato cake had sold out).
We've made a little film of the day (including Tim answering lots of your questions) so watch this space for the official premiere.
For now though, massive thanks to Tim, Neil and the catering staff at Hanbury Hall for such a brilliant afternoon, to Julian and Nicky for being such enthusiastic winners and to my mum for being an excellent camera assistant.
Here's to Buy One Get One Bee coming back again next year.
Every year our Fruit team have an in-house competition to take the best photos whilst out and about, sourcing the globe for the finest fruits to go in our smoothies.
There are currently around 189 categories in the competition(so that Simon can win at least one of them) and we thought you might like to see a few of the winners.
There's the best photo of fruit on and off the tree
(Cherries taken by Rozanne)
(Bananas taken by
The best photo of a team member at leisure
(Sam in Verona)
(Dan with the pizza machete)
And the best photo taken from moving car window (to mention but
(Taken by Simon somewhere in Florida)
We're going to be putting together an online gallery of all their best shots so you can find out a bit more about the stories around the fruit we use. So make sure you keep watching this space.
For now though, here's the overall winning photo from the 2009 competition
It's of one of our apple growers, Christian (he's the one infront of the tractor, holding the apple, just to right of the shaggy haired fellow) and was taken by our Siobhan (pictured below)
More to come from our budding Rankins and David Bailey's very very soon.
And those woods happen to be in Poland, you might find a forest floor filled with blueberries
Rozanne and Dan have just returned from a berry sourcing adventure across Eastern Europe, where they tasted an array of berry shaped fruit.
Howver, before they got to actually taste any berries, they first had several mini adventures along the way.
After being greeted by a dog on the runway, hiring a car that sounded like a hairdryer and picking up a speeding ticket in the first twenty minutes of driving, they then got hideously lost (thanks to a self-programming sat nav system) and had to wait by some woods in the middle of the night for our suppliers to pick them up.
When our suppliers finally arrived, Rozanne and Dan were then driven through pitch black forests at 180kph in a blacked out Audi, plied with vodka, potatoes and breadcrumbed meat and made to sing along to Russian pop. And that's not even taking into account the 7 hour border crossing, rigourous strip search (of the blowdrying car) and more money changing hands they had to endure, all in the name of finding the best berries for our smoothies.
It was all worth it when they got there though as they got to taste loads of berries and meet this excellent chap
He is in charge of about twenty or so berry collection points, which is where all the farmers turn up each day, in Fiat Pandas laden with fruit to be sent further afield.
Here are Dan and Rozanne sampling some berries
And here they are post berry-buying-vodka-toasting-high-speed-driving-traffic-police-bribing antics, playing catch up kip.
Berry buying at it's finest.