Forage and glamp along North Norfolk coast

Fancy a nice meal or two, enhanced with a spot of foraging along the North Norfolk coast?

From June 15-17 and September 14-16, glamping company Margins has teamed up with chef and forager Simon Hunter Marsh (a local Norfolk Food Hero) and his partner Kate Anderson, to offer an opportunity for people to learn about and cook from nature’s bountiful pantry.

Gin Wilson-North, from Margins, said: “Everything will be set up ready to welcome you when you arrive in our fully-equipped safari style tents plus all meals are included, although you do have to find and forage most of the ingredients.”

Guests will walk from their camp at Stiffkey, foraging along the coastline and countryside in that area, learning what they can and can’t eat, what the health benefits are, how to prepare and cook foraged finds and ultimately sit down together to enjoy meals of local produce enhanced by foraged culinary delights, which will undoubtedly include samphire.

To find out more including cost and what is included go to



Small businesses encouraged to bid for concession pitches in North Norfolk

Start-up businesses and small traders are being given the chance to secure their own pitches across North Norfolk.

It follows a decision by North Norfolk District Council to increase the number of concession pitches across the area. It will increase consumer choice, benefit taxpayers and open up more opportunities for local businesses.

Judy Oliver, portfolio holder for asset commercialisation, said: “Our concession locations have always been popular and many businesses have come back year after year because of the opportunities the sites provide.

“Following a review of our portfolio, we have now identified some further possible sites for concessions. This will provide opportunities for more local businesses and a wider choice of facilities for locals and visitors, as well as providing further revenue for the council and the district.”

The sites are in places such as busy car parks and seaside promenades and the concessions typically include hot food and ice-cream vans, but NNDC is hoping to expand the offerings and will consider any business that wants to bid for a pitch.

North Norfolk District Council leader Tom FitzPatrick said: “Taking on a concession pitch can be a great way for start-up businesses to test the market and hone their skills before looking for bigger premises. The rents are more affordable than on fixed premises and running costs are lower.”

Two supporters of the concessions scheme are Nathan and Adele Boon (pictured), who signed a three-year deal last season on a pitch in Overstrand for their business, The Bucket List, which sells buckets of chips with homemade toppings.

Adele said: “It had been an idea we had wanted to pursue for a while but we needed the location to be just right. The concession at Overstrand gave us a very well-kept position overlooking the beautiful North Norfolk coast. Having the site has given us a fantastic concept and created the ability to grow our business fast.

“We promote the area and use it at the forefront of advertising through social media, and it has certainly worked. We couldn’t be happier with our pitch.”

North Norfolk’s concession businesses have traditionally operated between April and December but NNDC is looking to bring the 2018 start date forward to March, so that businesses can make the most of Easter.

To apply for a concession pitch, visit Applications must be submitted by early January.

Plan, eat and you really do save


Many of us would not consider ourselves to be wasteful. There are few people above chopping off the sprouting parts of potatoes that have been left at the back of a cupboard and does anyone really have an issue with eating a banana that has gone slightly brown?

It seems that not everyone has as loose standards as me because it has been reported that in Norfolk, food waste makes up approximately one third of the contents of our bins. The average family could save £700 a year, simply by throwing away less food.

Plan Eat Save is Norfolk County Council’s campaign to help Norfolk residents reduce their food waste and save money. Part of the campaign has been to encourage people to sign up to the Food Waste Challenge, which I myself did back in September at a Plan Eat Save cooking demo outside the Forum in Norwich.

The cooking demo was hosted by one of Norfolk’s best-loved chefs and YouTubers, Ian Haste from Haste’s Kitchen. Ian is the campaign’s official ambassador and a huge advocate of stripping cooking back to the basics and getting everyone involved in creating simple but delicious meals.

Speaking at the demo, Ian said: “Fifteen million tonnes of food is thrown away in the UK every year and a huge majority of that comes from our homes. I’ve teamed up with Plan Eat Save because I want to share tips and recipe’s to help people stretch their food further and longer, and save them money. I’ll be working with Plan Eat Save to show people what to do with leftovers that will appeal to the whole family.”

Just over three months after signing up to the Food Waste Challenge with the Plan Eat Save team at the cooking demo, I reviewed my weekly online food bill and discovered that in total compared to previous months, I had saved just under £150. This was including Christmas, which we all know is a more extravagant time of year (those mince pies and quality street aren’t going to eat themselves…).

By simply using the challenge’s weekly meal planner and taking note of the weekly top tip’s on Plan Eat Save’s Instagram, I had not only saved money, I had also become more organised with meal planning and wasted less food.

To find out more and sign up to the Food Waste Challenge, visit:

To check out Ian’s YouTube channel:

Aylsham High pupil springs into cookery finals

Aylsham High pupil Scarlett Addison cooked up a storm to reach Springboard’s FutureChef Regional Final.

On Friday at City College Norwic, four young, aspiring chefs competed in FutureChef 2017. FutureChef directly relates to the national curriculum and gives young people a life skill. It aims to tackle the severe skills shortage facing hospitality by inspiring 12-16 year olds to develop their cooking skills and understanding of nutrition.

Springboard’s FutureChef features a four stage national competition, annually involving more than 8,000 participants. It also includes classroom resources, chef demonstrations and skills challenges, and forms a link between schools and hospitality employers.

Scarlett, 16, went through to reach the East of England Regional Final of Springboard’s FutureChef competition with her menu of duck and chips followed by “floating islands”.

Scarlett said: “I really enjoy cooking and love working at Benedicts Restaurant part time, it’s so much fun. I am looking forward to working towards the regional final.”

The competition will culminate on March 27, with the National Final taking place at Westminster Kingsway College in London.


Tesco pitches in with food to help charities

Every day food goes to waste as supermarkets close up at the end of a working day.

But Tesco is Aylsham is planning to put its leftovers to good use with a new scheme open to charities.

Each day, charities will be given the chance to come and take the short date produce to distribute as they wish.

In charge of the Aylsham Tesco project are Kay Harwood and Dawn Bence and they are keen for charities and good causes to get in touch with the store.

“We hoping to create a really good partnership with the community to help,” said Kay. “Our Community Food Connection is a way we can help out and stop more waste going into landfill.”

Each evening at 7pm, the duty manager at the store will pack the food into boxes and contact a charity, a different one each day, to come and collect.

The scheme is also being run in other Tesco branches.

It’s just one of several ways the store is hoping to give something back to the community.

The Aylsham branch is also planning to organise regular cream teas for older people, the first of which was on July 20.

Staff are also keen to get involved in the town’s community garden and will be offering help to the community through volunteers doing odd jobs.

Anyone interested in finding out more about any of the above can contact Dawn on 07718 522476 or contact the store and ask for the duty manager on 01215 197165.


Pictured are Kay and Dawn. Picture by Molly Foss


Legendary footballer helps raise funds for charity

Norwich City Football Club legend Jeremy Goss was at a special charity evening at the Desh World Foods Supermarket in Magdalen Street, Norwich, on May 1 to help raise funds for The Norfolk & Norwich Association for the Blind (NNAB).

The event was sponsored by Shana Foods, one of Desh Supermarket’s main suppliers of Asian foods. Nikhil Desai from Shana Foods and Abul Hussain, director of Desh Supermarket, welcomed guests and encouraged them to enjoy freshly-cooked paratha bread, curry, spicy rice and lamb kebabs, together with non-alcoholic drinks, which were served in the Desh Deli during the evening. Guests were also given a goody bag containing Shana Foods items, plus incense sticks and Desh shopping vouchers.

Members of the Magdalen Street & Anglia Square Traders Association (MATA) were also invited and helped to make the opening evening a success in raising awareness of the importance of the multi-cultural shopping area of Norwich.

Mike Talbot, CEO of the charity NNAB, along with his colleague Donna Minto, presided over the prize raffle draw, and thanked all those who had helped raise funds for their charity.

 Left to right: Nikhil Desai of Shana Foods, Mike Talbot of NNAB, Erik Kirk of MATA, Abul Hussain of Desh Supermarket and Donna Minto of NNAB.

Left to right: Nikhil Desai of Shana Foods, Mike Talbot of NNAB, Erik Kirk of MATA, Abul Hussain of Desh Supermarket and Donna Minto of NNAB.


Desh Supermarket director Abul Hussain with his sons, Norwich City footballer Jeremy Goss, Nikhil Desai of Shana Foods and a supermarket staff member at the charity evening.

Desh Supermarket director Abul Hussain with his sons, Norwich City footballer Jeremy Goss, Nikhil Desai of Shana Foods and a supermarket staff member at the charity evening.

Presenter to open new Hoveton cafe

Channel 4’s Food Unwrapped presenter Kate Quilton will officially open the Garden Kitchen Cafe in the picturesque grounds of Hoveton Hall this Sunday (May 1).
The cafe is the latest venture by Norfolk chef Alex Firman and is housed in the old dairy barn. He said: “It’s real food cooked by real chefs using quality local and seasonal ingredients. It’s home cooked food with heart. We’re about flavour not flounce.”
Firman and his team, including front of house manager and former city florist Libby Ferris, grow their own produce in the nearby Hoveton Hall walled garden and source much of their ingredients locally including lamb from the neighbouring Hoveton Hall farm and locally caught fish.
“We want eating in the Garden Kitchen Cafe to feel like drawing up a chair to the best farmhouse kitchen table you can
imagine,” said Alex, who is catering for Kate’s wedding later this year. Kate will carrying out the honours at around noon.
The cafe has a diverse menu including Norfolk Plough Pudding, Tuscan-inspired Sunday roasts and classics like ploughman’s lunches with sour dough bread, Norfolk Dapple cheese and home-made bread and butter pickle. Signature ice cream sundaes will feature innovative flavours like rhubarb and custard ginger crumble.

Children can play in an enclosed field opposite which Alex plans to fill with a mini street of colourfully painted play houses and old wooden boats with sand.

kate web