Monday, 3 October 2011

First Bloomsbury Farmers' Market

First Bloomsbury London Farmers Market
Bloomsbury London Farmers Market begins to warm up
I couldn't resist a trip to our first local Farmer's Market in Torrington Square - just beyond Waterstone's book shop - on Thursday.   I went early when many of the stalls were still setting up and the golden light seeping through the plane trees made it feel just like a market in France.   It wasn't a huge market but there is space for it to grow as I am sure it will.   Even if you go just to look it's impossible not to have the odd nibble with many samples on offer - in particular delicious and perfectly ripe fruit, cheeses, let alone cakes...

Some of the stall were one-person operations - Lois Lawrence "Plumbun" impressed me with "I cooked all the cakes yesterday".   Others were family or family + businesses.   The friendly guy on Nut Hall Farm's goat cheese and produce stand had plenty of stories to tell about belligerent goats and I had an interesting squirrel conversation with the lady on the fruit and veg stall (Brambletye Fruit Farms, I think!) selling fresh cob nuts and hazel nuts - the ones the squirrels didn't get.   Apparently they had sent a shipment to feed the red squirrel population of Brownsea island!   But I suspect most of them were snitched by the pesky common grey variety!

There were plenty of lunch opportunities (for those NOT watching their weight) - free-range meat burgers from Woodwards Farm, Giggly Pig's delicious free-range pork bangers and faggots.   Different stalls offered free-range produce breakfast rolls, lamb burgers and plenty of pastries and pies - even fresh paella - plus plenty of seasonal fresh fruit and pressed apple juice to wash it all down with.

For the shopping basket there were treats like beautiful courgette flowers and the Bath Soft Cheese Company's blue and brie-type cheese were succulently oozing with flavour and perfect ripeness.   Now I am making myself hungry again.

I will be back another Thursday having planned my weekly shopping needs and looking forward to the promise of more and different goodies on offer.

For more info see

Apple Produce, Bloomsbury Farmers Market
Flourish Bakery at Bloomsbury Farmers Market
Lois Lawrence "Plumbun" home made cakes
Courgette and other edible flowers
Giggly pig bangers at Bloomsbury Farmers Market
Gerberas at Bloomsbury Farmers Market
Fashion and hygiene collide, Woodwards Farm free-range burgers
Plenty for lunch at Bloomsbury Farmers Market

Friday, 26 August 2011

Coffees in Fitzrovia

   There are enough coffee shops around Fitzrovia to go to a different one every day for a month - or I would guess so.   But the other day Debs (one of my long-suffering assistants, baker of great cakes and photographer in her own right) and I went out to explore the idea of coffee-drinking photographically.   We didn't get far but decided that Italiano's on the corner of Goodge Street and Charlotte Street was the best cappuccino we had - and with croissants thrown-in!

We didn't rate the coffees at Eat but loved the plastic spoons! (below)

Thursday, 14 July 2011

Being paid to eat ice cream?

It is not often that I get to shoot on location, so when it is - apart from being a little nerve-racking - it is usually fun.

Just recently Golin Harris asked me to go up to Jean Christoph Novelli's Academy to shoot him preparing recipes for a Carte D-Or Ice cream Sundays promotion.   After a nerve-racking battle with the traffic the sat nav deposited us at a cross roads in the middle of 4 nice but fairly feature-less fields, telling us we had reached our destination.   Neither my nor my assistant's phones picked up any signal.   Fun eh.

We finally hit on asking at the nearest pub who naturally knew exactly where to direct us and arrived on time - only have to sit and wait for several hours while the video crew did their stuff.

By the time we got to shoot poor JC was pretty exhausted but none the less charming for that and we wrapped the whole thing up in about an hour and a half - which included - of course - tasting each dish.   Yum!


See Jean Christophe preparing the recipes on Carte D'Or's web site.

Tuesday, 28 June 2011

Tea and sympathy

... and tea and toast!

Anyone who has spent a day in the studio with me is bound to have heard me mention my Mum.   At 94 she still lives on her own, has more hobbies than me and I have to ring her up to check her social calendar before I make any arrangements for us to do anything together.   Not that she is ever too busy for me to pop in for tea and sympathy.

A dear friend and mentor of mine, photographer Peter Carey, suggested I photograph her as part of a new series of personal work about people eating and drinking.

Here is my Mum.............

With batter pudding from oven - "Hurry up dear, it's hot!"
We were staying with my sister in law when I shot these picture's of her hands at breakfast.   I love photographing people's hands, they are so expressive.   I did not photograph her actually eating it - she was fairly well tucking in!