The Garden
& Kitchen

For January, 2024

Our ethos is very much about sustainable produce and supporting local Sussex farms. Why not try some family activities at home and grow some veg this year and use it in family meals!

Prepare for
the new growing year!

Sow broad beans in pots in mild areas and place in a cold frame.

Sow seeds indoors for early crops such as lettuces, summer brassicas, spinach, salad onions and turnips.

Cultivate and prepare seed beds covering them with clear polythene, cloches or fleece to warm up the soil.

If the weather is reliably dry and frosty, leave heavy soils exposed, the frosts kill pests and improve soil structure.

Improve drainage of heavy soils by working in lots of organic matter

Save egg boxes as they will come in handy for potato chitting next month, source your seed potatoes.

Plan a rotation system for vegetable plots to ensure the same crops are not grown in the same beds each year.

Venison Stew

Family Recipe

2 carrots roughly chopped

140g turnip/swede roughly chopped

2 onions roughly chopped

3 celery sticks roughly chopped

Olive oil and butter for frying

3 garlic cloves crushed

1kg diced venison (we source ours from South Brockwells Farm)

5tbsp plain flour

Salt and pepper

2 tbsp redcurrant jelly

450ml red wine

450ml beef stock

1 bay leaf

Fresh thyme plant

Heat the oven to 180C. Fry the vegetables in a little oil and butter in a heavy-based casserole for 4-5 minutes, tip in the garlic and fry for another minute, then set aside.

Put the venison into a plastic bag with the flour and seasoning and shake to coat. Add a little more oil and butter to the pan and fry the venison over a high heat until browned in batches.

Add the redcurrant and wine to the pan and bring to the boil, pour in the stock, add some thyme, bay leaf, meat and vegetables, season if needed and bring to the boil. Cover and transfer to the oven for about 1 and ½ hours until tender.

Serve with seasonal vegetables of your choice and mash potatoes.