From the food on our plates, to the clothes we wear and the air that we breathe, nature is all around us. Yet today’s fast-paced world of technology and machinery has distanced us from the earth’s resources. Many of us have disconnected ourselves from nature and we quickly forget all that it provides and the miracles it performs every day.
Sustainable consumption applies to so many areas of our lives, but for me, I think it is meat that is one of the most troubling areas. ‘Eat meat, but eat less, and of a higher quality’ has always been my view, but for many people, poorly produced meat is a daily staple, consumed each day with little thought for the detrimental impact on our health, our animals or our planet.
I am incredibly proud of the fact that Daylesford is one of the most sustainable farms in the country. Since the very beginning we have set out to farm, grow, produce and sell food according to sustainable principles and every year we learn new ways to work in harmony with nature and get one step closer to our ultimate goal of being 100% self sufficient.
Daylesford Discusses is a series of events held every other month where we bring together a panel of experts to highlight and debate a variety of issues around food, health, well-being, sustainability, balance and conscious choices.
As a passionate supporter of sustainable farming I was delighted to read Michael Grove’s recent statements in support of sustainable farming, starting with a ban on neonicotinoids to protect our valuable soils.
Christmas is my favourite time of year and decorating the house is something that I always look forward to. This Christmas we are holding a number of wreath workshops at the farm, when our team of expert florists will show you how to make seasonal wreaths and garlands using natural foliage and blooms foraged from the farm.
As autumn reaches its peak, Daylesford’s Environmental Scientist Tim Field gives us an insight into various sightings from around the farm and tips on the wildlife we need to look out for as the season for hibernation closes in. “Now is an excellent time to see wildlife on the farm.”
I have always loved keeping hens – for the sheer enjoyment as much as for the promise of fresh eggs each morning. Hens are engaging and inquisitive creatures that really are low maintenance and rewarding to keep.
As we gathered the honey from our hives in the summer, we were mindful of the remarkable effort that goes into every precious golden drop. The hard work of the bees begins long before harvest and at Daylesford we are committed to supporting our favourite pollinators throughout the year.
Our busy bees have had a great spring and summer this year, with plentiful hedgerows, orchards and good flying weather in the early season all contributing to a bountiful harvest. The fields of wildflower and lavender that we have at Daylesford, together with the second flowering of clover and Sainfoin have also bolstered their reserves, making this one of our best years yet for our estate honey.
At Daylesford we are looking forward to celebrating autumn at our HARVEST FESTIVAL later this month. Our excitement is being fuelled by the hedgerows and verges ripening with the mellow fruitfulness of the season. The early glimpses of the bright, glossy berries peeping out of our hedgerows are a sign of the colourful and delicious bounty to come in the full flush of Harvest.
There is something very special about coming together at the end of the summer to give thanks for what our gardens and pastures have produced and I am looking forward to our Harvest Festival on Saturday 23rd September. Good food and traditional family fun are at the heart of the festival and I am particularly excited about our Honey Show, held in honour of our bees who have been working hard all summer to pollinate the wildflowers and crops on the farm.
National Nest Box Week is an annual initiative that encourages everyone to put up nest boxes in their local area in order to promote and enhance biodiversity and conservation of our breeding birds and wildlife.
Practicing yoga with your child can held create a wonderful bond and is a great way to stretch the body and calm the mind of young and old alike.
As the days become longer after the turn of the year, I look forward to the green winter crops, which are now being harvested from our market garden.
The combination of fragrant quince and earthy cobnuts in this tart really celebrates the flavours of the colder months. Served with a spoonful of whipped mascarpone or clotted cream to cut through the sweet caramel, it’s very moreish indeed! If you struggle to find quince, do replace them with pears – simply bake for a slightly shorter time, until just tender.
I am so happy to announce that our new Home and Garden Room has opened at the farm.
Our Christmas floristry classes are always popular, but there are still a few spaces left on our Creative Christmas Flowers and Garlands class on 9th December.
One of our award winning soups, this is one for the autumn, when the big winter beetroots are around and their earthiness combines beautifully with the smokiness of the bacon and the sweet, sharpness of the crème fraiche.
I am so excited to be unveiling our new Home & Garden Room at a special preview evening at the farm.
The stars shine brightest in the countryside so join us at our farm in the Cotswolds for an evening of stargazing on Wednesday 9th November.
Willow Crossley is a floral stylist whose wild, natural style I really like. Shying away from formal, neat displays, Willow’s creations include lots of foliage, branches and wild flowers in jam jars.
Over the years, I have formed a close and special working relationship with architect Spencer Fung.
I am absolutely thrilled that The Wild Rabbit has been awarded their first Michelin star, with Executive Chef Tim Allen at the helm.
Join us for an evening’s discussion with two inspiring chefs as they discuss and share their thoughts and tips for cooking seasonally, whilst enjoying chilled Daylesford prosecco and delicious bruschetta.
Every September we hold a Harvest Festival at the farm, to give thanks for another year’s harvest and to celebrate the ample produce that the British growing season has brought us.
Lucy Auge is a young botanical artist whose delicate ink paintings explore the subtle differences of shapes and patterns found in the plants.
In China, Japan, Vietnam and many other East Asian countries, tea is much more than just a drink.
This is a fantastic way of using up ripe tomatoes that are becoming too soft to use for salads.
Bircher muesli was first developed by Dr Maximilian Bircher-Benner, a Swiss doctor who wanted to create a perfectly balanced breakfast and believed wholeheartedly in increasing ones intake of raw foods.
This September sees the return of Organic September – the Soil Association’s annual celebration of all things organic.
Autumn is fast approaching and as the seasons change we welcome our new Bamford collection in to our stores.
This year the team who look after our Cotswolds Market Garden have grown over 45 varieties of heritage tomatoes
A former monk and long-term peace and environment activist, Satish Kumar has been quietly setting the global agenda for change over the last 50 years.
Patrick Holden has been a guiding light to me for many years. As Director of the Soil Association from 1995 to 2010.
August is the time for children to be outside exploring the countryside and this summer we are holding a number of children’s floristry classes.
During July and August, our Market Garden is laden with delicious peas, beans and fresh herbs.
Our beautiful Cotswold Cottages are located a short walk away from The Wild Rabbit in the quiet village of Kingham
We grow thousands of heritage tomatoes in our organic market garden at Daylesford each year
We enjoyed a magical dinner in the market garden last weekend – our first big picnic at the farm and the highlight of our summer picnic season.
Set over 20 acres of our organic farmland, our Market Garden in the summer months is overflowing with vibrant, fresh produce.
There are few things more evocative of summer than the scent of lavender in the sun. Whether it is a lilac field in the Mediterranean or a row of shrubs in an English cottage garden.
This is the simplest of soups to celebrate summer. It is lovely to make when you have fresh peas.
Farming with a conscience is not just about taking care of our animals: it is for the benefit of the soil, the pollinators and the wider natural environment.
Green juices are a great way to start the day, helping to cleanse the body and boost the mind.
Agricology launched one year ago, and what an incredibly active year it has been.
Artisans are at the heart of Daylesford and I am particularly proud of our bakery at the farm, where we bake our organic bread each day.
For some time now, kale has been hailed the queen of healthy green vegetables – be it massaged, juiced or wilted.
These bright, crunchy vegetable wraps are a recipe created by the Cookery School team. Light and vibrant, they make for a brilliant starter or canapé on a summers evening and can be prepped in advance.
This is simply about celebrating the bounty of the summer garden on any given day.
I have always believed that summer is a time for slowing down and savouring the good things in life: good food, good friends and good health.
At Daylesford we are passionate about sustainability and giving back to the farmland that nourishes us.
For centuries, dry rosé wine has been a staple in the south of France, where it is has long been considered the best wine to enjoy day and night beside the sea.
Wild Garlic is one of my favourite foraged ingredients and something that I love to pick up on my daily walks with the dogs.
Summerill & Bishop in Clarendon Cross is a shop that I have been visiting for many years.
This is a marriage of Queen of Puddings.
Preparations are now well under way for this year’s Summer Festival, which takes place at the farm on Saturday 21st May.
I have collected cookbooks for many years now and finding new ones to add to my collection always gives me great joy.
Our animals live a happy and content life on the farm – roaming freely in the fields and living off a grass based, organic diet.
We make this in spring and early summer, when English asparagus is in season, and it pairs well with goat’s cheese.
Last November we launched Agricology – an online and in-field platform offering practical information and advice for farmers about sustainable British agriculture.
At Bamford we celebrate the work of artisans.
I am so happy to announce that our newly refurbished pizza bar, The Old Spot, will be opening on Friday 15th April at our Kingham farm.
The official meaning of ‘artisan’ is someone with a skilled trade, who makes quality products by hand.
To celebrate the beginning of spring we are launching a new series of weekend events at the farm.
There was big news last week from the European Parliament as MEPs voted to take action to curb the use of antibiotics in farming – something that I have always believed in.
Wild Garlic & Pumpkin Seed Pesto
Spring is one of my favourite times to walk in the countryside with my grandchildren and gather seasonal, foraged food like wild garlic and meadowsweet.
Come and join us at the farm on 2nd April for an introduction on bees – our most vital pollinators.
Early April is a time for new life on the farm, when the lambing season is in full swing.
Fenwick on Bond Street is one of my favourite department stores, both for its eclectic mix of independent fashion brands and its excellent beauty hall.
Spring is the time for floristry and there are few things I enjoy as much as creating interesting and beautiful flower arrangements, for the table and for the home.
Earth Hour is a global annual event organised by WWF where millions of people switch off their lights for one hour.
The hot cross bun is one of the most iconic British baked goods – dating as far back as Saxon times.
Easter, for me, is one of the most uplifting times of the year: a time for green shoots in the garden and new life on the farm.
Rhubarb can be quite low in pectin, despite its tartness, and it does tend to break down in to a puree as it cooks, so the texture is a little different to other jams, but the flavour is wonderful.
To celebrate Mothering Sunday Bamford have created a number of special, handmade gifts to show your mother just how much she is cherished.
We shall be celebrating Mother’s Day at the farm on Sunday 6th March with a number of special events.
The health and future of our planet is dependent on a diverse food and farming system and yet the biodiversity of our seeds – one of the world’s most precious recourses – is rapidly diminishing.
I was so happy to read a new study published today, which shows that organic meat and dairy products contain around 50% more nutritionally beneficial omega-3 fatty acids than non-organic.
Chateau Leoube is set on the coast of Provence, within one of the most beautiful protected sites in Europe.
The Cheltenham Festival is, for me, the highlight of the National Hunt season and this year we shall be celebrating with an evening of fine dining and racing talk at the farm on Sunday 13th March.
Come and join us at our Notting Hill farmshop for a Supper Club with food writer and contributing Vogue editor Calgary Avansino.
Artisan skills lie at the heart of everything that we do at the farm and this February we shall be holding a week-long series of classes at The Cookery School.
For me, nothing heralds the end of winter quite like snowdrops.
This is a tart for winter, since Jerusalem artichokes are always sweeter and more flavoursome after the first frost.
Early spring is a wonderful time for bird watching and it’s a great way to get children outside and exploring the wildlife.
Treat yourself and your loved one this Valentines Day to a relaxing, romantic weekend getaway at Daylesford farm.
Find the perfect present for your Valentines this year with Bamford’s selection of special gifts.
Beef brisket is one of my favourite recipes for this time of year. The key to brisket is the thick layer of fat that melts while cooking and a long, slow cook in a low heat oven.
Refreshing, vitamin-dense citrus fruit is something that I crave at this time of year and one of my favourite January rituals is to make a big batch of Seville Marmalade.
Join us at the farm on Saturday 16th January for our Health & Wellbeing Open Day, from 9am – 6pm.
My love affair with India started 40 years ago and during that time I have been drawn back time and time again.
This January The Cookery School is focusing on gut friendly food with a great line up of health based classes, from how to make the perfect bone broth to cooking for the family without dairy, gluten and added sugar.
Kickstart healthy eating habits this new year and give your body a chance to repair and rejuvenate by taking a break from processing food with Daylesford’s 1 and 3 day organic cold-press juice cleanses.
Roger Saul, founder of Mulberry and Sharpham Park, will be hosting a supper club at Daylesford’s Pimlico cafe on 19th January.
January is the time for warm, cosy layers and Bamford’s Haybarn Collection of essential pieces for travel, spa and relaxation are perfect for wrapping up in comfort.
Nature lies at the heart of Bamford and these beauty gifts would make an indulging gift for family or friends.
Shake off the Christmas excess with a wildlife walk around the Daylesford Farm on Sunday 27th December.
Daylesford’s farmshops are full of organic festive food that would make a lovely gift for all the family.
Decorating the house for Christmas is something that I look forward to every year.
The Daylesford Cookery School has provided this light dinner party starter, which is crammed full of useful techniques that can either be used individually or together.
To help you prepare for Christmas Day, Château Léoube’s head wine maker Romaine Ott has put together some suggestions.
A rich, spiced pudding that is perfect for this time of year.
Today the press has been filled with articles on findings from a new report commissioned by the Prime Minister about antibiotics in livestock.
This Saturday is World Soil Day – a global celebration of the importance of soil.
On Friday 27th November the Daylesford Foundation, along with the Organic Research Centre and the Allerton Project, are launching Agricology.
This Sunday is Stir Up Sunday – the traditional day when families come together to make the Christmas pudding, with everyone giving the pudding a stir whilst making a wish.
Hamiltons Gallery in Mayfair is one of my favourite photography galleries and their latest exhibition of flowers by Irving Penn is worth a visit.
It has been almost six months since my son, George and I launched Bamford Grooming Department.
As the days get shorter and the weather colder, Daylesford’s resident nutritionist and life coach Rhaya Jordan shares her knowledge on mood-boosting foods.
Bamford’s Home Collection of small household items has been created by artisans who share our love for natural, handmade craft.
As the nights get longer and the temperature drops, it is especially important to look after your health and make sure that your immune system is boosted in preparation for winter.
The gentle cooking of the rice over a bain marie makes this pudding not only soft and creamy, but also incredibly easy to make.
Fruit liqueurs are one of the joys of winter and are a fantastic way to warm up on a country walk or to enjoy at the end of a good lunch.
Join us on the farm for the WellChild Christmas from Monday 9th – Wednesday 11th November.
I am so happy to share with you the newly launched Daylesford website.
At Daylesford we promote healthy eating, real food with low or no sugar content and always truthful labelling on all our products.
A favourite seasonal pudding and a great way to make the most of this autumn’s glut of blackberries. Serve with either custard of cream.
Elephant Family now funds 20 projects across Asia and its latest mission is to create an Assam corridor in North East India.
This November we are holding our first supper club at the farm, which will celebrate seasonal autumnal produce in all its natural glory.
Knitwear has been the beating heart of Bamford since the very beginning. It was the starting point for our first ever collection back in 2006 and has inspired all of our collections ever since.
Our slow clothing philosophy extends to caring for your cashmere – there is no short cut to washing your knits if you want them to last a lifetime.
I love pumpkin and spice and this is a great alternative to a meat casserole. Great with rice or couscous and a dollop of sour cream.
I was so flattered to be featured in the inspiration section of Ella Woodward’s website Deliciously Ella last week.
The Bamford Haybarn has doubled in size following a major refurbishment, and now offers nine tranquil treatment rooms alongside three Pilates and Yoga studios and a beautiful new manicure and pedicure area.
This autumnal tart can be made with cavolo nero as an alternative to kale if you prefer, or even spinach.
Truffles are one of Autumn’s delights and I always look forward to the first truffles of the season.
This October sees the return of Wellness Week at the Cookery School, with the focus on healthy cooking for the family and children.
A wonderful seasonal soup, this is very rich – so you don’t need to serve enormous bowls of it – fantastically smooth and silky, with a great colour and just the right element of sweetness.
Today is the start of Wool Week UK: the Campaign For Wool’s annual celebration of all things wool.
Nature is at the heart of all that we do at Bamford and our skincare range is no exception.
Bamford’s Autumn/Winter 2015 collection is now in store and our beautiful new journal has just arrived.
Daylesford Harvest Festival
It seems that Autumn is now on its way, bringing with it a new crop of seasonal produce, including green cobnuts, crisp apples, juicy blackberries and new season honey harvested from hives on the estate.
The wine harvest is now underway at Leoube and it looks like it is going to be a fantastic year, with the hot summer producing grapes that are full of flavour.
I am so excited about the launch of our Bamford Skincare range. Developed with therapists for treatments at the Bamford Haybarn spa.
This month sees the return of Organic September – an annual initiative launched by the Soil Association to celebrate all things organic.
Jamie Oliver has declared war on sugar and it’s a campaign that I wholeheartedly support. Here at Daylesford we promote healthy eating, real food with low or no sugar content and always truthful labelling on all our products. Sadly, the same cannot be said for the majority of other food companies.
A good chutney is about the balance of sweet and sour flavours; this one is a lovely accompaniment with cheese, terrines and roast pork.
This weekend the Daylesford Cookery School will be setting up camp at the Big Feastival on Alex James’s farm in Kingham.
The Telegraph Magazine ran a great piece on Daylesford’s tomatoes, which I wanted to share with you here.
For me, sloes signify the end of summer and the beginning of the autumn season.
We’ve been busy on the farm sowing 30 acres of sainfoin seed to feed our animals in the winter. A traditional haylage crop once prized in the Cotswolds, Daylesford is once again growing sainfoin because of its high suitability to an organic environment.
Everything in this summer garden soup is raw, but as well as the bright, fresh flavours, the pleasure comes from the different textures.
The recent press articles on Genetically Modified crops got me thinking about Vandana Shiva – an inspirational environmental activist who has been campaigning for changes in the practice and paradigms of agriculture and food for over 30 years.
I can think of few better ways to spend a summer’s day than having a picnic with my grandchildren. During the summer months, we love to pack a basket full of fresh food and head outside to find the perfect spot to relax and enjoy great food.
Satish Kumar is someone for whom I have great admiration and respect. A former monk and long-term peace and environment activist, he has been quietly setting the Global Agenda for change for over 50 years.
The market garden is the heart of Daylesford, from where we harvest all of our organic fruit, vegetables, salad leaves and herbs.
I have always felt very strongly against Genetically Modified crops (GM) and so was interested to read about the latest series of test results.
I have always thought of Daylesford as one big family and I am proud of investing in the people that work with us.
Port Eliot is the historic seat of the Earl and Countess of St German and one of the most beautiful places in the country.
Ease: Easy Serves: 6 Time: 30 minutes 1 punnet of strawberries 3 egg yolks…
I was interested to read about the Royal Geographical Society’s latest exhibition of photography and film, which is shining a light on to climate change and social inequity.
I love to discover hidden gardens in London’s urban landscape and think the Open Garden Squares Weekend sounds like a wonderful way to explore a lesser-known side of the capital.
This year’s Summer Festival was a fantastic celebration of organic food, farming, craft and cookery.
I’m looking forward to the opening of the Chelsea Flower Show this Tuesday and in particular seeing the Chatsworth House show garden.
I was recently given the most beautiful photograph by a food artist called Amber Locke and wanted to share some of her works with you on my blog.
Like us, the team at Wilderness are incredibly passionate about food and we are thrilled to be partnering with their cookery school to present a packed programme of talks, demonstrations, workshops and practical cookery classes.
For anyone interested in bees, beekeeping, honey, gardening or nature, there is an interesting new Sunday session taking place at the cookery school in July.
Farmed livestock have determined our landscape for millennia.
I have a great respect for the bond that exists between humans and horse and so was interested to read about a new exhibition by Charlotte Dumas.
It has just been announced that The Cookery School will be collaborating with Wilderness Festival this year for a series of cookery classes and demonstrations.
I recently visited our vineyard, Chateau Leoube, in the South of France and wanted to share with you these photographs of the sheep grazing among the vines.
Venison is the healthiest of all meats. Lean, iron rich, low in fat and high in protein, it is, I think, a meat we should all be eating more of.
The Wild Rabbit has just released its latest calendar and there are some great events lined up for the next six months.
I am delighted to introduce Bamford’s Spring Summer 2015 collection, which goes in to our stores on Monday.
Our four-minute film tells the story behind Daylesford – how we started, how we have grown and how we are continuing to learn and develop each day.
Daylesford’s new supernutrient powders are a brilliant way to fit some extra goodness into your daily food intake.
I am delighted to announce that The Wild Rabbit has been awarded a third Rosette by the AA Guide.
As part of our eat to be healthy campaign we have put together a list of some of the best seasonal ingredients to add to your salads, soups and roasts.
A selection of photos from January.