Elm Court Farmers Market
Sunday 6th December & it’s our Christmas Drinks Special
As well as being Produced in Kent Farmers Market of The Year 2013 & a finalist this year, Elm Court Farmers Market with over 25 producers booked in, is now a regular shopping destination for fresh local produce in the Medway area.
Way back in October we ran Pink Sunday. Thanks for your support with this.
Having now counted up the odd £20 note and the many more bags of small change, we can happily tell you that across our 3 markets we raised just over £800, so thank you all so much for your support this year again.
December at Elm Court Farmers Market
Where has the year gone? 2015 has flown by and it’s time yet again to get ready for the Christmas feasting. Just like stir-up Sunday and opening the first door on the advent calendar, a visit to your local Farmers’ market is the perfect way to get into the true spirit of Christmas. The sights, scents and sounds of the season are all present as you mingle with other food enthusiasts, all intent on selecting the best produce to enjoy at this special time of year or simply there to soak up the atmosphere. Whether it’s shopping for tried and trusted old favourites, getting advice on the best way to cook your carefully selected produce from those most qualified to offer it, maybe trying something new for the first time – it’s all a world away from pushing an overloaded trolley round an overcrowded supermarket.
We will have cooking demonstrations which will feature plenty of local drink and mayby a turkey.
Thank you so much for that support.
You can find all your favourite producers at our other markets in December.
Tonbridge Farmers Market – Sunday 13th &
Aylesford Farmers Market – Sunday 20th
What to buy at our market in December.
Plan ahead to get the most from your trip
To make sure you get the best from your visit and spend your budget wisely, be sure to plan ahead and do a bit of research. Sit down a few days before the market and make lists of the essentials plus a few treats and surprises to help take the hard work out of all the cooking. If you’ve forgotten to order items ahead such as the turkey or maybe a goose, phone or email individual suppliers to see if they can fulfill your order ready to pick up at the market.
Whatever you are planning for the big event – maybe a succulent goose or magnificent roast of rare breed beef or pork, or just going with tradition and sticking with turkey check what size you will need. You might be catering for smaller numbers so a pheasant or wild duck could be the best choice. And wonderful sea-fresh turbot or halibut are both very special for all kinds of celebrations. Whichever you choose, buying locally makes sense on every level. Smaller producers can select the best breeds for flavour and respond to local conditions to ensure the very finest results. You’ll also be supporting vital regional industry and have the satisfaction of caring for the environment too.
Once you’ve made your list of what you intend to buy at the market (and don’t forget it’s also the ideal place to pick up all kinds of special foodie gifts too), it’s a good idea to make a few simple preparations for your trip. If you haven’t ordered ahead and there is something you can’t manage without then aim to get there early so you don’t miss that special purchase. Make a trip to the cash machine ahead of your visit. Some producers do accept cards but many smaller ones don’t have the facilities so be prepared. It’s intensely frustrating to run out of money before you’ve bought all your essentials. Come with plenty of bags to carry away your goodies, and a freezer bag is always a good idea if you want to leave perishable goods in the car (unless we have a repeat of the arctic weather of some recent winters!) And before you leave home it’s a great idea to check you have enough fridge and freezer space for your purchases – storing them properly is vital to maintain flavour and quality.
What to choose this month…
The wet summer, sunny autumn and mild early winter have been good for many growers and producers which makes this year a great opportunity to feature foods from the area for your Christmas entertaining. Celebrating the winter solstice with feasts, frolics and fun goes back way beyond Christian traditions. With the harvest all in and a long dark winter to face, folk needed a lift and many of the foods we associate with the season have been featuring on feasting menus for centuries. Cranberries, turkey and pumpkins may have come to us from the new world but we can more than match these imports with chestnuts, celeriac, parsnips, Brussels sprouts, goose, pheasant, partridge, venison, wild duck, oyster, mussels and sea bass. Plan your menu around these and you won’t go far wrong. Don’t forget the extras such as sausagemeat and bacon for the trimmings, maybe a chicken liver pate or local hot smoked salmon to serve as a starter, and to round up, traditional Christmas pudding served with thick cream or ice cream, warmed mince pies and a platter of carefully selected local cheeses.
As well as all the traditional festive produce, there are plenty of speciality foods and dishes at the market to help save time and feed crowds over the holiday. A gammon or ham, pates and terrines, soups and curries, all are worth finding a space for in the fridge or freezer to bring out for unexpected guests or when you are just too overwhelmed to prepare yet another meal. Also don’t forget to stock up on chutneys, preserves and relishes to go with your cold cuts. In fact why not go the whole hog and serve a special local market spread on Boxing Day or for a party – platters of local meats, cheeses, with a couple of salads and the trimmings are excellent grazing food. And a few extra loaves of good bread tucked in the freezer for turkey sandwiches or to go with a bowl of soup will always be popular.
And if you have time to think ahead, it’s a great idea to stock up on local produce as gifts for families and friends. A hamper of goodies is a wonderful way to say thank you to a special friend for help during the year, and an over-worked host or hostess will welcome a carefully selected basket of treats, if you are going to others for the big day.
The Market Eatery
We have a fabulous selection of food at the Market Eatery. You can sit in our covered area, have a chat, watch the band or the cooking demonstrations. Hot, cold and alcoholic drinks can also be purchased. Supplying us all these mouth watering treats include:-
The Eatery Food Stall. Burgers, Sausages, Bacon & Fish in a roll & more. Most of the produce is supplied from our producers, including: Hemings Bakehouse, MB Farms, PJ’s Farm Shop, Pure Kent Oils, Stour Valley Game, Two Suns Quality Fish, Winterdale Cheesemakers.
Jo’s Cakes. Tea, coffee and of course, cakes, baked just down the road in Halling.
Pinetrees Farm. Award winning Cider & Apple Juice
Firkin Ale. Real Ale
The Cherryberry Co. Fresh fruit juice and in the colder months hot juice.
The Market Kitchen
As always we will have Matthew Kearsey-Lawson from Kent Fine Foods who will be showcasing some of his fabulous goodies in a variety of dishes.
Also becoming a regular at the kitchen is Paolo from Kent Collection. He is Michelin trained and does some wonderful stuff with the Charcuterie that his company makes. Call
by his stall to see if he is doing a demo. It will be worth watching and tasting.
John the Baker will be baking something special. If you want him to show you anything in particular let him know and he will try and demo it next month.
He is still very busy doing group demonstrations in customer’s homes. If you like the idea of this his contact details are-
All our demonstrations will be featuring local drinks this month.
Music at the Market
We will have some carols this month.
Our monthly charity.
The market gives a free pitch to a charity each month, so please contact us if you would like to take advantage of this. These pitches are going quite quickly so do please get in touch if you are interested.
The market will run from 9.30am – 1.30pm at Elm Court (formerly Wyevale) Garden Centre, Capstone Road, Gillingham. ME7 3JQ
By supporting your local markets you are supporting small and micro businesses, the backbone of the economic recovery.
If you need a bigger fix of Farmers Markets and local produce please come and see us at –
Tonbridge Farmers Market, 13th December and the 2nd Sunday of every month.
Aylesford Farmers Market at the Priory, 20th December and the 3rd Sunday of every month.
Next month is our Farmhouse Breakfast Special at Elm Court Farmers’ Market January 3rd.
Future dates for the Elm Court market are
7th February 2016….Scallop Sunday
6th March 2016…Month is Marmalade Month
3rd April 2016…The Big Curry
1st May 2016…Real Bread Month
5th June 2016…Our 4th Birthday and it’s Kent Farmers Market Month
3rd July 2016… A Berry Bonanza
7th August 2016…The Chilli Circus
4th September 2016… A Jam Jamboree
2nd October 2016 …Pink Sunday
6th November 2016…Love Cheese
4th December 2016…Christmas Drinks Special
1st January 2017…No Market-It’s new years day.
Contact details are
Steve Wood 07876 685853
Elm Court Farmers Market
PO Box 325