River Journey to River Cottage for Tamar Apple Crumble

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Shamrock with schoolchildrenHoney, apples and eggs from the Tamar Valley are preparing for a special river journey from Calstock to Plymouth this September.

They will then be transformed into a tasty apple crumble by a group of school children from Buckland Monachorum, under the watchful eye of top River Cottage chef, Joe Draper.

The ingredients for the crumble will be sourced from the Tamar Valley Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty, and transported along the River Tamar by SailTrade’s traditional sailing boat. Andy Whiteford from SailTrade says, “My aim is teach children about sustainability, the history of the River Tamar and how it can be utilised today – what better way than with a locally sourced, organic, fairly traded, low carbon apple crumble made from scratch!”

Celia Steven, who devised this idea, is also great granddaughter of the founder of the Bramley apple, Henry Merryweather. Celia will join the group of school children at Buckland Monachorum’s Community Orchard, to gather the crop of apples. The fruit will be loaded into a cart, and pulled along by two ponies, Angus and Arran, as they make their way down to the boat at Weir Quay.

orchard_apple pickingCelia explains, “I wanted to kick start this year’s apple season in a unique and innovative way. Most apple growers throughout the UK had a disastrous year last year with a great shortage of apples. This year, with the cold start ripening the wood to encourage the fruit to take, coupled with a greater prevalence of bees this summer, we are set for a bumper crop.”

Joe Draper, chef at Royal William Yard’s River Cottage, says; “I am delighted to be part of this as I think it’s great for helping educate kids about food and where it’s from, and the importance of sourcing locally.”

The reward for all the children’s hard work throughout the day will be to taste the apple crumble that they helped to source, transport and make.

And the secret of a good apple crumble? Celia Steven says, “A great chef and the Bramley apples! These apples are so versatile and simply packed with flavour”. Joe Draper adds, “It’s important to still have chunks of apple in the crumble for texture, so not over-stewed”.

If you would like to show your support on Friday 13th September by waving the precious cargo on its way, SailTrade’s boat will be leaving:

  • Calstock at 10:30am
  • Cotehele, with flour from the Mill, at 11:15am
  • Weir Quay, with apples from Buckland Monachorum Community Orchard, at 12:30pm
  • Saltash at 1:30pm

Our grateful thanks to Tamar Grow Local and their producers for their support and generous donations of ingredients.

The Tamar Valley AONB

Working with people to celebrate and support the special landscape of the Tamar Valley and its rural way of life.

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