November Lambs

Some gorgeous little lambs are now arriving on the farm. Cornwall’s mild climate makes lambing this time of year possible as grass continues to grow through the winter. The lambs can then feed on the pastures and meadows along with the Ewe’s milk. They’re Polled Dorset Horns, a traditional West Country breed that are able to lamb at any time throughout the year as well as having lovely wool.

 

late september sunset

What a gorgeous end to September after quite a blustery stormy month. The mornings here have been shrouded in sea mist before clearing away to reveal a beautiful golden autumn sun. The sunset last night glowed across the horizon, it was a bit like viewing it from an aeroplane, such a vast horizon with a rising band of colour disappearing into a deep blue sky. Stunning. Here’s the view from the ‘Higher Blow the Winds’ field, close to St Ewe village. Enjoy the sunshine!

 

Late Summer Sun

A glorious evening at Kestle Farm, grazing sheep illuminated by the soft late summer sunshine.

red sky at night

Words don’t very well describe last nights sunset over these skies, even a photo doesn’t quite do it justice but it’ll have to do!

Feast Week Fireworks

Every year at the end of June is Feast Week in Mevagissey. You find out a little more about it here. The weather this year was amazingly beautiful, lucky as the majority of events rely on being outdoors in the gorgeous setting of the harbour. The end of the week is topped off by an incredible fireworks display from the end of Lighthouse Quay, people travel a long way to see these fireworks and they’re definitely worth it! In case you didn’t hear them or see them for miles around, here’s some photos, so get ready to “ooh” and “ahh”!

above: Mevagissey Harbour

News from the farm…

It’s spring and there are so many jobs to do on the farm (well that’s my excuse for being late with the newsletter). We have planted young cauliflowers and cabbages, drilled spring barley and swedes, turned out the cattle to the pastures, weighed and sold the early lambs, fertilised and sprayed the cereal crops. The crops on the farm are, on the whole, looking well despite the dry weather this spring. We have had a few showers unlike the east of England where there is a serious problem. Water is such a vital resource which we rely on to produce our crops and to water our animals. We are lucky to have the rain regularly in Cornwall, although the dramatic downpour in November was a disaster for our hedges and for many people in Mevagissey and Pentewan. In my opinion both extremes were abnormal, once in a lifetime events, or is this what we should expect now with climate change? Of course water is also very important for the wildlife on the farm; our swallows which returned to the farmyard a week later than last year have required assistance. The normal array of puddles around the yard have been absent this year, so I have released water from one of my rain harvesting tanks to replenish a puddle. Within a few minutes there were two swallows at the puddle either drinking or collecting mud for their nests. The swallows are busy in the fields as well. Whenever we move a flock of sheep the birds are seen swooping down in front of the ewes catching the flies and insects that are jumping out of the way of the many advancing feet. The sheep and the cattle are depositing their natural fertiliser on the ground which is essential for the flies and insects and many other species within the cycle of life that revolves around the pasture. The grazing of these animals is so important for wildlife diversity, supporting insects, flowers, bees, birds and a whole host of creatures within the soil. The modern efficient way to progress in livestock farming is tending to house animals throughout the year. This will be detrimental to the biodiversity of the countryside; with less insects there will be less pollination of wild flowers. Rest assured on our farms we do allow our animals to graze our pastures and meadows supporting biodiversity and also producing great tasting grass fed beef and lamb. Just as our advertising strap line says; “Naturally the best from the Countryside”. -Ian Lobb

above: Ian with a new lamb

above: a very shaggy sheep awaiting a trim!

above: shearers hard at work

above: newly shorn sheep, off down the lane

fields of gold…

…or vaguely green? Just a few photos of winter barley growing at Kestle Farm with a beautiful late sunshine lighting up the landscape. Enjoy!

Cooking Lamb

Mark from the Salamander restaurant in Mevagissey hosted a lovely Lamb cookery demonstration on Saturday 26th March at Lobbs Farm Shop. Based around making the most of Spring Lamb which is coming into season about now. With simple but beautiful combinations of ingredients Mark rustled up some gorgeous food. The demo was rounded up by an interesting lesson in butchery from our head butcher, Phil who cut up a lamb.

Recipes for this demo will be uploaded soon, in the meantime, have some photographs!

above: browning lamb chops before brushing them apricot puree and adding a breadcrumb coating

above: Mark brushes on the apricot puree

above: preparing the shoulder of lamb for five hours of slow roasting, ‘ansome!

above: here’s one I prepared earlier, a slow roasted shoulder of lamb, tender and succulent.

above: delicious lamb kebabs with a mango, tomato and red onion salad dressed with lime juice.

above: head butcher Phil begins cutting up the lamb.

above: Phil demonstrates how to tie up a rolled shoulder of lamb


a spoonful of sugar….

What a sugar filled day Saturday was, well it was if you happened to be attending the Tray Bake cookery Demo with our Anne at Lobbs Farm Shop. I’ve never seen so much sugar, butter and general badness in one go! It was a great day, very well attended and with Anne in charge of proceedings it was interesting, amusing and informing. The Countryside barn at Lobbs was filled with sunlight, a relief after a week full of drizzle, mist and rain. Anne made a selection of tray bakes including, Rocky Road, Date Slices, Heva Cake and other yummies. At the end of the demo everyone had a chance for a taste of the cakes made, a nice cuppa and a bit of recipe swapping going on. All in all a pretty good day! p.s Recipes will be posted soon

above: Here’s lovely Anne, with Helen Lobb in the background who helped out.

above: traditional Cornish Heva cake, rich!

above: a rowdy crowd!

above: Anne and Helen

above: Anne pours in the caramel to another of her low fat, low sugar cakes!!

above: a little more chocolate on the Rocky Road… just for good measure!

above: what its all about, good food, a nice cuppa and a chat at the end of the demo

above: date slices

almost spring?

The light was lovely this afternoon, a dank drizzle this morning gave way to hazy sunshine. The air is warmer and there was more than a hint of spring in the air. It may only be the first of February but the sun is noticably higher in the sky and the mornings and evenings a little lighter. We finally seem to be coming out of the other side of winter at last! Here’s a few photos from the permissive path on the farm today. Muddy but lovely, skeletal winter trees bathed in a warm hazy light.

above: a tree so big I had to take three photos and join them together to fit it all in!

above: hazy sunset over the farm.

 

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