Opening up the Land

a four-part foraging & preserving course

A bounty of foraged items collected by Rob Gould and Michael in Northampton,
ready to be transported into delicious meals, syrups, drinks and preserves.

Opening up the Land is a four part foraging and preserving course, running through the seasons of 2022, in the fields and woodlands of Northampton town with The Food Library & forager Rob Gould.

GOOD NEWS…. DISCOUNT PLACES! As a result of acquiring the workshop opposite the Food Library, we can offer a limited number of places at £30pp, children free with a £5 donation towards lunch. Email michael@food-library.co.uk to secure your booking now!

Spring. This is the Land.

Join us for a spring walk and observe what is there:

  • What’s growing.
  • What’s edible – and what’s not.
  • What clues are there to tell us what we may see in the the future.

We will gather & collect beautiful tender spring shoots, and head back to the kitchen in the library to eat. Whilst we wait for Michael to make magic in the kitchen, we will work on some preserves or infusions, and talk about what we have seen and what we have learnt.

Date – 02.04.22
Time – TBC
Cost – £95pp or £360 for all four sessions booked in advance

Book now by emailing Michael@food-library.co.uk

Our first session….

Summer. This is the Land & the Kitchen.

We will take a walk and observe the changes that have occured in the landscape since the spring. What we have gained. What we have lost.

We will harvest from our walk, and then head back to the library to eat and make. There may be conversations about the way the environment has moved on since the turn of the year. We will talk about ideas, about concepts, about laying food down for later in the year, with demonstrations and hands-on action.

Date – 06.08.22
Time – TBC
Cost – £95pp or £360 for all four sessions

Book now by emailing Michael@food-library.co.uk

Autumn. This is the Land, the Kitchen & the Larder.

We will take a walk and observe the final flourish of the gathering calendar. Note the changes in the environment. Learn more lessons from nature.

We will harvest & collect the final precious bounty of the year; the fruits, the nuts, the seeds and berries. Then we will head back to the library. We will eat. We will store. We will deepen out understanding. We will prepare for our future Winter Feast.

Date – 04.09.22
Time – TBC
Cost – £95pp or £360 for all four sessions
Book now by emailing Michael@food-library.co.uk

Winter. This is the Feast. A Celebration of the Land, the Kitchen, the Larder.

We will gather in the The Food Library for the finale to 2022. We will talk about how the season passed. About what we noticed. What we didn’t. What we learnt.

To finish our first year of knowledge and growth, we will share the saved bounty of our gathering year. We will have completed our first year of re-engaging with our local environment.

Date – 12.11.22
Time – TBC
Cost – £95pp or £360 for all four sessions
Book now by emailing Michael@food-library.co.uk

Preparing for a feast at the Food Library
Rob Gould locating treasure on Kingsthorpe Moor.

More information…

Opening up the Land is a four part foraging and food preserving course. It is intended to explore the local land that often secretly provides raw ingredients for the kitchen and larder, and to look at how we can create, preserve and eat extraordinary food from that which is growing wild.

It is a course that aides us towards identifying what plants can be eaten, and those that can’t.

It is a course that takes us through the seasons, to explore, investigate and experience with respect, not only the land, but the seasonal, and climate changes. To learn to look at habitats, at entities that are companions within those habitats. At similarities. And at differences.

It is an adventure in the local fields and woodlands of Northampton town, in walking distance from The Food Library on Cecil Road. More specifically, it is intended to look at what the land gives within the 8-mile radius of a bee’s flight, a distance to which the Food Library is committed to sourcing all food gathered, grown and supplied from within.

This is a course that will enable us to find, identify and gather, and then produce excellent food from the freshest raw ingredients, either immediately or to store through processes of salting, drying, fermentation, pickling… Providing nourishment for the weeks and months ahead.

A course inspired by a The Food Library of books dedicated to food and drink. A course led by two people who have utilised a wealth of knowledge written by others to learn for themselves.

A course run in collaboration between The Food Library; Rob Gould, Cotswold Forager; and most importantly, the land that sustains us.

Expect the unexpected and wear clothing appropriate for walking on the day. Light refreshments will be provided for each session (except the feast, which is a meal made with preserved treasures gathered throughout the year!) however please bring a bottle of water for the spring, summer & autumn session.

To book now or make enquiries, purchase your ticket by emailing Michael@food-library.co.uk

The Forager (Rob) and The Chef (Michael)
A selection of The Food Library preserves created using home grown
and foraged goods, with inspiration from the collection of food related books