Heritage pasta and Countryfile

Posted in Food Stories, Kitchen News with tags , , , on September 25th, 2015 by liberatethelasagna

The Harvest, BBC Countryfile & Heritage Pasta

As we have been working on our new range of Heritage Pasta, the grains in the Prestwood farm fields where we have been experimenting with pasta have been ripening and the harvest has started! We have been lucky enough to witness the extra-ordinary ripper-binder, an incredible 1930’s machine that still at work on the farm.

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It seems it was not only us that was interested and a crew from the BBC program CountryFile visited to film our friend John Letts autumn Harvest of the heritage grains. We have been using John’s flour in our cookery classes and to make our fresh pasta for some time and have recently been developing some dried pasta with it.

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Country File aired on the 30th August and featured not only John but us making pasta and creating a amazing dish of food for everyone on the team. We will be selling some of the pasta along with some pesto at the Thame Food Festival on the 26th September… hope to see you there.

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Heritage : Rare Breed : Ancient : Heirloom

Posted in Food People, Food Places, Food Products, Food Stories, Kitchen News with tags , , , , , on March 24th, 2013 by liberatethelasagna

Handmade Fresh Pasta with heritage and ancient varieties of wheat.

As an artisan producer heritage, ancient, rare breed and heirloom are the words that we are hearing more and more in the world of producers and artisan food makers… as breeds and varieties that often taste better, are more distinctive as well as helping to preserve biodiversity in our countryside.

Whilst we use rare breed Oxford Sandy and Black Pork in our Cuddington Special Lasagna and are exploring Heirloom tomatoes in our sauces (giving each one its own sweetness rating) we were excited when were introduced to ancient and heritage varieties of wheat, by John Letts.

We met John about two years ago at a local apple festival; he spoke about ancient varieties of wheat that he was working with and we discussed how these might work in pasta making as an alternative to the more traditional wheat varieties.

Two years later we met John again and have been making our own fresh pasta using his flour since. We experimented with various different varieties of ancient and heritage wheat flours but have settled on our own unique mix of spelt and rivet wheat flour to make our pasta.

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The heritage rivet flour is milled from rare species of wheat that was first grown in England in the Norman period and became popular because of its high yield and exceptional flavour. The spelt is the parent of modern wheat flour and was first grown in Britain in the Bronze Age (2,000BC) before disappearing from the farmer’s fields in the Saxon period.

John Letts has been working with local farmers in Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire to grow a limited supply of these wheat varieties and mills the wheat into the most amazing flour.

By combining the two varieties we have made a pasta that has a fantastic bite and taste. Just by combining the pasta with butter and parmesan you have a great tasting lunch…

John is also growing one of the oldest of all wheats, Emmer. This is closely related to durum wheat so we are looking forward to getting our hands on some of the milled flour to see what we can make…

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