Monthly Archives: November 2010

Beyond the supermarket: sourcing fresh, quality food

We’re great food lovers in Dara Towers, and we’re starting to discover the delights of tracking down quality ingredients for the meals we make.

Like most people, we do most of our shopping at supermarkets – principally Sainburys and Waitrose at present – but we’re starting to investigate local, family run and speciality businesses for certain items. This is due in part to being unable to source all of the fresh food we’d like, especially with our weekly delivered shop. We also like to support local businesses in these tricky economic times and you can’t get lower food miles than something that’s produced just up the road.

For meat we’ve been trying a few butchers as an alternative to the supermarket – including the superb M Newitt in Thame, Oxfordshire, although most regularly we frequent our local butcher, Chris Blake, on Rickmansworth High Street.

Fish is a particular favourite of ours, we’ve found the choice of fresh fish to be limited when shopping online. Our local Waitrose offers a good range both at the counter and pre-packaged, however we’re still often frustrated by being unable to find the fish to fit a selected recipe. We decided to look around for a dedicated fishmonger to see if a greater selection was available.¬†Rickmansworth itself doesn’t have a fishmonger – the number of supermarkets perhaps puts pay to that – however just up the road Chorleywood’s boutique high street boasts the excellent Catch of the Day.

Catch of the Day provides brilliantly friendly service, a selection of fresh fish and sea food that’s certainly beyond that of the supermarkets and the type of personalised service we feared we’d lost from the British high street. We came away with two stunningly fresh looking tuna steaks and two mackerel, which the fishmonger duly gutted for us. Here’s the tuna looking splendid in Saturday’s dinner:

It’ll take a while to experimenting and comparing food from different sources, although that’s very much part of the fun. We’ll be sharing details of the food producers and suppliers we like on our new page simply entitled “We like…

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