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Succulent Strawberry Season

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Somehow, I always manage to miss strawberry picking season. Last year, I took the kids to a strawberry picking farm and, upon noticing there were none on the vines, bought a punnet and raced ahead of them, strategically placing strawberries for them to ‘find’ so that they wouldn’t be disappointed.

Strawberries season in England usually starts at the beginning of May, and lasts until the end of September, though in 2017 strawberries started to appear in February due to an unusually warm climate for the time of year.

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The strawberry is an incredibly versatile fruit, used in baking, salads, smoothies, ice creams, jams and chocolates, as well as being widely used in cosmetics such as lip balm, shampoo and moisturisers. Appreciated as much for its aroma as for its juicy and sweet taste, the strawberry could well be one of the most underestimated fruits on our tables.

When eating strawberries, we not to dwell much on its nutritional value as we lose ourselves in the juicy, saccharine taste, but they are an excellent source of vitamin C, a good source of manganese, and provide several other vitamins and minerals in lesser amounts.

Interesting Fact: Strawberries are the only fruit that wear their seeds on the outside.

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Food Photographer: Tom Davies, Lead Photographer, Full Steam Pictures.
Written By: Kate Davies, Media Manager, Full Steam Pictures.

World Chocolate Day? Yes please!

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An entire day celebrated by eating chocolate? Stand aside and pass me the confectionary!
Some sources say that this day commemorates the introduction of chocolate to Europe on July 7, 1550, but whether or not this is the case, let’s eat some choccy!

These days, chocolate is many things to many people: a comfort food, a little treat, a forbidden indulgence, something to keep the kids quiet, or even an aphrodisiac.

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Historically, chocolate was much more than just a tasty morsel. The Aztecs believed that cacao (which chocolate is made from), was given to them by their gods, and the cacao bean was considered to be more valuable than gold.

Back in Europe, chocolate was mostly enjoyed as a drink, until chocolatier J.S. Fry and Sons created the first chocolate bar in 1847, and over two decades later Swiss chocolatier Daniel Peter teamed up with his friend Henri Nestle to create the Nestle Company and brought chocolate to the mass market.

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Chocolate may well be one of the most celebrated foods around the world, popping up as specialities on Easter, Christmas and, of course, Valentine’s Day. Chocolate has been the subject of many successful books and film adaptations, and makes its way into almost any dish you can think of, including beers and coffees.

Interesting Fact: The French celebrate April Fool’s Day with a chocolate shaped fish.

Food Photographer: Tom Davies, Lead Photographer, Full Steam Pictures.
Written By: Kate Davies, Media Manager, Full Steam Pictures.





I Scream, You Scream...

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The words ‘ice cream’ invariably conjure up images of slurping up Mr. Whippy’s on the beach, and of children running around the neighbourhood in the summer, clutching pennies as they try to chase down the ice cream van.

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This year, ice cream seems to be growing up! Gone are the days of the humble strawberry, vanilla, and chocolate… as we open our minds to the possibilities of quince, blackberry, and pear.

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It has been predicted that in 2019, ice cream and gelato flavours are going to be pushing boundaries with new flavours such as wild blueberry lavender, mascarpone, and beetroot, with companies such as Hackney Gelato really thinking outside the box with palm sugar, basil and smoke flavours.

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Another growing trend is the increase in interest in alcoholic ice creams. Haagen-Dazs has just introduced a range of boozy ice creams including Stout Chocolate Pretzel Crunch, Irish Cream Brownie, and Bourbon Vanilla Bean Truffle. More locally, Treleavens in Cornwall stocks Vodka Pink Grapefruit ice cream among its other flavours

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Food Photographer: Tom Davies, Lead Photographer, Full Steam Pictures.
Written by: Kate Davies, Media Manager, Full Steam Pictures.