School of Artisan Food, Nottinghamshire
A day spent at the School of Artisan Food in Nottinghamshire is a chance to forage in the Sherwood Forest then cook your own finds back in the school's kitchen. Trips are led by professional forager James Wood and take place on the grounds of Welbeck Estate. Unlike many foraging courses, which see students pick the foods they eat then hand them over to the resident chef, the School of Artisan Food is all about arming its pupils with the skills and confidence to source and cook wild foods again at home.
The day-long course begins with a breakfast of wild teas, coffee and scones served with wild jams, before grabbing a forager’s basket and heading out. You’ll spend the remainder of the morning wandering around the grounds of the estate harvesting foragable goods. All the while, James will explain how each can be used in a variety of recipes and, fundamentally, help you avoid picking up dangerous look-alikes.
If you get peckish or thirsty along the way (and let’s face it, with food on the brain all morning, who wouldn’t?), fear not: a selection of pre-made jams, pickles, cordials and even alcohol infusions can be sampled as you forage. Once back at the school, the afternoon is then spent cooking up a storm with the wild ingredients you found. It doesn’t matter how up-to-scratch your culinary skills are – from sorting and cleaning to chopping, boiling and baking, you’ll be given as much guidance as you need.
Those who’ve enjoyed the experience so much they don’t want to leave could book onto one of the school’s cocktail-making evenings, where you’ll learn how to infuse your tipples with edible flowers. Finally, while you can’t stay overnight at the school, the team recommend quaint nearby guesthouse The Barns (rooms from £75 per night) or Muthu Clumber Park Hotel & Spa (rooms from £154) for those looking to extend their time in the forest.
PRICE: £145 per person for foraging, cooking and dining only
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The School of Artisan Food, Lower Motor Yard, Welbeck, Nottinghamshire S80 3L