The Northern Rivers is home to a thriving food bowl which makes it the perfect place to fill your belly with local produce, as we are forced to take time out from the ether and hang a lot closer to home.
From the abundance of vegetables grown in the rich red Cudgen Plateau, to the sub tropical climate that produces some of the most delicious exotic fruits. Oh and did we mention gin, rum, beer, a swag of bakeries and quite possibly the finest coffee in the land?
Here’s our guide to fill you pantries with the local stuff, support the independents and look after your loved ones at the same time.
1. Farm & Co – local honey, ginger, turmeric and lemons.
Make a hot drink immune booster with a fresh lemon wedge, sprig of ginger and turmeric and a dash of local honey- for a Tweed Toddy add a swig of Husk Bam Bam to kick start your weekend and keep your throat well lubricated.
2. Baked @ Osteria – fresh bread, croissants, ground coffee and vino.
Name a better combo than freshly baked bread, croissants and local ground coffee. The good folk at Osteria have diversified their offering to add all the best Baked products to their takeaway cabinet; freshly baked bread, French style croissants and bags of Ground Control coffee – P.S they’ve just added a selection of European and cellar wines to said cabinet.
3. Mate & Matt’s – farm fresh eggs, greens and roses.
Home is where the heart is, so fill it with freshly picked roses, farm eggs and local vegetables. Make a minestrone soup with Cudgen sweet potato and herbs or a spinach frittata with all those farm eggs and the farm roses are an inexpensive way to add colour to any dull day.
4. Tropical Fruit World – avocados, macadamias and condiments.
There’s an abundance of avocados in season and the tropical fruits are delicious, add them to you favourite salad or create a dessert now that we have time to have 3 courses. Our tip, make a top deck avocado and jackfruit ice-cream, half dip in chocolate and fresh coconut – yum.
5. Madura Tea – English Breakfast, Lemon Myrtle and Peppermint.
Time to brew a good old pot of tea, head out to Madura Tea Plantation on Clothiers Creek Road, they have a one-stop tea shop for all your Tweed grown tea. From a classic English breakfast to a lemon myrtle, perfect for hibernating in the coming months. Also available at all shopping centres, including independently owned and operated IGA in Murwillumbah.
6. Tweed Valley Whey – Fresh cheddar, labna and feta.
A farm fresh dairy with a drive through and take away. The good farm folk at the Tweed Valley Whey cheese factory have all your cheesy needs sorted to create a Friday (or Monday) cheese board. Think chilli feta, creamy labna and tasty haloumi and be sure to grab some Byron Bay crackers & fresh figs along the way.
7. Husk Distillers – Ink Gin, Sloe & Berry and Bam Bam Spiced Rum.
Now that we’ve got the belly sorted, time to tempt the spirit palate and toast the weekend. We can’t go past an Ink Gin & Capi tonic with a sprig of local rosemary and a lime wedge. Second that with an aperitif to cleanse the palate, Sloe & Berry on ice with a slice of blood orange and you already know what to do with the Bam Bam – hello hot toddy (refer to point one.)
8. Bread Social – Crème Brulee Tart, Sausage Rolls and Pies.
Notice the temperature change a little as we look forward to April, well its time to stock up on the hearty stuff like pies, sausage rolls and crème brule tarts. Choose from a variety of weekly pies like a venison and Elvis stout pie or a banging vegetable sausage roll with green beans, mint and ricotta.
We’re loving seeing our local businesses pivot with the change in our way of living, and we will continue to share everything the innovative businesses in our region are doing for the community.