Winter has arrived


With Jack Frost nipping at their toes our farmers are outdoors every morning feeding, milking, harvesting and pruning.  Come and join them this Sunday and peruse their delicious fresh produce whilst sipping on a delicious coffee, European hotdog or a Chilean empanada.

See you this Sunday from nine til noon at the Marlborough Farmers’ Market!


If you haven’t already, don’t forget to join us on FaceBook!

To market, to market, to buy … farm fruits, artisan cheeses, fresh vegetables, local preserves and even … a fat pig!


The Marlborough Farmers’ Market operates all year round, come rain come shine, offering delicious fresh produce and great coffee & brunches.


Our weekly regulars include … Harwoods Produce, Face-painting, Koromiko Eggs, Marlborough Nursery, Ngamahau Fish, Pedros, Peter the Swiss Butcher, Riverina, Spudz n Greens, Traditional Country Preserves, and Koffie or Ritual or both!

There’s plenty more stalls popping up through Winter too – look out for NuggetyCreek, Premium Game, Nutt Ranch, Seasons, Feast Merchants, Limrose, Garden Bees and Purple Patch.

Kaikoura Cheese will be at the Farmers’ Market until the end of June – so make sure you visit for your artisan cheese fix and please continue to support this boutique business that is still finding it’s feet post-earthquake.


Olive You


Understandably Lusatori isn’t at the Marlborough Farmers’ Market at present because it’s harvest time!  We do have Extra Virgin Olive Oil available at Limrose instead, and Two Short Dogs Olives are available for purchase at the Information Stall.


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With a climate akin to Tuscany it’s no wonder that olives thrive in Marlborough’s environment.  Olive oil is manufactured after crushing and pressing the fruit of olive, and is graded according to quality and its best kind is called Extra Virgin Olive oil.  If you’re fortunate enough to have your own ‘grove’ though, Winter is the time to harvest and here’s how to cure them …


Black olives in a bowl

Curing olives

You’ll need:

fresh black or green olives
sterilised glass jars with lids*

1. First, wash and prepare the olives. Discard any with blemishes, separate the green and black ones if necessary (they have different soaking times, so need to be soaked separately). Now, use a sharp knife to make two lengthways cuts into each olive, down to the stone (one cut on either side of each olive).

2. Put the prepared olives into sterilised jars*. I use the preserving jars with a rubber ring and a clip on top, but any clean, sterilised jar with a lid will do. Add the olives until the jar is just two-thirds full. Then cover the olives with water (ordinary tap water). Now, here’s a handy trick: part-fill a small plastic bag with water, tie it at the top, sit it on the olives in the jar. This keeps the olives underwater. Seal the jar with the lid.

3. Change the water every day. Pour out the old water, pour in fresh tap water. For black olives, do this for 4 days. For green olives, do it for 6 days. Don’t worry if, when you open the jar each day, you see a scum forming on top of the water. That’s normal.

4. After the 4 days of soaking for the black olives (or 6 for the green), fill the jars with a brine solution (brine is salty water). To make brine, mix in 1/3 cup salt to every 1 litre of water you need. Heat up the salty water in a saucepan, and stir until all the salt has dissolved. Let the water cool for an hour or two. Then pour it over the olives, to fully cover them.

5. Then pour some olive oil over the top of the brine solution, to completely cover the olives. Seal the jars, then leave them for 5 weeks. After that, your olives are ready to eat. You can keep your olives stored for up to 6 months in a cool, dark, cupboard. You can leave them stored in the brine. But I lash out on a big 4-litre tin of olive oil, and store my olives in olive oil.

* Tip: to sterilise jars, wash them well first, then place the whole jar (and the lid) into a large pot filled with boiling water. Immerse the whole jar in water. Let the water simmer away for several minutes, lift the jars out carefully, let them dry on clean paper towels. Do this sterilising while you make the cuts in all the olives, in step 1.



Recipe: Garden Bees Honey Loaf


Try this delicious Honey Loaf recommended by Garden Bees.  Be in quick if you’d like some Lavender Honey – there’s not much left – and stock up on salves and balms this Winter.

1 cup honey

2 tablespoons soft butter or margarine

1 teaspoon salt

1 egg

3/4 cup buttermilk (substitute plain milk with 1 tablespoon lemon juice if no buttermilk)

2 1/2 cups whole wheat flour (stone ground flour)

1/4 cup bran (or wheat germ)

1/3 cup raisins

1/3 cup currants (we use cake fruit mix for these)

1 tablespoon grated orange peel

1 teaspoon baking soda


Preheat oven to 300degF (160degC) and butter a large loaf pan.

Mix the honey and butter with a wooden spoon. Add the salt, egg, and buttermilk, and beat with the  spoon until the mixture is well blended. Add the rest of the ingredients and stir just long enough to distribute everything evenly.

Pour the mixture into the pan and bake for 1 hour and 40 minutes, or until the loaf is very brown and is beginning to shrink away from the sides of the pan. Cool before cutting.

We have found that this keeps for at least a week in a sealed container.