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Plan Ahead: Eating Well With No Effort in Tom’s & Douglas’s Barns

You can certainly eat well while you’re staying in Tom’s & Douglas’s Barns

There’s no excuse for stinting yourself, while you’re here! You’ll find basic supplies awaiting you in both Tom’s and Douglas’s Barns, with great ‘proper’ cooks’  kitchens and delicious temptations locally… You’ll never be able to fit everything in, so a bit of local knowledge in advance will help you make the most of your opportunities.

Totally relaxed forward planning

1. Eating IN: First of all, you need to know what you already have, without moving very far

The kitchens are real, working kitchens, with masses of gadgets and sharp knives.

You will find waiting for you in Tom’s or Douglas’s Barn all the basic store cupboard necessities (and more).

You’ll find a slow-cooker ready and waiting for action, so with just a little but of forethought when you return from the pub or the trails you can sit straight down to enjoy almost effortless casseroles and even steak & kidney pudding (really!). However all this requires at least some energy output, however pleasurable. There are several recipe books to help.

For any basic necessities you suddenly find you need, Janet Gosling in the pub/shop (01335 390 212) will undoubtedly be able to help you during pub hours. You could have a quick drink in the pub at the same time if you felt like it or even a bar meal.

You can also always try us for the proverbial cup of sugar – we have a pretty well stocked kitchen and many is the last minute vital ingredient crisis we have been able to avert.

2. What extra ingredients and drinks might you like to order in advance?


Why don’t you pre-order online with Waitrose (plenty of healthy and organic choices there as well as nice wines)? They will deliver here to DE6 1QB any day, free as long as you spend over £50 – which doesn’t take long these days. If you arrange delivery in the 11-1 slot for the day you are arriving we will put it all away for you before you arrive.

Riverford Organics:

On the other hand you can also order the most lovely organic veg, fruit, meat and dairy products – even wonderful chocolate – from the regional Riverford Sacrewell. Most conveniently they deliver here on Fridays; we can take your order in, check it and put it away in your barn before you arrive, just as we do for Waitrose orders.

The system with Riverford for one-off orders is rather more personal than it is with the bigger Waitrose. Look online to choose what you would like but the actual order itself needs to be made by telephone on 01780 789700. Explain you are staying here at Orchard Farm and would like your food delivered at the same time as ours on the Friday you arrive. You can pay them by card over the phone, or send a cheque.


3. Letting Someone Else Do Nearly All the Work

Our next door neighbour, Val Kirkham:

Val has sold her TopNosh catering business but is still happy to do one-off meals for local people, and even more importantly, people like you staying in Parwich. Ring her on 01335 390 458 to discuss prices and what you might like. She will deliver your meal to the door.

Cottage on the Green Curries:

You also now can pre-order a truly delicious homemade curry for the end of the week (hottish – let them know if you don’t want it too hot!). They can also provide rice, poppadums, chutneys etc.

Ring Paul and Evie Burlinson on 01335 390488; you collect it from their Cottage on the Green between 5 and 7 on Thursday, Friday and Saturday.


if you want to eat well but do not want any unnecessary exertion at all in the kitchen department you could order frozen pre-prepared food ranging from comforting/homely to more exotic/celebratory from  Cook, a firm we use ourselves a lot, and rate very highly.

If you use Cook do arrange for your order to be delivered the morning of your arrival and we will put it away in your freezer for you. In case you balk at the idea of frozen food being transported safely we can personally assure you that Cook uses very clever insulated packaging and our own orders have always arrived absolutely rock solid frozen.

The Original Supperbox Company

The Original Supperbox Company will  send you on a prearranged date all the ingredients you need to create three or five  delicious genuinely homemade meal, plus a very clear recipe that is very easy to follow. We can wholeheartedly recommend them – our only warning is that the order comes via courier and one cannot tell what time it will be delivered so don’t rely on being able to cook it the day you have requested it.

As when you stay here you are a Premier Cottages guest, you get a 10% discount – quote pcdc04.

3. Buying Delicious Food Locally

For many of us, there is great pleasure in buying fresh local food, locally.

Before you arrive we will send the names of a few local butchers, farm shops and delicatessens: we are spoiled for choice in an area that boasts the Chatsworth Farm Shop, various other farm shops and farmers’  markets, various Bakewell Pudding shops/delis in Bakewell, whilst in Ashbourne we have two great delis for for cheeses, pies and cakes and all things tempting and delicious: the Cheddar Gorge and Bramhall’s. Natural Choice is excellent for everything organic and ‘green’. In both the Cheddar Gorge and Bramhall’s in Ashbourne you can now buy delicious fresh bread baked by the Dining Room on St John’s Street.

Nigel’s on Compton in Ashbourne sells excellent local meat but the meat from the White Peak Butchery in Tissington is something else again – not for nothing do some of our guests walk over the hills every day but Monday to buy their next treat!

You may find a visit to the Chatsworth Farm Shop  an essential rather than a luxury…

4. Eating Out

Before you arrive, we will always send you an updated list of recommended local pubs and restaurants. You’d need to stay a while to sample them all…

5. Last resort (that we all sometimes enjoy!)

Ssshhh…If all else fails, there are several supermarkets in Ashbourne including a small Waitrose and a larger Sainsbury’s. Possibly the most convenient if you’re on your way here and don’t want to linger a moment longer than you need, is the small Marks & Spencer on the Waterside Retail Park, almost next door to an excellent Majestic just off the roundabout on the ring road as you approach Ashbourne from the south. There is lots of parking, and it’s free but remember your own bags or they charge you for theirs!

John and Marion Fuller-Sessions                 Last reviewed 8th June 2014


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