On the 23rd of April I decided to throw a virtual sleepover for Mini Chef to celebrate him and his friends following the rules for a month of lock down. It was absolutely wonderful for him to see so many faces as nine kids from six households joined in. We had origami, a story and everyone made a sign for their front doors thanking postal workers and couriers for delivering our letters and parcels. This last one has been especially lovely as I’ve had lots of said workers saying they really liked the sign. The activity I planned was a scavenger hunt and it was great watching the kids throw themselves into it. I had done a book giveaway over on my Facebook page but wanted to do something else and figured if kids liked a scavenger hunt then maybe adults would like a Coronavirus competition.
Turns out it was a resounding yes!
I asked for ten items to be collected and arranged within a single photo and the entries were just amazing. The brilliant Rob Gould aka The Cotswold Forager made this wonderful video on the topic of urban foraging to help people find a foraged element. I have only really started dipping my toe into foraging recently but while I’m a little tentative, it has been a lot of fun. I started out last year with elderflower cordial and have since made rose hip gin and dandelion marmalade. Rob really makes the subject accessible and rather than finding lockdown has limited our ability to forage, Mini Chef and I have found it adds new interest to the limited distance we are able to travel for our walks.
The winner of the hunt was Donna Cook. I liked the stories she shared behind her family’s hunt and thought the wild garlic flowers made it look very pretty. Her prize was a ticket to one of my new Pyromaniac Prototype evenings and she’s booked onto the night of the 18th of September (which has now sold out). There are still tickets available for the 9th of October and 13th of November.
It was a tough decision and one of my other favourites was this beautiful arrangement.
I’m planning to do another hunt this Saturday (9th May) so please make sure you follow my Facebook page and are ready at 9am. Given we are in lock down I would encourage people to think creatively. One of my favourite foraged items was a picture of eggs that someone found whilst tending their horses. The absolutely essential thing in all of this is that everyone keeps themselves safe and follows the law.
The next scavenger hunt will again have the prize of a ticket to a Pyromaniac Prototype event. All items will need to be photographed together but you have advance notice that one of the items will be a dish from The Pyromaniac Chef Cook Book. If you don’t already have a copy, the voucher COVID19 will reduce the eBook to £1 at checkout. If you would like a printed copy, the paperback version of The Pyromaniac Chef Cook Book costs £12 including delivery and I’ll send a free eBook when I get the order given that the post is a bit slow at the moment. Of course, you do not have to pay to enter the competition. A list of recipes I have reproduced from my book are available below.
I hope to see your entries on Saturday.