On Wednesday 24 March, Dart Fresh HQ in Exeter played host to a series of socially-distanced, Covid-safe, cookery demos to showcase their top quality Dartmoor beef and lamb, now to be processed on site thanks to state -of-the-art butchery unit being installed on the premises.

Dart Fresh has always aimed to be a one-stop-shop for chefs; to be able to give them everything they need to make their lives easier with making just one order and therefore one delivery.  Now, chefs and home delivery retail customers can rest-assured that they are getting the freshest possible beef and lamb, straight from Dartmoor prepared to their individual specification and delivered to their door.

Olivier Certain, Head Chef at The Michelin-starred Masons Arms, Knowstone, North Devon joined forces with his Chef Patron Mark Dodson (both pictured above) to create a fabulous dish of roasted rack of Dartmoor Lamb with spring vegetable, bacon fricassée and Lyonnaise potatoes and wild garlic.“I really enjoyed the chance to see all the fantastic fresh produce available at Dart Fresh.  It was great to cook with Dartmoor lamb and the ingredients supplied - I particularly liked the bacon and top quality, locally-sourced vegetables available – The Koppert Cress was fantastic – I used the salty fingers on my dish – It’s something we’ll definitely use at The Masons Arms and great news that we can get it from Dart Fresh!”

Second generation costermonger and Director, John Pritchard had diversified the business as he wants to offer chefs a complete foodservice solution. Throughout the day John invited the crème de la crème of chefs over to Dart Fresh to cook with his top-quality produce in preparation for the restaurants, pubs and hotels reopening.

Paul Da Costa Greaves from Koppert Cress showcased his fabulous range of micro greens and cresses and how they can be used as fortifiers in food to boost health and flavour.

Anita Clare-Field of La Petite Bouchée made a beautiful Cote de Boeuf á la Bordelaise with seasonal vegetables and a beautifully rich bordelaise sauce made from cognac and veal stock - The Dartmoor Boeuf was a real star of the show and this dish really did this showpiece cut justice!

Next was Dan Bowden of Berwick Lodge, who created one of his signature dishes called ‘Moo and Mould’ – A wondrous combination of sirloin of Dartmoor beef in clottedcream, Devon Blue cheese, onion puree, carrot fondant, shimeiji mushroom and beef dripping potatoes.

Barrie Tucker drew the day to a close with a sensational starter of lamb bon bons with char grilled asparagus, followed by cannon of Dartmoor lamb, wrapped in confit shoulder of Dartmoor lamb with textures of beetroot and coriander oil.

John was delighted to host a day of culinary excellence and really enjoyed working with the visiting chefs showcasing his beef and lamb in a range of creative and delicious dishes, He said “This was a great chance to showcase the journey of where we’ve come from as a fruit and vegetable company in 1957, working with the supermarkets, to becoming an all-encompassing foodservice company and now introducing an online home delivery offer with the onset of the pandemic, which is proving really popular.  Our Dartmoor beef and lamb is simply the best money can buy, sourced locally from Dartmoor and processed on site for minimal food miles.”

This was the third of a series of culinary focus days to be held by Dart Fresh, in association with The Chefs’ Forum, to showcase the vast range of meat, fish, fresh fruit and veg, fine foods and cooks’ ingredients available to top chefs and now, retail customers online. John and the team are delighted to be supporting chefs at this difficult time and keeping them up to date with all the latest moves at Dart Fresh, and in the industry, to enhance and enrich the vast product range in preparation for the return of hospitality, as chefs set to work on menu planning and sourcing fantastic produce for their kitchens.

New additions to the impressive range of over 3000 products already offered include Koppert Cress microgreens and cresses, Santa Maria herbs and spices. They continue to supply fantastic fresh and locally sourced ingredients to chefs currently offering take-away menus as well as chefs and cooks across the care, education and hospital sectors six days a week and look forward to supporting chefs and the hospitality industry prepares for a phased  reopening on the 12th May.

Next month’s culinary focus day will see a Fresh Fish Focus showcasing beautiful, fresh crab and lobster from Cornwall and Devon and the line-up of top local chefs will be announced shortly!

For more information on Dart Fresh, ingredients for chefs and the new online home delivery service, visit www.dartfresh.co.uk