Embrace plant-based eating and discover delicious and exciting alternatives with our nutrition expert Naomi Devlin.
Vegan cooking has never been more popular, and as Hugh says, "whoever we are, and however we choose to eat, it is without doubt a very good idea to make vibrant, nutritious plant foods the basis of our diets".
So, join us for a hands-on day and expand your vegan repertoire with a mix of plant-powered dishes. From cakes and blinis to vegan cheese, pestos and raw food delights, Naomi will take you through a variety of dishes, dispensing nutritional info and valuable tips along the way.
You’ll also have the chance to explore the famously picturesque surroundings at Park Farm and be treated to a delicious plant-based lunch, fresh from the River Cottage kitchen.
09.30 - 17.00
Arrive at River Cottage
You’ll be met at the top of the hill at 9.30 and transported to River Cottage HQ by tractor and trailer.
Make yourself at home
You will meet your host, Naomi Devlin and you’ll start the day with a cup of creamy horchata made with tigernuts, spices and a pinch of brown sugar. Tigernuts are a fantastic source of prebiotics that help the gut to make B vitamins that can be lacking with a plant-based diet. It can be chilled and served over ice in the summer or warmed through for the perfect nightcap in winter. We’ll also taste some creamy vegan cheeses with crackers made by the River Cottage chefs.
Egg free baking – from linseeds, to seaweed and chickpeas to psyllium husk. Naomi will show you how to make a range of egg- replacers and then you will make a moist and tender egg free and dairy free cake.
Shan tofu – using English pulses from Hodmedods or gram flour, Naomi will make a smooth, creamy tofu, which is made on the hob and then left to set. Naomi will show you how to make crispy breadcrumbed tofu nuggets that you’ll dip into a creamy plant-based sauce, or probiotic ketchup.
Blinis, crème fraiche and umami carrots – carrots and seaweed make a delicious alternative to the traditional smoked salmon topping for blinis. You’ll make a batch of the umami carrots to take home and enjoy. Naomi will also demonstrate egg free blinis that you can enjoy as a pre-lunch snack and talk about umami flavours in a plant-based diet.
Food is always the focus at River Cottage, and a two-course lunch of local, seasonal fare will be one of the highlights of your day.
The River Cottage chefs will have been busy making bread rolls, juicy plant-based burgers and quick pickles for you to enjoy for lunch with mustard and ketchup. You’ll even have some kimchi to add a fiery probiotic kick to your burger.
Fermented nut cheese – we’ll make our own batch of nut cheese that you will mature for 24-48 hours at home and can then be used as a spread, or pressed under a weight into something a bit more sliceable. It can even be smoked!
Raw food delights – Naomi will demonstrate a dairy free pesto made from seasonal greens - it might be wild garlic, nettles, kale or garden herbs which we’ll use to fill some raw ravioli which we'll eat with plant-based labneh, a sweet root cream or herb oil made for us by the River Cottage chefs.
Tea and departure
By now your head will be full of the possibilities of plant-based eating and your belly full of some delicious food, but if you have room we’ll enjoy a piece of the cake Naomi made earlier, with a cup of tea before you head back up the hill with your goodies.
Please note: This is a guide to the activities that will make up your course at River Cottage. This is by no means set in stone and will depend on seasonal availability.
On occasion cookery schools will use equipment that includes induction hobs. It is recommended that people with pace makers should not work on these units. If you are concerned or would like to check whether or not induction hobs will be used on the course you are interested in, please call us on 01297 630302.
Thinking of buying a River Cottage experience as a gift?
This course is run from River Cottage HQ on the Dorset/Devon borders. Full address details of HQ will be provided once you have booked.
We are a licensed venue. We have a wide selection of the finest organic wines available to purchase.
If you need local accommodation we have a full list available.
We would advise that this course is only really suitable for 12 years of age and upwards. Under 16s must be accompanied by an adult. We put these guidelines in place for the safety, comfort and enjoyment of all our guests.
This course is suitable for dairy free, egg free and egg free diets. If you follow a low FODMAP diet please be aware that there will be no low FODMAP alternative for the Shan tofu, we can make nut cheese with a low FODMAP nut such as hazelnut but it will be coarser and some of the egg replacers will use high FODMAP ingredients.
- Sustainable Restaurant Association
- Food and Travel Magazine 2017
- Great British Food Awards 2017
- Great British Food Awards 2018