The Family Foraging Kitchen

Discover Cornwall's free food

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Vix

Vix

Founder

I set up The Family Foraging Kitchen in 2013 to teach people the skills to find Free Food Forever. Food that is exciting, delicious, sustainable, and nutritious. 
And I don’t just teach people the skills to find free food – but how to turn it into easy and healthy meals for the family.

After the birth of our son, my husband and I left our successful careers in the Third Sector and moved from London – back to the village where I grew up in South East Cornwall. Reconnecting with a vibrant community and beautiful countryside allowed my son the same upbringing I enjoyed. I spent my childhood in the hedgerows, fields and on the coast with my late Grandfather, a scout leader and amateur botanist, who first introduced me to wild edible plants.

Although I left Cornwall at 18, studied, graduated, travelled the world and forged a career in fundraising, I retained my love and passion for the natural world and for foraged food and cooking with wild ingredients. Even in London, at weekends I’d be in the parks and commons – basket in hand – enjoying the edible delights that urban wild spaces have to offer.  Foraging on my travels and during my time as a salary woman, I began selecting wild ingredients to invent interesting gourmet-style recipes – for fun – as a hobby.

Moving back to Cornwall, my relationship with wild food changed from being ‘just a hobby’ into a necessity due to a change in our circumstances.  Every day I was out gathering ingredients for my dinner – I would be stopped and asked what I was picking and how I would use what I gathered. Over time it became apparent that the knowledge I had was sought after and that I had a skill from which I could make a living whilst also sharing the skills and knowledge with my community. Cornwall has a rich natural larder with a fantastic and bountiful array of wild food, yet I find people lack, not only the skills and confidence to forage, but also the appreciation that vegetables do not have to be covered in plastic and labeled to be safe enough to eat.

I teach people from all walks of life how to safely identify wild edibles and poisonous species so they have the skills to feed their families in a nutritious,
sustainable way – for free - forever.

Since launching The Family Foraging Kitchen, my reputation has grown and attracted an amazing team of people so that we now offer not only walks and activities connected to wild food, but also workshops in traditional countryside crafts from willow basketry to beekeeping. I work with a number of award-winning Head Chefs to create gourmet wild food pop up restaurant nights and have provided wild food cookery demonstrations at big events and festivals. Most importantly, my connection to the landscape and daily contact with nature continues to teach and provide me with both nutritious food and plants for healing and medicinal use. I’d love to share that knowledge and experience with you all.

Below you can meet the rest of FFK team!
 

Debbie Thorpe

Debbie Thorpe

Wild Food Recipe Creator / Food Revolution Ambassador

Debbie is the wonderful Head Chef at The Jetty resturant and is fantastic at creating recipes for The Family Foraging Kitchen. Not suprising really as she's also Jamie Oliver's Food Revolution Ambassador here in South East Cornwall. With Vix, together they form 'The Two Wild Chicks'.

Dorian Castiglione

Dorian Castiglione

Wild Game Expert / Film Maker

Dorian is not only our wild game tutor but also a talented film maker. He is currently making a documentary for The Family Foraging Kitchen's community project, Free Food Forever.

Robbie Ryder

Robbie Ryder

Apiarist & Traditional Skep Maker

Robbie is a local bee keeper and runs courses in how to get started with bees and in how to look after them. He also goes out to collect swarms. Alongside running our apiary courses, he runs traditional skep making workshops.

 Jo Collins

Jo Collins

Willow Weaver

Jo is a stunning artist in willow work and is an amazing weaver. I poached her recently so that she could run willow foraging basket workshops for the FFK!

Andy Dorset

Andy Dorset

Bushcraft Expert

Andy is our wilderness living Instructor, survival & safety consultant and medic.  As well as having run courses for The Family Foraging Kitchen, he runs his own company called Wisewoods Bushcraft

Gia Daprano

Gia Daprano

Forage Plymouth

I met Gia last year after I heard of a new facebook group set up called 'Forage Plymouth'. Gia founded this fantastic venture to encourage urban foraging in Plymouth and to spread knowldege of the abundance of food growing in  'wild' spaces found in the city. Teaming up has strengthened the 'Free Food' campaign and she's become a firm friend and supporter of all we do here at the FFK!

Claire Roper

Claire Roper

Ecologist

Claire Roper is a freelance ecologist providing a wide range of services from biological survey and management plans to permaculture and wildlife garden design! She's also a Forager and helps out at Family Foraging Kitchen events. She makes fantastic wild teas too! She runs her own business called Wild By Design.

Pixie Stagg

Pixie Stagg

Nature Nanny

Nature Nanny helps out at our monthly Wild Food School Sessions for home educated children. With over 10 years experience in early learning education and Level 3 City & Guilds Child care, First Aid and Food Hygiene certificates - not only is she qualified but she's a Pixie of the woods and an invaluale and respected part of the FFK team!

Faye Channing

Faye Channing

Social Media Officer

Our newest team member, Faye has commited to helping us document and share our wild food adventures and recipes through social media. We are so excited to have her help and marketing expertise and welcome her to the FFK tribe!

Tribal Elders

Tribal Elders

Family Foraging Kitchen Trustees

The Family Foraging Kitchen has its very own board of Tribal Elders. We meet twice a year to discuss our successes and setbacks and to make sure we are always delivering the best service for our customers. The 'Elders' were individually selected for their backgrounds, varied skill set, friendship and support. We believe that every successful business should be led by a wise team!

Botanical adventures begin within
our hedgerows…

We are based on the beautiful Rame Peninsula in South East Cornwall. You can choose from hedgerow walks with stunning sea views, coastal walks that finish on the wonderful Cornish shoreline, woodland walks and even discover what's hidden in the wild urban landscapes of our nearest city, just across the water - Plymouth. We range in price from our popular monthly wild food walks (with a cookery class using the wild produce we've collected at the end also included!) for just £20 an adult and children go free. Bespoke private walks can be arranged at any time (and location of your choosing) - and we also offer exciting packages tailored for honeymooners and corporate team building days etc (please see the relevant pages on this site!). We also run courses in traditional countryside crafts - such as bee keeping, willow weaving and working with wild game.

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Contact us


01752 823424  /  07900 792 033
kitchen@familyforagingkitchen.co.uk