Foraging is the buzz word in the top kitchens, but now a leading chef has teamed up with a beauty therapist to take the art to a new dimension.
Kevin Tickle, award-winning head chef at the Michelin-starred Forest Side hotel and restaurant at Grasmere, inspired natural beauty entrepreneur Jo Evans to create a bespoke range of Bath Teas for the hotel.
Windermere based Jo, who runs Bespoke Aroma, is a great admirer of Kevin’s food and foraging. So she welcomed the chance to work with him on the recipes for the “teas” which are now available in guest rooms at Grasmere’s Forest Side Hotel, and Windermere’s Ryebeck Hotel, both owned by Andrew Wildsmith.
Bespoke Aroma is a range of natural skin treatments and beauty products created by Jo who is also qualified in massage treatment.
“When creating new products I search for natural ingredients that offer targeted results as well as blend perfectly together,” says Jo. “Extensive research results in recipes that use the amazing natural power of botanicals, plant oils and essences. The ingredients for the Forest Side range were chosen to reflect what is grown in their kitchen gardens, such as fennel and marjoram, and I incorporated nettle to reflect the foraging aspect of Kevin's cookery.”
"The new range reflects the foraging aspect of the chef's work"
Kevin Tickle now teaches other chefs how to forage for wild food. He says: “I love being outdoors and I’ve always gone fishing and shooting and exploring the countryside. I loved finding out more about what I could see and what I could find, learning that a lot of it was edible. It makes sense to incorporate foraged items in natural skin care too, and to work with Jo on her recipes.”
Hedgerows and woodlands can be great places to forage for free food, to find edible species ready to be transformed into jams, soups, cordials, wrappings, beers, wines and liqueurs. They include old favourites like elderflower, blackberries and sloes to the slightly more unusual common sorrel and fat hen.
“I’m fascinated by the whole notion of foraging,” says Jo, who developed her range initially after listening to massage clients. “One had undergone treatment for breast cancer and her skin was very sensitive. Another was allergic to many products on the market. Others had dermatology problems, eczema and dry skin.
“I decided to develop a natural range of skin care products because some brands still contain known skin irritants, ingredients we promise never to use. My range contains well researched ingredients that are skin nurturing, to help with different skin conditions and needs, as well as helping ease aching muscles and either promote relaxation or sharpen senses.”
*Bath teas are infusions containing a range of ingredient such as, perhaps, ginger, and nettle leaves, along with essential oils.
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