Have you seen us in the news yet? Feel free to read the BBC article if you haven’t.
Last month we decided to take 20 of our lambs to a sanctuary in Goodheart Animal Sanctuaries, near Worcestershire.
The sanctuary, which looks after 220 animals, said it had never received lambs from a farmer before.
For the last couple of months we’ve been shifting our focus more to cooking masala dosa, dhal and chutney at markets and less on livestock farming. Changing our ethos to encourage more plant-based eating.
“I will still be in the farming world, but not livestock farming anymore”
As masala dosa, tomato chutney and dhal is naturally vegan we didn’t feel right selling lamb.
We’ve still got 69 sheep left running on Dartington Estate. At the moment we don’t have any immediate plans but have decided we don’t want to take them to the slaughterhouse.
We’ll be updating our website to update photos and our ethos very soon. I also chatted to Nihal Arthanayake on BBC Asian network which you can listen to here – https://www.bbc.co.uk/programmes/m0002dd4#play. Skip to 12:10pm to listen.
As the train pulls into Totnes station I sleepily open the door of the train carriage and hop out. It’s 11:15pm and dad is standing by the gate; open arms and a big Sri Lankan smile. He’s wearing his woolly green checkered jacket. I hear music coming from the van and walk to the van. We travel down narrow empty windy roads into the darkness, car lights beaming to lead the way. Keys jingle and the dad opens the cottage door. There’s a smell of wood burner and wet dogs. The first thing I notice about the cottage is the dark brown beams above and the front door that looks like a farm stable door. Dad has made rice, dhal and potato chips (my fav!) but I’ve already eaten. Boxes pile high in the rooms. I climb the stairs upstairs and in one of the rooms there is a made up bed by the window. A flask of hot water on the floor for me. I tuck myself in and fall asleep.
I slink downstairs, the woodburner is on and my sister and her boyfriend is sitting at the table awaiting breakfast. It’s dhal on toast for me and sambol on toast for the others. The sambol was bought by our godmother as a chrissy present. After 8 months of not having dad’s dhal that breakfast was incredible!
Saturday was spent reading by the fire, eating rice, dhal and red cabbage and a trip to Blackpool beach were we took the dogs for a run around and swim (couldn’t resist picking up plastic on the beach!). Dinner with a Sri Lankan friend in Ivy Bridge where we got goosebumps as dad told us about Mandy the ghost him and a friend saw on the road in the rain between Totnes and the cottage as they drove back from moving a load of furniture.
As we walked back from the van to the cottage we saw Orion’s Belt and the most beautiful moon.
On Sunday evening I watched dad as he made carrot curry. Experimented with Instagram stories and planned to add a few more recipes to the website.
Heard about dad’s Christmas in Hampshire. Photo by Joshua Bennett
Can’t believe it the time of year again when lambing begins again. This year seems to be a little more crazy than last year. The sheep were moved to a friend’s field in Dartmoor temporarily as the fields are a bit more drier than ours. They had a barn which we were able to use, so the ewes lambed in there.
I just got back from Brighton after a long weekend in Devon, helping dad with selling masala dosa at Totnes Market and with the lambing. It wasn’t really a holiday which I had hoped for but loved every bit of the madness. Definitely not one for walking up at 5:30am and going to bed at 11pm!
On the first evening I arrived, my sister Molly and I went to check and feed the sheep. To our surprise there was the most two adorable lambs just born, with a third one that Molly pulled out. Over the course of Friday, Saturday and Sunday so many lambs were born. Early morning and evening checks to see if they were ok. By Sunday we were eager to get them out onto the grass as they were creating chaos in the barn. But the electric fence battery died and classically in rained all day! So we decided to leave it and Molly and I spent the day doing small farm chores, like strimming and fixing posts.
On Friday I helped dad selling masala dosa at Totnes market and then on Molly and I helped dad serving masala dosa at someone’s birthday party on Saturday where Molly tried her dosa making skills! Was very impressed.
Video of Molly making dosa is on our facebook and intsagram pages.
Since 1st Jan 2018 I have been trying to follow #thelowimpactmovement. Inspired by David Attenbourgh and a few youtube zerowaste/low impact/vegan people. So going down to Devon I decided go prepared and bring by stainless steel tin and keep cup.
I told dad it would be a good idea to implement some low impact ideas into Kumar’s Dosa Bar and so since Jan 1st 2018 when you bring a plate/lunch container and cutlery to our market stall you can save 50p off your masala dosa, chutney and dhal meal. Share your photo of your masala dosa meal in your reusable plate with the hastag #lowimpactdosameal on Instagram.
And off course nothing goes with out saying how gorgeous it was to see these two lovely boys!
Last Thursday I made my way down to see dad, Molly and her boyfriend in Devon from Brighton. A 5 hour relaxing journey passing through gorgeous countryside.
The first evening was spent listening to Glastonbury music on the radio while cutting vegetables for the Friday and Saturday market in Totnes. 20kg potatoes peeled and cut, 10kg onions cut, garlic, ginger and tomatoes cut…
It was my first time in Totnes and what a beautiful place! Dad was very popular at the market, everywhere I turned I heard stallholders say ‘Oh is that Kumar’s daughter’.
On Saturday, Molly came with us and we spent the day helping out dad, meeting everyone and popping into ‘Seeds 2 Totnes’ for a latte.
On Sunday we went to the farm to see the farm and sheep.
We hadn’t wormed the ewes yet so we herded the flock into a pen with the help of Tiger (who helped a little, despite not being trained to herd the sheep). There was always one ewe who decided to run of in the wrong direction.
We eventually managed to worm the ewes and check the lambs over. Then I walked around the land seeing new things that happened since I saw the land last. Such as a new compost heap and fence netting for the veg patch!
Ending up with tea and biscuits to end the day on the farm and a pint at the local pub.
Last week, I bought a DevonLife magazine, flipped to page 128 and saw a wonderful article about Kumar’s Dosa Bar and Farm. Last year Sharon Goble interviewed Kumar about his story – moving to Devon, buying a 20 acre farm and starting cooking South Indian food at markets and festivals.
If you do find yourself in a local shop in Devon, get your hands on a magazine and see for yourself.
Kumar’s Dosa Bar is currently selling masala dosa, coconut chutney and dhal at Totnes Market every Friday and Totnes Good Food Sunday Market every third Sunday of each month.
“I love Devon and the West Country because there are small farms and lots of dairy units. I love the gentle landscape”
A little Autumn update to keep you all in tuned with future happenings.
Excited to announce that we have a tiny addition to our flock!! Well bigger 🙂 Now the 6 sheep in a 20 acre field doesn’t look ridiculous anymore. 20 happy Llanwenog ewes all battling to stuff there mouths on fresh grass. Photos to come soon!!! We have a ram ready to hire for November and are looking forward to be lambing in April 2017!
Website Google Chrome issue fixed!!
Also we fixed the little problem with our site on google chrome is now fixed!! Have a fully functioning website. Just need to update a few photos and some text and add some recipes to the cooking page.
Veg patch beds have begun!!!!
We have finally started on the veg patch!!! Took a lot of strength, a helping hand and plenty of tea and biscuits 🙂 🙂
The dogs thought they might help but then decided to just sit back and doze off.
Molly having a cheeky rest.
Can’t forget the sheep!!! They just pondered the 20 acres eating as much as they could.
And our final product!! 12 posts and a trench for the netting!!
Only two days till Powderham Food Festival!!! All go go go with cooking prep. So many onions to cut, that I might cry 😦
But hopefully to see some lovely faces, new and familiar their. And just experience our first time selling masala dosa, tomato chutney and dhal at a festival.
I’ve been attempting food photography for the website, social media and Instagram. Using inspiration from Jaimie Oliver and David Loftus. Managed to get a few lovely shots that I’m proud of. Just need to keep practising and practising. As soon as dad is out of the house, the spices and camera come out!
We have started planning a little ahead now. Managed to get a stall space at Dartmouth Food Festival on the 21st/22nd/23rd October and Powderham Festival on the 1st and 2nd October. Our first two festivals, which is a little scary. Need to find someone to help as Molly will be at Uni and I’ll be in Brighton.
Have written around ten other food and music festivals that sound perfect for us. So when the time is right we’ll fill in the applications.
We also have a few new dishes we want to try out – idli, vadda and chutney and kothu roti. I’ll try and get dad to try out the new 50 idli dish steamer next week!! We’ll see.
As for the farm side, we are going sheep shopping for an additional 30 sheep in September. Purebred Llanwenog sheep from a nearby farm in Devon. Just hunting for a ram and then we can tup them in November for lambs April next year!!
The barn will hopefully go up by the end of the year and we are planning to try out our hands on a bit of hugelkultur!
Pretty mad right?! Well we’ve had a few ideas from my sister’s friend in the States who is interested in permaculture, and gave us a few alternative ideas to have a mini veg patch to grow potatoes and onions for the markets.
Apparently Hugelkultur is no more that no-dig raised beds but the impact is greater.
“They hold moisture, build fertility, maximise surface volume and are great spaces for growing fruit, vegetables and herbs. Simply mound logs, branches, leaves, grass clippings, straw, cardboard, petroleum-free newspaper, manure, compost or whatever other biomass you have available, top with soil and plant your veggies.” –https://www.permaculture.co.uk/articles/many-benefits-hugelkultur
We’ll start small and see what happens. The aim of this is to try and grow most of our produce on our land.