Camp fire cooking at Llangollen food festival
A nature-loving duo will be inspiring families to embrace their inner wildness and help beat stress with camp fire cooking at the Llangollen food festival.
Forest school and bushcraft experts James and Lea Kendall will be hosting interactive cooking workshops throughout this year’s event to reconnect parents and children with nature to boost their mental wellbeing.
The couple, who run the highly successful Woodland Classroom in Wrexham, will be unlocking the gastronomic secrets hidden in Wales’ hedgerows and forests and creating a range of mouth-watering treats during the festival, which takes place on October 19 and 20.
Children will get the chance to toast popcorn over the camp fire and make hedgerow tea, toffee apple slices, hazel chocolate parcels and hedgerow crumble from freshly foraged berries and other herbs and plants on site.
Parents, will be introduced to 'weeds for wellbeing' and will learn about the medicinal benefits of a host of garden herbs and plants – as well as the joys of 'hunting and gathering' as a family.
James said: “Children absolutely love being outdoors. They always have and usually they don’t need to be pushed. It’s what they’re supposed to do.
“There are the obvious benefits of good bacteria and sunlight but it’s also about developing a love for nature and an appreciation for the outdoors so that we raise children who love nature and will look after it.
“Now is the perfect time for bush craft and forest school. People understand the benefits of being outdoors and reconnecting with nature."
James and Lea host courses on foraging, wilderness cooking, bushcraft and outdoor survival skills. They are also trained Forest School leaders and work in primary schools across North Wales.
James is a qualified bushcraft instructor and previously managed the Long Wood Community Woodland, the largest community-owned woodland in Wales, overseeing the management of 300 acres of broadleaf and conifer forest.
Lea, who formerly worked as a learning mentor in a primary school, is a qualified counsellor and practitioner of mindfulness in a woodland setting and also hosts 'circus workshops' for young people.
During the festival, families will learn the art of wilderness cooking and will have the opportunity of baking bread in a traditional Dutch outdoor oven as well as learning how to safely light and manage a camp fire and transform seasonal fruits and berries into tasty treats.
The workshops are part of a packed programme of live cookery events for families over the two-day festival, which takes place at the International Pavilion, Llangollen.