It Starts With The Soil at Heckfield Place

September 1, 2021 by Hidden Doorways

If the House is the heart of Heckfield Place – a lovingly restored Georgian family home in the Hampshire countryside – then its farm and biodynamic Market Garden is its soul.

Overseen by the Heckfield team and guided by masters of their craft in biodynamics, the farm provides for the House: from flowers to rotating arable crops and honey. This deep relationship with the land and an ambition to preserve it for generations to come is at the heart of Heckfield’s sustainability ethos.

Their respect for nature and the environment all stems from their appreciation of time. They are a living place that follows the rhythms of nature and the seasons – which defines their energy, and in many ways, their practices.

Chefs and restaurants at Heckfield Place are fueled by the seasons and what their farm and local suppliers can produce. From this, comes a commitment to not waste a precious ounce of what the land gives to them.


Creatively, this has led to the Earth menu in their Marle restaurant– a pursuit to use unloved bits like carrot or beetroot tops, alongside gluts and more to create a delicious menu from what would have otherwise gone overlooked.


Heckfield Place seeks to impart their food and sustainability knowledge to guests, so that it can stay with them far beyond their stay.

As part of their Autumn Equinox celebration, join Heckfield’s Chefs on September 18, 2021 for an Art of Preservation  workshop – a key method in combatting food waste by preserving what is abundant for seasons to come.


For those who are interested in canning at home, Heckfield’s Development Chef Dor Harel and Preserving/Pickling Master shares his tips and recipes for making fresh home-made Piccalilli.


Heckfield’s Home Farm Piccalilli

The Produce:

  • Cauliflower – Large florets, core cut to small chunks, blanched and refreshed in iced water.
  • Romanesco – Large florets, core cut to small chunks, Blanched and refreshed in iced water.
  • Carrots – peeled and sliced into discs
  • Fennel – thinly sliced
  • Kohlrabi – peeled, and diced to large dice size
  • Shallots – Peeled and sliced thinly


The Method:

  • Combine cooked cauliflower with raw vegetables, weigh, and toss in 1% salt, leave overnight in fridge.
  • Drain following morning, reserve liquid and weigh.


Liquid and Spices (per 1kg mix):

  • 15 g mustard seeds
  • 1g (½ tbsp) clove
  • 2g (1 tbsp) Fenugreek
  • 2g (1tbsp) coriander
  • 2g (1tbsp) Cumin
  • 10 g turmeric
  • 30 g cornflour (sifted)
  • 7 g salt
  • 600 ml apple cider vinegar
  • 250 ml Brining liquid left from macerated veg


The Method:

  • Blitz spices and add to sifted cornflower & turmeric.
  • Bring vinegar, water, salt & sugar to simmer until sugar is dissolved.
  • Ladle hot liquid on dry products in small amounts and whisk to a smooth paste.
  • Mix paste back into hot liquid and whisk until thickened and cornflour flavor is cooked out.
  • Pour hot pickling mix on vegetables ensuring it is nicely coated.
  • Pack into sterilized jars.



Heckfield Place
RG27 0LD, England
Telephone: +44 (0) 118. 932. 6868





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