Good From Scratch – The Farm Experience

Arriving on a crisp winter’s morning, sun shining through the large glass windows, and a warmth radiating from the kitchen fireplace, Toi Tangata Poutiaki, Matire Seath, took a day out of the office to spend it at the Good From Scratch school on Auckland’s beautiful West Coast, Muriwai.

Run by TV celebrity and chef, Michael Van de Elzen and his wife Bee, Chef Lucie, and Head Gardener, Adrianne Barry, this team of cooks and green thumbs run a variety of experiences at Good From Scratch. These range from half-day to full-day classes, a monthly farmers market at the school, and “Supper Club”: a three-hour, three-course dining experience.

Matire had signed up for a full-day experience. This started with a walk around the farm, kitchen gardens and citrus orchard with Adrianne. Adrianne, who is also a chef, shared the secrets to the success of the school’s gardens as well as the struggles they had during the challenging weather in Tāmaki Makaurau earlier this year.

After some knowledge sharing and collecting of fresh produce for the day’s menu, everyone headed back indoors to spend the rest of the day in the amazing kitchen. Throughout the cooking lesson, Michael and Lucie shared tips and tricks, including technical baking tips and different cooking methods. By the end of the day, everyone had had a go at making focaccia bread, pasta from scratch, caramelized onion ta-ta-tan bruschetta, wrapped snapper, and homemade vanilla ice cream. It was amazing.

All-in-all, it was a thoroughly enjoyable day for all and everyone had the opportunity to share some of their learnings with others. Matire goes on record to say, “I would recommend any one of the classes or experiences the school has to offer as a team-building activity. I guarantee everyone would love it.”