Archive | Aquagarden

Todmorden Country Show

Thanks to everyone who came along to see our stalls at Todmorden Country show on Saturday 3rd June 2017. Big thanks also to our trustees for working so hard on the day and our friends at Incredible Edible Todmorden. Our tent looked fantastic.

We had plants to show, including our ginormous cabbage, and to share- lots of parsley, chives and lovage from our basket of produce were given away at the end.  Andy & Martyna really enjoyed talking to you all about what we’re growing up at Incredible AquaGarden both traditionally and using aquaponics and hydroponics.

Jane & Ian volunteered to help make smoothies on our fabulous smoothie bike. Hope you had a go!

Becky, our food inspirer had made salsa, bean dip and flat bread for folks to have a taste of the sorts of things she cooks up at our food workshops.

The bean dip went down extremely well and she even ran out of recipes to give away. If you weren’t able to get one on the day here’s the recipes she used:



Easy Bean Dip


  • 1x 400g tin white beans (Cannellini, butter bean or flageolet)
  • 3 tbsp olive oil
  • 1 clove garlic (peeled and chopped)
  • 1 heaped tbsp. sesame seeds
  • A pinch ground cinnamon
  • Large handful flat leaf parsley
  • 1 sprig of thyme ( or lemon thyme if you have it)
  • 1-2 tbsp lemon juice


  1. Whizz all ingredients, except 1 tbsp lemon juice, in a hand blender until smooth and creamy, taste and add more lemon juice if required.
  2. Serve with homemade flat bread  or chopped raw vegetable sticks like carrot, peppers or cucumber

Tomato Salsa (Serves 4)


  • 4-6 medium tomatoes, peeled and finely chopped
  • 1 small red chili, finely chopped and deseeded
  • 1/4 – 1/2 medium red onion, very finely chopped
  • 2 small garlic cloves, crushed
  • Small splash of white wine vinegar
  • Squeeze of lime juice
  • Handful of fresh coriander, roughly chopped
  • Salt and  black pepper to taste


  1. Combine all ingredients in a medium bowl and mix together well.
  2. Refrigerate until required.
  3. Serve with flat breads, carrot sticks, tortilla chips……..Enjoy!


Easy Flatbreads              (Makes 6 large or 12 small)


  • 500g self-raising flour, plus a little extra for dusting
  • ½ teaspoon salt
  • 1 tea spoon baking powder
  • 500g natural yoghurt


  • Put all of the dry flatbread ingredients into a bowl. Make a well in the centre and tip in the yoghurt. Fold the flour and yoghurt together to form a dough.

(If the dough’s a little wet still, you may need to add another sprinkling of flour)

  • Dust your work surface with a little flour, then tip the dough onto it.
  • Knead the dough for a minute or so to bring it together, and then divide the dough into about 12 equal-sized pieces.
  • Dust a rolling pin with flour then roll the pieces of dough out into side-plate-sized rounds.
  • Stack them between small sheets of greaseproof paper next to the hob ready to cook.

To cook your flatbreads Put a griddle pan (or a large dry frying pan) on a high heat to get nice and hot. Once it’s really hot, cook each flatbread for a couple of minutes per side, until slightly puffy and lightly charred – you’ll need to do this in batches.

We’re still working on the recipe section of the website but  will have all the recipes from our Eat Fresh cooking workshops up there soon.

If you want to join Becky to make flatbread and dips then come along to the Eat Fresh Cooking Workshop at Todmorden Health Centre 11.30-1.30 on Monday 12th June


We are recruiting – Board of Directors

About us

Incredible AquaGarden is a social enterprise,which evolved from the success of Incredible Edible Todmorden, and shares its ethos and values.

Our Board of Directors has committed members from the local community, and we are now moving to increase its size and skills base.


Located in Todmorden, in the heart of the Pennines, the aim of Incredible AquaGarden is to provide access to good locally produced food for all, by providing incredible growing and learning experiences for families, schools and communities, in a dynamic and innovative environment, and by sustainably producing fresh fruit and vegetables all year round.

At the same time, our purpose is to work with a range of public, private and community and voluntary sector partners, to deliver outcomes for wellbeing and education, by providing urban farming learning opportunities, both on our purpose built site and at the heart of our communities, to help people live well and prosper through their own efforts.


We know that in our area there are great untapped strengths, the kind of which bring people together, strengthen families and communities and which span generational divides.

Our aim is to find and develop these great assets.

Our strategic focus is on empowering and enabling people to deliver this change for themselves. We believe that amazing things can happen when people decide to do something together for their communities.

We are a company limited by guarantee.



We are looking for committed individuals to expand the range of Director skills on our Board as well as to consolidate existing skills with an eye to future planning.  We require dynamic and motivated people, who are sympathetic to the aims and objectives of Incredible AquaGarden,  to fulfil these voluntary duties.  We expect Directors to contribute actively to the Board by;


  • giving strategic direction;
  • setting overall policy;
  • defining goals and setting targets;
  • evaluating performance;
  • ensuring the company’s effective and efficient administration and financial stability.

We want to have a wide range of people on the Board. However, there is no need to have Director experience in order to apply. At the same time, whilst we seek to be representative of the local community, it is not essential that you are a member of that community.


In addition, on the basis of our recent skills audit, we now seek people with financial, commercial and/or legal and HR skills, experience of the Health and Education sectors, as well as Company Secretary experience, to deepen our expertise in those areas.


Directors are expected to:

  • attend monthly Board meetings and an annual planning day;
  • get involved in support work, including fixed term projects and/or sub-committees as relevant to their skill base;
  • contribute advice and support on an ad hoc basis;
  • attend events associated with the work of Incredible AquaGarden;
  • become ‘champions’ of Incredible AquaGarden in order to promote its development



How to apply

If you would like to express your interest in this position, or require further information, please send an email message to Aine Douglas, our Business Development Manager, who is coordinating the recruitment process ( or telephone her on 01706 813448. We would welcome the opportunity to show you around and discuss the project further.

If you can send a brief outline of why you are interested in becoming a Director, together with a summary of your skills and experience, that would be helpful.


You will be invited to sit in on part or all of our next Board meeting, and if you remain interested, Aine and two of our Board members will then arrange to meet with you to talk about your ambitions and expectations in a little more depth. They will then make a recommendation to the Board and a response will be sent to you in writing.



Closing date

Completed applications should be returned to us before 5pm on Friday 19thth May 2017. Applications received after that time may be considered if we have any further places available.


Note that applications will be processed on a ‘first come first served’ basis as they arrive, and that the following board meeting will take place on the 25th May at 6pm.



Thank you very much for your interest, we look forward to hearing from you!

Learn to Build an Earth Oven

Less than two weeks to go!

Build an Earth Oven workshop

Saturday 22nd April 10 am – 4pm

This course will teach you how to build a small cob oven from scratch. During the day Chris Bax, from Taste the Wild will look at all aspects of oven building from selecting your raw materials and mixing your cob through to the first firing. The course is a hands on experience and we will construct an oven together on the day so you can see and experience the different processes in action.

We will have a break for a wonderful home produced lunch, made from locally sourced ingredients. We will also be looking at recipes and cooking techniques, which you can use with your oven, so that you can bring the experience to life in your own setting.

Make the most of summer evenings by bringing the kitchen outdoors. Impress your friends with home made pizzas, breads, casseroles and more, all cooked in you own hand built oven!

For booking please call 01706 813 448 or email

Eat Fresh! Cooking Workshops

Our Eat Fresh cooking workshops are now up and running at Todmorden Health Centre. Everyone is welcome to  join in this great new opportunity to learn how to cook new recipes from fresh ingredients and have fun .  All sessions are free to attend and families are welcome. We’re running free cooking workshops every 2nd and 4th Monday of the month showing you how to cook delicious & healthy meals using fresh produce from our garden as well as the Incredible Edible garden at the Health Centre

We’re cooking at the Health Center from 11.30 to 1.30 pm every 2nd and 4th the month so come along on Monday 10 April 2017 and join us to cook home made pizza in this family friendly workshop

If you can’t make it, the next one is Monday 24 April 2017. Our theme is Eggs-cellent vegetables and we’ll be making tasty fritatas 

You don’t need any cooking experience and you can taste what you have cooked AND take some home -that’s if there’s any left, seriously, this food is delicious! And, its FREE.


The class is situated on the ground floor, in the room at the back of the building to the left of the reception desk. Look out for the sign.

Contact our  Food Inspirer, Becky, to book your place .

Tel: 01706813448



Spice Up Spring Cooking Workshop  27.3.17  (write up by  volunteer, Karen)

Today we made Veggie Chilli, here’s the recipe, it will serve 4-6 people (depending how hungry you are)



1 medium leek

1 medium onion

2 cloves of garlic

1 tablespoon of oil (sunflower oil or olive oil or rapeseed oil)

1 large pepper (can be any colour)

1 medium carrot

1 tablespoon of tomato puree

1-2 red chillies

A pinch of salt and a pinch of black pepper

1 teaspoon of ground cumin

1 teaspoon of ground cinnamon

1 teaspoon of fresh or dried oregano

2 x 400g tins of tomatoes

2 x 400g tins of red kidney beans (or you could substitute one of the cans for another tin of beans like pinto beans, black eyed beans, cannelloni beans)

Brown Rice (75g per person)



1 large sauce pan

1 medium pan

chopping board

sharp knife

measuring spoons

wooden spoons


tin opener



Before you start wash your hands.


  1. Peel & finely chop the onions and garlic.


  1. Trim and finely chop the washed leek, peppers and chilli. Deseed the chilli if you want. Remembr to wash your hands after handling the chilli!


Becky, the tutor showed us how to make vegetable stock:

Get all your vegetable peelings, any will do so long as they are not mouldy or slimy.  Add some sprigs of fresh herbs (collect from one of the Incredible Edible herb beds-we got ours from the herb garden next to the Health Centre), you can add pepper corns too. Place it all in a pan and cover with hot water, bring to the boil and simmer for 20 minutes, strain the vegetables then put the liquid aside to cool. This can be used later.


Here’s another tip: buy (or if you have grown your own use that) an organic leek and use the green bit at the top.  Leave the bottom of the leek that has the roots.  Now, put the leek in a jar with about an inch of water in the bottom. The leek will grow from the top and you can continue to harvest this new growth whilst your leek is in the jar.  Remember to change the water every 4 days or so.




  1. Trim & dice the carrot.


  1. Add a tablespoon of oil to a large heavy based pan and place on a medium heat. Add the chopped vegetables & garlic and gently fry for about 5 minutes until softened.
  1. Add the spices and herbs then fry for another 2 minutes, if it’s a bit dry add a splash of your vegetable stock, or water.
  1. Stir in the tomato puree and cook for a further 2 minutes.
  1. Drain, rinse and stir in the beans, followed by the chopped tomatoes and the home made stock. (Or use vegetable stock cubes or bouillon) so that it covers the vegetables in the pan.
  1. Bring it to the boil, reduce the heat and let it simmer for 25-30mins until it has got thicker, stir occasionally.


  1. Put the rice on: rinse it first in cold water. Put it in a pan and cover well with boiling water. Simmer on a medium heat for 20-25 mins. Once cooked rinse again with boiling water.
  1. Serve chilli on top of the rice and top with a spoonful of yoghurt and chopped fresh coriander.



You can use whatever vegetables you like in your chilli.  Peppers, red kidney beans and tomatoes are standard then add whatever you like. We have used leek and carrot today as they are in season.  Try courgette and green beans in the summer.

If you are a meat eater just add some beef or turkey mince and only use 1 tin of beans.  Cook this at the beginning with the onions then add the rest of the veg.


Hope to see you for lunch sometime! Please give us your suggestions about what you would like to learn to cook.

Inspiring workshops coming soon!

We are delighted to announce the start of Reconnect with Nature workshops.


All of these are designed to teach you new skills, inspire your cooking and growing techniques and bring you a little bit closer to Mother Nature.





Wild plants for skin and hair

We are starting with a fantastic workshop run by Rose Bax from Taste the Wild (, where Rose will introduce you to the array of wild plants to nurture your hair and skin. You will make natural skin and hair products using wild flowers, leaves and roots. The day will be a mixture of demonstrations by Rose and plenty of hands-on experience. You’ll have all your products to take home and the skills to make more.

Places are limited to 8 people


Build an Earth Oven

At the end of April, together with Chris Bax from Taste the Wild we will build an Earth Oven, in which we will be cooking over the summer. This course will teach you how to build a small cob oven from scratch. During the day we will look at all aspects of oven building from selecting your raw materials and mixing your cob through to the first firing. The course is a hands on experience and we will construct an oven together on the day so you can see and experience the different processes in action.

Places are limited to 10 people


Create a Kitchen Garden

May is the perfect time to think about what edibles we can grow in our gardens and how can we add extra flavour and nutrition to our cooking. This workshop explores all aspects of creating a kitchen garden, from seed to harvesting and cooking. You will develop life long skills to enable you to produce delicious meals for the whole family with home grown produce. No matter what size your growing space is, we will help you to understand how to make the most of it.

Places are limited to 10 people


Wild Food Foraging

This day will be all about what extra treats we can get from nature to funk up our meals. Led by the experienced team from Taste the Wild, who have been running foraging courses for many years, we will take you for a walk through Todmorden to explore, recognise and pick edible plants which often occur in the wild. Depending on the season we may be tapping trees for sap, gathering wild herbs or picking edible fungi, but no matter what we find you will learn how to prepare and transform foraged foods into great dishes, preserves and drinks.

Places are limited to 10 people


Field to Fork

Learn how to create delicious meals for family and friends which will add the wow factor to vegetarian cooking. This workshop will challenge the view that fine dining can only be achieved in high end restaurants. Turn your dinner party into a gastronomical experience, using freshly harvested, local, organic produce and learn how to make the most of home grown ingredients. We will demonstrate a selection of menus with unusual ingredients, which will taste great and inspire your cooking.

Places limited to 10 people


15% Early Bird discount if you book before March 24th 

To make a booking call on 01706 813 448 or email

Free cooking workshops

Our Wellbeing Food Inspirer would like to invite you to FREE cooking workshops in Todmorden Health Centre.


Becky is an experienced cook and baker and has plenty of delicious, easy-to-make recipes for you and the whole family.

Starting Monday 27th February, the workshops be on every 2nd and 4th Monday of the month – everybody’s welcome!


Urban Farming Workshops

We have recently launched our first Urban Farming workshop and the first people to attend, were our co – Incredible – Edible groups from all over the country. The course is an introduction to Soil Science, Hydroponics and Aquaponics and whether you’re only starting your adventure with growing or you’re already an experienced grower and want to find new ideas, you’ll find in it something for yourself. This course will soon be launched for non IE groups, so if you’re interested in attending, get in touch.




Soil Science reminds us that it’s not just ‘dirt’ below our feet, but a vibrant and exciting world of living things, from bacteria, fungus to soil animals and worms. We looked at building a healthy soil for our plants, we had a go at looking at some soil animals under microscope (and I swear it wasn’t just shots of 1970s horror movies).

We spoke about some permaculture methods, worms and worm composting, learned about compost brews, how they affect the soil and its life and we even brewed our own.

What a healthy aerobic compost brew looks like:


What an unhealthy anaerobic compost brew looks like:

Second part of our learning was the basics of hydroponics. We discussed a wide range of topics, from what hydroponics is, why we need it these days and all the technical aspects. We had a look at some Autopot studies of hydroponics in developing countries and areas which struggle to use conventional food production. We learned about pest control and nutrients and finally we had a go at assembling our own Autopot set up.



The last topic was Aquaponics; we discussed its role in modern world, touched on urban farming options, sustainability and the future of our food. We had a go at assembling a small Hydrogarden aquaponics unit, which shown that it’s not as difficult as it first seemed.


Our attendees took away a set of small hydroponics to try and have a go at growing at home. We hope that you will have a great crop and will spread the word about growing without soil.


Thank you to Incredible Edible Network for making this course available to Incredibles.

Also big thanks to Autopot Watering Systems, HYDRoToPS and Tod Hydro for long lasting support in many areas.

Movie screening

Todmorden was featured in an award-winning movie about future of our food and environment and it will now be screened for one day only in our own Hippodrome cinema. Come and see the influence our Incredible town had on the world.

Tuesday January 24th, 2017. Doors open 6.30pm.


Vacancy – Wellbeing Food Inspirer

Incredible AquaGarden is seeking a Wellbeing Food Inspirer, to increase awareness and skills in cooking with home grown and locally produced food, through the delivery of learning programmes, events and workshops.

Purpose of Role: To increase awareness of the connection between growing, cooking and wellbeing, through the delivery of events and workshops, in a variety of settings and to increase interest in cooking and growing local food.

Passionate about cooking with local produce, as well as growing and harvesting, you will engage a variety of groups, including families, schools and the local community, by planning and delivering workshops and activities, focusing on the links between growing, cooking with fresh produce and wellbeing.

Working across age, ability, culture and background, you will have access to exciting and innovative growing techniques, such as aquaponics and hydroponics, as well as more traditional growing methods, indoors and out. You will guide and support groups in the preparation and cooking of seasonal and nutritious local food, both on site in our demonstration kitchen and in a variety of settings, within the community. Your skills and experience will be vital in engaging people for whom learning can be a challenge, or who lack experience and confidence. You will provide an accessible learning platform, where skills and experience can be developed and shared through group activities and peer mentoring.

Specific outputs include:

• The planning and delivery of learning programmes, events and workshops, focusing on increasing healthy lifestyles and wellbeing, through growing and cooking, on site and in community settings.
• The delivery and evaluation of outcomes against predetermined criteria and objectives.
• Working with volunteers and members of the community to identify need and to establish partnership projects with local services, community groups, schools and businesses.
• Managing and developing the demonstration kitchen, cooking equipment and resources.
• Using IT and social media to communicate and promote Incredible AquaGarden activities
• Sourcing and producing healthy nutritious recipes, menus and planning materials for a wide range of audiences
• Transporting equipment and resources and setting up ‘pop-up’ kitchens in community settings

Fixed Term Contract – 12 months
21 hours per week, working flexibly, and including some evenings and weekends
£20,000 pro rata, per annum DBS check required
Closing Date for applications: January 9th 2017

For job specification and further details please email:

Please send letter of application and CV to:
Áine Douglas, BusinessDevelopment Manager, Incredible AquaGarden, Ewood Lane, Todmorden, OL14 7DG
Or email to

An evening with worms and other soil creatures


We are delighted to welcome Guy Thompson (Worm Man Extraordinaire) and Dr. Charlie Clutterbuck (Soil Zoologist) to Incredible AquaGarden for an evening talk about the role of worms in agriculture and the future of soil and soil animals, to celebrate the arrival of our giant wormery.
Guy, the designer of the wormery, will discuss its design and working process along with top tips for nurturing worms.
Charlie will follow up with a talk about the life beneath our feet.
This will be an interesting, informal interactive evening, and a great opportunity to learn about what lies beneath.


When: Monday 14th November

Where: Incredible Aquagarden, Ewood Lane, Todmorden

(please park at the Sports Centre car park)

What time: 6.30 – 8.30 PM


This is a free event however donations are welcome.


If you’re interested in coming please RSVP to by Wednesday 9th November.

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