Consuming The Harvest

While Pottering About At Home In Norfolk

Archive for the ‘Review’ Category

Good For Customers, Better For The Environment

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While searching t’internet for large containers of bicarbonate of soda (1001 uses!) I ran across the online shop EcoShopDirect which is endorsed by Aggie MacKenzie of Kim & Aggie/How Clean Is Your House fame.  They had the bicarb and an endorsement from Aggie so I was more than happy to give them a try.

The order process was painless and the bicarb showed up at the door within 3 days.  Along with a load of other products.  I was sure that they had mistakenly boxed up someone else’s order with mine and promptly sent off an email stating so.  I received a reply back which surprised me and (very odd) left me silenced.  All of the extra goodies in the box were sent on purpose, for me to try their products and get this . . . they were free.  All of them.  Not dinky little sample ditties you occasionally get from some companies, but full size products!  The photo below shows what was in my box, the bicarb and Citrus Room Fragrance containers are the only things that I ordered, the rest are the ‘freebies’.


I’m sorry, but companies – no matter the size, just don’t do things like this any more.  As a matter of fact, I don’t know of any company anywhere that I have ever received so many full sized products from, free, for me to test out their worth.  Now, I don’t speak for EcoShopDirect so I have no idea if I was just lucky that day I ordered or if this is something they do on a regular basis (even 1 or 2 products), so I can’t say that if you were to place an order you would be quite as fortunate as I was in receiving ‘extras’, but I can speak for the products themselves that I’ve tried thus far.

I have not used the furniture or floor polish yet.

  • The Bicarb – I suppose bicarb is bicarb, it is what it says on the tin (bucket) so good enough for me 🙂
  • The Citrus Room Fragrance is absolutely lovely.  I put some in a little dish in the lounge and the aroma stayed for about 4 days, and I then stirred it up a bit and it lasted another 4 before I shook it up a bit once more and was good for another 2 days!
  • The Fabric Conditioner is extremely economical, just a small (very) amount worked wonders on a full load in fairly hard water with a subtle fresh scent.
  • The Colour Washing Powder worked very well with my coloured loads, and once again, you use a really very small amount per load.  So small in fact, I was a bit dubious and was certain that I would have to double up (at least) on the amount the next time, but no worries.  Just the small amount stated on the container is all it takes.
  • The White Washing Powder – the same as above.  Using only the small amount recommended did the job wonderfully on my white loads.

Now, as for the laundry, my usual washes are of garments that are what I suppose you call average grubbiness. 😀  If you were to have a load that was really dirty or your water was extremely hard, you would probably have to use a bit more product, but I’m certain that it wouldn’t be too much more, and not nearly the amount your average laundry detergent would need.

So, can you tell, I’m thrilled.  A company that offers innovative ecological products which actually work and is good to it’s customers. I think that speaks for itself, but just in case you’re waiting for the specific statement – I would highly recommend EcoShopDirect and those products that I’ve tried thus far.

There are plans in place to try a fair few more in the future . . . . .

EcoShopDirect gets a place under ‘Shops’ in the sidebar too, from one very pleased customer!

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Written by kadeeae

March 23, 2009 at 11:31 am

Simple Simon Really Is THE Pieman!

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I had read a couple of different rave reviews of Simple Simon’s Pie Shop, where now I couldn’t tell you, and thought both times that I would definitely have to give them a try.  I bookmarked the site after reading the second review and finally got around to placing an order last week.

The most difficult part of placing the order was trying to decide on which pies to purchase.  All of the varieties sounded absolutely scrumptious, but in the end I placed an order for some of the Sausage and Potato in Onion Gravy, Pork with White Wine – Lemon – Parsley & Garlic and the Beef & Mushroom.  I ordered on a Wednesday, about 2:45 PM, which according to their delivery quotes on the website, would have mine arriving on the following Tuesday because I was after the 2 PM ‘deadline’ for Friday delivery.  I was pleasantly surprised when an email arrived about 15 minutes later stating that they had received my order and I could expect delivery on Friday.  Not only a punctual reply, but I’d be getting my pies 4 days earlier than planned!  🙂

The pies did indeed arrive on Friday, around 1 PM, and were wrapped and packed well with small ‘chiller cubes’ (ice gel) around them which they state would keep the appropriate temperature for 48 hrs.  Of course there was no way that these boxes were going to sit untouched for 48 hrs to find out!  I ordered more than I needed at the time so that I could put some in the freezer (they will keep well for up to 2 months, defrost slowly and thoroughly before reheating) and give a couple to the IL’s.

Dinner time the next day and into the oven went my pie, for about 35 minutes (I had taken it out of the fridge about half an hour prior to come up to room temp.) at Gas Mark 4.  Vegetables steamed, and I was ready!

And I was not, in any fashion, disappointed.  The photo above shows how gloriously golden (no edits here!) the pastry was and it tasted every bit as good as it looked coming out of the oven.  The pastry was lovely moist and light, but not so crumbly that you end up with bits everywhere like you do with some.  I thought that maybe it would be a bit dry because of reheating an already cooked pie, but it wasn’t in the least.  And, even better than the ‘shell’ was it’s contents.

The pork was very tender, moist and plenty of it.  The seasoning was absolutely spot on with no one flavour overwhelming the others, and all of the ingredients resting on steamed potatoes . . . . genius.  It really was delicious and a generous serving at about 300g.  I could have been a bit piggy and had two but with the veg it was a nice meal and I wasn’t so overstuffed that I couldn’t make a bit of room for some pudding.  🙂

I have to give Simple Simon’s Pies an enthusiastic and total “thumbs up”.  We haven’t had either of the two other kinds just yet, possibly this weekend, but I can’t imagine that they would be a let down.  Thought and care has gone into making these wonderful pies, you can tell, and I would feel confident in assuming the rest of the “line” is just as mouth watering and filling.  I will definitely post when we have the other two varieties.  Also of note, their creations are additive and preservative free with locally reared meats and fresh fish being used.

There are 20 types of pies and they also do casseroles which are suitable for freezing too, and a cold pork pie flavoured with spices and mustard which sounds yummy also.  I heartily suggest you drop by their site and have a look at the wonders Simple Simon’s has to offer, I know that we are now confirmed Simple Simon customers!

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Written by kadeeae

September 12, 2008 at 6:50 pm