BETTY Rainger and Lucy Fleming have lived four doors down from each other for years, and as it turns out, for just as long, have been turning out some of Inverell’s best home cooked tomato sauce and relish.
“I suppose every year you have tomatoes, and with pickles, you can do anything. I know Lucy always makes her tomato sauce,” Betty said.
“I make relish as well, but the tomato sauce is the real popular one,” Lucy said.
“It’s the hit.” Betty added.
Despite living closely on the preserves scene, and being good friends, both Betty and Lucy said there was little competition between them.
In fact, Betty hasn’t tried Lucy’s tomato sauce recipe. But the pair are both sharing the limelight after netting the top prize in the BEST Food Garden’s preserves competition on April 30. The relish and tomato that has been the homemade hit with their grandkids will soon be available on the local market.
Betty’s relish and Lucy’s tomato sauce, after impressing competition judges in what could have been the longest relish-on-toast breakfast on the planet, will be produced by BEST Community Connections clients with Holy Trinity School’s home economics class and sold around Inverell, with funds reinvested in the BEST Food Garden.
You could see the commitment and the passion everyone had for the gardens.David Traynor
The Dust Jacket’s Josh McPhee was one of the judges charged with separating more than 30 entries in three categories.
He said it was no easy task to pick the winners.
“There was lots of good entries and it was fun trying all the different entries. It was difficult, but they were three very good recipes,” he said.
Regional Finance Solutions’ Debbie and David Traynor pitched in to get the competition off the ground and said the response from Inverell’s home cooking masters was excellent to see.
“You could see the commitment and the passion everyone had for the gardens and we thought, well, we may as well be a part of it,” David said.
“There’s nothing better than home cooking,” Debbie added.
It was difficult, but they were three very good recipes.David Traynor
BEST’s Danny Middleton was stoked with the result, which he said will help the Food Garden continue growing and delivering to local clients.
“Apart from a few small funding grants, BEST Food Garden is funded by BEST Employment and 100 per cent of the proceeds goes to charity.
“So, we were looking for something to make it a bit more sustainable; to generate a bit of income,” he said.
“Whenever we do stuff at the BEST Food Garden, it has to achieve more than one benefit. It has to benefit more than one group. By doing it this way, it involves the entire community.
“The community puts forward their recipes. We have disability groups producing the recipe alongside Holy Trinity School’s home economics class, and then it is sold through retail outlets and small businesses in town.
“Everyone is participating with us to enable us to support the whole community.”