With backgrounds in journalism and fine art Duncan and I moved to Nundle in our late twenties after visiting for 18 months and falling for its dramatic hills, historic buildings and village atmosphere.
We revived a timber and iron building in the main street, re-registering the name Odgers and McClelland Exchange Stores and stocking traditional kitchen and garden wares inspired by original handwritten and typed ledgers.
Some of the brands that we stock are the same vintage as the building: Burgon and Ball, Sheffield, 1730; Kilner, 1842; Opinel, 1890; TALA Taylor and Law, 1899; Mason Cash, 1901; Fowlers, 1915; Falcon, 1920s.
Our business evolved for 11 years without being online. Our online journey began in 2011 after the birth of our youngest son. Creating an online store was a way for me to work from home.View full article →
For the Murrurundi Ladies Day Out I made Black Forest Brownie Cake to demonstrate how I style and photograph an image to share on our shop social media. It is a delicious cake and I had to laugh when our 10-year-old said it was his favourite cake because he preferred dense chocolate cake to airy chocolate cake. The recipe could come in handy during the summer months when we're all called on to "bring a plate" from time to time. Your friends will love you for bringing this along.View full article →
Walking our Border Collie Kelpie cross, Walt, under the alders in the paddock near our house, I admire the magnificence of the Great Dividing Range and I am reminded of the first time I visited Nundle and saw those striking mountains.
After an extraordinary drive from Tamworth, shadowing the serpentine curves of the Peel River, by the time I reached Nundle I was so in awe of the beauty of the landscape that I was thinking, “What is this place?”
Duncan and I have just passed our 20-year anniversary of living at Nundle and I still appreciate that humbling experience of living in a mountain landscape daily.View full article →
If you're looking for a simple recipe to make and package for friends for homemade Christmas gifts, or to take to a gathering try making a batch of Pfeffernusse. While reading Matthew Evans 'Summer on Fat Pig Farm' I came across a recipe for Spiced biscuits, described as 'Almost like a Pfeffernusse'. This lead me on a search to find out what Pfeffernusse is and a morning of biscuit making. With ground cinnamon, nutmeg, ginger and cloves the mixing and baking really does bring Christmas spice scents into your kitchen. It is very satisfying rolling the smooth biscuit dough into small balls, and once cooked and cooled they had a lovely chewy texture and of course the delicious spice flavour.View full article →
Christmas has come early to the bush this year in the form of simple but effective social media campaigns, #buyfromthebush and #buyregional. This is an immediate leg up for country online retailers like ourselves, who by simply adding the hashtags #buyfromthebush and #buyregional to our social media posts, or registering on the NSW Government #buyregional online hub, are linked with potential urban customers who would like to support regional communities facing their third year of drought this Christmas.View full article →
Duncan has added home butchering to his skill set. After helping friends Gibbo and the Worleys butchering home grown lamb, and picking up tips like wiping the carcass with lemon and herbs, he has been butchering our own lamb for about 12 months. At first he was limited to hanging the carcass in our shed (winter only), but after buying a tall fridge he now has the flexibility of hanging a carcass at a consistent temperature and can home butcher year-round. Our knife wholesalers, Tawonga, are a source of butchering tools, a New Zealand made saw, skinner, boner, and knife.View full article →
Back at the house Teree tells me to take some lemons from June's renowned prolific producing lemon tree. I remember a recipe for Walnut and Lemon Syrup Cake and give it a go, naming it Walnut and Tarwarri Lemon Syrup Cake. It involves boiling the lemons until soft for about an hour, before processing the lemons with eggs and syrup to create a batter to add to the walnut meal and bicarbonate of soda. The result is a light, gluten free, nutty textured cake, and a deliciously tangy lemon syrup with subtle undercurrents of cloves, cardamom and cinnamon. At the end of the week I tell Teree about the cake, "I'm going to miss that tree, the lemons are amazing," she says.View full article →
In preparation for a presentation I was giving for Tamworth Regional Heritage Festival, I interviewed the last McClelland to own our shop, Tony McClelland, aged 80. Tony’s earliest memory of the old store is when he was about eight, being with his grandfather Bill McClelland dressed for work in a suit. Odgers and McClelland Exchange Stores was started by William McClelland and John Odgers in the 1890s, about 40 years after gold was discovered at Hanging Rock. The partnership exchanged gold for credit at the store to purchase goods. It was a general merchants selling all the basics that people needed. Goods like potatoes, sugar, salt, onions, dates, and flour were bought in bulk and repackaged in paper bags.View full article →