Tales From River Cottage

Episode Guide

Series 1 Episode Guide

Getting Started

Series 1 · Episode 1

Hugh reminisces about the early days at River Cottage, and offers advice to would-be smallholders on how to find their rural escape hatch and get started on the good life.

A Garden Of Eden

Series 1 · Episode 2

Hugh recalls the progress of his horticultural skills over the three years, from planting his first organic veg beds, running the gauntlet of pests, to harvesting bumper crops.

The Joy Of Pigs

Series 1 · Episode 3

Hugh celebrates his growing affection for pigs and pork over the years, from how to buy a pig, to how to make a dry-cured bacon and ham; this is a guide to all things piggy.

Friends And Neighbours

Series 1 · Episode 4

Good friends and helpful neighbours are an essential part of the rural idyll. Hugh recalls his initiation into the rural Dorset community, from a posh dinner to a riotous piss-up.

Barter And Business

Series 1 · Episode 5

The life of a smallholder is not of self denial but of good living. To achieve this, you need to be a bit of a wiley entrepreneur, always ready to barter and heckle.

Chicken And Egg

Series 1 · Episode 6

The difference between a veg garden and a smallholding is simple: livestock. And the first item of livestock every downshifter needs is a chicken or two.

Customs And Rituals

Series 1 · Episode 7

When it comes to acquainting yourself with the local customs, the secret is: get stuck in. Hugh recalls how he learned of hedge-laying, charcoal-making and mouse-charming.

The River And The Sea

Series 1 · Episode 8

Hugh explains how the river and the sea offer the smallholder a combination of escape and adventure, as well as free food, from crabs and cuttlefish to eels and pike.

The Wild Larder

Series 1 · Episode 9

Hugh explains why wild food, both plants and animals, should always be a prime part of the smallholders diet, as he hunts for rabbits, deer and pigeons and finds the edible plants.

Land And Livestock

Series 1 · Episode 10

Having made his decision to stay in Dorset and continue the rural life, Hugh considers the big question facing the committed smallholder: how far are you prepared to go?