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Marcassie Farm Kitchen owners Axel Zwaans and Gulli Skatun love running their new catering company from Rafford, Moray


By Garry McCartney

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Marcassie Farm Kitchen specialises in locally sourced, easy to prepare seasonal meals. Picture: Becky Saunderson
Marcassie Farm Kitchen specialises in locally sourced, easy to prepare seasonal meals. Picture: Becky Saunderson

A COUPLE from Rafford have started a new business that promotes locally sourced food.

Axel Zwaans and Gulli Skatun left Mallorca and London in late 2020 to move closer to Gulli's parents in the village - last November they launched catering and events company, Marcassie Farm Kitchen (MFK), specialising in locally sourced, seasonal, easy to prepare meals.

Axel Zwaans. Picture: Becky Saunderson..
Axel Zwaans. Picture: Becky Saunderson..

Axel explained: "We met in 2019 on a yacht in Greece. Gulli was working for the owner and his wife as their private chef - I was part of the ship's crew. I was based in Mallorca while Gulli had been living in London.

"Gulli’s parents own Marcassie Farm and she always had intentions of moving back to the area so it felt right to move up north."

The couple aim to bring something different to Moray's food scene, providing a fun, sustainable and seasonally changing menu.

Gulli Skatun. Picture: Becky Saunderson
Gulli Skatun. Picture: Becky Saunderson

Gulli does the cooking, having had 15 years of experience in restaurants, pop-ups and private catering.

Axel set up the website and is responsible for the orders, deliveries and other aspects of the business.

He explained: "Being surrounded by small farms and local growers with amazing produce is incredible but we recognise how time consuming and costly it can be to source local and organic produce, and cook from scratch all the time.

"We evolved the business to focus on freezer meals and created a box scheme so there is less waste and more flexibility for our customers.

"We use locally sourced, free-range meat, organic and locally sourced fruit and veg' where we can, and dry goods from Suma whole food collective.

"Despite focusing on quality ingredients and the rising cost of food, we try to make our meals affordable. Our subscription service is flexible - customers choose what they want to spend, whether that’s one delivery/month as a special treat, or a delivery every week if strapped for time or don’t want to cook! Customers can also make one off orders."

The happy couple and industrious business partners at work. Picture: Becky Saunderson..
The happy couple and industrious business partners at work. Picture: Becky Saunderson..

While Axel and Gulli lived in the cities, they often planned days off around the huge variety of food on offer. They admit to missing being spoiled for choice.

Axel said: "We loved just walking around finding hidden gems and trying street food stalls - there was just so much to choose from!

"We love the local food scene here, there are lots of great cafes and restaurants, as well as amazing food producers. There is also plenty of choice for ready meals in supermarkets, but there are a lot of processed ingredients and often not much emphasis on flavour and quality of produce.

"So we’re trying to mix it up and offer the best of both worlds - restaurant quality meals disguised as frozen ready meals delivered straight to your door."

More than 1000 people attended MFK's Marcassie Christmas Market which showcased local produce and artisan crafts.

"We had a great day selling barbecue buffalo brioche buns and other street food," said Axel. "We’re currently working on the second event planned for July."

He added: "We had our first Supper Club in January, where 30 people sat down for a five course Burns supper, accompanied by local bard Margot Henderson and harp music from Iona Leigh.

"We’ve been very busy with the frozen ready meal side of the business but we’re planning to have more supper clubs and events with more food vendors involved going forward."

See https://marcassiefarmkitchen.co.uk for more information.



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