This last weekend I travelled slightly out of town to our neighbouring county of Derbyshire to visit the Bakewell Food Festival 2013. There was a lot of good food and produce on offer, almost too much to retell. So in the spirit of randomness I thought I would post my own highlights or random awards (all of which are unofficial – just my opinion)
Most Helpful Food People – The Hartington School of Food
The Hartington School of Food were conducting Bread making demonstrations all day so we popped in to discuss our sourdough making experiences. They were incredibly helpful giving out really good and FREE advice. They listened patiently as we talked about what had gone wrong with our bread making and did not judge us too harshly when we discovered the really basic mistakes that we had made. It normally costs about £100 for a bread making course and I reckon that we spent at least 30 mins to an hour talking to a couple of different instructors during the day, they could not have been more welcoming or helpful. So much so that we bought some of their freshly baked cheese scones which were very good indeed!
Best Pork Cob – New Close Farm
I was lucky enough to have a double encounter with the New Close Farm Shop over the weekend while visiting the Bakewell Food Festival. They have a regular stall at the Bakewell Farmer’s Market which runs on the last Saturday of each month where I purchased some very good smoked streaky bacon. They also had a stall at the Festival selling Roast Pork Cobs which were the best on offer.
This was a nice cob, plenty of hand carved pork, crackling if you wanted it, stuffing and apple sauce for the bargain price of £3.50.
Most Outrageous Cheese – ‘Sticky Toffee’ from the Cheshire Cheese Company
The Cheshire Cheese Company were really pushing it out there with some very unusual, perhaps bordering on crazy, flavor combinations. The most outrageous of which was the “Sticky Toffee Heaven” cheese. It actually did taste of sticky toffee pudding, I quite liked it and so did quite a few of the crowd, but there were plenty of other people who just could not get on with the sweet in a cheese. I think that this combination was a bit like Marmite, you are going to either love it or hate it. Cheshire Cheese Company have a tagline which was “Cheese that makes you grin” It certainly did!
Best Pies – Great North Pie Company
The Great North Pie company was at the adjacent Bakewell Farmer’s market fresh off the back of some success at the National Pie Awards. I bought a pie with the short name of “Short Rib of Beef, Potato & White Onion Cream” can I just say Beef, Potato, and Onion? for £3.95. It was very delicious and to be very honest the best artisan pie I have bought for a while. The full description they give of the pie is “R&J’s Yorkshire beef, slow braised short ribs with corned beef spices, baked potato, caramelized white onion cream, homemade pickle with caper and raisin, poppy seeds and sesame”
Hey guys “you had me at ‘Pie'”
Scotch Egg Of The Day – Duck Egg and Black Forest Ham
The most interesting and as it happens most delicious Scotch Egg on offer at Bakewell this weekend was a “Duck Egg & Black Forest Ham” effort produced by the Staffordshire Savoury Scotch Eggs company
I know that I nearly always tell you that the scotch egg I just ate was the most delicious I have eaten and I am so biased towards this snack that I always believe that it is or was. Well hopefully you will believe me when I try to tell you just how good this Scotch egg was. This was the first one I have had using a Duck egg and that really makes a difference. The yolk is so much more rich and creamy, there did not seem to be quite as much egg white, but that might just have been this egg. The pork meat encasing the boiled egg was not too dense and it had been mixed with sage and onion to give a nice savoury taste a bit like stuffing. The real kicker was wrapping the egg in the Black Forest Ham, this was a gem of an idea, a nice smoky cure to the ham adds a real rich taste to the whole scotch egg. Yes! this was a really good variant on the snack. Not only that at just £2 it was a bargain as well!
Well that was just some of the highlights (well my highlights anyway)
This was a really good show and combined with the excellent Bakewell Farmer’s Market it was a great day out for a food lover. There were so many good stalls and producers there many from out of the county, check out my facebook page over the next few weeks for updates and snippets about them as I eat my way through the food that I bought.