THOUSANDS of food lovers turned out in force yesterday at The Journal’s Taste of the County marquee at the County Show in Corbridge to savour flavours of the region.
Show visitors browsed the 52 food and drink stalls specialising in quality artisan produce from around the North East. Stalls were selling everything from cheeses, meats, home-baked produce and preserves to local brews, cakes, jams and ice creams.
Names big and small included the likes of Julian’s Veg, Allendale Breweries, the Mad Jam Woman, Trees Can’t Dance chilli sauces, Kielder Organic Meats and Northumbria Muffins.
The Taste of the County food fair was an added tasty attraction at the County Show, being held in Corbridge for the last year before it moves to Bywell next year.
Sisters Jane Slater and Fiona Woodcock of Glanton-based The Cake Root were doing roaring trade with their cakes baked with fruit and root vegetables, including chocolate and beetroot cake, one of their best sellers, and sticky fruity gingerbead.
Jane said: “This is our third year here and we really enjoy it. It’s a great atmosphere. We’ve brought along about 250 scones and about 400 pieces of cake. Everything is selling well.”
Heather Foggon, of The Chirnells Farmhouse Kitchen in Thropton, said working the nightshift the evening before baking all her goodies had been well worth it.
“I’ve brought about 700 scones today and 200 loaves of bread. I used 51 kilos of flour for the scones alone!”
Heather’s scones, cheese and onion and fruit varieties were her bestsellers as well as sourdough breads.
Chefs and cooks were another big draw in the Taste tent as they took it in turns to demo in the mobile kitchen to watching crowds.
First up in the mobile kitchen was Jo Hampson of Smoky Jo’s food smoking courses in Shap, Cumbria. She demonstrated dishes of smoked aubergine dip and smoked salmon.
Next up was Journal food columnist and cookbook author Jane Lovett who wowed the crowds with her dish of salmon en croute with lime and coriander sauce.
Jane, who lives near Wooler in Northumberland, said: “It’s the first time I’ve demonstrated in the Taste marquee at the County Show and it’s been fun.
“It’s great to get all the local producers together and a good opportunity to support local.”
Also demonstrating in the kitchen were Andrew Laurie of Barluga, Morpeth, John Connell of The Meat Merchant, Jesmond, who is also newly-crowned North East Chef of the Year 2012, and Lee Campbell of The White Swan, Alnwick, also a previous winner of NE Chef of the Year. Taste of the County is the tenth food and drink extravaganza held by The Journal in support of the newspaper’s buy, use, eat local campaign.
The Journal’s next Taste event, Taste at Beamish Hall, will be held as part of Best Western Beamish Hall Summer Fete on June 17, 11am to 5pm. For info, call 01207 233 733 or email firstname.lastname@example.org