• Midlands

Midlands

From Melton Mowbray pork pies, to Stilton cheese, and curries from the balti triangle - the Midlands provide meals to suit all tastes.

The food of the Midlands
The Midlands stretch across the heart of Britain, covering the area from the Welsh border in the west, to the Lincolnshire coast in the east.

This is a region of two halves; the West Midlands - Herefordshire, Shropshire, Staffordshire, Warwickshire and Worcestershire - and the East Midlands - Derbyshire, Leicestershire and Rutland, Lincolnshire, Northamptonshire and Nottinghamshire.

Market towns in this region pride themselves on their regional specialties and culinary traditions.
Try some regional recipes:
Herefordshire fidget pie
Pears in perry syrup
Venison steaks with damson sauce

Here's a rundown of much-loved local produce...

Melton Mowbray pork pies
Melton Mowbray in Leicestershire is rightly famed for its top quality pork pies - a rich pastry crust yields to the meaty filling, crammed with sage-flecked chunks of succulent pork, glistening in a rich pork jelly.

Hunt cake
This lightly spiced fruit and nut cake is flavoured with rum. It makes a tasty complement to Melton Mowbray pork pies.

Stilton cheese
Britain's famous blue cheese, Stilton, is produced in Melton Mowbray and five other licensed dairies in Leicestershire, Nottinghamshire and Derbyshire. Stilton cheese is still made to a centuries old recipe and is the only British cheese graced with its own certification trademark.

Interestingly, this distinctive cheese isn't actually made in Stilton. The village of Stilton is located 80 miles from London. Historically, Stilton village was the first stop for coaches traveling north from London. Convenient to Melton Mowbray and the surrounding area, the village became the central market place for this cheese, which is how it got its name.

Bramley apples
Nottinghamshire has extensive fruit farms and the Bramley apple originated in this county.

Nottingham roast goose remains a classic favourite. The skin of a goose is rubbed with salt and pepper and its cavity filled with a stuffing of chopped locally grown cooking apples, sage and breadcrumbs. It earned its fine reputation from the famed Goose fair

The Nottingham Goose Fair traces its origins back to the 13th century and got its name from the thousands of geese which were driven to Nottingham to be sold every October.

Local gingerbread
Ashbourne in Derbyshire has its own gingerbread and the recipe is said to have originated from French prisoners of war who were kept in the town during the Napoleonic Wars. It's a rich cake, scented with spices and emboldened with delectable black treacle.

Tamworth pigs
One of the most sought after pig breeds, Tamworth pigs are reared in Staffordshire, a prime area for top quality succulent pork.

Staffordshire oatcakes
A soft pancake which can be served with fruit or jam, but is particularly tasty as a breakfast dish with locally cured bacon, and eggs.

Apples, pears and damsons
Herefordshire is still a county where hops are grown and is renowned for its apple orchards and cider production.

Perry pear production, much of which goes into a delicious pear-based cider, is experiencing a revival of interest and gaining fame even outside the Midlands.

Locally grown damsons are back in demand and make wonderful chutney, jams, jellies, sauces, ice cream and fruit gin.

Fidget pie
A traditional pastry-topped dish with a bacon, cider and apple filling. No one really knows how it got its name, but it was traditionally made to feed hungry workers during the harvesting season.

Bakewell Pudding
Bakewell in Derbyshire is home to the famous Bakewell Pudding. Like so many culinary successes it came about by accident because of a misunderstanding between Mrs Graves, mistress of the White Horse Inn in Bakewell and her cook. Visiting noblemen ordered strawberry tart, but the cook, instead of stirring the egg mixture into the pastry, spread it on top of the jam. Bakewell puddings are still made by hand to a secret recipe.
 

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