At Bressingham Steam and Gardens on Friday, South Norfolk Flavours 2014 showcased the wealth of local food-producing talent the area boasts and gave buyers from the hospitality, catering, retail and tourism industries the chance to meet suppliers in one place and find exciting new tastes to tantalise their own customers.
Martin Wilby, deputy leader of South Norfolk Council which supported the event, said: “The idea behind the project is all about making it easy for food and drink buyers keen to meet local producers and sample their goods. Being able to get together in one place will make it much easier for buyers who are looking to source locally in such a diverse market.
“This event supports the work that we are already undertaking with our partners to ensure that our market towns are in the best shape possible to attract shoppers, tourists and businesses, now and in the future.”
At an event aimed to recognise the vital role that the local food industry plays in Norfolk’s economy and celebrate the bountiful produce that is made in one of the county’s largest regions it would have seemed churlish not to join in with an open mind (and mouth).
South Norfolk Local Flavours Event at Bressingham. Mark Ford from Big Skies Food Co.
Photographer Simon ‘Hollow Legs’ Finlay and I took a culinary tour of the exhibition hall at Bressingham, starting with a business based in Bressingham itself, Hodmedod, which sources British beans and peas and is the only company in the country which produces British baked beans in addition to dried pulises, dhal and a range of canned bean and pea products.
Founded in 2012 by Nick Saltmarsh, Josiah Meldrum and William Hudson, the company sells British-grown beans – split and whole fava beans – and peas – Kabuki marrowfat, black badger, yellow, large blue, split green and split yellow.
“For years, the British have grown beans and exported them – we thought that was a waste, so we use our British beans and peas and make wonderful products from them,” said Mr Hudson, offering Simon and I some roasted fava beans (like healthier peanuts – ridiculously moreish).
Find out more about Hodmedod at www.hodmedods.co.uk.