Grey Seal Coffee – Wells

How better to warm up on a cold grey morning then visiting the newest site of Grey Seal coffee? We have been fans of the Roastery since it opened, so we were excited to see their new digs in Wells-next-the-Sea.  

   
The new place has all the rustic charm you find at the Roastery itself as well as the Blakeney site.  Just the cosey sort of place to take refuge on the North Sea in winter.

   
    
 
The Portuguese tarts are a must try! 

I also noted the mod cons including outlets for electronics and USB ports. A nice touch in a region with very little mobile phone service. 

  
With local knowledge and attention to detail on top of Amazing coffee I’m sure it will be a hit!

  

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Oyster Catcher Catering

As part of our ‘Winter Recaps’ we can’t wait to gush about our invitation to a fabulous tasting event by Oyster Catcher Catering. I am not food blogger (though we do seem to talk about food, and local food, a lot on here) so I will let the starters speak for themselves!

Heritage beetroot salad with grilled goats cheese and toasted nuts and seeds
Canapes: Goats cheese wrapped in cured ham with oven dried tomato and pesto, cucumber cups with Cromer crab and radish salad, polenta cakes with pickled mushrooms truffel mayo and broad bean

Polenta cakes with pickled mushrooms, truffle mayo, and broad bean

They are as delicious as they are beautiful. 

Wherever possible they provide food and ingredients from the Norfolk area. And of course living in some of the best arable farmland in the UK, great ingredients combined with Chef Jackson Campbell’s imagination and skill leads to an amazing meal. While it is pretty, this is real food. Healthy, filling, local. 

Enough of me, here’s some more…

Seared sea bass with celeriac mash, braised fennel, and prawn bisque

Sea bream ceviche with citrus, herb puree and rocket cress
  

Jerusalem artichoke ‘lasagne’ with blistered tomatoes and balsamic
   

Apple tarte Tatin, vanilla icecream

So many courses! But we had to have it all! On display at the event was a selection of things offered in their Welcome Packs. (which we may have also tried.) What a great idea! When you spend all day trying to get out of the Big Smoke, and arrive late and hungry, what better thing to have waiting for you than delicious local food? I can distinctly remember when we moved to Blakeney and by the time we unloaded the van the only thing being served at the local pub was dessert and a cheese board. If only….

  

So to summarise, catering, meals delivered, and welcome packs. Amazing. 

  

Photography by George Gould and Fiona Diamond

Creake Abbey Farmers’ Market

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Yesterday saw a gloriously sunny day for the monthly Creake Abbey Farmers’ Market in North Creake. Now, we have been to Creake Abbey before, and aside from the English Heritage Abbey ruins, there is a fabulous cluster of shops and cafes; but more on that later.

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As far as local produce is concerned we have been spoiled for choice since moving up here. It is a bastion of artisans and the market was well curated. We could have walked away with a lot more than we did. Good sense had to kick in at some point, but not before we made a number of choice selections.

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First stall we came to was our first purchase and that is a good start! WOW muffins,  or Without Wheat Muffins, were offering free samples and were so good we bought a box of 9 ‘muffinettes’ despite having no food intolerances between us. We brought them down to visit some friends today and they were praised highly.

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Jamoroc Spices were our next hit. Run by a husband and wife team from Jamaica and Morocco this stall featured a full range of spices (complete with fab little containers), sauces and dips. We went all out and got a mild and hot sauce for ourselves and another as a gift.

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Next came another of my favourites. We have come across the Marsh Pig range before, which is stocked at our local, The Blakeney Delicatessen. But there is such a wide range of flavours and I can’t seem to resist the free samples. I always end up buying some.

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The last highlight of our day was the English Spirit Distillery. Despite having only just passed noon the free samples were flowing. This little distillery based in Dullingham, Cambs (a few streets away from our last home no less!) has turned out something special. We walked away with The Old Salt Rum, blown away by its banana and caramel notes. This was used later that evening in some very rich hot chocolate and couldn’t have been nicer.

A couple of venison burgers, and a shoulder of lamb later we decided we had to leave the premises. It was a lovely day and in lovely settings. I’m sure the sun helped a bit too but highly enjoyable and very recommended. The market is the first Saturday of each month barring January. Check it out.

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Fudge

Fudge at Blakeney Farmer's Market
Fudge at Blakeney Farmer's Market
Fudge at Blakeney Farmer’s Market

Yesterday saw the first Blakeney Farmer’s Market & Craft Fair in the Village Hall. There was a wealth of delicious homemade food – of which more to follow in other posts – but first and foremost we must talk about the fudge. Unfortunately we didn’t catch the name of the lady who made it, but the fudge stall was exceptional. No sooner had she offered samples of a few of the varieties than we found ourselves signing up for her tremendously good value 3 half bars for £5 in cherry almond, chocolate and caramel.

The plan is…was…to use it in some homemade ice cream recipes, but a small amount may have been eaten this afternoon already.

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