Thursday, March 31, 2011
Trealy Farm charcuterie
I used to be a bit sniffy about British charcuterie. It didn't seem quite right - surely only the French and Italians had the centuries-old know-how to do it properly? And for a while all the samples of rather bland British salami and sausage I tasted bore this out.
But there's no reason why we shouldn't do it well - we have great raw materials for a start - and I'm increasingly impressed by the local charcuterie I'm tasting
Last Sunday at the Love Food Spring Festival was a case in point. There was a stall from Monmouthshire-based Trealy Farm including a very tasty venison salami, a brilliant soft chilli-spiked black pudding (for eating cold rather than cooking) and one of the best garlic sausages I've ever tasted - apparently much admired by Raymond Blanc in his recent series. They also won the title of Best UK Food Producer in last year's Observer Food Awards.
I've also had some really authentic French-style country paté recently (ironically from an Italian, Vincent Castellano who sells in Bristol's Wednesday farmers' market). There's also Bath Pig which specialises in chorizo and former chef and forager Andrew Sartain's Wild Food Larder.
Given the charcuterie craze in restaurants and wine bars at the moment they should do well.