Countryfile Live will be running from Thursday 2 until Sunday 5 August 2018 at Blenheim Palace, Oxfordshire. A brand-new feature for 2018 will be the first ever British Charcuterie Awards on Day One in the Charcuterie tent. We’ll be there supporting the event and will have a pitch showcasing our Homemade Curing Kits. The tent will be fitted out with a bar, ongoing chef demonstrations and plenty of charcuterie boards!
Traditional Charcuterie is a great love of ours here at Ross & Ross Gifts. Back in 2014 we started making the Original Bacon Curing Kits, for people to have a go at curing their own at home. Four years on we have eight kits for Salmon as well as Bacon. Take a look at our range:
In the run up to the show, we have interviewed Henrietta Green, co-founder of the British Charcuterie Awards:
Why did you start the awards?
Charlotte, my co-founder and I started The British Charcuterie Awards as we felt the time is right. There’s been such an explosion of British Charcuterie, particularly in the continental-style of making - salami, air-dried ham and chorizo. So, we wanted to mark their presence in the British food world. Our intention is that the Awards will achieve a number of things. By judging the products, giving feedback and informed praise and criticism, the hope is to raise the standards and to praise excellence where it exists. And so, we’ve put together an impressive group of knowledgeable experts, chefs, makers, teachers, buyers etc as judges. This can only result in gaining a higher profile and more publicity for British Charcuterie. This will be through the good offices of BritishCharcuterie.live and The British Charcuterie Tent at BBC Countryfile Live. The ambition is that the best Charcuterie Makers will receive the attention they deserve. No longer will they be thought of as a poor relation to their continental cousins.
Do you think British Charcuterie is in a good place?
It’s getting there. All I can say is watch this space……Check after the British Charcuterie Awards have been announced on August 2nd on our website to see how many gold, silver and bronze medals the judges were able to award and then we will all know. To be honest, we have been overwhelmed by the number of entries, over 400 products from just short of 100 makers.
What is the future for British Charcuterie?
The future for British Charcuterie is looking very rosy indeed. We have identified a huge number of producers – both traditional and modern – and the skills, energy and interest they are showing, I believe that it will get better and better. Actually, we’ve always made Charcuterie in Britain – think, hams, bacon or such regional specialities as Lincolnshire Chine, Bath Chaps, Haslet or Black Pudding. But now the opportunities are widening as we copy techniques from abroad such as fermenting, air-drying and slow maturing.
Can Britain now sit at the top table with its European cousins?
Think back a mere 10 years when English wines were the laughing stock. Now look at the medals they win, the respect they earn and their increased popularity and that’s my vision for British Charcuterie. So, if I can borrow from The World Cup – British Charcuterie is coming home! You can get tickets to Countryfile Live here (we’re also running a competition for tickets during the week before the show, so keep your eyes peeled). On Thursday 2nd August, Day One, judging by the panel of experts runs from 10.30am – 2.00pm and the awards will be presented from 4pm.
As a strong supporter of the awards, the Ross & Ross Team will be in the Charcuterie Tent sniffing out the great selection of charcuterie and producers … We hope to see you all there!