The Food and Drink of Yorkshire – Part 1

Food and drink production in Yorkshire is renowned around the world. Certain recipes have been around for centuries, yet the county’s culinary path has followed, and in a way reflects its history. One of the most famous British dishes is the Sunday Roast and it is thought that it emanates from Yorkshire. The dish involves a main course of roasted meat of either beef, chicken, lamb or pork, accompanied by a selection of vegetables and gravy.

A traditional Yorkshire pudding

The most traditional meat is beef, and this is served with “Yorkshire Pudding”. The pudding is produced from a batter being formed by mixing eggs, flour, milk and water together. This is the then cooked on a tray containing very hot dripping. In many parts of the county it as actually served as a separate starter dish. With Yorkshire’s strong agricultural past the availability of top quality livestock has always made sure that the meats served in the county have the finest reputation. Many local butchers supply the nation’s supermarkets.

Dovecote Park is a butcher who supplies Waitrose Supermarkets. Based in North Yorkshire the firm takes locally sourced beef products and prepares them before sending them off to the supermarkets around the country. As well as meats being popular the eastern coast line of the county has produced a supplies of North Sea fish for centuries. Whitby-sea fish-Ltd are fishmongers who supply a wide variety of fish to both commercial and domestic customers. Their produce including cod, haddock, turbot, and Dover sole arriving via the quays of Whitby and Scarborough.

The Dairy farming of Yorkshire has also produced other famous products to the region. Its cheeses are world famous and the Wensleydale cheese has proved so popular that it is now even produced from outside the county. Originally it was produced from a recipe that included mixing sheep’s milk with cow’s milk, and was first introduced by French monks who had settled at the Fors monastery in Wensleydale. The cheese is rich and creamy and many varieties of it are now produced.

Vale of Mowbray pork pies

Another by-product of the huge dairy industry has been the production of ice cream. Mr Moo’s Real Dairy Ice Cream started production in 2003 just outside of Hull. Its 30 different varieties are now available all over the county.

Bakeries have always been popular in Yorkshire and certain pies; breads and tarts are cherished within the county. There are many award-winning pork pie manufacturers within the county with the Vale of Mowbray pies being one of the older firms. Established in 1928 the company uses a traditional recipe which includes the classic hot water pastry. The tender pork is locally sourced from the North Yorkshire Moors and their other products includes a variety of different recipes that include cheese and pickle pork pies, the lattice pork pie and the county pork pie.

The food industry has been attracted to Yorkshire and there has been a huge variety of food stuffs that have been produced. One of the most popular areas has been in confectionary with one of the world’s most iconic sweets, the Jelly Baby having its home in Yorkshire.

Although originally produced in Lancashire, the modern-day Jelly Baby was created by George Bassets and Co in Sheffield as “Peace Babies’ to mark the end of the First World War. The sweet made from a soft sugary jelly now comes in a variety of different colours and flavours, and their popularity has risen with the top sports teams using them as sources of energy for their athletes. Another major confectionary company is also based in the county with Henry Rowntree producing sweets and chocolate from his York factory since 1864. The Kit-Kat, the Aero, the Rolo, Smarties and also Fruit Pastilles all have their origins in York.

Yorkshire for centuries has produced so many different food products that has been enjoyed by local, national and international markets.