Dave enjoys a taste of his native county, Cumbria, including a supper dish made from Cumberland sausage and the ultimate Cumbrian dessert, sticky toffee pudding.
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We've travelled the world. We've eaten everywhere
from roadside bars to restaurants with Michelin stars.
But there really is nothing like a bit of home cooking.
Coming into a warm kitchen, filled with the aroma
of a tasty meal bubbling away.
It's one of life's great pleasures.
There's nothing like comfort food to put a smile on your face.
Today, recipes from my neck of the woods -
The Cumberland sausage, the most famous sausage in the world.
This is like a shortened version.
It's a bit like those kind of cut-down novels,
do you know what I mean?
But it's quite acceptable for a tray bake.
First off, some oil in your tin.
I want onion wedges.
I tell you what I'm doing,
I'm just going to prepare this butternut squash.
Now you could use other sausages but, you know,
-I like Cumberland sausages because they're peppery...
..and they're full of meat.
So we're going to add bone-in chicken thighs.
The reason that we get the bone on, it just adds flavour, doesn't it?
And the beautiful, beautiful skin goes all crispy
and lovely and you want that, it's a comforting dish this, it's lush.
You could take the skin off if you wanted,
you could take the bones out.
Cumberland sausage in there as well.
Lovely. And then on top of that...
You haven't peeled the squash!
Well, it's rustic, innit?!
It's kind of, all the ingredients in this are pretty basic,
and it's great because it's quick.
Now I'm just going to strip some thyme onto there.
Sprinkle it all over.
While Dave's doing that, I'm going to put a little bit of salt
and some pepper in there as well.
A good glug of olive oil on top of there.
Now, I've got 100ml of water and 50ml of red wine.
And that's it for the first stage.
We pop that into a preheated oven, 180 degrees Celsius,
for half an hour.
-Did you ever do Cumberland wrestling?
No, you'll hurt yourself.
I'll be all right, gentle.
Cumberland wrestling, it's like sumo but they wear like white tights
and you stand on a hilltop, and you go like this, you go...
And then you try to flip each other up.
I quite like that.
Get off me now.
No, no, we've done the demonstration.
Right. See you in a bit.
It's bits like this that really brighten up your dish.
There's nothing goes better than chicken and mushrooms,
sausage and mushrooms.
So I'm going to put a layer of sliced mushies on,
and again, keeping this quite rustic.
See, that's just started to turn now, hasn't it.
-That looks nice, Kingy.
-Now the glaze.
We have a tablespoon of maple syrup.
It's a lovely glaze, this.
And a teaspoon of red wine vinegar.
So we've got sweet and savoury.
-So you're just dabbing that on, aren't you?
You get an even more even coating then, don't you?
You do, on the sausage as well.
There we go.
Now because we Cumbrians are bang on in the 21st century -
it's not traditional but we like a bit of oomph
and it can be cold up there -
so I reckon about half a teaspoon of chilli flakes.
Roast for a further 25-30 minutes until everything is cooked through
and well browned.
Now alongside this, we're going to serve some cavolo nero.
It's like a super-duper cabbage, fresh from the garden.
It is quite a robust green, this.
And although it's not fashionable,
-it's quite nice if it's cooked down for quite a while.
-Smell that, straight from the garden.
I like cavolo nero because there's a slight bitterness to it,
Great with pasta, isn't it? Or great with minestrone.
-We might as well chuck this thyme in, eh?
I'll strip it off first. We don't want stalks.
That's so lovely. A proper winter green, isn't it, that?
I love it. Do you want some lemon zest?
Please, man. Put a little bit of salt in there as well.
Add a little bit of water.
Not too much. What we'll do...
..a little bit of nutmeg in that.
Nutmeg's great on spinach, too, isn't it?
Right, a little bit. Shall we turn that off?
You don't want to burn the 'meg.
It's surprising, isn't it? You just cook it down for about 15 minutes,
20 minutes, boom, done.
All that walking and drinking tea, dude, I'm exhausted!
And that's what you need.
-Look at that.
-Oh, look at that.
And did you know what we call pork sausages up where I'm from?
Snadgers. Look at the blush on those snadgers.
You know why they call sausages bangers?
Cos in World War II, you know,
they used to pump the sausages full of water to make them go further.
You put them on a plate and they went bang.
That's why they're called bangers. But these are Cumbrian snadgers.
I've got to go for a sausage.
Oh, that takes me back.
That's a proper midweek winter's dish.
Or after a hike on a Sunday.
That cavolo nero is superb.
It's indulgent, it's unctuous and buttery.
Tell you what though, dude...
I might be rustic but I think if we're doing this again,
we'll peel the butternut squash.
Nothing beats a bit of home cooking, but every now and then
it's nice to have someone else cook for you.
Thankfully, all over the country there are tasty places
that make us feel right at home.
My name's Doug Gillam.
I own and run Gillam's Tearoom in Ulverston, Cumbria.
Ulverston is a very well-preserved traditional market town
but it has a really quirky edge to it.
My family had a grocers directly across the road.
And that closed in 1994.
In 2005, we saw the building across the road for sale
and we thought it would be great to bring the family name back.
We bit the bullet and went for it, and it's paid off,
we're here ten years later.
A real big focus of the tearoom is the tea.
I absolutely love tea.
We have 108 loose-leaf teas.
They're all organic, many of them are Fairtrade.
It's such a wonderful tradition, a proper teacup and saucer,
Teapot with extra hot water, a tea strainer.
One of the best selling things we have are the teacakes.
People love a tea cake. They're comforting,
a great accompaniment to a cup of proper tea.
I make my teacakes with strong flour, mixed fruit, spices,
a bit of oil, sugar and yeast and water, of course.
I mix it all together in the mixer...
..take it out, give it a good kneading.
This is my nana's sifter shaker that I inherited from her.
It makes me think of her each time I do it,
and baking with her when I was a kid.
Now I'm going to put this on here for ten or 15 minutes.
I think the teacakes are popular because I put
plenty of fruit in them and they're spiced, and they're a decent size.
This little bit of dough I make into a tea cake for my daughter
for when she comes back from school.
She comes in about half three and has a little snack.
We have an eclectic mix of customers.
Everybody's welcome and everybody gets on.
People chat to each other, table to table.
We have a laugh together.
Teacake John comes in every day on his bike,
cycles in about three miles,
tried all the 108 teas on our menu.
He sits quietly upstairs and studies
and then potters off back home again.
I'll have my usual.
-And a teacake.
-And a teacake.
-Could have guessed!
-It's a teacake for John, please.
Incredibly, I've been having tea and a teacake almost every day
for years and years.
I've been to many teahouses but...
..this teacake is the best I've tasted.
There we are, John.
It's full of flavour, it's spicy, it's just very nice.
It's always very friendly, always the same.
A nice welcome and, of course, in the winter, a nice fire.
People will say hello to you, you can strike up
conversations with people even if you're not sitting there.
It's quite difficult, actually, just to come and meet
one friend in Gillam's because everybody kind of chats.
It's really important to me that the food represents us and our beliefs.
Everybody that comes in gets a bit of love.
I'm going to brown these lamb shanks off in our casserole dish
just to get a bit of colour on them.
So these are flageolet beans. They've been soaked overnight.
I pop them into the water and boil them for ten minutes.
So, while Mr King's browning off, I'll get on my veggies.
So to skin tomatoes, put a cross across the base like so...
..and plunge them into boiling water for about 30 seconds.
Just to release the skin.
And then we plunge into iced water
and the skin will curl up, fall off,
then I deseed them and set them aside for later.
When I was a kid,
the core of the tomatoes and the skin, I had my own word for it.
I used to call them the cods.
I remember saying to my mother,
"Mother, I don't like my tomatoes with the cods in."
And I don't know where it came from but since then,
even if I have tinned tomatoes, I always cut out the cods.
The skin just peels off.
Now you plunge it into cold water to cool the tomatoes down,
to basically stop it cooking.
Just take the...
the cods out. Like so.
The veggies I start off with are finely chopped fennel,
carrots and onions.
Right, I'm going to take these out and set them aside,
-ready for your veggies.
Right, so I'll put this in to sweat down.
That just needs to moulder away for about ten minutes.
Meanwhile, I'll get ready for the second flavour infusion,
and I'll just deseed and chop me chilli.
I'm going to chop the garlic for this, I want it a little bit...
a little bit rustic.
A sprig of thyme, I'm going to put this in in its entirety
and we can fish it out. A bay leaf.
A teaspoon of smoked paprika.
-Smoked paprika's brilliant.
It's kind of sweet, it's mild,
it kind of gives everything a nice barbecuey flavour.
And 100ml of dry white wine.
-Some tomato puree.
A tin of anchovies.
Since Victorian times, anchovies have been used to season lamb.
And just push that through.
And we just need to reduce that by half.
Right, mate. Pop in your shanks.
Look at the colour. It's beautiful.
-Are you going to stand them up like little soldiers?
-I think so.
Our cooked beans go in the top. They are almost buried in them.
Use lamb stock if you can get it.
If not, well, beef or chicken will do fine.
Now put that in a preheated oven, 170 degrees Celsius,
for an hour and a half.
Right. It's been an hour and a half, it's time for those tomatoes.
Just pop them in.
And there are going to cook down, to give us a bit more flavour.
And that goes back into the oven for another hour and a half.
Slow, slow, quick-quick-slow.
-Well, we're nearly there, Kingy.
-That's it, dude.
-A bit of mustard mash.
-Mustard mash. I'll mash.
-Are you ready for the butter?
-I am, mate.
Oh, Dave, look. It's come up lovely, that mash.
Oh, it has, it has.
-I think that should be enough.
-Perfect, Mr Myers.
Let's get the shanks.
You know when you cook lamb shanks,
there's always a sense of anticipation, isn't there?
That's what I love about casseroles, taking the lid off.
Oh, where've they gone?
You have to be careful, they're dropping to pieces.
Oh, look at that!
-Oh, I'm going to have a taste.
Big, bold, comforting flavours.
-The beans are superb.
Lamb's been around for thousands of years and do you know,
Cumbria has some wonderful lamb.
I think this really does it justice.
The secret to creating good grub is using the right ingredients.
The real work is done by the producers who put all their passion
and expertise into getting their ingredients just right.
I'm Jane, and I live at a house called Dalemain which is in Cumbria.
Marmalade has been my passion.
I adore it.
I talk about it a lot.
It struck me that actually it would be quite fun to set up a competition
in cahoots with the WI to find out
whether people could learn more about it and whether we could
really start young people making marmalade.
So the recipe that I'm going to make today is one that my mother used.
I think it's called an economy marmalade.
Three fruit, so it's grapefruit, lemon and sweet orange.
We've got a lovely sort of sophisticated overlaying sharpness to it.
What I love about the way marmalade is made is that, probably, it hasn't
changed in all the centuries that it's been made.
You take a skillet, you put water in it and you boil things up.
It's all very, very similar.
So this is where I'm doing a bit of cheating, because I'm using a
pressure cooker and it has to be said that my mother used a pressure cooker,
so it's probably an influence from there,
that wonderful sound of the hissing and smashing, but it does make the
fruit very soft for chopping.
Having steamed it for about 20 minutes and let it cool down,
take it out of the pressure cooker, lovely and soft,
chop it up nice and quickly, in nice big chunks,
and take out all the pips at that point.
So one of the things which is important is getting the size of the chunks right.
Now, "right" means whatever it is that you like.
So for some people, like my husband,
he would probably prefer no chunks at all.
And for me, as I'm chopping now, I think this is marmalade for me,
probably, because I'm going to make nice big chunks.
Roughly chopped, for everyday marmalade, I think is good.
It means you can do it very, very quickly.
You're not chopping it up into tiny little bits and it has a bit of body
to it, and I think body in marmalade is a really lovely thing.
It's got texture.
I love marmalade because it has so many facets to it.
It's something about making it and making it with other people,
which I love. It's something about the scent of it,
the aroma, which is extraordinary.
It's all part of our heritage.
We've had it as a little golden thread coming through from the earliest of times.
Even Queen Elizabeth I was eating marmalade.
When you're making marmalade, getting to what is called, I think,
a rolling boil, and it's a sizzling boil, it's wonderful.
And if you've ever been to a marmalade factory,
where they still cook marmalade by the open pan method,
it's the same thing. You have this sizzling effect of the sugar boiling
in the marmalade and it gets to a point where you just know that it's ready.
However, my mother always used to do the saucer test.
So it looks like it's ready.
It's just got a delicious colour to it.
It's been rolling boiling for a bit.
So I'm going to try this saucer test,
which has been tried and tested over centuries, I'd have thought.
You put a tiny bit in a saucer.
And you just want it to rest for a minute.
let the shred get settled.
The strength of marmalade is that it is quintessentially British and it
comes right from our roots.
This is something that people remember doing with their granny.
That granny probably did it with her granny and so it's going back
centuries of time, where people have just made this delicious thing.
And the satisfaction of having 12 lovely jars of marmalade is immense.
-That's the first date you've had for a bit, isn't it?
It flaming is, dude, I tell you! Look at that!
But dates are the secret to a good sticky toffee pudding.
This goes back to old-fashioned times.
Cartmel is near where I live
and sticky toffee pudding is said to have originated there.
Now don't bombard me if it's wrong, but, you know, for me,
Cartmel sticky toffee pudding -
eee...stick to yer ribs - it's lovely.
That'll do us.
So one teaspoon of bicarb, just sprinkle it over.
And then there's exactly measured...
..300ml of boiling water.
And you just let that sit while Dave makes the batter.
First up, I have some butter, which I'm going to cream
with some soft brown sugar and some muscovado sugar.
So, what I'll do now is I'll break an egg into there.
So it doesn't separate,
what I'm going to do, while Dave's whisking that,
I'll just add a spoonful of flour.
And now we crack in another egg.
And another spoonful of flour.
I mean, there's such a debate around who originated,
what is a genuine sticky toffee pudding.
I think it's something that's come out of the gingerbread that goes
back to the 18th century, you know?
It's coming together. I think we can get the rest of the flour in now, do you?
And I just put the rest of the flour in.
I always remember one of the earliest sticky toffee puddings
that I made was Delia Smith's.
And Delia was the one who said the secret is the dates.
What they do is they enrich the pudding and they make it sticky.
-We've got the toffee sauce.
And also they give it that lovely earthy flavour as well.
Yeah. The Cumbrians, being great adventurers,
cooks and generous of spirit,
would have brought the dates back from our trade with the mysterious East.
Now let's put in the dates and the water and the bicarb.
Let's just throw those in.
Now the batter's virtually there.
Dave's just stirring all those lovely dates and date water in,
..a lovely baking dish with butter
and a little bit of baking parchment.
The thing is, the clue's in the title, it's got to be sticky.
That's why it's quite a loose mixture.
Try and get those dates so they're evenly distributed.
Pop that into a preheated oven, 180 degrees Celsius,
25-30 minutes until risen,
golden and just about springy.
So the toffee sauce.
It is simplicity itself.
Melt the butter.
We've got Demerara sugar.
I'm just going to put some cream in there now.
So then what you do, once all the sugars have dissolved and the butter's melted,
you continue to stir and then you just bring it to the boil
and you simmer it.
Now, there may be a temptation to stick your finger in it,
because it's glossy and lovely.
Don't, because it'll be incredibly hot. Now look at this.
This is what we're talking about for a simmer.
Just a couple of minutes like this.
And what will happen is those sugars will start to darken even more,
and it'll just make this beautiful, beautiful sauce.
Turn it off.
Leave it to cool.
Oi! In yonder oven, I smell a pud.
I'd better get it out before it's a dud.
Although it was very liquidy, it's really firmed up a treat.
-In fact, it's too firm.
We want it sticky.
Now, you could use a skewer, a piece of spaghetti,
but we find chopsticks is just the right bar for that thick toffee sauce
to go. I want reasonably...
Not too random, because every bit's
got to have the right amount of stick.
So you just leave that to soak in. Leave it for a good few hours,
-just so that soaks in.
And then reheat it, reheat the sauce, serve with a bit of cream,
-That's lovely, isn't it?
-Oh, dear me.
It's one of those just great puddings, isn't it?
-It is, it is. But it's all about the dates, isn't it?
Actually, do you know what? It is great.
Everybody after Christmas has a box of dates left there they don't know
-what to do with.
-That's a good idea, actually.
Just knock yourself up a sticky toffee pudding.
-I tell you what, this taste of Cumbria episode's doing well, isn't it?
Dave enjoys a taste of his native county - Cumbria - as the Bikers cook recipes with great local ingredients to remind him of home. These include a comforting supper dish made from Cumberland sausage and the ultimate Cumbrian dessert, sticky toffee pudding.