Aylsham's 'slow pudding' party a sellout

Just some of the 17 puddings on offer at Slow Food Aylsham's Slow Pudding Party. In the foreground is Ruth Harrison's Treacle Duff, the outstanding hit of the eveningA plentiful provision of pleasing puddings was on the menu for partygoers in Aylsham on Saturday.

A plentiful provision of pleasing puddings was on the menu for partygoers in Aylsham on Saturday.

Slow Food Aylsham's 'Slow Pudding Party' was a sell-out with over 50 diners in the Town Hall enjoying a huge selection of 17 dessert puddings, preceded by a variety of soups.

All the dishes on offer were home made by Slow Food members and featured a choice of five different soups, ranging from the traditional 'leek and potato' through to the more exotic 'red lentil and chard', all served with home made bread.

The puddings were served with either cream from Norton's Dairy or home made custard. The choices included a Norfolk Treacle Tart, Lemon Meringue Pie, Chocolate Mousse, Pears in Moscato d'Asti and Apple Pie with a Norfolk Dapple cheese flavoured crust.

Outstanding hit of the evening was a traditional Treacle Duff, made by Slow Food Aylsham member Ruth Harrison, which reflected how it might have been done in the 18th Century.

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Liz Jones, Chair of the local Slow Food group summed it up: "Everyone I've spoken to has said how much they enjoyed the evening and how good the food was. Our members have excelled themselves and added to Aylsham's reputation as a foodie town".

Copies of recipes for the soups and puddings were available for guests to take home and try the dishes for themselves.

Adding a little 'spice' to the evening was the presence of two researchers from ITV's Britain's Best Dish programme. They were scouting for cooks who will enter the Norwich auditions for the 2009 competition and went away happy that they had got an enthusiastic response from a number of Slow Food Aylsham members.

This national competition has a particular place in the hearts of Norfolk foodies as it was won in 2007 by Aylsham pig farmer, John Kenny who featured at the 2008 Aylsham Food Festival Cooking Theatre - run by Slow Food Aylsham - as a celebrity chef.

Liz Jones commented, "It would be wonderful if our area could scoop the prize again. John Kenny has been a great ambassador for Norfolk food and I'm hoping that it will get more coverage in Britain's Best Dish 2009."

The next Slow Food Aylsham event will be a food-themed quiz night in the Town Hall on Saturday 25th April. More details are on the website, www.slowfoodaylsham.org.uk