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Spotlight on Norfolk as top chef cooks on Cromer beach

PUBLISHED: 15:06 27 February 2019 | UPDATED: 15:06 27 February 2019

James Martin's Great British Adventure in Cromer. Pictures: James Martin's Great British Adventure/ ITV hub

James Martin's Great British Adventure in Cromer. Pictures: James Martin's Great British Adventure/ ITV hub

James Bailey 2017

More national attention was focused on Cromer when top chef James Martin brought his popular daytime TV show Great British Adventure to the town.

James Martin visited Cromer with a camera crew in tow last year. Photo: Paul MottleyJames Martin visited Cromer with a camera crew in tow last year. Photo: Paul Mottley

In the episode, which was first aired on ITV today, Mr Martin was shown around the area by his “good old mate”, Norfolk chef Galton Blackiston.

And he hosted a very special cookery demonstration on Cromer beach with the iconic pier in the background and the waves lapping behind him on the shore.

His visit took place last summer and provided more welcome publicity for the north Norfolk seaside town ahead of the summer season.

Earlier this year, an episode of the BBC’s Antiques Roadshow with Fiona Bruce, which was also filmed in Cromer last summer, was shown on national TV.

Celebrity chef Galton Blackiston showed his friend James Martin around Norfolk on the show. Picture: Morston HallCelebrity chef Galton Blackiston showed his friend James Martin around Norfolk on the show. Picture: Morston Hall

That attracted hundreds of comments on social media about what a great place Cromer and north Norfolk was for a holiday.

As a self-proclaimed “connoisseur of fish and chips”, Mr Martin was keen to sample the food at Mr Blackiston’s No 1 Cromer fish shop.

He said: “I’m obsessed with fish and chips. This is nice fish and chips.”

The food inspired him to cook pan-fried cod with a warm tartar sauce on Cromer beach.

Sir Michael Savory next to an anti-aircraft gun at the Muckleburgh Collection at Weybourne. Picture: submittedSir Michael Savory next to an anti-aircraft gun at the Muckleburgh Collection at Weybourne. Picture: submitted

He also visited Norfolk Lavender in Heacham in west Norfolk on the show, to find out why it grows so well in the 
county and how it’s distilled for oil. He then cooked with it in his roast duck in hay and lavender recipe.

Mr Blackiston also discovered the secrets of innovative salads with experimental leaf growers, Jepco, in Shouldham.

And Mr Martin made a very special deep-fried soft-boiled egg salad with croutons and bacon.

And then the pair went tank-driving at the Muckleburgh Collection in Weybourne, which is owned by Sir Michael Savory. This was followed by tempura monkfish and vegetables with minted peas back on the beach in Cromer.

Galton Blackiston prepares Jubilee recipes for local Big Jubilee Lunch organisers at Dragon Hall. Photo by Simon FinlayGalton Blackiston prepares Jubilee recipes for local Big Jubilee Lunch organisers at Dragon Hall. Photo by Simon Finlay

Mr Blackiston said that tank-driving was the hardest thing he had ever done, and told Mr Martin “to play by the seasons while cooking in Norfolk”.

Mr Martin also tried to get his tongue around the Norfolk pronunciation of samphire - something like ‘samfear’.

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