In an array of baking creations of which Prue and Paul would have been proud, two of the county’s finest cake-makers are now celebrating after being named joint winners of the ‘Royal Showstopper of the Year’ category in the Carlsberg UK Northamptonshire Food and Drink Awards, writes Anna Murby.
Jeyes of Earls Barton and Workbridge Coffee Shop beat off competition from four other finalists to share the title, following the judging at last weekend’s Althorp Food Festival.
The category, which had been made possible thanks to the generous additional support of sponsor Whitworth Bros Ltd Flour Millers in Wellingborough, was introduced not only to mark the Awards’ tenth year but also to celebrate Northamptonshire’s links with the royal family ahead of this weekend’s big wedding!
Among the themes introduced by the finalists were flavours inspired by HRH Prince Harry and Meghan Markle’s diverse backgrounds, decorations using the Spencer family coat of arms, and even icing carefully depicting the late Princess Diana’s wedding dress!
But it was Jeyes’ colourful creation of a royal wedding street party scene, complete with smiling figurines of the bride and groom – and some corgis! – and Workbridge’s three-flavoured, three-tiered spectacular which won over the judges.
The panel charged with the enjoyable but difficult task of tucking into all six cakes were Kim Little from category sponsor Whitworth Bros Ltd, Gavin Austin, who is consultant chef to the England Football Association, former Great British Bake Off contestant Deborah Manger and Countdown presenter Nick Hewer, who recently appeared in the Great British Bake Off – Stand Up 2 Cancer series.
Speaking just before announcing the results, Nick commended all the bakers for their amazing efforts, cleverly using nine-letter adjectives for which his daytime show is famed: “On behalf of all the judges I want to say well done to all the finalists because all of the cakes were beautiful, fantastic and delicious!” enthused Nick.
“I know it’s a cliché but the judging was a tough challenge and so my particular plaudits go to the two winners, who should feel very proud of their achievement!” he added.
Having been on display on the Awards’ stand at the show for much of the day, causing gasps of delight from many who saw the showstopping creations, the remainder of the cakes were then sliced up and offered to show visitors in return for donations to The Earl Spencer’s chosen Festival charity, DACT – Daventry Area Community Transport.
The Awards is therefore very grateful to Jeyes, Workbridge and the four other finalists – Bills Edible Art and Nutty and Nice Cakes, both from Northampton, Little White Cakery from Rushden and Silverstone Circuit – for donating their cakes, helping to raise just over £130.
For more details on the competition or for entry forms for the other Awards categories, including nomination forms for the ‘Independent Café / Tea Room’, ‘Weetabix Local Food Hero’, and ‘F&B Achiever of the Year’ categories, please visit www.northamptonshirefoodanddrink.co.uk Meanwhile to recommend your favourite pub, restaurant or café, please contact Rachel Mallows on 01933 664437 or email firstname.lastname@example.org