Taste of Britain: Our favourite British ingredients


Our British Food Fortnight blogs continue as head chef Ian Percival tells us about which British ingredients would be his first pick from the larder

  • Taste of Britain: The Old Stocks Inn - favourite British ingredients
  • Taste of Britain: The Old Stocks Inn - favourite British ingredients

Wednesday 27 September 2017
Food and Drink

When I am putting a menu or a dish together, or even cooking myself dinner, there are always certain British ingredients which spring to the forefront of my mind.

These three ingredients in particular are ones which we produce some of the best of in the world. They bring special flavours to a dish which just could not be matched anywhere other than Britain.

The first of these is an icon of our cuisine - beef. We have some of the best beef available here and there are many reasons for this. Not only is our beef tender and succulent, but it is also produced with some of the highest welfare standards in the world. In this country we never give hormones to our cows to make them grow more - what you see is what you get.

Perhaps most importantly though, we owe thanks to the British farming industry for the lovely countryside which makes the Cotswolds and much of this nation such a beautiful place to be in.

Without the demand for grazing fields, Britain would not be nearly as green as it is today!

Another important ingredient for me is Cornish crab. Having worked in the region for many years I have come to know the taste very well and I would argue that there is no better place to get them from. Cornish crab is especially fresh and meaty. It also has a certain sweetness to it which can elevate a dish to something really special.

And finally, my vegetable of choice would be celeriac. It is such a versatile ingredient, which is great as a chef preparing a number of very varied meals. It can be used in so many ways and it will match with almost anything I can think of to put on my menu or my dinner table. Thanks to its subtle flavours which have hints of celery and nuttiness it never overpowers a dish, only complements it.

I have experimented with huge amounts of ingredients during my years as a chef and these remain some of my absolute favourites. Buy British with these, and you really cannot go wrong. 

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