Today marks the very first Norfolk Day – venues, producers and residents are coming out in celebration of the county.
It got me thinking about the county I call home and why I feel so attached to it.
Norfolk for me is all about the coast and countryside – vast stretches of coastline and idyllic inland nooks.
The county offers some of the very best in seasonal and locally-produced food and drink, it’s history and architecture is second to none and in every part of the county a warm welcome awaits you.
I was born and raised in Cromer in north Norfolk and although I have moved out of the county throughout the years I have always been pulled back to Norfolk by all it has to offer.
As a Cromer girl I spent years on the coast, crab fishing, exploring cliff top walks, admiring sunrises that appear over the sea and sunsets that disappear over the sea. Today I live in south Norfolk and am equally fascinated by the agricultural landscape that now surrounds me. The changing seasons in Norfolk are a joy to watch and each day the landscape offers me something new and exciting to explore.
- Favourite place Cromer – for me the town has an amazing community spirit that is unbeatable. When I’m there the beach is my first port of call regardless of the time of year. In the summer it’s a swim and in the winter a brisk walk looking for trinkets in the tide line. The day has to start with a fried breakfast at the Lifeboat Café followed by a Mr Whippy ice cream. The town has a great array of art galleries, independent shops and eateries and a climb to the top of the church tower (the highest in Norfolk) offers the best views in town. There’s no better way to finish a day in the town than watching the sun set from the Pier.
- Favourite local produce There is simply no way I can narrow this down. Norfolk has so many glorious producers that offer seasonal produce, hand-cooked goodness, straight-from-the-farm goodies and foodstuffs made with local ingredients. As much as I can I try and buy seasonal, local food – and use these ingredients as inspiration for cooking at home. I love picking up fresh asparagus, strawberries, hand-reared meats and ale made with Norfolk barley. But, it shouldn’t stop at that, I try and get everyday essentials locally too, including raw milk, Norfolk-ground flour, rapeseed oil and eggs. Producers in Norfolk are a band of passionate folk who really do treasure their products. In the coming months I will be chatting to lots of local producers about what they do and why they love Norfolk > watch this space…
- Favourite place to sip a pint On Cromer Pier watching the sunset over the sea (although it must be a pint of Norfolk ale).
- Favourite walk On the footpaths of south Norfolk which surround where we live. I like treading the same paths at different points in the year to explore the changes in nature and to forage for food. Recently I’ve used lots of elderflower for cordial and champagne.
- Favourite place to eat This isn’t really a place to eat, but you can’t beat a Cromer crab sandwich (in Norfolk Crunch bread) sitting on the beach next to the boat that caught the crab that morning. Now, there are many more things you can do with crab but I’ve found that a whole crab spread between two thick slices of bread is just the ticket. No vinegar, no seasoning – just crab and butter. It’s succulent, sweet and tastes of the sea – and eating it next to the sea only enhances it!
I’d love to hear what makes Norfolk special for you, where you enjoy visiting, your favourite places to eat – let me know!