Five reasons to fall in love: It is really amazing how this farm shop has developed rapidly over the years. I have known Charles for a long time, and the first years were building years. I can remember him showing me his ‘fancy’ coffee machine.
Sometimes life takes you down a different path, so after the coffee machine ‘show’, I hadn’t been to the Gogs for many years until early 2012. I have to admit I was stunned at the progress at the time, and they go from strength to strength! The Bradford family have done a fantastic job, and this certainly hasn’t come unnoticed as the awards seem to be rolling in. Charles and I are both passionate about local food, so it is good to catch from time to time.
First of all, the Gog Farm shop is heaven for a Foodie. You can’t go wrong with their meat as their Butcher shop has been in the finals of the Butchers Shops of the year many times, and they make their award-winning Cambridge Royal Sausage on site. Here at their shop, you can stock up on fruit, vegetables, delicious and stunningly presented ready meals and fish, although frozen is of very high standards.
A shopping spree at the Gogs should always include cheese. Most of their cheeses are from Neil’s Yard Cheeses, and I especially love the creamy matured Gorgonzola and the Coolea, a matured Gouda made by a Dutch family in Ireland.
Five good reasons to visit
1. Scotch egg
2. Cheese Scone
3. Cambridge Royal Sausage
4. Black ham
5. Cambridge Haslet
All of them are homemade, and I have to admit that their Scotch egg definitely is one of the best ones I have had. I can’t wait to try the black pudding one! Their cheese scones are made with matured West Countries Montgomery’s Cheddar, which gives it a lovely tangy taste. Still, after their award-winning recipe for the Cambridge Royal Sausage, we only can guess as Charles didn’t let me into the secret. My favourite type of ham is black ham, and theirs is made with Porter beer and molasses, even better!
What is Haslet?
Let’s talk about the Haslet! Charles told me that many clients are surprised when they spot this in the counter. The Gog Farm Shop reintroduced it when they first opened and refined the recipe and soon won a gold award.
So what is Haslet? Also spelt as Acelet, it is a type of meatloaf, but it’s almost like a pate. Although it can be eaten as a main course, these days, you’ll find it most of the time in the deli counters as it works perfectly as a starter or as part of sharing platters.
Haslet derives from the old French word bastilles, which means entrails and has always been very popular in Lincolnshire. Here it is made from stale white bread, minced pork, sage, salt and black pepper. In Wales, they make it with minced potatoes, pigs liver and onions. The Gog Farm Shop secret recipe? That stays behind closed doors, I am afraid. But I can assure you that tucking into the Haslet is worth a try!