BOOK CUMBRIA HOTELS


Kendal Mint Cake, Cumbria

More British food legends

The Lake District has some fine foodstuffs such as Lythe Valley Damsons and Herdwick Mutton , and plenty of great restaurants, Sharrow Bay springing immediately to mind. And it has Kendal Mint Cake.

It may be that Kendal Mint Cake can trace its roots back to the importation of sugar at Whitehaven and Workington . Possibly it is the descendant of sticky confections from the Stuart era. Others claim it was the result of an accident when a Kendal sweet maker took his eye off the production of glacier mints.

In the form now found it is perhaps better considered as fuel for walkers and mountaineers than as a delicacy, though some refinements to the basic sugar (brown as well as the more usual white) and peppermint hit are available, notably chocolate-coated versions, and it certainly has its devotees in the sweeter-toothed amongst us.

The basic product is a mix of sugar, glucose and water, with the cooling boiled product flavoured with peppermint oils (the blending of the oils being a trade secret of course). The still hot mixture is rubbed or stirred until it achieves a grainy or crystalline texture.

The Victorians were said to have been big fans of the sugary slabs, called by some the original energy bars. The names of explorers and mountaineers are dropped by the various manufacturers as endorsements of the confectioneryís powerful properties, with Shackleton and Hillary to the fore Ė Hillary and Tensing are said to have eaten it atop Everest, and it certainly has enough calories packed into it to boost tired limbs.

If it helps you see more of the great British outdoors, all to the good. Just donít expect a great gourmet moment if you are trying it for the first time.

Visit Kendal

Brit Quote:
Failures are finger posts on the road to achievement. - C S Lewis
More Quotes

On this day:
Englandís Worst Mining Disaster - 1866, Marconi sends 1st transatlantic wireless message - 1901, Marples Hotel Tragedy - 1940, Peace Women Embrace Greenham Common - 1982, Clapham rail disaster - 1988
More dates from British history

click here to view all the British counties

County Pages

England:
Bath
Bedfordshire
Berkshire
Bristol
Buckinghamshire
Cambridgeshire
Cheshire
Cleveland/Teesside
Cornwall
County Durham
Cumbria
Derbyshire
Devon
Dorset
Essex
Gloucestershire
Greater Manchester
Hampshire
Herefordshire
Hertfordshire
Kent
Lancashire
Leicestershire
Lincolnshire
London
Merseyside
Norfolk
Northamptonshire
Northumberland
Nottinghamshire
Oxfordshire
Rutland
Shropshire
Somerset
Staffordshire
Suffolk
Surrey
Sussex
Tyne & Wear
Warwickshire
West Midlands
Wiltshire
Worcestershire
East Yorkshire
North Yorkshire
South Yorkshire
West Yorkshire
Scotland:
Angus & Dundee
Argyll
Ayrshire & Arran
Borders
Dumfries & Galloway
Edinburgh & the Lothians
Fife
Glasgow
Grampian
Highlands
Isle of Islay
Isle of Mull
Isle of Skye
Lanarkshire
Perthshire
Stirlingshire
Western Isles
Wales:
Anglesey
Mid Wales
North Wales
South Wales
West Wales
Ireland
Northern Ireland:
Belfast
County Antrim
County Armagh
County Down
County Fermanagh
County Londonderry
County Tyrone
Offshore:
Guernsey
Jersey
Isle of Man
Isle of Wight
Isles of Scilly
Orkneys
Shetland Isles