Justice Secretary and Lord Chancellor Liz Truss, praised the quality of food produced in Norfolk at a celebration of a new cook book in Brancaster Staithe on Friday.
Norfolk Table, One County, Twenty Chefs, was launched during a reception at the White Horse in Brancaster Staithe last week.
The book showcases the talents of many of Norfolk’s top chefs.
More than half are local, including the White Horse’s Fran Hartshorne whose work is highlighted as the first chef in the book.
Also featured is nearby Titchwell Manor, the Thornham Deli and Shuck’s at the Yurt also at Thornham.
Further a field is Congham Hall, Strattons in Swaffham, Market Bistro in Lynn, the Duck Inn in Stanhoe, Great Massingham’s Dabbling Duck, Holkham’s Victoria Inn, The Globe at Wells and the Norfolk Riddle at Walsingham.
But some of the White Horse’s local producers of good food are also not forgotten including Brancaster sourced mussels from Cyril and Ben Southerland, oysters from Richard Loose and hot smoked salmon from Letzer’s Seafood and Smokehouse.
There is also Norfolk cheeses from Barsby Produce in King’s Lynn, pork belly from Perfick Pork in Great Ryburgh and black pudding from the Fruit Pig Company in Wisbech.
Ms Truss, MP for South West Norfolk and a former Environment minsiter with Defra, said the book was fantastic.
Food, she said, was such a big part of Norfolk’s heritage from Coke of Norfolk – the first Lord Leicester, who did much to revolutionise farming in the nineteenth century – to today’s fishermen, farmers and chefs who, she hoped, would get a bigger public profile.
Listening was the current 8th Earl of Leicester, who has been busy promoting good local produce himself as part of his Farm to Fork exhibition.
“Looking at the book makes you feel hungry. I celebrate Norfolk food at breakfast, lunch and dinner every day,” she said.
“It’s a coming out for Norfolk’s chefs who will hopefully get a bigger profile.”
The buffet was a foodies’ delight. It included Cyril’s Crispy Mussels and Richard Loose’s open oysters, both farmed on the marshes within yards of the White Horse.
There were Asian fishcakes alongside less-known nibbles such as Belly Bao Buns, Red Poll Blade Sliders, Black and White Pudding Fritters and even Rabbit Sausage Rolls.
The 240-page book is published by Feast Publishing, price £19.95.