No Bude winners but three victories for one family and a top award for a baker who travelled from Canada were among the highlights of the fifth annual World Pasty Championships at the Eden Project today (Saturday, March 5, 2016).
Thousands of people flocked to the home of the famous Biomes on St Piran’s Day – Cornwall’s National Day – to celebrate the county’s most famous foodstuff. More than 200 pasties were entered into the eight classes covering amateurs, professionals, juniors and companies.
Luisa Ead claimed victory in the Cornish Pasty Company category on behalf of her family’s Chough Bakery based in Padstow, and her son Jack, nine, won the Cornish Pasty Junior Category. Luisa’s other son Robbie, 12, claimed third place in the Open Savoury Junior category with a Scottish-themed haggis, neeps and tatties pasty (complete with a “wee dram”).
Luisa said: “I’m absolutely amazed. I’m so happy – it’s like the best day of my life. I’m so proud. This is the award I’ve never won. It’s such a special day. I’m so proud of the boys, I could cry. They’ve done so well.”
Matt Grant of The Great British Pasty and Pie Co. based in Ottawa, Canada, claimed the coveted Pasty Ambassador prize. Matt travelled more than 3,000 miles to compete for the second year running at the World Pasty Championships, leaving behind minus 30-degree temperatures to compete in the Cornish sunshine.
Matt said: “It’s unbelievable to be named the Pasty Ambassador. It’s a very proud moment. I’ll definitely come back next year, I love the people, everyone’s so nice and there’s a great community around pasties.”
Don McKeever scooped the Open Savoury Amateur title with a pulled pork pasty. Don, who won the same class two years ago with a chicken and chorizo effort, was one of 15-strong group of friends from Bristol who have supported the championships since the first event in 2012.
He said: “I put a lot into it – it took me eight hours to make and cook. Our group of friends loves the championships. It felt a bit tongue in cheek in year one but it really is a proper competition and it is a great honour to win again.”
Alongside the hotly-contested pasty competition was a gala celebration of music and comedy headlined by Fisherman’s Friends, Seth Lakeman and Kernow King. The event is supported by industry body the Cornish Pasty Association.
Championships stalwart Richard Shaw from Portsmouth, Hampshire, tested the judges’ taste buds with a “bush tucker” pasty filled with locusts, farm-raised worms and crickets, prepared in a chilli and chocolate barbeque sauce.
Other varieties include a rugby-inspired Six Nations pasty consisting of English steak, Irish potatoes, Welsh leeks, Scottish haggis, Italian peperoni and French cheese. There was a Cornish pasty with added chocolate, a Czech “dinner pasty” and a Hungarian variety. And a child’s pasty shaped like the Eden Biomes.
The event was also a way of showcasing the work of charities and good causes. Eden, in partnership with the Cornwall Community Foundation, invited Recycle and Renewing, The Cornwall Faith Forum, Creation Fest, Soroptimist International of St Austell & District, Wadebridge Foodbank & StoreHouse, Flashlight to promote their causes.
Alongside the support of the CPA, individual classes within the competition were sponsored by other organisations including Carters Packaging, Allied Mills, Cornish Mining World Heritage Site, Craft Bakers Association, Trewithen Dairy, St Austell Brewery and Mono Equipment.
The full list of winners is:
Cornish Pasty Junior
Winner – Jack Fuller, nine, from Wadebridge.
Second – Amy Meredith, six, from Helston.
Third – Jodie Heath, 10, from Bodmin.
Open Savoury Junior
Winner – Rhys Heath, 13, from Bodmin with a “breakfast pasty”, containing bacon, sausage, scrambled egg, baked beans, black pudding and hash browns.
Second – Harrison Shaw, nine, from Portsmouth in Hampshire with a kangaroo steak in a sweet pepper and red wine sauce pasty.
Third – Robbie Mowbray, 12, from Wadebridge with haggis, neeps and tatties pasty with wee dram.
Open Savoury Company
Winner – Warrens Bakery with a chicken, potato, swede, onion in a creamy white sauce.
Second – Cornish Premier Pasties Ltd. with a chicken and mango pasty.
Third – The Chough Bakery with a chicken, smokey bacon, leeks, potato, onions and cheddar pasty.
Cornish Pasty Company
Winner – The Chough Bakery
Second – Cornish Premier Pasties (with their Cornish gourmet pasty)
Third – Prima Bakeries
Cornish Pasty Professional
Winner – Julie Heard from Bodmin.
Second – David Collings from Fowey.
Third – Andy Heath from Bodmin.
Open Savoury Professional
Winner – Louise Slee from Torpoint with a pulled pork, sweet potato, shallots and cheddar pasty.
Second – Alan Pearce from Budock near Falmouth with cheddar, red Leicester, onions, potato and cayenne pepper pasty.
Third – Andy Heath from Bodmin with a three cheese, spring onion and potato pasty.
Cornish Pasty Amateur
Winner – Roger Richards from Camborne.
Second – Alistair Wall from Camborne.
Third – Billy Deakin from Mount Hawke.
Open Savoury Amateur
Winner – Don McKeever from Bristol with a pulled pork in a cider sauce pasty.
Second – Emma Pugsley from London with a sausage, shallot, potato and pepper pasty.
Third – Cherry Ferris from Penzance with a “Mumbai pasty”, containing onion, sweet potato, green peas, cauliflower and a secret selection of 15 herbs and spices.