16 of our foodie guilty pleasures in Suffolk
PUBLISHED: 13:06 09 May 2019 | UPDATED: 12:28 11 May 2019
With Eat What You Want Day 2019 coming up (May 11) our food and drink editor shares some of her favourite naughty, but nice, treats from the county.
1. Panna Cotta at The Unruly Pig, Bromeswell - I'm a stickler for details and technique when it comes to cooking and the panna cotta delivered by the kitchens here is always divine. If it's on the menu, I have to have it. It has just the right amount of gelatine to produce that "sexy little wobble". Wonderful.
2. The Big Smoke Burger at Love Thy Burger, Ipswich - By God the burgers here are good. Forgive the try-hard industrial décor and you'll be rewarded by the juiciest hand-pressed patties, made that day with prime local butcher's meat. I love The Big Smoke (with cheese, crispy onions and bacon), swapping out the mayo for their house chilli sauce. The rosemary fries are addictive!
3. Cheese scones at Applaud, Ipswich - Warm, cheesy, a bit herby and served with chilli jam and salted butter, these are some of the best in Suffolk.
4. Fish and Chips from Mrs T's, Southwold Harbour - The service can be a bit hit and miss here, but they make flipping awesome fish and chips and it's worth the (often long) wait. Cooked in rapeseed oil, the fish is tender and as fresh as can be, the batter thick and ungreasy, and the chips marvellous. They have a cracking, spicy curry sauce too.
5. Crispy peanut tiffin slice from Paddy and Scott's, throughout Suffolk - After our son's football practise on Saturdays, my hubby and I always treat ourselves to a 'mini date' at our local branch of this café and literally cannot get enough of this gluten-free, grown-up take on rocky road. A salty, fudgy peanut icing sits on top of a crunchy chocolate base, topped with more chocolate. It probably negates the points of my skinny decaff latte…
6. Quiche from The Meare Shop and Tearoom, Thorpeness - Happiness is sitting at one of the tables outside here in the sun, overlooking the lake, digging a fork into one of the delectable little homemade quiches. Just watch out for the swans!
7. Sausage Rolls from Pump Street Bakery, Orford - Peppery, oniony, with a touch of fennel and rich, buttery pastry. Ooh yes I love a Pump Street sausage roll. Especially when they're warm. This is good picnic fodder if you're crabbing by the harbour.
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8. Salted caramel hot chocolate, Fire Station Café, Woodbridge - So thick you can almost stand a spoon up in it. Hot chocolate is very very hit and miss, but they always get it bang on the money here. It's like a thick, chocolatey hug in a mug.
9. Cheeseboard at The Marquis, Upper Layham - I have to try not to squeal with delight when they push the cheese trolley my way at this restaurant. There's always a wide, well-kept selection, accompanied by nuts, a little pot of honey, chutney, slivers of celery, apple, and your choice of crackers from the 'treasure chest'. My friends and I have often talked of coming here purely for the cocktails and cheese.
10. Grasshopper slices, Two Magpies Bakery, Aldeburgh - Not something they have all the time, but if you see these gleaming in the counter you HAVE to buy them. Taking inspiration from a classic American dessert, these layer chocolate brownie, peppermint fudge icing and chocolate. Oh yes.
11. The Eel's Foot Special, The Eel's Foot, nr Leiston - Probably one of the best 'cheese on toasts' in Suffolk. For less than a tenner you get a big slab of local bread, smothered in a Welsh rarebit topping made with Adnams Blackshore Stout, with mushroom, ham or smoked haddock (my favourite), topped with a poached egg and served with chips. It is soooo good.
12. Brunch bowls, No 4 Restaurant and Bar, Bury St Edmunds- These are only served on weekends and pair tiny diced crunchy pieces of potato with a variety of toppings and sauces. This is pure indulgence. My favourite combined stilton, pulled pork and barbecue and béarnaise sauces.
13. Mixed grill to share, Casablanca, Ipswich - Absolutely behemoth. Whether you order for two or four, what you get is a giant bowl of buttery cous cous and rice studded with lentils and onions, topped with a platter of perfectly seasoned, tender meats. I like to nibble on the lamb chops. Everyone we've taken here has been mighty impressed.
14. Lemon meringue pie at Berridges, Ipswich - Don't pass this Dial Lane café by. Found above the jewellers, everything is made on site, including all the cakes and desserts, which sit tantalisingly on a table in the centre of the room. The billowing lemon meringue pie is incredible, with every element executed perfectly.
15. Doorstop sandwiches, Ferguson's Deli, Hadleigh - The bread (from Lavenham) is cut thick, and fillings are very very generous. Julie and the team have a queue out the door at lunchtimes for their amazing sarnies, which you can only just get your chompers around. I'm a simple gal, so I like cheese and ham on granary- but it's thick, hand cut cheese, and a pile of wafer thin, proper homecooked ham. A slick of spicy local chutney seals the deal. There are delightful homemade cakes to take away too.
16. Sin Buns, Wooster's Bakery, various markets and Bardwell - Everything made by Wooster's is amazing. Their croissants are better than any I've eaten in France, the bread is sensational, and the sweet pastries and occasional cakes and brownies on their stall cannot be bettered. The sin buns, when they have them, are swirly rolls of delight, layered with cinnamon and sticky salted caramel. Give me one of these and a coffee and I'm one happy lady!