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Our bakery supplies a large number of schools, colleges and universities. So we've always had a quiet period over the summer. Ian has long been looking for something to fill this lull. Last year he saw an opportunity with the closure of the Ultimate Plum Pudding Company in Kendal. Ian's theory was that if Freshfield made Christmas Puddings over the summer that would nicely fill the gap and keep everyone busy. We should have been careful what we wished for!
First of all Ian persuaded Bernice and Carole, from the company, that they were not yet ready to fully retire but would love to act as pudding consultants to Freshfield. Then he bought the basic equipment required from the asset sale. An unused area of the Knowsley bakery then became Christmas Corner with the 'new' pudding line installed and training provided by Carole and Bern. Well far from filling a quiet few weeks, Christmas Corner was flat out right up until December.
So now we make Christmas puddings for foodservice, for retail, for corporate gifts and for fundraisers. We do special recipe puddings for private label customers and we provide personalised labels for our own recipe puddings. We supplied over 200 customers nationally and we even exported a few. It was a huge learning curve for us but we made it - all out on time, 50 tonnes of puddings produced and not one single complaint - just compliments. It was very exciting and we were exhausted but just so chuffed.
This year we have even more to learn as we are taking over most of the sales from Bernice and some of the label printing (and maybe design) from Carole. Next year they tell us that we are on our own and they'll be out on the fells with the dog.
So if you are looking for Christmas puddings which are delicious AND beautiful please click on the linked images at the top of the page to find out more.
Freshfield Bakery | S B Supplies | Unit 6, Abercrombie Road, Knowsley Industrial Park, Liverpool L33 7YN
United Kingdom | 0151 546 4543
This was one of the most important things we learned. It's fine having a lovely recipe (and The Ultimate Plum Pudding - Carole's family recipe certainly is that) but it's a celebration and presentation really matters. So whether its a 90g foodservice pudding or a 908g family centrepiece it has to look good and sit nicely on the plate. Every one of our puddings is hand pressed to make sure that it looks great when its served.