Our friend Rick grew up in the rolling hills of High Peak and had a great little recommendation for us - The Swan Inn, Kettleshulme. He'd been coming in to this cute little pub for years and wanted us to try out the honest grub and cosy atmosphere that makes the place so popular with locals.
|When Rick was a child, he thought this was a plate of worms...|
It isn't very big at all - basically two little rooms filled with knick-knacks and nice old furniture. It was packed to the rafters on this Sunday lunchtime but they just about managed to squeeze our table of ten in!
This possibly wasn't the best time for me to visit a traditional British pub seeing as I've decided to be vegan for Lent. However, as I've discovered a lot recently, people seem really happy to cater for different dietary requirements and as I'd rung ahead they'd sorted me out with a main course, but unfortunately no starter choice. I was happy to eat the spongy, thickly sliced tin loaf that had been delivered to the table instead though. Bailey and quite a few of our mates around the table went for the Black Pudding which everyone said was really good - moist and really fresh tasting, a great pudding. Bailey thought the crap chilli sauce was an unnecessary addition but spot on otherwise.
|Black Pudding as modelled by Nat, with scallops|
My vegan choice was Vegetable and Bean Crumble, which was huge and served in an actual oven tray. No messing with this portion. The veg were nicely cooked and the tomato had been really well reduced which made for quite a thick, rich sauce. I also loved the idea of the nutty crumble topping as an alternative to cheese - will definitely be stealing that idea. Although I would have liked the beans to have been cooked down a bit more and I needed to add a fair old whack of seasoning to it, this was a good vegan option and I was impressed that they made me something especially!
Everyone was predictably excited about dessert and the Sticky Toffee Pudding was a popular choice in our party. Bailey loved the beautiful ice cream but found the sponge a little dry in places, he thought it needed more of the delicious sticky toffee sauce!
My vegan dessert was amazing - Poached Pear with Roasted Plums. This should have come with an ice cream and ginger cake which I'm sure would have been even more delectable but I was more than happy with this - one of the best poached pears I've had!
|Harden's in 'writing about somewhere and not calling it average' shocker!|