NEW CHESTER SHOP OPENS

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NEW CHESTER SHOP OPENS

Premises on Five Ashes Road in Westminster Park have undergone a £100,000 make-over to become a new base for Chatwins - adding to its stores in Hoole, Upton, Blacon, Lache and Northgate Street in the city centre.


Owner Edward Chatwin said: "We had been supplying the previous shop “Aldente” for several years so when we heard he was looking to sell the business we thought it would make an ideal location for one of our shops. There was already a quality Butchers, Fishmongers and Greengrocers…the parade of shops was just missing a Baker.


"It's the latest in the Chatwins portfolio to carry our new branding and the response has been terrific
"For weeks people on around Westminster Park have shown genuine interest in the works, asking about when we were going to open and the products we would sell.


The shop offers traditional Chatwins bakery products as well as a hot roast carvery and sandwiches made to order.

 

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Afternoon Tea Week

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Afternoon Tea Week

Afternoon Tea Week takes place from the 14th - 20th August so if you're planning on hosting your own afternoon tea our cakes, pastries and bread can all help you save time! All you need to do is provide the the tea and arrange the food on a cake stand.

On the bottom tier place sandwiches cut into fingers and other savoury items. We have a great selection of bread including 'Britains Best White Loaf', our award winning white Farmhouse bread. Other great additions to an afternoon tea would include our pack of 6 bite sized sausage rolls and slices of our pork pies and quiches. 

Scones are an important part of afternoon tea. Buy a pack of our 4 large fruit scones on the top tier with a pot of jam and cream for people to help themselves to. As for the cakes, we have plenty to choose from! You could serve a mix of vanilla slices, chocolate eclairs and strawberry tarts while taking advantage of our 'buy three get a fourth free' offer on our cream cakes! Or take a selection of kids cakes such as chocolate trains and crispy cakes. You could even slice one of our Swiss rolls into individual pieces!

Serving up an afternoon tea may seem daunting but with these tips you'll have less to worry about.

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National Cream Tea Day

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National Cream Tea Day

The third National Cream Tea Day, brought to us by The Cream Tea Society, is on Friday 30th June so pick up a packet of four fruit scones from our shops, slather with jam and cream and enjoy with a cup of tea!

The tradition of the cream tea started in the Westcountry after the arrival of the railway brought a tourist boom in the mid 1800's. The influx of visitors wanted a place to relax and indulge in the finest local ingredients and so hotels and cafes started to serve scones with strawberry jam and clotted cream.

There's a lot of debate on how to serve a proper cream tea. Some people top cream with jam and others like the jam first and then cream. Don't even start on whether to add butter or not!

According to research by the University of Sheffield, your scone should be 4-7cm in diameter and the jam should be spread on first, leaving a space around the edge. Finally the clotted cream should sit proudly on the top. 

You should break the scone in half rather than slice it and the ideal ratio is two parts scone to one part cream and one part jam. You should always use clotted cream (not whipped cream) and the ideal height of a cream tea is 2.8cm thick. I'm sure we all have our favourite way of preparing a cream tea though!

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Chatwin's Farmhouse Loaf is Britain's Best White Loaf

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Chatwin's Farmhouse Loaf is Britain's Best White Loaf

Chatwin's Farmhouse loaf has been awarded best white loaf at the 'Britain's Best Loaf 2017' competition. Our bread competed against 150 other loaves at the event which was held as part of the Farm Shop & Deli Show at the NEC, Birmingham on Monday 24th April 2017. As well as winning the white loaf category, our multiseed was also highly commended.

The competition, which was sponsored by Rank Hovis, had a record-breaking number of entries, and the live judging was the most hotly contested yet.

"This event is a fantastic opportunity for Britain's bakers to showcase their skill and the quality of their products to their peers and potential customers," said British Baker editor Vince Bamford. "It is always a hard-fought competition and I'm sure our expert judges will once again have to make some tough decisions in deciding who takes the individual category awards and, of course, the ultimate accolade of Britain's Best Loaf."
Vince Bamford, Editor, British Baker

Congratulations to our Bakers Nigel Atwell and Tom Pattinson (who competed for the first time at this event).

Congratulations to our Bakers Nigel Atwell and Tom Pattinson (who competed for the first time at this event).

Our award winning bread is made fresh for you everyday at our Nantwich bakery and is available in all of our shops.

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National Tea Day

21st April is National Tea Day so we've put together 11 facts and tips about the Great British institution. Grab a cuppa and read on.

1. Black, green, white and oolong are the main types of tea. They're all from same plant called Camellia Sinensis but are processed in different ways.

2. Always use a cup for tea. Tea should be slightly cooler before drinking it, so to release heat the traditional teacup is slightly shorter/wider than a coffee mug.

3. Black tea needs five minutes to brew and green teas need three minutes to ensure optimal taste.

4. The number of recommended cups of tea to drink each day is 4.

5. 98% of people take their tea with milk, but only 30% take sugar in tea.

6. 96% of all cups of tea drunk daily in the UK are brewed from tea bags.

7. Tea breaks are a tradition that have been with us for approximately 200 years.

8. By the mid 18th c. tea replaced ale & gin as the drink of the masses to become Britain's most popular beverage.

9. Turkey drinks more than twice the amount of tea as the UK. We drink 2.74kg per capita, while Turkey drinks 7.54kg.

10. Apart from tourism, tea is the biggest industrial activity in India.

11. Finally, Lalith Lenadora, the East India Company's chief tea taster, has these tips to really taste your tea.

"Take a small sip and let it cover the tip of your tongue, then take a second sip and taste it with the back of your tongue. Now your tastebuds are all awake as you take a third sip."

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6 Ways With Hot Cross Buns

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6 Ways With Hot Cross Buns

When it comes to hot cross buns are you a traditionalist or are you always looking for something a little bit different? Even a classic hot cross bun is versatile and can be used in many ways. Below are six ways to eat hot cross buns including some ideas for stale buns. Don't forget that Chatwins hot cross buns are two packs for £2.50 so you can have your traditional bun AND try something new!

Bacon Bap

Last years trend was to replace the bread in a bacon sandwich or bap with a hot cross bun. It's not for everyone and definitely divided opinions!

French Toast

A quick treat to use up left over buns. Simply use hot cross bun slices instead of bread in any french toast or eggy bread recipe.

Bread and Butter Pudding

Another way to use up less than fresh buns by combining two classic recipes. If you love bread and butter pudding then try this Easter twist. Find the recipe here.

Ice Cream Sandwich

We're all hoping for the sun to make an appearance this Bank Holiday weekend. If we do get nice weather try sandwiching vanilla ice cream in a toasted hot cross bun.

Croutons or Crostini

Cut into even sized cubes or thin slices, toss in olive oil and grated parmesan and toast in the oven. Serve on salad or topped with cheese and chutney.

Creme Egg Toastie

If you've got a sandwich press or toastie maker this one is for you. Slice a hot cross bun, butter both sides and sandwich back together with a creme egg inside. Put in the sandwich press and toast until golden.

Will you try a different way of eating hot cross buns this Easter?

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The History of Simnel

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The History of Simnel

Simnel cake is now available in our shops for Easter. There are lots of different theories about the origin of the Simnel cake.

Some people say it was traditionally baked for mothering Sunday during the easter period. In the 17th century, mothering Sunday was the day that sons and daughters got the day off to visit their mothers and the daughters would bake simple as a gift. Others say it was a post-Lent treat as it contained all the things you weren't allowed to eat during Lent.

Another story is that one Easter, 'Simon' and 'Nelly' had a piece of left over dough and argued about what to do with it. Simon wanted to boil it while Nelly wanted to bake it so they did both, resulting in 'Simon and Nelly's cake' or Sim-Nel.

In reality, Simnel probably refers to the Latin word 'simila' meaning fine, wheaten flour. The cake is often decorated with eleven marzipan balls to represent the disciples (minus Judas).

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Where Do Hot Cross Buns Come From?

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Where Do Hot Cross Buns Come From?

Although hot cross buns are now available throughout Easter, they were traditionally eaten on Good Friday. People used to hang them in their house on Good Friday to protect them from bad spirits and believed that they would stay fresh until next Good Friday.

Queen Elizabeth I banned the sale of hot cross buns except on Good Friday, funerals and the day before Christmas as they were too special to eat any other day. To get around the ban the public started baking them at home but if they were caught they had to give the buns up to the poor.

Even before Medieval times, bakers marked crosses on their products as they believed it wold ward off evil spirits who would make the bread go bad. In the 1600's marking baked goods with a cross was condemned by the puritans in much of the UK except for certain goods on certain occasions, such as Good Friday. This is when hot cross buns became a 'special' bread and is what sets them apart for everyday buns. 

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Sandbach Expansion and Refit

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Sandbach Expansion and Refit

Our Sandbach shop is now open after it's expansion and refit. We started work on the property next door in January and closed our existing shop on 4th Feb to finish the refit. After just three weeks of hard work, the shop reopened to lots of positive comments from old and new customers.

The whole shop has been refreshed with the new grey and green branding and there's now a cafe inside so you can sit and enjoy a drink with a range of food from cooked breakfasts to one of our delicious cakes. The shop is fully accessible with a disabled toilet and as well as being open 8 - 5 Monday to Saturday, we are now open Sundays 9 - 4.

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Sourdough at Chatwins

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Sourdough at Chatwins

Did you know that we sell sourdough bread? Our sourdough is currently available at our Square shop in Nantwich on Thursdays, Fridays and Saturdays. 

What Is Sourdough?

Most modern loaves are made with bakers yeast. Sourdough goes back to the origins of bread making when bakers yeast didn't exist. Instead, naturally occurring yeast is used to make the dough rise. It begins with a 'starter', a mix of flour and water which is left to ferment. It takes time and a lot of patience but is very rewarding.

We make our sourdough using local flour from 'Walk Mill' in Cheshire. The stone ground flour gives the bread a unique flavour and tasty crust and because it's local flour, there's less food miles involved.

Sourdough Chatwins

What's so great about it?

There are loads of things that are great about sourdough. It has a slow fermentation process which gives it a distinctive tangy flavour, open texture and flavoursome crust. Sourdough has lactic acids that make the vitamins already in the loaf more readily available to the body. They also slow down the release of glucose into the blood stream. Terry Graham, a Canadian professor, led a study into the effects of bread on insulin levels, carbohydrate metabolism and blood sugar. His team discovered that breads with a long fermentation process using natural yeasts resulted in the bread being digested more slowly, producing a smaller spike in blood sugar levels. 

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The Perfect Slice of Toast

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The Perfect Slice of Toast

Thursday 23rd February is National Toast Day and whether you like butter, jam or eggs on your toast, there's no denying we are a nation of toast lovers. In fact, 94.2 million slices are eaten every day! 

But how do you make the perfect slice of toast? Experts say that it should be evenly toasted all over and have the look of builders tea.

Bread should be a medium thickness. Too thin and it will be too crispy, too thick and it won't toast in the middle. The bread should be stored in a bread bin at room temperature and you should wait 17 seconds before adding butter to stop the toast becoming soggy.

If you want to get even more scientific about it, follow Dr Dom Lane's example. He went through 2000 slices of toast to determine the perfect formula for toasting. He found that 14mm is the ultimate thickness for the bread. Pop it into a 900w microwave, turn the dial to 'number five out of six' and toast for 216 seconds. Then spread the toast with 0.44g butter per square inch.

Now add your favourite toppings. If you're going to use a knife and fork (for toppings like beans) keep the slices whole. For spreads, cut into two triangles.

What are your favourite things to eat on toast?

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Best place for a "Blacon" Bap

Looking for a freshly cooked breakfast roll to kick start the day? Then look no further tan our new shop at 11 The Parade, Blacon, Chester. Open from 7:30 a.m. (Mon-Fri) we have the a full breakfast menu available to take out or to sit in at our relaxed coffee shop. We also have our award winning cake and savoury items, and have introduced our hot roast carvery baps to compliment our delicious made to order sandwiches. Whether it is breakfast, lunch or an afternoon cup of tea, we have something for you to enjoy.

Looking for a freshly cooked breakfast roll to kick start the day? Then look no further tan our new shop at 11 The Parade, Blacon, Chester. Open from 7:30 a.m. (Mon-Fri) we have the a full breakfast menu available to take out or to sit in at our relaxed coffee shop.

We also have our award winning cake and savoury items, and have introduced our hot roast carvery baps to compliment our delicious made to order sandwiches.

Whether it is breakfast, lunch or an afternoon cup of tea, we have something for you to enjoy.

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Work starts at our Historic Chester shop.

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Work starts at our Historic Chester shop.

Work has finally begun on our flagship Northgate St shop in the centre of the Historic City of Chester. To celebrate our 10th anniversary in the city, a complete refurbishment of the timber framed Grade II* listed building is now in full swing.

Our Tearooms on the first floor is now closed, but the shop is operating as normal until the 30th January, when we will be closing for approximately 3 weeks...assuming no Roman ruins are discovered in our medieval cellar!

We apologise for any inconvience caused while work is being carried out, and we are all excited to show you the finished results when we reopen towards the end of February. 

 

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Shop Proves Christmas Cracker in Congleton

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Shop Proves Christmas Cracker in Congleton

Our Congleton has undergone a major transformation as part of our rebrand across our 21 shops in Cheshire, Staffordshire and North Wales.
 
The project included tearing out the old shop frontage which has been a familiar site in the heart of Congleton for more than 30 years.
 
Builders worked flat out over two weeks on the face-lift which has replaced the old blue and white branding for a contemporary slate grey, black and lime green theme.
 
Staff chipped in on the scheme in the race for its opening  – and were delighted to be greeted by a queue of customers at 8am.
 
Owner Edward Chatwin said: “Our Congleton shop is one of the oldest in our portfolio and has a loyal following. Local people have shown a genuine interest in the works asking about when we were going to re-open.
 
“With Christmas fast approaching, and orders already in for festive pies and puddings, we had to work fast and often through the night.
 
“But the response has been terrific and we would like to say a big thank-you to customers for their patience and to traders for any disruption the works may have caused.”
 
The shop offers traditional Chatwins bakery products as well as a new hot roast carvery, salad bar, hot drinks and sandwiches made to order.
 
Its manned by five people drawn from the local area, including three new members of staff adding to the 300 already employed by the firm.
 
Father-of-three Edward: “As part of the rebrand some under-performing shops have closed but our Congleton branch has a loyal following and we can confirm we are here to stay.”
 

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Sweet treat for the Lache

Premises on Cliveden Road in Lache have undergone a £100,00 make-over to become a new base for Chatwins - adding to its stores in Hoole, Blacon, Bache and Northgate Street in the city centre.

Owner Edward Chatwin said:"The shop was empty for four years so there was a lot of work needed to bring it up to current standards.

"It's the latest in the Chatwins portfolio to carry our new branding and the response has been terrific

"For weeks people on the estate around Cliveden Road have shown genuine interest in the works, asking about when we were going to open and the products we would sell.

The shop offers traditional Chatwins bakery products as well as a hot roast carvery and sandwiches made to order.

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New Look Llangollen

Our busy shop in the tourist hotspot of Llangollen has reopened after its refit. The shop now has a fresh new look to go with the great fresh food offering.

As well as the traditional cakes and freshly baked savoury products that Chatwins is famed for, we are also offering sandwiches made to order, hot roast carvery, cooked breakfast and fresh coffee. All available to take out or eat in...so you can rest your legs after a long day walking in the hills or cycling the Horseshoe Pass.

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Hoole Shop Reopens

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What a transformation! In just over 2 weeks our Hoole shop has been brought right up to date with a modern look and refreshed menu. A huge thanks to Jackie Muir for the fabulous shop design, Frimoval for a great shopfit, and the countless other people who have helped to make it happen.

Customer reaction has exceeded our highest hopes, with the new hot roast carvery and sandwiches made to order proving a big success.  The new look seating area and improved coffee offering has meant that sales to "eat in" have more than doubled.

Don't forget, this shop is now open on Sundays.

Pictures below show the work in progress.




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February

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Work has started at our latest shop refit. Our Hoole, Chester shop will be closed until w/c 16th Feb. We look forward to welcoming you back with our new look store and improved food offering.

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