FOR us English folk, it’s sometimes hard to remember that Wales is a different country.
The currency and language are pretty much the same, you don’t need a passport to come here and it’s only the eye-gouging six quid you’ve got to pay to get across the bridge that really reminds you that you’re in a foreign land.
When I was first presented with a Welsh Cake, I honestly did think it was a flat scone.
Topped with sugar and filled with currants, this small spongy delight is a great snack.
The best place to get them is from Swansea Market where they’re served warm moments after they’ve been made. Delicious.
Having mastered what a Welsh Cake was, I was surprised once again when I was given a Jam Split.
My neighbour, who originally comes from Aberdare thought it odd I’d been in Swansea for so long and hadn’t had one, so off we head to the market.
It’s basically the same as a Welsh cake, but with one slight difference: It’s got a layer of jam in the middle.
The lovely sweet treat has been made even better by giving it some moisture.
Tip: Buy in bulk when you can find these!
Whilst everyone will remember cockles for the Morecambe Bay disaster where 23 illegal immigrants died when they were caught out by the tide, they are actually a lovely seaside treat.
The Magna Carta from way back in 1215 is still in force with regards to how many cockles a person can harvest – eight pounds (or 3.6 kg for you modern folk) is still the legal limit and if you want to pick more, you’ve got to get a commercial licence.
Tip: Served best with vinegar and white pepper.
The delicacy that is Bara Lafwr is made from seaweed.
Boiled for several hours, and then cut up and puréed, the paste is rolled in oatmeal to soak up some of the moisture and is traditionally fried with bacon and cockles for a hearty Welsh breakfast.
Richard Burton the Welsh actor famously described laverbread as the “Welshman’s caviar” and it is highly nutritious from the high protein, iron and iodine content.