All posts tagged: Lace

Absinthe and Champagne. Teatime at The Loom

The Lace Market area of Nottingham is thought to be one of the oldest parts of the City. It has a history going back to the early settlers who carved out caves in the soft sandstone rock of the cliff in which to live and it has had a crucial place in every period of the city’s history. It now forms Nottingham’s “Creative Quarter”, with some wonderful architecture, the magnificent St Mary’s Church (where I was wed, incidently ☺️), and lots of bars and restaurants, one of the latests and coolest of which is The Loom. The Loom is located in a beautiful Grade II listed 18th Century building that was formerly the city’s Lace Museum. The entrance is a deceptively discreet Town House portico which opens up into a surprisingly huge space. With the front rooms classily set out as restaurant space, leading to the bar/lounge and stage area at the rear (which operated as a lace warehouse as recently as the 1960s). I love that The Loom reflects Nottingham’s lace-making heritage, everything about …

Cattern Cakes and Nottingham Lace

The two great holidays of the Lace Makers – for which Nottingham is known the world over (and which, according to modern folklore accounts for number of beautiful and feisty women in the City) are Cattern’s (St Catherine’s Day, November 25th) and Tander’s (St Andrew’s Day, November 30th). St Catherine is the patron Saint of Spinners, lace-makers, rope-makers and “spinsters” and Lace-makers traditionally made these cakes to celebrate her feast day (also the name, coincidentally, of the Duchess of Cambridge who chose Nottingham Lace for her wedding gown). The story is also told that when Katherine of Aragon was imprisoned at Ampthill she heard of the plight of local lace-makers and ordered all her lace to be burned so she could commission new in order to give work to the industry. Sometimes the cakes are made as rounds or  “wheels” (Catherine Wheels, associated with St Catherine of Alexandria) but I remember them more like scones. Either way, they are delicious – something between a cake and a cookie bar flavoured with Caraway. This recipe is …