Cumberland sauce, a traditional sauce served with ham or lamb, is made from the juices of an orange and lemon, together with redcurrant jelly, mustard, port and ginger.
Shepherds Pie is traditionally made with lamb, to which mushrooms, carrots, pureed tomatoes and spices may be added. Once cooked the mixture is topped with cooked, mashed potato which is then browned in the oven.
Cumberland rum butter is another favourite. The butter is mixed with brown sugar, nutmeg and rum. An old tradition attached to this is that the butter was served with oatcakes to celebrate a baby’s birth, after which the guests would leave coins in the butter bowl, supposedly to ensure prosperity for the new baby.
Today’s Kendal Mint Cake is produced mainly by two companies, Quiggin’s which is the oldest surviving mint cake company and Romney’s which bought Wiper’s company in 1987. The exact recipe is kept secret but basically it’s made from sugar, glucose, water and peppermint oil boiled together and continuously stirred. It’s poured in moulds and allowed to set then broken into individual bars. Because of its energy-giving glucose, it's popular with climbers and mountaineers, and was used by Edmund Hillary and his team on the first successful ascent of Everest in 1953.
Damsons, grown in the Lyth Valley, south of Windermere, are used for making and flavouring tarts and pies, and also to produce Westmorland plum chutney, not to mention damson wine and gin.