Sauce sensations and the power of pickles...

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A jar of yellow Piccalill and tall bottle of brown sauce Sheeran's Brown Sauce and Piccalilli Ben Sheeran, Head Chef at National Museums Liverpool, looks ahead to the Liverpool Food and Drink Festival which takes place on 19, 20 and 21 September. Here he blogs about the joys of pickles and sauces. "Well preserved in the past is the tradition of gathering up your fruits and vegetables from the summer and pickling them to survive the winter months. Although this is not a necessity for most these days, here at the Maritime Dining Room we hold true to the real rewards of pickling, not least as the best homemade relish or chutney can add a burst of flavour to many dishes throughout the winter months and beyond. "We'll be showcasing a couple of my favourite condiments at this weekend's Liverpool Food and Drink Festival in Sefton Park, with our homemade piccalilli and Sheeran's brown sauce. "Piccalilli has become a true British classic. Originating from India this pickle invariably features cauliflower, a staple vegetable eaten throughout my childhood. Although it is seriously underused these days, cauliflower is fantastic in piccalilli. Seasoned with mustard and chilli it is a perfect accompaniment for pies, ham or strong cheese. For the best flavour I recommend adding good old English radish as one of the vegetables for a peppery kick and stunning colour. Why not sample our homemade piccalilli and stock up your larder this weekend. "If you asked me what my personal favourite condiment is I would undoubtedly say brown sauce. With its fruity and tangy taste it is often best served with a full English breakfast or the occasional bacon sandwich. I'd also strongly recommend it with a black pudding fritter or two and we'll be serving it with ours this weekend. I'd choose the richness of brown sauce over tomato sauce varieties every time. "Why not visit us this weekend in Sefton Park and sample our condiments to see what you think. Homemade is definitely better than off the supermarket shelf, the flavours are so much richer. It's a great opportunity to stock up your larder for the winter months ahead. A great Christmas stocking filler for foodies."