Leeds butcher wins prestigious pie contest

WINNER: Peter Middlemiss with award winning pork pies and trophy. PIC: John Houlihan
WINNER: Peter Middlemiss with award winning pork pies and trophy. PIC: John Houlihan
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A LEEDS butcher’s secret pork recipe helped him seal first prize in a prestigious national competition.

Peter Middlemiss, 51, who helps run Otley family business Geo Middlemiss and Son on Market Street, won the Supreme Pork Pie Champion title at the Great Yorkshire Pork Pie and Sausage competition.

Peter Middlemiss (front) with (back from left) his father Tony Middlemiss, brother Martin, butcher Andrew Barraclough and butcher Daniel Marston.

Peter Middlemiss (front) with (back from left) his father Tony Middlemiss, brother Martin, butcher Andrew Barraclough and butcher Daniel Marston.

Mr Middlemiss, who works with father Tony, 72, and brother Martin, 46, said he used a secret recipe which dates back to the 1960s to earn victory in the contest held at Harrogate Exhibition Centre on Sunday.

He said: “I use a special blend of three herbs and spices with my seasoning to give them an extra little bit of flavour.”

Commenting on his win, Mr Middlemiss said: “It’s a good achievement because the people that are judges are usually retired butchers and retired pie makers, so they know a good pie when they see one.”

He added: “It is good for Otley and might help bring people into town and help revitalise it a little bit.

“Times are a bit hard at the minute for small businesses in Otley.”

Mr Middlemiss added: “Yorkshire seems to be a big pork pie area. Down south they have pork pies that are grey when you cook them.

“We have a salt cure in them which makes them go pink.”

The prize was handed out by the Craft Bakers Association (CBA) and the Confederation of Yorkshire Butchers Councils, who joined forces for the event.

It was open to butchers and master bakers throughout the country, who make products on their own premises.

Peter Middlemiss is a fifth generation butcher who started work in the family businesss as a 16-year-old.

The butchers was set up in 1881 by John Middlemiss, the present owner’s great-great-grandfather, from a stall in Otley Market Place. The firm moved to its current shop in 1900.

Father-of-two Peter Middlemiss’s youngest son Luke, 15, works at the company’s shop every Saturday. Mr Middlemiss said Luke could be make it six generations if he decides to work full-time in the business. Mr Middlemiss said: “It is a good opportunity for him.”

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