Ancient ‘lost’ cake makes TV debut

Vicar Shaun with Jamie Oliver and Jimmy Doherty
Vicar Shaun with Jamie Oliver and Jimmy Doherty

Last summer the vicar and the local community surrounding St Oswald’s Church in Preesall played a central role in filming for a new Jamie Oliver series.

And this Friday, January 17, the programme will air on Channel Four at 8pm.

Originally called Food Fight Club and now renamed as Friday Night Feast the programme, also featuring celebrity chef Jimmy Doherty, came to St Oswald’s Church on August 13 and 14 for two days of filming.

The duo were making a series of films about “lost foods” in the UK that will be aired as part of the current series of Friday Night Feast. The Lancashire filming is about the little-known Tosset Cake, a biscuit that’s flavoured with caraway seeds and coriander seeds.

The cake is local to Stalmine and Preesall and dates back centuries; most likely linked to the old wakes holy day celebrations to mark the feast day of St Oswald.

Vicar Rev Shaun Baldwin even had a go at baking the cake himself for the programme.

He said: “Jamie’s visit was a fantastic moment for the community and a great catalyst for the revival of an old traditional festival rooted firmly in the church’s history, which came about originally as a result of the importance the church has always played, and continues to play, in the local area.

“The revival and filming of the Tosset Feast was a great experience that brought together all sections of the Over Wyre community. We think that this was the first celebration of the Tosset Feast for over 100 years.

“We were delighted he and Jimmy Doherty came to the area and we are looking forward to seeing the results of the filming on Friday night.”

Rev Baldwin said the origins of the name Tosset is a corruption of St Oswald.

He added: “There has been a place of worship in Stalmine since around 1240AD and the parish was originally dedicated to St Oswald before the existing church was built and dedicated to St James in 1806.

“Jamie and Jimmy’s aim was to revive the Tosset Cake as well as the community celebrations linked to the feast of St Oswald.”

Parrox Hall in Preesalltraditionally held the Tosset Feast.