Eating & shopping
Call into the Visitor Centre
The Visitor Centre, in the old stable block overlooking Tumbleton Lake, is open from 10am and is where you'll find our licensed tea-rooms and gift shop. The tea-rooms use locally grown and seasonal produce and are open for morning coffee, light snacks and afternoon tea.
Take a look around our shop and pick out the perfect gift, from handmade soaps to locally made jewellery - or treat yourself to some Northumbrian food and wine.
Shop 'til you drop
Cragside is open again for the 2015 season, so pop in and treat yourself to some fabulous gifts, books, homeware, gardenware, local food and crafts.
With new stock flying its way onto the shelves and exciting offers to take advantage of, our shop is the perfect place to buy a treat for yourself or a gift. Every penny you spend in our shop helps us look after our special place for ever.
Car park shop
Forgotten something? You can now call into the car park shop in the main car park where you will find gifts, snacks, ice cream, toys and guidebooks. The team will also be happy to help you with becoming a national trust member and giving you information to help you get the best out of your visit.
What's in Season
The months of May and June begin to offer fresh leafy vegetables - ideal for salads, stir fries and quick cooking. As the slow cooked casseroles and one pots of winter and early spring are replaced with healthy nutritious dishes, cooks and chefs seem to have a spring in their step at this time of year. Here at Cragside we are excited for the beginning of English Asparagus season which makes an appearance at the end of April and runs until the end of June. It is an extremely short season so it is vital to make the most of it. Check out the recipe for Asparagus and Wood Sorrel Soup. Not to be missed: Jersey Royal Potatoes, Lettuce, Purple Sprouting Broccoli, Radishes, Spinach, Asparagus, Chard, Cockles, Crab, Lobster, Prawns, Salmon, Sea Trout, Whitebait, Mackerel, Plaice, Sea bass, Sardines, spring lamb.
Lee's Top Tip
Lee, the Food and Beverage Manager's top tips for baking: "Here at Cragside, we are passionate about baking so I thought I would share some of our top tips:
- To stop your brown sugar becoming hard, transfer to a sealable bag and pop in a marshmallow or two.
- When making cookies or biscuits, ensure your dough is chilled as you put it on the baking tray and in the oven, this allows the ingredients to react to the temperature correctly before the butter melts and flattens the cookie.
- For the best cake results, leave the eggs and butter at room temperature overnight.
- Always serve a cake at room temperature and slice no more than 20 minutes before you want to serve it.
- The most important tip of all, always accurately weigh your ingredients when baking!
Get out foraging
These months see the start of the wood sorrel season which is a delightful little herb that grows in most woodland. It is often mistaken for clover but is easily identified by the three leaves which are a distinctive heart shape with small white flowers. It brings a citrus flavour to salads, pasta and tarts; and it also works well with chicken, and especially fish and shellfish. If you pick large enough amounts, you could make soup or a zingy pesto. Ensure that you know exactly what you are picking as some plants are poisonous and can cause harm.
Check out the Cragside Tea Rooms blog written by our fantastic chef Jill for news, events, recipes and a sneak peek into a busy and productive National Trust kitchen!