5 Foodie Minutes With … Jacob and Anja Baak

Every now and then we are going to hang out with some of the cool foodie folk we get to work with or who we have bumped into along the way to find out a little bit more about what makes them tick, both on the ‘shop floor’ and in life more generally.

We call the series “5 Food Minutes with …

For over 10 years, Jan Jacob and Anja Baak have been building their business and their reputation on the unique depths of flavours inherent in wild venison. Life in the Highlands of Scotland provides inspiration as well as a livelihood riven from nature’s bounty. Mr and Mrs Deli were lucky to have spent a wonderful evening earlier in the year sharing Welsh cheeses, fine wine and outstanding Highland charcuterie as we got to know one another better; this is the perfect chance for you to get to know the talents behind our latest handpicked charcuterie producer.

We were delighted to catch up with Jan Jacob and Anja for ‘5 Foodie Minutes‘ … as you will see, they cleverly halved the workload by answering jointly.

 

Hi, who are you and what foodie mischief do you get up to in your day job?

We are Jan Jacob and Anja Baak, the husband and wife team running Great Glen Charcuterie. We use wild venison sustainably sourced from the mountains around us in the Scottish Highlands to produce a range of Wild Venison Charcuterie.

What inspires you?

We have a great passion for food and we have a determination to take our knowledge of continental curing to create stunning charcuterie from one of the best meats available.

Where in the world do you get to hang out doing your foodie thing? Can you tell us a little of what is so special to you about ‘place’?

Although we are originally from the Netherlands,  we love living and working with our family in this wild and beautiful part of the country.  Jan Jacob is in charge of production and building while Anja markets and sells the charcuterie but we are both immersed in the Highland life and the bounty that provides.

Which 3 food (or drink) producers should the foodie world know more about?

We love Guy Grieve who sustainably hand-dives Scallops near Mull, not far from us (Guy is one of the speakers at the Walking Whisky Wellness gathering Mr and Mrs Deli will be catering for later in the year).

We love to start a meal with a gin & tonic of Harris Gin and Walter Gregor Tonic made in Aberdeenshire.

You have £30 in your wallet/purse and an open mind about supper – where do you head to locally and what do you buy?

If we had £30 we would go to our local fishmonger to get delicious scallops or a bit of monkfish, depending on what is available. We’d also pop into our local deli DeliCraft (in Fort William) for a great bottle of wine to go with this. We grow our own vegetables so no need to buy those … with a bit of chorizo, we’ll be able to make a delicious meal.

Favourite food writer?

We really love Yvette van Boven, born in Ireland from Dutch parents she now divides her time between Amsterdam and Paris. She takes traditional Dutch recipes to a new exciting level and has a brilliantly relaxed cooking style.

Favourite Meal?

Our favourite meal is scallop linguine {with our venison chorizo and hand-dived scallops}. It is the ultimate fast food and is just so easy to throw together while sipping a Scottish gin & tonic (we love your style, Jan Jacob and Anja!).

Most comforting ‘comfort food’?

We love eating stews and there is always venison available here, either one hanging in the larder or in the freezer. Recently, we have been making lots of Moroccan stews with prunes and delicious spices (oh, yum!), all together in a pot simmering away in the bottom of our wood-fired Esse cooker; it really is the ultimate comfort food after a busy day.

 

What a fabulous insight into your food loves and your Highland inspirations, Anja and Jan Jacob. Thank you. We hope so much to see you later in the year when we head to Scotland in the Autumn.