From time to time, in my respectful submission (I used to be a lawyer, you know), the subject matter of this little column is of such interest and local (if not national) standing that all I want to do is sit down with them and listen to them speak. That highest of accolades in F in the K circles goes to Candi Robertson, the owner of what many of you will know as Candi’s Chutney, but which she has recently renamed as, wait for it . . . Candi’s Cupboard, home of Candi’s Chutney, Steak Sauce and retro-style Relishes.

If you’ve met Candi at one of the many farmers’ markets she attends, the first thing I learned on my visit to her Salle premises won’t surprise you; that she turned down a place at RADA to become a chef. Having worked in London and Norfolk, including as head chef at Darby’s in Swanton Morley, Candi had amassed an array of chutneys and other condiments to spice up her dishes. In 2012, her friend Tessa suggested these could be sold to the public, and so the journey began, specifically at Blakeney. Candi still recalls the horror of seeing eaters of her food, for the first time, standing directly in front of her and telling her what they thought. As you can imagine, it was most usually very favourable. That said, I am told of an early market where one potential punter scoffed his way through half a jar of carrot chutney only to declare he didn’t like that particular vegetable. Such liberties are no longer tolerated!

Within a year, Candi’s Parsnip and Chilli Chutney had won national recognition and two stars at the Great Taste Awards. Other awards adorn the wall, including our (Norfolk Magazine) Pride of Norfolk 2017.

In a moment of seriousness, I ask about the ethos of her food. Candi’s reply is immediate and clearly heart-felt. Everything (save for the spices and vinegars) are British, everything is fresh and everything is hand crafted. These stipulations have led to a firm favourite, The Non Mango Mango Chutney. “Air-mile-mangoes” are replaced with British Bramley apples. Otherwise, it’s a genuine Kashmiri recipe with a base of onion, garlic and ginger to which no less than 11 spices (all roasted and ground on site) are added.

It’s also no surprise that Candi has needed some assistance as the business has flourished. This has come in the form of son, Finley, who is now the director of distribution and merchandising. He is also, his mum tells me, the 'man in charge of the clipboard.'

Although Finley may work with algorithms and spreadsheets, Candi keeps tabs on production volumes by way of her annual onion consumption; this last year, up from nine tons to 14-and-a-half tons. This leads on to the one drawback of the business. At a recent dinner party Candi attended, two other guests were convinced they could smell burgers. If it’s been a 'cooking day,' extra perfume is required...

Candi’s chutneys, sauces and relishes can be acquired throughout the county.

Follow Candi on Instagram @candischutney and Mark @fitchinthekitchen