The Tale of
Saint Cuthbert’s Ginger Treats
Saint Cuthbert’s Ginger Treats traces it origins back to the dark ages of late 2009, when Stephen Houghton and his sister decided to rent a table at their church's annual Christmas fair. Eager to sell holiday-themed preserves, they invented the recipe for what would become Saint Cuthbert's Famous Ginger Jelly. The jelly was the hit of the fair, and a persistent crew of aficionados kept up a steady demand for more. With the invention of Saint Cuthbert's Original Ginger Compote later that winter, the company began testing its products on a wide array of foodies, gourmands, and connoisseurs, namely, their friends.
Oh! Who is Saint Cuthbert? What does he have to do with Ginger Jelly?
Cuthbert of Lindisfarne (AD 634-687) was a monk, missionary, and bishop in Northern England. Famous for his piety, charity for the poor, and healing miracles, upon his death Cuthbert was accounted a saint. When the Vikings attacked the monastery at Lindisfarne in AD 875, the monks fled, bringing with them the relics of St. Cuthbert. The wandering of the monks went on for more than a hundred years. They would settle down for a while, then have to flee once more. When the cart carrying his relics got stuck near the ford at Durham, the monks took this as a sign that Cuthbert had found his resting place. On September 4, 999, his relics were transferred to a shrine in the newly built church on the site of what is now Durham Cathedral. It just so happens that Stephen's birthday is September 4, 1970—a little less than a thousand years after St. Cuthbert found his place in Durham.
Stephen Houghton standing in a fireplace in the ruins of Lindisfarne, Cuthbert's abbey on Holy Island in Northumberland. Lindisfarne Abbey was abandoned in 875 due to Viking attacks.