There are many companies seeking to provide consumers with fine, freshly prepared food at affordable prices. But Higgidy stands out.
Never having viewed the enterprise as a “get-rich-quick” scheme, Camilla and James (her business partner and husband) have insisted on keeping the brand true to its original values; the high standards of Higgidy pies, quiches and slices. As the business has grown, Camilla has ensured that each Higgidy product feels “like something you had baked in your own oven”.
On sampling a range of Higgidy products, not once was I disappointed by what emerged piping hot from my oven. The Little Moroccan Vegetable and Feta Pie for example was a marvel of delicate seeded pastry that encased fragrantly spiced vegetables whose sweet notes were balanced by crumbles of salty feta.
A hearty Chicken Pot Pie with Ham and Leek had generous fine chunks of meat; a Smoked English Bacon and Mature Cheddar Quiche was a luxurious ode to a classic; and a Spinach, Pesto and Goats Cheese Slice made for a delicious light bite in which creamy goats cheese was complemented by tangy roasted tomatoes.
All went above and beyond what I might expect to create myself at home; while being a far cry from the typical shop bought item. Their rustic quality, and distinct flavours and textures, left no doubt that each had been made with a respect for ingredients and more than just a dash of tender loving care.
Camilla says the success of Higgidy has been the result of “hard work and a little bit of luck”; as well as a commitment to make sure that consumers always receive the great quality food that Camilla believes they deserve.
In return, Higgidy has earned itself a loyal following and Camilla explains that Higgidy’s relationship with its clients is in fact symbiotic. Much of the product has evolved through comments which have often helped new flavour ideas. The Higgidy website has been fundamental in this dialogue and features Higgidy Poetry, short verses and rhymes sent in by happy customers. Camilla describes this as an organic idea; a reflection of the strength of Higgidy’s relationship with its customers.
This sense of community is unsurprising. The Higgidy kitchen team is like a large family and Camilla believes such a bond amongst the Higgidy workforce means customers to know that their pies come from a “happy background”.
But success hasn’t brought complacency. Both Camilla and James are committed to their involvement in the whole process, from pie-making through to delivery in store. And, although Camilla still gets a little thrill whenever she sees someone placing a Higgidy pie in a shopping trolley, her ambition to keep improving the business means that she is as yet to feel that definitive ‘yes!’ moment.
She attributes the steady growth of the brand to “not playing it safe”. She has always made intuitive decisions, and never been afraid of expansion and distribution on a large scale. Determination has also been key. But Camilla admits that one of her greatest challenges is much closer to home.
Juggling family and business sometimes brings worries that she may not be spending enough time with one or the other. But although pulled in two directions, Camilla is hugely thankful for the great support network that she has around her.
Currently there is some respite, with further expansion of the Higgidy brand only when it “feels right”. Camilla assures me that for the moment Higgidy will be sticking to what it does best: delicious food from a wholesome background that appeals to pie lovers, housewives and veggies alike.
If you would like more information on the Higgidy brand then visit their website at http://www.higgidy.co.uk/
Those fabulous people at Higgidy are offering one lucky subscriber the chance to win a specially selected assortment of their pies in a great competition for Food Focus.
To enter you need to answer the following question:
Since Higgidy Pies started, according to their website, how many pies have they made to date?
Send your answer to email@example.com ensuring you put the word Higgidy in the subject header and also include your Women Talking username with the submission.
This competition has now closed and the winning subscriber will be contacted shortly.
Please note that the actual prize may differ images on show in this article.