The loveable bear from ‘Darkest Peru’ is first discovered in Paddington railway station. He has been sent away by his Aunt Lucy, who has gone to live in a home for retired bears in Lima. It’s clear very quickly that Paddington Bear has a penchant for marmalade. When he first meets Mr and Mrs Brown at Paddington station, he proudly shows them an almost-empty glass jar of the stuff, which had kept him going during his long journey. ‘Bears like marmalade,’ he announces.
When Mr and Mrs Brown invite Paddington Bear to stay with them, they tell him he can have marmalade every day. Paddington is overjoyed – apparently, bears only have marmalade on special occasions in Darkest Peru. And so, marmalade became a staple in the Brown household at number 32 Windsor Gardens.
In fact, before the first Paddington film came out in 2014, marmalade sales had been declining for a number of years. After the film, supermarkets reported sales going through the roof, with Waitrose experiencing an 88% increase. Paddington would be pleased – as long as there was still plenty of marmalade to go around.
Touchingly, when the Paddington Bear author Michael Bond passed away earlier this year, Londoners flocked to the Paddington statue in central London to pay their respects by leaving jars of marmalade.
Although not many of us are likely to be going around with an emergency marmalade sandwich in our hats, the marmalade resurgence looks set to stay. Marmalade recipes are making their way into restaurants (it pairs especially well with salty foods) and there is even a marmalade vodka.
Just in case you do need an emergency marmalade sandwich, here’s our Paddington-Bear-inspired marmalade sandwich recipe.
Marmalade sandwich recipe
Two slices of bread
To celebrate our favourite bear from Darkest Peru and Aunt Lucy’s 100th birthday in Paddington 2, visit The Runnymede on Thames for our Marvellous Marmalade Weekend Break. Tuck into a marmalade themed afternoon tea, with a marmalade cake playing a star role. Enjoy a pre-dinner special marmalade cocktail, which includes a spoon of English marmalade, gin, Campari and Angostura bitters. The following morning, indulge in heaps of breakfast at our Leftbank restaurant. We’re certain Paddington would approve.