Monthly Archives: October 2014

Food Festivals details this weekend 31.10.14

Food festivals this weekend in brief

* Today and all weekend sees a honey fair in Weybridge and the
Southbank Real Food Festival in London
* Huddersfield and Great Malvern celebrate World Vegan Day this
Saturday with vegan and cruelty-free food fairs
* Newbury Food Festival is on all weekend
* Sunday sees the Winter Queen fair in Colchester and another vegan festival in Sunderland

See our Calendar for full details of what, where, when, plus links to
festival websites & twitter feeds

Looks like a drizzly-to-variable weekend, weatherwise. If you plan on catching an event, may the rains of disconsolation never cloud your condiments of joy. xx

Food Festival details this weekend 23.10.14

Food festivals this weekend in brief

* Belfast Food & Drink (the big one) and Southbank real food fest start today! On all weekend
* Two week-long festivals: Dartmouth food fest starts today, Rye Wild Boar Week starts tomorrow
* Wolverhampton Vegan Festival and Lincoln Sausage Festival are on Saturday
* Today & tomorrow: Cider Festival in Cowbridge
* Conwy Feast and Peebles Food Fest are on all weekend
* This weekend is the last of the London Restaurant Festival

See our website Events Calendar for full details of what, where, when, plus links to festival websites & twitter feeds

It’s pouring with rain here. If you’re off to a fest, may the drizzle of fate never dim your artisan hot dogs of radiance. xx

Pumpkin recipes and menu ideas 21.10.14

The pumpkin is a stately thing. Less a vegetable, more a looming presence in the kitchen. It awaits like the sculptor’s block of marble, concealing much, awaiting the delicate touch of the kitchen artist to reveal its fate. It may transform to a delicious soup, it may become a grinning gargoyle, only fit to frighten the children.

Two things: first, you can carve a pumpkin. But we find drawing eyes and fangs on in black marker pen works pretty well too.

Second, with Halloween coming up, if you want to make something out of Mr Pumpkin’s innards as well as his skull, here’s our Crib Sheet of puCRIB Pumpkinmpkin recipes, which includes a great recipe from Ston Easton. (scroll down for more)







If you’re in an experimental mood, you can combine a little sweetcorn in most of these recipes, to add sweetness and (to a British audience) familiarity. (Americans are very happy with pumpkin pie; historically, the Brits have carved more than we’ve eaten.)

Halloween Crib Sheet coming up shortly. Once you’ve sorted out Mr Pumpkin, come back to us for ideas on bat’s wings, black candles and squid ink! (You need squid ink, to dye the risotto . . . keep up!)

Happy Autumn.

Food Festivals on this weekend 17.10.14

Food festivals and similar events on this weekend. In brief:

* OLYMPIA chocolate week, GLASGOW BBC Good Food Show, MUMBLES oyster festival and SOUTHBANK real food fest start today (continuing all weekend)

* Today only, “beer’n’folk” in KINGUSSIE

* Saturday fests in ALCESTER, IPSWICH, SHOREDITCH plus foraging in HOPETOUN

* BEAMINSTER, BROGDALE and LLANGOLLEN host events all weekend
* Sunday sees a chocolate event in CARSINGTON WATER, an Artisan fair in RICHMOND (Yorks) and a fest in KIRKCUDBRIGHT

* The Restaurant Festival continues across LONDON

See our website Events Calendar for full details or check recent tweets at @TheTaster1

Have a great weekend. If you’re off to a festival, may the flooded gutters of despondency never overflow your wellingtons of hope. xx

Beetroot recipes and menu ideas 17.10.14

Beetroots – the great Pink Peril of the Kitchen – aren’t the easiest veg to deal with, at first glance. They have the capacity to stain an entire kitchen; they take hours to boil and although they’re edible raw, you’d never pick one up and eat it like an apple.

They’ve started arriving in our veg box and like a lot of people, we find ourselves from time to time looking at the things, while they sit there intractably looking back at us.

CRIB JPG Beetroot

However, once you’ve donned the heavy-duty gloves and boiled or grated them into submission, the sweet side of beetroots’ nature comes out. They’re surprisingly versatile, featuring in hot and cold dishes including soup, salad, crisps, pickles, tarts and even cake. So if you’re staring glumly at a heap of crimson roots, tear your gaze away and click on our crib sheet for a bit of inspiration. Good luck!


Food Festival details this weekend 10.10.14

Just put out a few tweets and other posts about food festivals and similar events on this weekend. In brief:

* Nottingham beer festival, Falmouth oyster festival and Southbank real food fest start today
* Today and tomorrow are the last two days of Belfast Restaurant Week
* Anglesey Oyster Festival is on all weekend
* This weekend sees the last two days of and London Cocktail Week and Aldeburgh food festival; it also sees the London Restaurant Festival getting into full swing
* Framlingham Sausage Festival is on Saturday
* Kenmore holds a fruit & fungi event on Sunday
* Royal Deeside & Cairngorms continues its Food & Fiddlers fortnight

Monday sees the start of the UK’s National Chocolate, Baking and Curry Weeks

See our website Events Calendar for full details

Have a great weekend. If you’re off to a fest, may the clouds of doom never shadow your street quesadillas of joy. xx

Tomato Recipes & Menu Ideas 6.10.14

Silly question, we know, but here it is: do you have Too Many Tomatoes? This is arguably one of the best times of year for eating them raw: aromatic, sun-warmed, at the last possible moment of utter, peak ripeness. Another fortnight or so & it’ll all be over. Click on the crib sheet below for a few suggestions/inspirations/basic tomato recipes, to use up  these last few globs of summer sweetness. Oh, and one more. Mix up some fine-chopped tomato & cucumber, lemon juice and mayonnaise, and sandwich between soft white bread. (The tomato and cucumber have to be best quality for this to work, and the bread does need to be white.) The result is a strangely retro creation, reminiscent of the sandwiches one might have eaten at some mythical 1970s village fete, but – it has to be said – completely delicious. As with proper cucumber sandwiches, the only difficult bit is managing to stop shovelling them down. Anyway, enjoy the rest of our recipes.

SEASONAL Ideas for tomatoes


Food Festival details on twitter 3.10.14

Just put out a few tweets about the food festivals on this weekend. In brief:

* Broadstairs, Stone, Waveney Valley and Neath start today
* The Cake & Bake Show starts today in Earls Court
* Newport and the Brecon Beacons hold festivals tomorrow; Edinburgh hosts a vegan fair (you don’t have to be vegan to go!)
* Orkney Food & Drink Gala Awards are on tomorrow night
* Melton Mowbray and Ardingly are holding events all weekend
* Knutsford holds an “Apple Day;” the Forest of Dean showcases its autumn show & game fair on Sunday
* October is Cardigan Bay‘s “Food Month”

Ooh, and * London Cocktail Week starts Monday :)

Full details are on the Events Calendar section of our website (with a few more details than we get out in tweets alone)

Have a great weekend. If you’re off to a fest, may the rain of despair never dilute your plastic beermug of joy. xx