Food and South Downs Festival

To get a break from all the revision I went to the local Food and South Downs Festival today. I thought I’d just go and buy some local produce but ended up staying for hours.

The Festival is happening today and tomorrow (Bank holiday) in the Weald and Downland Open Air Museum in Singleton, UK. The museum is located in the middle of the beautiful landscape of the South Downs Nationalpark with 50 buildings ranging  from 1300 to 1910.

Today I bought a lovely loaf of olive bread from one of my favourite shops – the Hungry Guest in Petworth.

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The most exciting thing I found today was this fondant rolling pin with a flower pattern I bought from the Creative Cookie Company. The rolling pins produce such a wonderful design on a small and large scale convinced me. Unfortunately I didnt take a picture of the example cookies they had on the stall – they used a rolling pin and painted the pattern with glitter paint – AMAZING!

I went straight to the shops and got some fondant just to try out the pattern, it will be used for a 75 birthday cake very soon!

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After all the shopping I went to the cooking demo tent. I watched Giles Thompson, a chef who has previously worked in the Ritz in London cook three dishes using local asparagus. He runs two local pubs, the Earl of March in Lavant and the Partridge Inn in Singleton. I have eaten in both and the food is of truly excellent standard so I was excited to see the man behind the food. Mr. Thompson cooked an Asparagus Risotto with Stone Bass and Asparagus and Selsey Crab Linguini with an Asparagus Side Salad. I love watching professional chefs cook probably because they are usually very relaxed, confident and passionate about what they do.

The second demo I watched was a professional chocolate tasting with OBE Sara Jayne Stanes who is truly fascinated and passionate about chocolate. We tried 5 squares of the finest Italian chocolate produced by Amedi.

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We started by trying the milk chocolate and comparing it plain and with some sea salt. We tried four dark types of chocolates (65%, 70%, 70% and 75%) and my favourite was the Chuao (70%) square. I never thought hat chocolate can actually taste so differently even though it has a similar cocoa bean solid content.

For lunch I had this burger which doesn’t look special but it was – boar, pheasant and apricot burger with some redcurrant jelly – OMG!

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