eat:Wellington looks like being a great free day out on Saturday 1 September.
This locally focused food and drink festival will be setting up in the town centre with producers trading from the top of South Street into the High Street as far as Red Lion Court. Alongside all the great producers there will be demos, cook school and free entertainment.
Bev Milner Simonds, co-organiser, said, “We are really pleased with the line-up of traders and the great range of festival activities planned for our 3rd festival in Wellington. The positivity from visitors and local businesses has spurred us on to get more creative and include more and more free elements. This wouldn’t be possible without the support of our sponsors and partners and our volunteer stewards.
“I’m looking forward to welcoming the primary producers who help us tell the story of the connection between the countryside that surrounds us, food production and the amazing range of produce on sale at the festival.”
Festival co-organiser Sarah Milner Simonds added, “There will be free entertainment including a circus skills balloon modeller, Punch & Judy show and the Porter Dodson music stage in the heart of the festival will be providing a laid-back soundtrack to the day.
“We welcome feedback so if readers have questions or queries please do get in touch via our Facebook page or email to firstname.lastname@example.org”
The team has assembled more than 80 outstanding food and drink producers to celebrate the best of the region. Expect farmers’ markets favourites like high quality beef & lamb, beers and cheeses alongside speciality teas, gourmet marshmallows, chilli oils and Somerset ice cream. There will be an impressive range of street food available, with global flavours made from local ingredients.
The Retreat Demo Stage in the Quaker Meeting House will have chefs and cooks on stage from 11am. Aimed at families the chefs will be cooking dishes that can be recreated at home. The building is fully accessible and there will be large screens to help the audience see what is going on.
At 11am Transition Team Wellington will be using in-season produce to demonstrate how to preserve and serve free local food. This local community group is the team behind the new foraging map.
At 1pm Steve Fowell, School Chef of the Year SW regional winner 2017, will be sharing his ability to create inspiring food for just over £1 a portion. Steve wants to reignite a passion for cooking with the family. In his fast-paced, high-energy demo Steve will create Somerset pork medallions with a broad bean and mushroom fricassee and crushed new potatoes from his new cookbook.
He said, “I am really excited about returning to Wellington. I love to see the audience there who are always so enthusiastic.”
At 1.30pm there is a free Bhangra dance class at with Avtar Indian Dance South West.
At 2pm Bini Ludlow, the creative genius behind multi-awarding Bini Fine Foods, will be cooking authentic Indian food, made in Somerset but inspired by India.
She said, “I love sharing my passion for cooking, flavours and subtle spicing that bring the dishes to life. I will be cooking vegetable bhajya, bhajis, Indian omelette which is perfect for a mid morning snack and channa chaat – a chickpea and potato street food dish served with tamarind chutney and yogurt.”
The demo stage is sponsored by The Retreat Caravan Park.
The Hawksmoor Cookery School will be set up outside the Conservative Club on the High Street. Hosted by Delicious in Taunton’s Chrissie Godfrey, she will be leading a hands-on workshop demonstrating how to make sushi.
She said, “You will be using nori sheets, cooked and prepared sushi rice, and a choice of vegetables. making your own maki roll with a soy and ginger dipping sauce – all lovely and sticky and fun!
“Then you will be making gram flour pancakes: preparing your choice of finely diced vegetables, frying a chick pea batter pancake with the veg mixed in, whilst making a tomato, coriander and lime salsa”
“There are lots of opportunity to taste, adjust, share and discuss. All the recipes are available to take home afterwards.The classes are suitable for adults and families with children aged 8+, they are vegan and anyone can drop from 10.30 to 12.30 and from 1.30 to 3.30 to have a go.”
Online the organisers are laying down a challenge to try and beat organiser Bev’s step count for the day, which is usually over 23,000. More details are on the organisers’ Facebook page.
The team have high sustainability criteria for their production and the producers at their festivals. The festival will be single-use plastic free with all serve ware being compostable. Sarah explained “eat:Festivals have an environmental impact – requiring transport, energy, water, materials, and producing waste and generating emissions. They have a lasting social impact on local communities.
“We have an opportunity, through our festivals, to inspire visitors through a raised awareness of environmental and sustainability matters, sharing our management decisions on reducing our environmental impact in partnership with our crew, our sponsors, local authorities, suppliers and traders is one way.
“We have worked hard with our producers and waste partners to come up with a solution for waste management that allows us all to minimise the impact on the environment. Alongside our other Sustainability Goals we hope make a positive difference through our festivals.
“We are encouraging visitors to make a greener travel choice and to remember to bring their own shopping bags, or panniers if they are cycling in.”
The festival is on Saturday 1 September and starts at 10am and is trading until 4pm – entry is free. Find out more at http://www.eatfestivals.org