I went to the Crediton Food Festival this weekend because one of my stories had been shortlisted in the Crediton Writers’ competition. It was pouring with rain, I’d eaten nothing for breakfast and I had to get up at five o’clock to make it on time. But it was certainly worth it- what a great way to spend an afternoon!
I’d never been to Crediton before- it’s a beautiful friendly town marred only by one shop dedicated to the EU leave campaign, full of predictable snarling Sun newspaper clippings. Fair play to free speech though! I went in a coffee shop and had an almond milk latte- perfect!
The Festival, when I arrived, was in full swing and it was brilliant, despite the downpour, and everything was so well organised. There were lots of stalls dedicated to cakes, which I don’t eat, but which looked incredible for cake lovers, so I bought some for them.
With lots of tastings on offer, I sampled some Porter Stout, which looked like
the stuff my Grandma used to drink, bottle in one hand and clay pipe in the other. It
was thick and chewy and sweet -you could taste the nutrients.
I bought some Fasole bătută which is Romanian hummus, with the most delicious seed
bread, to take home for tea, and some Latvian cake for friends.
Then I bought freshly cooked vegetable noodles with chilli and garlic, which was sublime smothered with sweet chilli sauce. Lunch was excellent.
A local wine winemaker had some good wine on offer and I sampled a white and a red before buying bottles of them. It never occurred to me that English wine could be superb, and inexpensive too. I will definitely buy it again.
Recipe idea below – new potatoes, steamed and cooked in butter.(I make my own vegan butter and that will work well) – and cider. What a treat.
There were sausages and roast wild boar and scotch eggs, burgers and falafels and paella and crêpes and cakes and cakes and cakes and the nicest, most happy people enjoying the festival, rain or no rain.People were scoffing all sorts of fine food beneath dripping tarpaulins to the sound of a swing band and there were charity fundraisers, In -campaigners and face painters, adding to the positive flavour of the festival.
I received second prize too for my story, The Hotchiwitchi Cake, the first prize going to someone who couldn’t collect it because they lived in New Zealand,and there were lots of international entries, which added to the flavour of the festival. There was a real atmosphere of collective fun. It was a celebration of food and wine and words, a small Devon town showing that you don’t have to be big to be beautiful and that community spirit, good taste and a sense of fun is alive and well and living in Crediton. I will certainly go next year. Wouldn’t miss it, rain or no rain!