We’ve enjoyed food markets in London, Brighton and – closer to home – Southsea. Today we went to the first I Love Wight Food Market at Brading. Some of our old favourites were there and it was also the first outing for some fledgling local businesses.
We stopped by Souporium and tried some of their tangy meat-free green Thai spinach soup. Very nice!
We were drawn to this attractive display of fudge by Cowes-based slab fudge. There were some traditional flavours, plus more unexpected combos, like cookies and cream and lemon meringue. We bought a couple of slabs: tongue-exciting sea-salted caramel and deliciously rich choc toffee. (Three quid each, or two for a fiver).
We were very excited by the prospect of dumplings – a street food first for the Island. Dumpling Dumpling offered four different fillings to choose from so we had one of each, plus a bonus brekkie dumpling (as they were five for six quid it would’ve been rude not to!). The dumplings were either steamed or fried. The brekkie dumpling was remarkable: scrambled egg, sausage, bacon, mushrooms and hash browns! Cat loved her ‘not hoisin duck’ dumpling: homemade hoisin sauce, tenderstem broccoli, spring onions and textured soya protein. #CoincidentallyVegan
The next stall was Richmond’s Artisan Bakery from Ryde. Although we’d already stocked up on slab fudge plus scoffed five pancakes between us we couldn’t resist these lovely-looking cakes. We bought a soft chocolate brownie (£1.60) and a positively gooey millionaire’s shortbread (£1.40). Lovely cakes at a good price.
All this noshing gave us a thirst so we bought some hot drinks from hyper-local The Break Lever, with his pedal-powered coffee grinder! Innovative and sustainable – oh, and good coffee too!
There are only a few dairies on the Island that provide unpasteurised milk and Westridge Farm, Ryde is one of them. This is quite a new venture for the team behind Holliday’s Herd, although they have been farming at Westridge for over fifty years. Our sip of the distinctive milk was refreshing.
You can’t have a food market without fruit and veg. The Isle of Wight Veg Box Co had a very attractive stall, with some established local brands, including the IW Cheese Company, Sharon Orchard and Bunbury Bees.
The next food market (which is already planned to be bigger and better than this first one) will be on 29 April 2017 in the main town car park, Brading. Today there was a suggested entry donation of 20p for the Earl Mountbatten Hospice. Next month’s collection will be for WOW (the IW Women’s Refuge).