Monday, 1 December 2008


On Sunday the three of us went to the Food Fair at Lincolnshire Showground for a look-see, arriving shortly before dinnertime.

On the way in there was a large van that was offering small tasters of freshly made pork risotto - very tasy and I made sure I got the recipe leaflet for that.

We paid to get in and decided to immediately look for something more substantial to eat, heading towards the top end of the hall that had cooking smells coming from it. There were several places to get food from, with tables and chairs close by, and we opted for a carvery stall - DH had a pork and stuffing roll whilst DS and I had the beef roll. It was a little pricey but well worth it, as it was the tenderest and tastiest beef we'd eaten in a very long while. Once we were suitably refreshed we decided to have an initial wander round to suss the place out and get a feel for what was on offer before honing in on what we were interested in...... which was easier said than done, to start with, as it was quite busy.

Alex and her family were also there so it wasn't long before DS disappeared off to have a wander round with them.

There was quite a nice selection of food and drink stalls with a few craft type stalls thrown in for those on the look out for gifts. The top end of the hall had a large loading bay style door that was open so people could access the small marquee that was tagged on to the building: that held other eatery places in it, as well as the Gringley Gringo chilli stall. DS came back from there clutching their last bottle of Thai Sweet Chilli Sauce as if it were more precious than a bar of gold (guess who got to carry it? LOL) before disappearing off again.

Once around the hall and we started to collect a few leaflets and make a few purchases. We got a pack of smoked kippers for DH from one of the smoked fish stalls as DS hadn't brought any back from Brigg Farmers Market the previous weekend because DH was going off to Italy.

Next we aimed for the Real Tea and Coffee Company stall where we sampled their Italian blend coffee (lovely, even though it was black and without sugar!) and we succumbed to a packet of that and one of the Rich Hazelnut, as we like to dig the filter coffee maker out over the festive season to have cups of proper coffee with real cream, as a treat (we always have instant the rest of the year). DH also decided to go for some proper tea: the English Breakfast tea and English Afternoon Blend. I wouldn't have minded getting some of their herbal teas as well but decided to wait until after my visit with the Herbalist to make sure I don't drink something that isn't a good combination with the treatments she will be giving me.

Next I made a beeline for the turned wood craft stall, dragging DH along in my wake, so I could check out the staffs and walking sticks he was selling. I'd been looking for a staff for some time, hadn't found what I wanted, so put the idea to the back of my mind - this was another of those incidences where I stopped looking and promptly found exactly what I wanted! I was instantly drawn to a particular one and picked it up to get a "feel" for it, put it back and handled a few more to see whether or not I got the same vibe from them - nope, so I picked the first one up again and asked the Turner what wood he'd used. The wood is Ash and it's finished with a piece of v-shaped Scottish Red Deer antler, which was taken from antlers that have been naturally shed by the stags, and the ends of the v are finished with small pieces of rounded bison horn. The Turner kept giving me some of the smaller staffs to try, as he considered this one too tall for me to comfortably walk with it, but I kept saying no, it's OK because I don't want to use it that way. That confused him no end, so he asked what I wanted it for but I just kept shaking my head, then paid for my staff. He asked one final time so I though OK and said "Pagan purposes" and explained: I want to use it, mainly on the festival days, to dress it in flower garlands or ivy. He started making warding off motions with his hands and backed away whilst saying OK, he didn't need to know more. I started laughing when we moved away and said to DH that I almost said to the guy that he really didn't want to know what I was going to use it for..... and I was right. LMAO In case you're curious: it will go outdoors in warm weather, slightly pushed into the Earth, next to the sacred space I intend to build out there - inside in colder weather, pushed into a small bucket of sand, to stand by my altar and it will be garlanded in whatever flowers or greenery that's appropriate to each festival. Think of it as an alternative decorated tree. :0)

After that came the Il Nutrimento stall where I bought a bag of Kamut couscous to try. The stall holder, a chap with a lovely, rolling Italian accent, told me that it's one of two species they stock (can't remember the name of the other one) that were the main cereal crops grown and eaten in Roman times. I like couscous as an occasional alternative to pasta, rice or potatoes and thought this would be a nice one to try. After this we left the hall to drop the bags at the car and grab a bottle of water, then went back in again....... quickly, as it was bitterly cold and had got a bit gusty. I kept my staff with me though as I'd soon discovered it was extremely useful for warding off buggy pushing people who weren't watching how close they were getting to my ankles - a quick tap on the tiled floor with the metal-capped end a few inches away from my feet had them stopping in their tracks or quickly swerving around me. Result! LOL

Back to looking for more festive goodies. Although I rarely drink alcohol I did want a mulled wine for toasting at Yule but failed to find anything. There were, however, a couple of stalls that were selling other spirits so we wandered over to taste a fruit liqueur. DH succumbed to buying a brandy based blackberry liqueur from one seller but I wasn't overly keen on it, as it was very heavily spirit tasting, with only a hint of fruit - the sip I had made me cough when the fumes caught the back of my throat. DH is obviously made of stronger stuff as he liked it. As we passed another the Lombard Wine stall on the other side of the hall I was stopped in my tracks by two bottles labelled Harvest Moon and Hunter's Moon....... now with a name like that I just had to have a better look, didn't I? ;0) Both are fruit liqueurs with the difference being that Harvest Moon is brandy based whilst Hunter's Moon is rum based. As DH had just bought the blackberry brandy I asked to try Hunter's Moon, sharing the sample with DH. I sniffed and could instantly smell the fruit, then I took a small sip, rolled it round my tongue, swallowed.... and got the tastiest fruity hit ever. Needless to say, we complimented the stall holder and bought a bottle...... and if DH hadn't already got the other bottle we'd have had some of the Harvest Moon liqueur as well. LOL I shall enjoy seeing in the festive season with a small tot of that wonderful taste. :0)

A selection of mini oat cakes (plain, cheesey and wheat-free) were also added to our haul, from one of the cheese stalls, so DH can enjoy his cheese and biscuits in an evening - they're better than cream crackers, healthwise.

DS put in an appearance around now, as Alex and family had left. He had a fair few bags on him, as he'd managed to buy a number of Christmas pressies, and was very happy with his haul. He also came back with bags full of cookies, as that stall holder was wanting to sell up so was selling them off at a cut price and DS can't resist a bargain (no, I won't be helping out with eating them!).

With DS's help we also bought some gifts from one stall (won't say what as Alex may read this blog) then two scented pillar candles from the Tranquility stall (Complementary Therapies and gifts). They're a blend of lavender, orange and ylang ylang - a very relaxing mix. From them we heard about the benefits of cinnamon for diabetics and they told us about the cinnamon chocolate that is OK for diabetics that the Special Edition Chocolate stall were selling, so we headed over there. DH got the last bar of the cinnamon chocolate and also, as he really misses his Terry's Chocolate Oranges, a bar of the cinnamon and orange chocolate. We had a natter with the stall holder and she told us that taking between a quarter and half a teaspoon of cinnamon a day can eventually sort out a Type 2 diabetic (as DH is) but it needs to be consistent and could take as much as a year for the benefits to be felt. It's one of the reasons why they decided to produce the cinnamon chocolate, though she did recommend it was best in moderation and that DH had no more than two squares at a time. DS also bought a couple of bars for gifts too, one of which was a bar of fig chocolate for his Grandpa.

By this time the number of people in the hall had well thinned out and we realised that it wasn't far off time for it to close so we headed for home. It was a good day out which we all enjoyed and we hope they run this event again next year. :0)



Karen said...

sounds like you had a super time and did well on spending lol I hope you enjoy your staff

Julie said...

I bet the sights and smells at the fair were wonderful.

Guess what i owuld like .... yes you guessed, a pic of that new staff all decorated LOL (you know how nosey i am)

Thank you so much for the nice tranquil background, much more how i see you....