I had absolutely the best intention last weekend. I hoped to spend it in a state of blissful relaxation, at my mother’s house, focusing on writing and staying strictly out of mischief. Of course that didn’t happen. Mid way through last week I got a call from Camp Bestival, asking if I would do a demo/workshop on what it was like to be an ‘Entrepreneurial Foodie’. Of course I said yes. A weekend of festival fun, good music and lots of food to get stuck into…
Camp Bestival is a charming, ‘kiddie friendly’ version of Bestival. Held right in the dorset coast, a mere stone throw from the sea. It has a very fun-fairesque vibe and a lot of activities going on.
I might have slightly under estimated how many little uns there would be. The height majority was certainly below 4’8. I was worried about being a bit stuck for conversation beyond the usual spongebob small talk, so I got another big kid (my old friend Archie) to come along and get stuck into some tasty festival food too.
After a long car journey down, we were in need of hardcore refreshment and spent at least an hour marching between the various different food venders trying to decide what we fancied. Eventually, we settled on the falafel platter from the Chai Shop Organic and a couple of bowls of soup from the Soup Library to line our tummies and get us in the mood for a little dancing.
We weren’t really in a distinctly foodie tasting mood at that point, and were planning on waiting to the saturday to hit the tasting big time! We struck gold early on with Annie Mae’s top notch mac n cheese. (Archie is a sucker for the stuff and I was willing to be converted…) It didn’t take long of queuing before the cheesy delights enticed me too.
ohhhh no little missy… you aren’t getting ahead in the queue for anything!
I’m not usually a mac n cheese fan. I fact, I tend to steer clear of all wheat based foods completely (the just wreck havoc on my digestion) but in this occasion, as it was a festival and I was dining with the ultimate mac n cheese lover, I went for it… bacon bits, basil oil and all. The don macaroni… just look at it waiting for me to jump all over it.
Ciders in hand, we march our bottoms over to a sunny patch of grass, lay down our picnic finest and got ready to dig in. Not before some cheeky close up shots though!
As ever the messy chef, I dropped half of it on me. I blame the small forks! Arch went plain and got the mac n cheese original, sans toppings. Sorry but it didn’t make a photograph… you can imagine what plain mac n cheese looks like.
The mac, made in a big paella pan, is made with 3 different cheese. Top marks if you can guess what they are. (Mine was parmesan, a mild cheddar and a soft cream cheese.) The whole thing was subtly cheesy, not overpowering. It would have been a little bland had it not been for the bacon bits and basil oil. Had I made it myself I would have opted for a more mature cheddar and a hefty pinch of mustard powder to give it some kick, but thats just me, I also would certainly have used a spelt or gluten free pasta. Delicious as they were, it reminded me (again) how much of a tummy bloater wheat really is. Unsurprisingly we needed a little lie down post-mac attack to recover. Before heading on our merry way to catch MNEK and have a boogie among the young uns.
If you fancy hopping along to visit the lovely Adam of Annie Mae’s Mac n Cheese, they will be heading to a lot of festivals this summer. You can find out which ones here
If you make mac n cheese anytime soon, be sure to send me your piccies, I would love to see your variations.