Monday, 4 July 2016

Festival Place Eat Street Weekend

I’ve been meaning to write this post for a few weeks now, but what with family weddings and my health being rubbish it just hasn’t happened. So, I apologise this is now rather late, but hopefully you’ll still enjoy hearing all about it.

On Saturday 11th June, my Mum and I made our way to Festival Place, Basingstoke, for their annual Eat Street event. This was its fourth year, although I don’t think I’ve actually managed to go before, so I was excited to see what it was all about. But the thing I was most looking forward to was seeing Nadiya Hussain (of Great British Bake Off fame), the event’s special guest this year.

We arrived in plenty of time and stationed ourselves at the front, with perfect views of the kitchen area where Nadiya would be doing her cooking demonstrations. After being introduced, Nadiya set to work on making a few dishes from her brand new book, whilst chatting about her experiences of the Bake Off and making The Queen’s 90th birthday cake. The dishes she made (including both savoury and sweet options) smelt and looked absolutely incredible and I’m especially excited to try making the macaroons!

Nadiya was just as warm and friendly in person as she was on the Bake Off, and I was very lucky to be able to meet her and have my book signed. As well as her new book, Nadiya’s Kitchen, which is on sale now, Nadiya also has big plans for the next couple of years. She has a children’s book coming out in September, which is set to be a collaboration of recipes and children’s stories. As an adult with no children, even I’m quite excited to see what it’s like, as from what Nadiya told us about it, it sounds great! Then, next summer, Nadiya will be back on our TV in a two-part cooking show, which will see her travel to Bangladesh to cook meals from her childhood.

After meeting Nadiya, we had a wander round the rest of the event to see what was on offer. There were numerous tasting stations from Festival Place’s wide range of restaurants and caf├ęs, including samples from Giraffe, GBK, Nando’s, Starbucks, gluten free dough balls from Pizza Express, Yaki Soba noodles from Wagamama and a range of foods from the Marks and Spencer Patrons’ Lunch menu. There were also visits from fun food stilt act ‘Hungry Chefs’ and the Nando’s and Giraffe mascots, who were walking around the crowds and joining in the food activities.

Festival Place centre Director, Steven Connolly said: “We were thrilled to bring Eat Street back for a fourth year and we couldn’t be happier with the feedback from the customers and retailers alike. It was great to have the wonderful Nadiya involved as well as so many of our retailers.”

Although it was pretty crowded and I found it a bit overwhelming, overall it was a really good day. I particularly enjoyed meeting Nadiya and hearing her talk about her experiences on the Bake Off, and was chuffed to get my signed copy of her new book. I’m excited to start cooking, although I doubt my meals will look quite as good as hers do!

Festival Place is now busy preparing for their exciting programme of summer activities. Kicking off on the 21st July, with the return of their famous summer garden, the events will feature a variety of family friendly fun with meet and greets from some of the most popular children’s TV characters. To find out more and stay up-to-date with their summer events and other activities, please check out the Festival Place website or find them on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and Pinterest.

Did you attend the Festival Place Eat Street event, or a similar one near you? What do you think of Nadiya’s new cookbook? 

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  1. That's looks like so much fun, food festivals are always great and that food looks delicious

    1. Thanks Lola it was a really fun event and so much amazing food on offer! xx