Last weekend I headed to Millennium Square in Leeds city centre to check out the bustling markets, fun music and chef demonstrations of the Leeds Food Festival. Now in it's 7th year, the festival is all about showcasing the delicious and tasty food and drink of local Yorkshire businesses. With the gorgeous weather at the weekend the square was full of people and had a great atmosphere!
After watching the Punch & Judy show and having a good giggle, the exotic smells of Musti's Kitchen wafted towards me. They make traditional Turkish food using Yorkshire suppliers, and the food is prepared and cooked fresh daily at their cafe in Halifax.
My boyfriend headed straight to The Crepe Escape for a banana and cream crepe!
Fish& serve sustainable fish and chips with a twist such as; masala spiced fish that is marinated overnight with sweet potato chips, grilled mackerel baps with lemon horseradish mayo, calamari with lemon and chilli batter and hand-rolled sushi. You can find their food van on Commercial Street in Leeds most days.
Sweet Sensations had a huge array of delicious looking cakes with some really interesting flavours. The sponges looked light and the decorations looked sweet and fresh. The presentation of these gorgeous cakes was the only thing that needed some work.
Lulabelle's stand was absolutely gorgeous! Very vintage and girly, I loved the camper van and the presentation of the biscuits in the large glass jars. Their elegant flavours like white chocolate, rose water and cardamon, and white chocolate and orange blossom matched the theme of the stand perfectly. Lulabelle is available for weddings and parties.
Sandinista is an award winning cocktail bar and tapas restaurant with locations in both Leeds and Manchester. I had a frozen pina colada and it was absolutely delicious! I hope they serve them at the restaurant because I need another one of those soon!
The Sawley Kitchen are a independent Yorkshire company specialising in hand-crafted delights such as the giant meringues in the photo above! They use family recipes that are over 200 years old to make some of their products which include biscuits, cakes, pastries, chutneys, relishes, dressings and celebration hampers. They are a real traditional company with a history, and I like that a lot.
I'm not sure of the name of the company that produces these hilariously named real ale's as there wasn't a sign, but both myself and my boyfriend thought it was so funny! Great present for Dads and Grandads!
Brown & Blond are a bakery tucked away in the North Yorkshire countryside that produce brownies and blondies in over 30 flavour combinations. The flavours sounded great, almost too many to choose from such as nutella, marshmallow, Crunchie, Oreo, Malteasers, macadamia... oh and one I'll be avoiding - chilli!
I love a piece of crusty fresh bread dipped in a bowl of oil and balsamic, to me that is heavenly! I also think oil is essential in cooking and adds great flavour. A family run company, Yorkshire Drizzle make an Extra Virgin Cold Pressed Rapeseed Oil that they blend with essential oils, dried herbs and spices to create seven different varieties of the oil. Check out their website for recipe ideas!
Spiffing Flour and Frumenta are European companies, I saw their range of flours at a stand and was interested in purchasing the pizza and pasta versions, that was until a woman stood next to me pointed out that the instructions on the bag are in Italian! That being said, if you already know what you're doing, for making Italian staples, surely a flour from Italy is the best to use!
There was no sign for this stand but I just had to show you how giant these 'rock' road cakes were! Not sure why they were rock instead of rocky, but they look good!
The Dumouchel stand immediately attracted me because of these gorgeous macarons in bright summer colours! Based in Leeds, Dumouchel is a boulangerie, patisserie and chocolaterie ran by Thierry Dumouchel who trained at the renowned food college in Rouen, France, and has worked in Paris, London, Sydney and Tokyo before opening the patisserie. On their website you can order bread boxes which arrive part baked for you to freeze or finish in the oven for fresh bakery bread anytime! I love this idea! Thierry also recently published a book called 'I ❤ Chocolate'.
There are four Sukhothai Thai restaurants in Leeds and one in Harrogate, the restaurants have received rave reviews, numerous awards and 6 consecutive appearances in The Good Food Guide since they opened in 2002. The owner and head chef worked in Bangkok for 8 years and continues to import fresh ingredients from Thailand. The food they had on offer looked stunning and super fresh!
I headed over to Tapas On Wheels for my lunch, I can never resist the big pans of paella at food festivals! There was also a chorizo stew that looked really good.
My huge portion of yummy paella!
There were demos on all weekend from chefs and local restaurants such as chef Brian Turner, Argentinian restaurant Gaucho, Masterchef finalist Tom Rennolds, Masterchef contestant Afsaneh Kaviani, patisserie Dumouchel, and Yorkshire chef Steph Moon.
Leeds is a great city that I spend a lot of time in and I loved seeing, learning and tasting what local food and produce it has to offer!