I was sitting on a picnic bench in a grotty yard in Shoreditch, surrounded by the smells, sights and sounds of street food, shovelling lunch into my mouth… when there was an announcement over a PA system.
“Thanks for coming today! In case you’ve missed it, we’re here to celebrate the launch of a new app, HitMeUp!”
I paused and wiped my fingers. Yes, I had missed that. I ran backwards through my memories and took in my surroundings. No, it wasn’t for want of publicity on their part; I was just far too food-obsessed. I was there for EatMeUp and had totally neglected its promotional purpose.
HitMeUp is a great concept – it allows users to find local businesses and events happening near them, right now. It was launched in Shoreditch (where else?) in November, and has now gone London-wide, undoubtedly with ambitions to conquer the world.
I would espouse all its virtues, except for the fact that I still live in the dark ages where a Nokia brick delivers me messages. And this is a food blog, so I’ll move on to that… 🙂
A variety of street food traders had squeezed their way into this yard to serve up all kinds of greasy and sticky delights. An informal burger competition was taking place so at least 5 different burgers were on offer.
My friend, enticed by the breakfast offerings from Original Fry Up, got an English muffin with burger, bacon and an egg.
Another friend, however, rejected beef and got a vennison burger from the Wild Game Company and wasn’t disappointed. Flavoursome and filling, he highly recommended it (“And he’s normally very crticial, so if he says it’s good, it’s good!” his girlfriend added). It’s a shame that the beef lard chips were a little too crispy to be enjoyable.
For me, the choice was fairly simple. I had seen this juicy lamb on the grill on my way in and hearts had popped out of my eyes.
Then I realised it was served by Bhangra Burger and I had heard very good things about them indeed. The wrap is coated in a yoghurt sauce that is similar to raita, and then a chilli sauce is smeared on top. Salad and fried spiced cabbage is added, and this is topped off with mouthwateringly succulent lamb. My only criticism is that my wrap defnitely needed more lamb. And my only warning is “Beware! This is hot!” – as in, it’s going to burn your mouth off. But I asked nicely for extra yoghurt and the man kindly obliged.
Also on offer was a fish masala wrap. (We did ask what fish it was but there was some kind of misunderstanding for we were told, “Masala fish.”)
For any veggies, Horn OK Please were offering boxes veggie samosas and chickpea curry, garnished with pomegranate and coriander. My friend reported it was very tasty, but sadly it wasn’t properly heated, which was not terribly appealing in the foggy-breath temperatures of Saturday.
To add to our mains, we ordered some rosemary fries for £2.50 from Street Kitchen. These were addictive by virtue of their saltiness yet we were completely unable to detect even the faintest hint of rosemary, despite the visible small, green specks.
I actually spent most of the festival in a dilemma as to whether to visit the Joint, which were advertising 5hr slow roasted, pulled pork (£6) or a BBQ chicken and candied bacon burger (£6). In the end, I had to save myself for the Chocolate Festival at Southbank (post coming soon) but I’ve got my eye on this trader…
Peruse the pictures below.