Finally, we are getting to the point in our lives where we do not spend our Saturday in bed, groaning about our hangovers (and probably our behaviour) from the night before. I say this with the mindset that actually, we do not spend every Saturday in this way, just maybe one every couple of months.
Living and working in London has made me realise that the weekends are precious and as precious as the night before, it is just time wasted lying in bed all day, pondering dark thoughts and contemplating the meaning of social suicide. You need to get up and explore London, so this is what we did.
This is where Time Out comes into it’s element. This absolute gem of a magazine is crucial to the utmost enjoyment of this city. It is jam packed full of ideas of things to do, the weird and wonderful or just things that you missed, even though you walk past the advert boards on the Underground, bleary eyed 5 days a week.
One of these diamonds in the rough was the Dalston Street Food Market. Me being based in SW London, going East or North East definitely makes me consider carefully what I am going to do when I am there, because it takes such a long time to get there/ or home but this little jaunt was well worth it.
Alighting the overland at Imperial Wharf, we took the train all the way around to Dalston Kingsland, just the best place to shop for cheap stuff. As we came out of the train station, I spotted ‘Everything’s a £ shop”, which always fills me with delight. As I was walking towards it, I noticed down the street another shop, “Everything is 99p” and then further one down the road, there was yet another… “Everything is 98p” – Welcome to East London.
The Dalston Street Food Market itself was taking place in a disused car park for the afternoon, lots of rusty rafters and makeshift walls. It was an ideal venue for this as it created the atmosphere for the food itself. It was heaving with hipsters, bristling with their retro cameras taking photos of every single item, stand or wrap, no doubt in anticipation to cycle home to Haggerston on their fixies to whittle out a blog post immediately.
There were many things on offer, like cupcakes from this tiny caravan (struggling to see how they do anything inside anything so small…)
This was a really brilliant idea: towed behind a car, it was a portable wood burning oven to make pizza or steak sandwiches.
After deliberating for ages about what to have, I chose to go with Wild Rover Food. I have seen a similar set up to this before at festivals in the summer but not one that we quite so portable. As you can see on the sign, they drive this old Landrover around the country, pulling the oven and worksurfaces behind. All you need to do is add ingredients.
I have a venison wrap, cooked in Moroccan Spices, all wrapped in a chappati with coleslaw and salad. It was delicious, using warming Middle Eastern flavours, which floated their way through the wrap, and accompanied with giant couscous and a bright and crisp coleslaw. (apologies for the photo, but it is just impossible to take a decent picture of a wrap…especially if you are standing up!)
This was a version of lemonade cooler, obviously saving money and plastic, it was served in a plastic bag. It had chia seeds in it to whisk away any hint of a hangover.
By this point I was feeling pretty full, until I spied Ginger’s Emporium. This lady has sold her life to buy an ice cream van, and has created some of the most delicious ice creams by her own fair hand. I saw an article about her and her project in the Sunday Times magazine and made a mental note to track her down. Unfortunately, even though I did see her at Secret Garden party and at Wilderness Festival, I completely bypassed any ice cream enjoyment on either jaunt. So finally, I managed to track her down and decided that it was essential that I experienced her trademark cone: the Chorlton Crack, marketed salted caramel and peanut butter).
There were no words (and a very insubstantial photo because I ate it before remembering to photograph it…) I can seriously say with my hand on my heart, that it was the best ice cream in the whole word. It was sweet and salty, just the right combination of both, nutty and creaminess. It was divine.