So, last weekend saw the annual festival frolics known as Doune the Rabbit Hole. We pitched up Tent City (now with two gazebos), drank all the drinks, climbed a tree, learned circus skills and sang songs round a campfire. Oh, and saw a few bands, too. In previous years, the post following Doune has been somewhat unimaginatively titled ‘Doune the Rabbit Hole‘ – but frankly, all I wanted to eat (and photograph) this past weekend was Wild Rover Food. If you haven’t caught any of my previous posts about these guys, let me drop an info bomb on you.
Wild Rover Food are a street food vendor, based in Fife. They cater for festivals (like the Kelburn Garden Party and Doune the Rabbit Hole), weddings, private events and are twice British Street Food finalists. They work from two reconditioned army land rovers – Bessie and Gracie – plus two field kitchens. They serve local, seasonal food, and everything (with the exception of soups and stews) is cooked to order. Once you’ve tried some of their food, you don’t mind the short wait. Plus, this year we were regaled with facts while we were waiting. Not facts about anything in particular, just facts. Knowledge and nutrition, side by side at last.
This year there was a new (to me) breakfast dish on the menu – Boston beans (either veggie or with added pork belly) with a fried egg and artisanal toast. I threw the word artisanal in there myself, it’s not really WRF’s style. But this is some good bread, I wouldn’t want anyone thinking it was off-the-shelf stuff. In fact, one of the facts we learned while waiting was about the baker who makes all Wild Rover Food’s bread. His name is Jock, and he bakes everything at Woodlea Stables in Crossgates, Fife. Jock was a joiner for 40 years before he decided he liked making bread better, and I can attest to the fact that this decision has made the world is a brighter place.
Look at that golden egg yolk. So appetising!
Full disclosure: I didn’t eat this breakfast. The idea of beans and egg being in such close proximity made me say ‘beans and egg?’ a lot of times, with a doubtful look, until Mr J had to ask me to stop saying it. I regret my moments of doubt, though, because three of my chums had this and pronounced it excellent.
For dinner, there was Rob’s Irish Stew – plenty of lamb, bacon, carrots and spuds, plus a parsley gremolata (again, my word choice…) and a wedge of bread. This, unless I’m much mistaken, was sourdough bread, and had all the requisite flavour and chewiness one would expect from such a loaf. It was perfect for soaking up all that gravy, and all that goodness.
Rob made this stew on his birthday – I think that added extra awesome to the flavour. It was also just what I needed after our first night in the tents, when I thought I might end up pulling a Captain America and freeze solid, only to wake up 60 years in the future and be adorably confused by pop culture references. On reflection, I’m fairly sure my friends probably wouldn’t have left me frozen in a field for 60 years, but in the middle of the night it seemed very plausible. What I’m saying is that I needed good, hot food to keep me warm. That’s not as interesting a way to say it, though.
An old favourite was also on the menu – the venison burger. This was served with a generous spread of blue cheese, and balsamic caramelised onions. So, as you can imagine, there are bags of strong flavours going on in this ciabatta roll, but they get along nicely with no rough-housing.
The burger was so popular that it sold out.
It *is* a tasty burger.
The last item I took a snap of was Halloumi Heaven – four slices of fried halloumi with beetroot houmous, dukkha and salad leaves. The chaps who were dispensing the food (as well as facts) were excellent in explaining dukkha to curious punters, even offering a wee taste to any non-believers.
It’s always reassuring to see vegetarian options that haven’t been created as an afterthought, or with less care and attention than their meaty counterparts.
That wraps up my Wild Rover Food ravings for this year. If you happen to be at an event where they’re catering, I can’t encourage you enough to make a beeline for them. If you’d like to keep track of what they’re up to, here’s how: