9 great things to eat and drink at First Light Festival this weekend
- Credit: Archant
Try everything from jackfruit bao buns, to limited edition cocktail ice lollies and breakfast brunch buckets at the new event in Lowestoft.
It's exciting times on the East Anglian coast this weekend as the inaugural First Light Festival gets underway.
Beginning on South Beach, Lowestoft at midday on June 22, the 24 hour event brings together art, live music, sunset DJ's bonfire, silent discos and loads more.
Obviously festival-goers are going to get hungry, so the team have brought together a plethora of interesting food and drink stalls to stop those tummies rumbling.
These include award-winning Jojo's Kitchen & Bar, of Lowestoft, who'll be rustling up their fresh take on American diner food.
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Chef John Spillings (also of The Penny Bun Bakehouse) has a gift when it comes to flavour combinations- not only of the bread and pastry variety, but also frozen treats. His Lickety Ice lollies really are a cut above the rest, made only with natural ingredients and a twist of creativity. As well as strawberry cheesecake, and crackers like the mint chocolate shard (basically homemade Viennetta on a stick), at this year's First Light you can get your chops around some cocktail lolly specials and some incredible new breakfast ice lollies too. Trialled for the first time at Suffolk Show, these include local honey, Fen Farm Dairy milk and granola lollies (with no added sugar) as well as an espresso lolly made with H&J coffee. "We'll also be doing a gooseberry, elderflower and pink lemonade gin lolly, maybe a prosecco lolly, and our First Light lolly which will be packed with local seasonal ingredients like rhubarb, elderflower and strawberries."
Charlotte's award-winning cordials with their cutesy owl branding really are a hoot to look at. Vibrant, colourful and rammed with flavour, the cordials are handmade with allotment-grown, foraged and locally sourced ingredients then packed into bottles which burst with flavour - from Suffolk Raspberry, to Lemon and Mint and Wild Nettle. Try them topped up with still or sparkling water…or enjoy a wild cocktail.
Regulars to Chambers Cocktail Company in Norwich, or to Cromer will know Bucket List for its crazy cool, oversized tubs of chips, smothered in toppings to make your mouth water. The team are bringing to First Light their best-selling Nuggs bucket, which sees fries covered in chicken Nuggs, cheddar fondue, bacon scraps and barbecue sauce. The full standard list (catering for veggies and intolerances) will also be there, as well as a breakfast bucket on Sunday morning, bringing together hash browns topped with barbecue beans, bacon scraps, deep-fried egg and sausage meatballs.
There's a bit of global fusion going on on this stand where the team are rustling up bao buns with slow-cooked hoisin beef or jackfruit,pickled red cabbage spring onion, sesame seeds and sriracha mayo, a pulled pork bao with shredded lettuce salsa verde, crispy onions and coriander, and Moco's take on a Cubano grilled sandwich (inspired by the film Chef) packed with Swiss cheese, ham, pastrami, mustard and dill pickles. "And we'll have our gorgeous brownies too," they say.
The seafood-loving chef from Lowestoft's Tramway Hotel is bringing simple but tasty ocean delights to the festival, with a stall right down on the beach. Snack on his salted cockle popcorn. In the morning sample a lovely local, smoky kipper with brown bread, or at lunch tuck into steaming mussels cooked in cream, garlic and wine - with bread to mop up the juices.
Also from the Tramway Hotel comes a selection from the vegan deli. Those who don't eat meat or dairy will find homemade falafel pitas and samosas with mango chutney, as well as sticky, sweet handmade vegan flapjacks.
Squilla and Squidge
Follow the scents of the Med and Middle East to this stand where you can indulge in a Greek pitta or gluten-free wrap filled with falafel, tahini sauce, pepper salad and Middle Eastern slaw. Switch the falafels for griddled halloumi if you like, or combine the two. There will also be pots of salad, skin-on fries, sweet potato fries and real barista coffee.
The Penny Bun Bakehouse
Not content with just selling ice lollies, John Spillings will be at First Light with his extremely good pastries, breads and buns. "We'll have a few loaves but mostly will have lots of sweet and savoury snacks. Our savoury swirls like breakfast ones filled with sausagemeat, dry cured bacon, tomato and mustard, and then croissants, pain au chocolat and caramel almond praline swirls. And we'll have cookies and cakes and brownies. But what I'm really excited about is our low and slow 24 hour slow cooked dry cured pork shoulder. We'll cook that down and use the stock to make our own barbecue sauce. That will be served with a pickle slaw in our own broche buns in the afternoon and evening until we run out.
Sweet Sunrise Crepes
Who can resist a crepe? These ones will be cooked fresh in front of you to order, and topped with whatever your heart desires. Special festival flavours will be Rocky Road and Salted Caramel…or pick your own from strawberries, blueberries, banana, Nutella, Malteser and M&M spreads, sugar and lemon, maple syrup and honey.