If it’s the third Sunday in the month then it has to be Harrogate Real Food Market. From 10.00am until 3.00pm Crescent Gardens becomes home to a selection of independent artisan food producers displaying their products which they have so lovingly created. And what a diverse bunch they are!

My first port of call was Buzz Coffee where Rachel provided me with a black Americano to give me the kick start I needed after the rather nice red wine I had had with Saturday dinner. I have been a regular at this Land Rover Defender since it was parked up at the weekends on my walking route during lockdown. It never fails to disappoint, or provide a source of gossip so well worth making a beeline for. https://www.buzz-coffee.com/

I had a great conversation with Felix from Tarazona de La Mancha, who was displaying his home produced range of signature chorizo made to his grandmother’s recipe. Alright, he lives in Eckington near Chesterfield now, but has converted and extended his garage, in order to replicate not only the cooking of the sausages, but also the humidity of the Spanish plain to get the flavour just right. In addition he has a range of home made pastes and sauces which have to conform to his stringent standards. Anything which doesn’t look as though it will come up to scratch is dumped. I know the feeling well! https://www.chorizoscasagomez.com/

Next door to Felix was Andrea’s Cheesecake Heaven, which speaks for itself really. As someone who wholeheartedly agrees with the sentiment on the counter, I had to exercise an enormous amount of self-restraint. Andrea, like her neighbour, has made her home here after moving from Hungary several years ago where she lived in a small village in the country. She said that she was struck by the hilly terrain of the Skipton area as her home region is very flat. Anyone displaying their good taste by relocating in Yorkshire is sure to make damn fine cheesecake! https://www.instagram.com/andreascheesecakeheaven/?hl=en

If you are going to have cheesecake then you need cheese, and Wharfedale Fine Cheeses were on hand to take care of that. They had everything a cheese-lover could need, even a cheese knife set in perspex block. I thought that I should just take my photograph and slink away before I was tempted. Writing pieces about food markets can be very detrimental to the waistline – and the wallet. https://www.facebook.com/WharfedaleFineCheeses/

CondiMental’s range of jams and chutneys

So, what do you need now you have the cheese? Chutney of course. Look I don’t just throw this stuff together will nilly you know. Actually I do, it’s just that CondiMental is strategically positioned next to Wharfedale Cheese, so credit must go to Lucy who runs the whole shebang. As with all the other stalls, the products are lovingly home-made, this time in Bradford. For more details have a look at https://en-gb.facebook.com/CondiMental/

And now for something completely different. Bruffles. I always thought that Bruffles was the capitol of Belgium in Shakespeare’s day but I muft have been miftaken!. As the sign says they are Brownie Balls hand-rolled, dipped and decorated. They look pretty appetising to me, as do the regular Brownies and they are all made from single origin Ecuadorian chocolate. Oh, and they were selling Brownie Sundaes too! https://www.facebook.com/browniesandbruffles

There were so many stalls at this event that I think I will just mention another two which will give me an excuse, not that I need one, to go back again next month. I will also make a note not to do my shopping for Sunday lunch and dinner so that I can indulge with a (relatively) clear conscience. I apologise to the lovely dedicated people with whom I spoke on Sunday but haven’t included this time, I will make sure I get you in July. You can run but you can’t hide!

OK, the penultimate trader is Cozy P’s Wood-fired Pizza who were hard at work producing some amazing looking creations. They smelled pretty good too, the pizzas that is. Obviously everything is made to order and so there was not a spectacular display on their stall but I did manage to snap a couple of the finished products as they were being put into the cartons. The cheese on this one is still bubbling away. https://www.facebook.com/CozyPs.WoodfiredPizza

Finally we have Providence Stock Pots. This is run by Sue who only started producing her plant based stocks and soups in February but has developed a wide and imaginative range; including Japanese Ramen Broth, to save you an awful lot of trouble, and Gazpacho which is just the thing for a hot summer’s day. I couldn’t resist trying the free sample of Bloody Mary Soup (I think that the word free is what swung it). You would think that making a vegan-friendly Bloody Mary is quite straightforward but you need to read the small print on a bottle of Worcestershire sauce, as it contains anchovies so is a no-no. Sue has managed to source – or should that be sauce – a version which does not disturb any of our piscine friends. This was also non-alcoholic so I have made a mental note to slip a miniature vodka into my pocket for next time. Actually, it was so good I probably won’t bother. https://www.providencestocks.com/

Bloody Mary Soup – Bloody Marvellous!

Once again, I apologise if I missed you out but I will return.

RealFood Markets take place on a monthly basis in Harrogate and Ilkley. For dates and further details please go to https://www.facebook.com/ilkleyfoodmarket/

Feature photograph provided by Real Food Markets, all others by Stan Graham

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