From the Farm/ Host

Ketchup vs Brown Sauce

Since we launched one year ago  we’ve fed 1000s of people, hosted supper-clubs on boats and in barns, fed the isolated, the musical, the lonely and the joyful.  We’ve raised money for charity, for home cooks for professional chefs. We’ve seeded at least one WeFiFo romance…

One year on from launch found the alarm going off at 03.30 to enable us to have a cup of tea and head off in the van to the top of Box hill to cook breakfast for Morris dancers.

I should back up a little.

Before we launched WeFiFo we had been heading up the hill to greet the dawn on May Day for years. Beltane is the date traditionally assigned for farmers to let their cows out to pasture. As farmers of our own small herd we have never really marked the date in that way (turn-out being contingent on a good field of grass more than anything else), but we’ve always liked the idea of marking the start of a bovine summer, of honouring our cows and of hanging out at the top of a beautiful hill while some energetic enthusiasts bash sticks and dance for our pleasure.  It’s a marvellous tradition, all over the country on the top of hills, on the 1st of May, groups of people gather to dance up the dawn.

We had planned to cook breakfast for the Morris dancers last year but the WeFiFo website launch had kept us busy, so we were determined to do it this time around.
Somehow it felt like a lovely way to mark our birthday. We put it up as a free WeFiFo event and we loaded up the back of the car with two BBQs, a bunch of soft rolls and a mountain of sausages and bacon made from our own pigs. Not forgetting the ketchup and brown sauce. We’d had a good 20 people book a bap and so by 5 AM we were stoking the BBQ and the first wisps of bacon scented smoke were wafting amongst the 5 troupes or “sides” that were busy gallivanting around the hill.

It was a beautiful morning but still chilly and the first to wander over were as interested in warming their hands up as they were in what these two odd people were doing sizzling sausages. We’d been in touch with a number of local Morris dancing sides before we came up the hill – most said they had pubs they went to afterwards for breakfast and being vaguely suspicious of a corporate take-over of their event. What they found instead were the two WeFiFo founders sizzling free bacon and sausages and not a whiff of anything more than a delicious smelling breakfast.

Soon we were stuffing breakfast rolls and were intrigued to see what would win out – brown sauce or ketchup…

By 6am the cupboard was bare. We’d been asked for eggs (next time), invited to cater for a wedding, to join a side (we prefer to watch) and fed over 30 people with a home produced breakfast. Everyone was appreciative and complimentary about the food and we were quietly delighted that we had given something back to those people who congregate on hills and mark the turning of the season with a dance.

And as for the age old question of red sauce or brown? Well, it was a limited data set, but we can confirm categorically that HP sauce is the winner.

You Might Also Like

No Comments

Leave a Reply