Part of the fall-out of the recent setback was that I lost a bit of interest in cooking new things and experimenting. I’d been working quite hard at home, perfecting recipes and working out portions, costs and economies of scale, but when it fell through I stopped – because there was no longer any point in working out the shelf life of 3 kilos of rough-puff. Which was sad, even if it was a respite for our waistlines, which have undeniably been showing the effects of the quest for perfect pastry goods.

I can’t lose interest in food though, that would be like losing interest in breathing. So in pursuit of our favourite hobby -eating – the other weekend the Waltshaws decided to check out a local(ish) food market called West Norwood Feast, which we’d been meaning to visit since it started in April. We walked there in order to off-set the inevitable ensuing gluttony so we schlepped from Selhurst, over the hill at Crystal Palace, down the other side and into West Norwood where we ate some nice food and drank some very nice coffee at the food market and then carried on our wending way through Tulse Hill then Herne Hill (where we stopped for a quick pint) before carrying on to Brixton, where we stopped for another, slower, pint.* While sitting in the pub in Brixton I sat doodling on the paper, compulsive doodler that I am:

We were both thinking along the same lines, and, to cut a long story short, we now have a pitch at West Norwood Feast starting on Sunday 2nd October, and the quest for the best home-made pastry recommences:

Hand-made mini pork-pies

We can’t wait, even if I have trepidations about my pastry sogging (I sog, you sog, he/she/it sogs, nous soggons…) it is so good to have something to aim for. We’re not going to make much money from it, and it is by no means a solution to our predicament, but it feels quite symbolic. And who knows who we’ll meet and what might come from it.

So, if you fancy standing in a church yard in South East London, in the rain, in October, being polite about my crust, come along!

No, wait. If you fancy coming along to an exciting new venture in South London, eating some quality produce, supporting some local traders (and wannabes), and then maybe going for a walk in the beautiful West Norwood Cemetry or Brockwell Park, then put 2nd October in your diaries. Come eat my pies.

Optimism, hello, it’s been a while.


*We were in Brixton a couple of hours before the riots kicked off there but would like to stress that, despite being relatively dissatisfied recently, we played absolutely no part in stirring up civil unrest. We were also in Croydon shortly before the riots hit there. Co-inc-i-dence.