Why do we only have toast for breakfast? Why is it acceptable to eat chicken, but a bit unusual to eat a cat? How do flavours bring back a memory?
If you ruminate on such food-related questions, find the answers at Food Junctions over May Bank Holiday weekend. This two day festival on 1st and 2nd May brings together food experts, UCL professors and local food producers to ponder on all things foodie as part of the Reveal Kings Cross Festival, in the meadows and marshland of Camley Street Natural Park.
There is an amuse bouche of warm up events on 24th-25th April, including a twilight garden tour of the city and an evening of food poetry. The main course on 1st and 2nd May, however, will feature talks and workshops as diverse as: urban bees; the anthropology of breakfast; chocolate tasting; foraging and cooking wild food; and the philosophy of food pleasure. The Jelly Mongers will also be present at 2pm on Sunday, demonstrating how to create architectural structures out of jelly (ice cream not provided). The weekend will be brought to close with a final Harvest picnic of homemade food and cooking demonstrations by Chef Oliver Rowe.
Food Junctions has been organised by a collective of UCL students and professors who wanted to bring their research out onto the streets. Lukas Meusburger, one of the organisers, explains how fundamental participation is to the project: “The festival grew organically, and we hope visitors will participate in the event, rather than just come and go as if they are consuming fast food. We would like to collect recipes and stories, whilst offering hands-on ways for people to take control of the food they eat.” Meusburger enthuses that Food Junctions isn’t about big name Chefs and fancy food, it’s about thoughtful, creative eating: “Everyone can be an artist when it comes to food”.
With workshops that teach you everything from making a window box to carving fruit and vegetable sculptures - Food Junctions is the most delicious thing you could do with your bank holiday weekend.
All events are free, although some require pre-booking. For a full programme of events, click here.
By Lisa Harris