Monday, 12 March 2012

'judging the London Farmers' Markets sausages..'

I'm pretty sure that the peasants that created the 'sausage' never imagined they would be the subject of a competition. Especially not one being judged by food critic Charles Campion, chef Alan Stewart (Manson) & Fergus Henderson (St John's). And like those peasants I felt I was such a lucky girl to be among them.

400 votes in total for the #loveyourlocalsausage extravaganza. This was made up entirely of people who have stalls and make the community of London markets. The competition itself was more of a celebration of all those creative foodies that set up their stalls through sunshine and the worst of English weather. True dedication to their produce. Which I have to say is admirable. 

So as a judge we got to taste the top 5. It was a tough decision. The level of skill and quality of entrants was astounding. As a butcher, I spotted craftsmanship, carefully chosen ingredients, fresh herbs and organic/free range pork. I also clocked the products lacking in these too, but they all had something that made them stand out as an enjoyable product. 

Talking to Cheryl who runs London Farmers' Markets (@queenofmarkets), I got a strong impression of one overall feeling: passion. this is something that London Farmers have in abundance. I have valued farmers and agriculture my entire life. And I was overjoyed when I heard of their presence in a city so busy as London. 

It was a pleasure to be asked to judge the competition. I am in awe of you guys. Keep up the great work. And - incidentally you're all winners.


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