It is no secret that I love living in the countryside. I love looking out of my window to see greenery, I adore having to travel just a few miles down the road in order to escape the sight of any houses and I will never tire of being able to see an abundance of animals in the fields near my home.
But the one thing that the countryside does tend to lack, is independent restaurants. Head to a city and you will find an abundance of independents. Here, on the outskirts of Milton Keynes, however, they are few and far between and we are often limited to an albeit tasty but somewhat uninteresting meal at Nando’s, TGI Fridays or Harvester.
What we do have, though, is a monthly Street Food Festival. And the regular event is one that I have welcomed with open arms since it began just over a year ago, as it provides me with the best of both worlds; a chance to try out new foods while embracing a bit more fresh air.
So, once a month I now run out of the office, feed Beano, and head into town to try out yet another new street food dish.
While I’m fairly fussy with foods that I have tried and decided that I’m not a fan of, I am willing to give everything a go at least once. A trait that my stepdad learned rather fast, after offering to pay me to try squid while on holiday in South Africa, only to find out immediately afterwards that I would have tried it without the £5 incentive.
Newport Pagnell Street Food is therefore ideal for me, as it gives me a chance to regularly try something that I would otherwise be unlikely to come across.
The events run monthly, and they generally have around six different vendors at each one, with a mix of Mexican, Greek, Italian, Vietnamese, American BBQ and dessert options to pick from.
So it’s safe to say that there are plenty of new foods for me to try at each one, and I can confirm that I am currently working my way through all of the menus.
I went a few weeks ago, to the April event, and decided that it was about time that I tried out some Vietnamese food. I went for the Asian Pork baguette from Banh Mi MK, with all of the fillings (naturally) and it was quite possibly the best street food sandwich I’ve tried yet. Although the srichara sauce was perhaps a little bit hotter than I had been expecting (let’s just say that I was glad for my drink), it was still tasty and by no means too hot to enjoy. Even for a heat wimp like me. The coriander gave it a unique taste and the pickled veg worked nicely to counteract the heat of the srichara.
I also picked up a box of Spring Rolls, which worked wonderfully as a starter and complemented the baguette beautifully. Although I did end up having to share the Spring Rolls, as you get a LOT for your money!
After stuffing myself silly with my food from Banh Mi MK, my sweet tooth was calling and the Pink Chocolate Kebab Van was too difficult to resist anymore. After much deliberation, as everything looked mouthwateringly good, I finished off my Street Food dinner with a milk chocolate and marshmallow kebab, which was just as sickly as it sounds but was still worth every penny.
While none of the vendors were quiet during the night, the queue for the Greek vendor was insane so that is definitely high up on my ‘need to try’ list, as my curiosity is killing me! That said, however, my first experience of Vietnamese food from Banh Mi MK was definitely a positive one, so it is safe to say that I will definitely be returning to sample the rest of the menu across the course of the summer. The rice pots in particularly seemed to be very popular and looked just as tasty as the baguettes were, so maybe that will be what I go for next...
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