28 May 2021

A PROGRAMME full of tasty treats, delicious dishes and clever cooks is on the menu as Sunderland Food and Drink Fest gets underway next week (June).

The Sunderland Food and Drink Fest, organised by Sunderland BID and Sunderland City Council, has unveiled a packed programme of virtual events taking place throughout June.

And with celebrity chefs Jean-Christophe Novelli, Rustie Lee and Alice Fevronia joining more than 50 local businesses taking part, foodies can learn everything from how to brew beer to cooking up a storm with cupboard staples.

The first “course” of the festival will showcase starters from 1 to 6 June, with demos from School Meals and Change 4 Life, which will be hosting sessions throughout the month

Sunderland-based Fat Loss Feast’s Joe Sexton, who is a personal trainer and also streams healthy cooking videos, will be making a nutritious alternative to a fry up breakfast and little ones can join in the fun with a DIY flatbread demo from Big Science UK.

There will be two opportunities to see tv chef Rustie Lee in action across the weekend, with demos on her Caribbean corned beef and rice or chicken in pineapple, and Nedhi Chera, of The Funky Indian Wali, will also be creating some authentic Indian vegetarian dishes.

Later weeks will turn the focus to mains, desserts and drinks, with chefs showing how to make vegan burgers, pizza, macarons, homemade lemonade, healthy smoothies and a chocolate brownie milkshake. 

And there are a number of events aimed at younger viewers, including CBBC Gastronut’s Stefan Gates teaching children about the science behind their favourite sweets, a demo on creating edible slime and a range of crafting tutorials with Katie’s Garden.

Other local businesses taking part across the festival include The Ivy House, Blackberries Patisserie, Undisclosed, Fausto Coffee, Maxim Brewery and Spent Grain.

Sharon Appleby, Chief Executive at Sunderland BID, is delighted to be shining a spotlight on home grown talent alongside tv chefs.

“There is a really exciting food and drink scene in Sunderland and events like this are an excellent way for people to show their support,” she said. 

“We have an incredibly talented line up, with a wide range of demonstrations over the month, so it’s a fantastic opportunity for any budding chefs to perfect their skills in the kitchen or try something completely new.

“We hope the city’s foodies will take advantage of the huge wealth of knowledge and experience being broadcast across the month and we’re proud to offer something for all ages to enjoy.”

Councillor Linda Williams, Cabinet Member for Vibrant City, at Sunderland City Council, said: “This promises to be a fantastic event, with something for everyone whether you’re a complete novice in the kitchen or a budding chef. It’s brilliant to see some of our local businesses taking part too.”

All virtual events will be streamed at https://www.facebook.com/sundfooddrinkfest/

For further information on the festival, visit https://sunderlandfooddrinkfest.co.uk/