Last week I was gripped by the urge to make some amigurumi chillis. A few rounds of straight forward single crochets later and I found Chilli Billy smiling up at me – with a few of his friends too.
Would you like to get to know them a bit better? Sure you would! From left to right I’d like to introduce you to Chilli Willy, Chilli Tilly, Chilli Billy and Chilli Jilly.
They’re a lively bunch and great fun to have around. Guaranteed to spice up your life and turn up the heat at any party, and oh how they love to party! Just as well I had the perfect day out planned for them this May Day Bank Holiday.
Despite the gloomy, world weary skies and threat of heavy rain we were determined to get out of the house for at least a few hours and what better place to take Billy and his friends than a chilli festival! So, completely ignoring the wet and windy weather forecast, we hopped into the car and headed off to Eastnor Castle where just such an event was in full swing for the holiday weekend.
The chillis were so excited they couldn’t sit still so I was glad it was only a half hours ride. Not that the brevity of the journey stopped a hundred calls of ‘are we there yet?’… Even the bad weather couldn’t dampen the sense of fun and expectation – all four chillies and all four humans were very much looking forward to our foodie day out.
We parked up in a nearby field and headed for the sign…
…and we’re in!
Once inside the gates we grab a photo opportunity that’s just too good to miss.
Time for a bit of shopping and stall browsing. There were so many different things to see. Billy particularly enjoyed perusing The Chilli Alchemist‘s stall. We both loved the perfectly Billy-sized cauldrons filled with the most wonderful chilli spells and potions.
The packaging on these sauces are worthy of a Harry Potter film set.
They even had chilli infused Popping candy for sale. How cool is that?! After a slightly messy tasting session the chillies chose a crackling vial of Melliculus Tropicus (medium hot) to take home.
We checked out Chilli Billy’s cousins to see what’s hot to grow this year. Loving the sound of Yellow Bumpy, Super Tramp and Stumpy.
The Fairy Lights chillies appeal to me of course, but I have no talent for coaxing seedlings into life and nurturing young plantlets in my snail filled garden so I just looked wistfully at the seed packets and considered a purchase of a more mature chilli plant for the kitchen windowsill instead.
This one should be a bit hardier and easier to tend, with the added bonus of chillies ready to harvest immediately. Surely even I can keep such a healthy and robust specimen alive. Only time will tell!
We found some sweet sombreroed amigurumi Amigos on the Ambalama Spices stall. Billy enjoyed hanging out with his new pals. He’s such a confident young pepper and makes friends everywhere he goes.
All the teasing of the tastebuds with the vast array of tester pots on offer makes you very hungry after a while so we headed off to get a good nosh from the falafel kiosk. Not in the mood to make any more decisions about which chilli sauces, jams, pickles and condiments I like best I order a wrap with a bit of everything in it.
Wow… That’s a big lunch. What a blessing that Chilli Billy has stuck around to help me eat it. I’d never manage all that on my own!
Some very tall mexicans were spotted in the crowd… Time for a selfie…
Thanks guys! It was very sweet of you to pose with the chilli posse. You made their day!
A bit more general loafing and hanging around…
…and we were ready for some entertainment. The chillis were regrouped and burnt off some of those lunchtime calories with some serious dancing – everybody salsa!
That wore them out a little bit, though they still have enough energy to pose for just one more shot as we leave the park. Now that’s a supersized chilli if ever I saw one.
A spot of crochet at the ready and a big haul of chilli goods packed away neatly in the boot and we’re were good to go, just in time to miss the worst of the rain.
It was lovely to be back at home again, snugged up and watching the rain fall from the comfort of my cosy terrace, central heating humming away to keep the more warmly acclimatised chilli family happy.
With our haul of chilli related goodies spread out before us and a couple of bottles of local wine from the Malvern based Lovells Vineyard to enjoy, we settled down to an evening of laid back chillin’ out.
and snuggling down on my favorite sofa to finish my loopy cushion cover.
If I were a cat you would have heard me purring from miles away!