This summer an explosion of flavour is taking Cornwall by storm, as street food dishes from around the world are given a local twist. Harry Bartlett’s distinctive orange van, known as ‘@Home – World Street Food’ has been dishing out Mexican Tacos , Spanish Cocido, Penang Pork Belly, Goan Fish Curry and many more regional delicacies at food festivals, farmers markets and even campsites – incorporating ingredients from right here in Cornwall in his fresh and inventive style. And there are still plenty of chances to get your fill….
Harry, who worked as a boat builder before giving into his real calling and retraining as a chef, is making it his mission to part locals and visitors alike from their generic slice of pizza, burger or supermarket sandwich as a solution to food on the go. “If you visit countries like Morocco, Vietnam or India the food served on the street is often your very best taste experience of that country – local specialities with unadulterated flavours. I want to bring a little of that diversity to streets in Cornwall; really flavoursome authentic cooking using quality ingredients. We’re renowned for our food in Cornwall, and our ‘fast food’ options shouldn’t be any different.”
Harry’s van is a melting pot of food cultures. The inventive menu changes all the time, but always revolves around ingredients from Cornish producers. For example Harry sources his fish and shellfish from Dreckly Fish – a co-operative of Newlyn fishermen who promote sustainability through line-fishing and traceability schemes.
Harry’s other collaborators, including Cornish Duck, Primrose Herd Pork and Duchy Game, can be found alongside him at Truro Farmers Market every Saturday. “It’s great for us to have a chef right here showing people what they can do with our products,” said Roger Olver of The Cornish Duck Company. “Harry’s food is original and delicious – it’s impossible to resist!”
With just a small van to run and no staff to pay, Harry has almost no overheads so is able to serve his high quality street food at a reasonable price, bringing delicious dishes such as Newlyn lobster corn tortilla, with Lizard Leaves, salsa, and lobster sauce, into the reach of mere mortals. That is part of his ethos, along with a brave and experimental approach. “I don’t want to be pigeon-holed as serving one style of food,” insists Harry, “my dishes are very eclectic. I want to push the boundaries – even if it means I lose a little money sometimes!”
Harry is looking forward to the winter, when rich stews and hearty, peasant-style dishes using slow-cooked stocks and offal will feature. A home-smoker will also add a Scandinavian flavour to his offering.
Harry will be at Truro Farmers Market on Lemon Quay every Saturday, and will also be appearing at food festivals. To keep up to date follow @HomeSTREETFOOD on Twitter.