It seems baffling to many that we spend one of the coldest nights of the year outdoors, but Bonfire Night is a fantastic chance to celebrate the autumn as well as marking an important point in the UK’s history.
As it’s so essential to stay warm and keep your energy up throughout the night – especially if you’re heading to a procession or bonfire site – we’ve chosen some of the best snacks to take with you. Don’t just take our word for it though – we’ve got together with a resident from the Sussex town of Lewes where the biggest bonfire celebrations in the country take place every year, for some tried-and-tested options!
My go-to meal on Bonfire Night is a big, steaming bowl of chilli. I tend to just throw together beans, vegetables and spices for a fairly cheap option, and while you can stick this in a pot and take it out with you I’ve also started the night at home surrounded by guacamole, nachos and salsas to really fill up on warming, spicy food before heading out to watch the processions!
Recipes: I rely on Jamie Oliver’s sweet potato chilli for a seriously autumnal meal, as it’s sweet, spicy and incredibly filling. If you have the time you could even throw together the Hairy Bikers’ guacamole recipe to go with it!
A friend of mine has always held on to the tradition of wrapping a baked potato up in tinfoil and sticking it in her pocket before she heads out the door – a snack that serves several purposes, since it will warm your hands as well as providing a source of buttery, stodgy warmth when you need it! It’s been a popular Bonfire Night food since the 1800s, and with good reason. Just make sure you don’t fill it with anything too messy!
One of my fondest childhood memories is of sitting in a family friend’s back garden, anxiously waiting for the local fireworks display to begin, fingers clasped around a cup of steaming tomato soup. There’s something incredibly satisfying about knowing you’re well-equipped with a warm, healthy snack to keep you feeling snug in your coat and scarf, and a flask for the kids is still the perfect grab-and-go option to keep them from getting too cold or too hungry. Now that I make my own, I add paprika and bacon for a smoky flavour to match the smells in the air.
Recipes: The roasted tomato and bacon soup from the spectacularly-named Gimme Some Oven is fantastic, but if you want something a bit quicker go for James Martin’s 30-minute chunky tomato soup and just add your own ingredients. Yum!
Do you have any of your own Bonfire Night favourites you’d like to share? Let us know in the comments below!