At the beginning of July we saw the opening weekend of something new and extremely exciting – Orange Pip Kitchen. Setting up shop inside the newly-refurbished Middlesbrough Town Hall, Orange Pip Kitchen is the brainchild of commercial events manager for the Town Hall, Keren Pearson, and the people behind the Orange Pip Market.
Orange Pip Kitchen has similar ethos to the Orange Pip Market in the way that it supports local, independents and gives them a chance to showcase their talents to a wider audience. Orange Pip Kitchen is giving talented chefs and street food creatives, at all stages of their career, a chance to test drive their business ideas in a central location – Middlesbrough Town Hall.
Each vendor will be given a three month residency inside the Town Hall where they can experiment with their menus and try something new without the long term commitment. This is a great way for businesses starting out to establish themselves and gain feedback on their offerings. Each vendor will offer a bold and diverse variety of street food, starting with rustic vegetarian food from The Waiting Room.
It was during my first visit to Turtle Bay that I realised just how tasty vegetarian food could be and that you don’t need meat to add flavour to a dish. Since then I’ve thoroughly enjoyed trying different meat-free meals and seeing how ingredients can be combined to create a satisfying meal. When I got invited along to The Waiting Room preview evening* I was excited to see what veggie dishes would be featuring in the pop-up kitchen during their three month residency.
Luke from The Waiting Room is the first local chef to take up a 3 month residency within the Orange Pip Kitchen in the Town Hall. Luke already owns a popular vegetarian restaurant in Eaglescliffe which opened in 1985 and has since been featured on the likes of BBC Good Food, The Times and The Telegraph.
Developing all of their own recipes from scratch using only fresh vegetables, whole foods and organic dairy from local suppliers, The Waiting Room are known for their homely and elegantly rustic dishes.
We were lucky to be served a variety of The Waiting Room menu for the Orange Pip Kitchen which gave us a good idea of the type of dishes to expect from the residency. My favourite dishes were the spinach, mushroom and feta curry and the Brazilian black bean chilli burrito. Both dishes were filled with so much flavour and spice that you wouldn’t notice that there was no meat in the traditionally meaty dishes.
I also really enjoyed the pea burger made from minted peas which is not something I would normally go for. The burger had the texture of a falafel and the rustic bread bun complemented it really well together with the tamarind ketchup.
Orange Pip Kitchen is a casual eating place which is located within the main entrance of the Town Hall and has seating to sit in or the ability to takeaway. With its central location, Orange Pip Kitchen is a great place to grab your lunch and take it away to enjoy in the beautiful Centre Square. I’m looking forward to seeing which other vendors will be taking up residency in the coming months (I’ve heard there’s Greek and Korean cuisines on the cards!).
Middlesbrough Town Hall | Albert Road | Middlesbrough | TS1 2QJ
*Complimentary food and drink supplied by The Waiting Room in exchange for an honest review. . All opinions are my own. Please read my disclaimer for more information.