Friday, 24 October 2014

Weekly Love: Week 139 + Win Foodies Festival Christmas Tickets

Podcast listeners/ mystery lovers/ true crime fans? I've found your new addiction: Serial. From the team behind This American Life, journalist Sarah Koenig investigates the murder of high school student Hae Min Lee in Baltimore, 1999 after her disappearance after school one day, a crime for which her ex-boyfriend Adnan Syed has been imprisoned for ever since, though is guilt is questioned. It is an audio documentary which is part narration, part recordings of phone conversations and the original police interview tapes of the suspects. I listened to the first few episodes all in one go the story is so fascinating, and full of unexpected turns. Something a little different for you this weekend; you can download it here
Weekly Love 241014[1]
1. Divine Devilled Kidneys and a New Etonian cocktail, solo lunching at Plum + Spilt Milk inside the Great Northern Hotel at King's Cross. Such amazing food and atmosphere, I will be going back to write a full 'Places To Eat In London' review soon. | 2. Browsing the new seasons produce between meetings at Borough Market. | 3. Lunchtime Bibimbap at Tamago in Canterbury. | 4. Catching up with some of my favourite blogger girls over afternoon tea at Laura Ashley's simply beautiful hotel in Elstree, Hartfordshire. | 5. Mini review of Stax Diner in Kingly Court off Carnaby Street solo lunching after meetings: absolutely fantastic Southern Sweet Tea in a mason jar. The Boardwalk Fries were okay, but I honestly did not enjoy the burger, in case anyone was wondering. The brioche was too dry, too much mayo, and no distinct flavour. Sorry, guys! | 6. Chowing down on Dungeness Fish Shack's Snack Shack Smoked Cod Chowder while profiling them for new British seafood website Fish on Friday. I'll be sharing all of my photos I shot to go with the article, as well as the feature itself as soon as it goes live on the blog soon.

This month over on my Borough Market column I've put together a very 'October' style meal that can be made in advance, then stashed in the freezer for whenever you want something last minute. To start, a Freeze Ahead Pork & Pumpkin Ragu that I will admit to being super proud of (stay tuned for the recipe!) Just boil pasta while the sauce heats up, and toss to serve. To follow, for National Chocolate Week I put together a No-churn Chocolate & Cardamom Ice Cream, which went through so many tests before I could get the recipe right, I'm frankly embarrassed at the amount of double cream I got through. Though, I promise that the end product is delicious, and even my Father enjoyed it; he usually hates chocolate ice cream!
Pesto & Mozzarella Baked Sweet Potato
 Finally, for the students (or time and or money strapped young professionals among you) I just want to link you over to the latest couple of recipes of mine that have gone live as part of my weekly 'Student Suppers' column over at Wozedu. Pictured above, we have a great method for mixing pesto and cheese into baked sweet potatoes for a super simple solo supper in my Pesto & Mozzarella Sweet Baked Potatoes. Also, great if you live far from campus so you can't just pop home for lunch, or you have an internship you have to rush too in the afternoons (I ate way too many meals on the District Line to Westminster my final year!) I have a suped up, store cupboard Ultimate Tuna Pasta Salad that is great on the go.
Weekly Love 241014[2]
7. Yet more new season produce at Borough Market. | 8. I can't be trusted to go to the supermarket it seems. But gin and good literature are essentials, right? | 9. Still at Borough Market, here. Lunching on my favourite Duck Confit Sandwiches. | 10. Fig & Almond Tart with (simply incredible) Chestnut & Honey Ice Cream at Plum + Spilt Milk. | 11. Speaking of chestnuts, quantifying the chestnut and walnut gathering haul from my trip to the French house at the beginning of the month in the corner of the larder. I in no way think that we went overboard. | 12. Cute and funny tote bags at West Elm's London store on Tottenham Court Road.

Finally, the guys at Foodies Festival Christmas, being held at Old Truman Brewery off Brick Lane this 28th-30th November has offered me a pair of tickets to give away to you guys on Twitter. All you have to do is RT this giveaway Tweet before midnight next Friday the 31st. Good luck!

What have you been enjoying this week, and what do you have planned for the weekend? I'm going to have a quiet one at home tomorrow working on a few ongoing projects, as I have another crazy busy week backwards and forwards too and from London for meetings, events and restaurant reviews planned next week! However, I am going to try and make it into London for lunch on Sunday, because it has been simply forever since Sherin and I last had a proper 'girl date'!

Wednesday, 22 October 2014

Recipe: Mini Limencello Glazed Vanilla Baked Doughnuts

I'd had the tab for a mini baked doughnut pan on Amazon open on my laptop since the doughnut episode of Great British Bake Off, but honestly I've been after one for over a year; I just kept on forgetting to buy one. They're not really a thing here in the UK, you can't just walk into most bake shops and find one. I think my influence comes from the disturbing number of American baking blogs I consume on a daily basis. 
Mini Baked Vanilla Doughnuts with Limoncello Glaze and Freeze Dried Raspberries

Monday, 20 October 2014

Exploring San Sebastián & Dinner at Rekondo, La Rioja

I felt that the afternoon a group of us spent wandering the streets of San Sebastián, arguably the foodie capital of the La Rioja region, enjoying the architecture, the beach and yet more of the local tapas, before we headed back to the hotel to change before driving up into the hills for dinner at Michelin Starred Rekondo deserved its own post. If there was one place I visited in the weekend I spent in Spain last month that I'm desperate to go back to, it is San Sebastián. There was so much I did not get the chance to eat and drink.
San Sebastián, La Rioja

Friday, 17 October 2014

Cookbooks I'm Currently Craving

I've had a lot of discussions about cookbooks, the processes behind making them, and why people buy them recently, so I thought today that I'd share with you some of the cookbooks on my current wish list (it is of the Amazon variety, guilty as charged), as well as the reasons why I choose to buy the books that I covet. I've already got hundreds of cookbooks; it has got to be something special to make me want even more! 
Cookbook Wish List October 2014

Wednesday, 15 October 2014

Recipe: Easy Raspberry Ganache Chocolate Brownies

The most popular recipe of all time on my blog, and the recipe I get sent the most photos of are my Super Simple 3-Step Chocolate Brownies. I've gathered that they're appeared at several Macmillan coffee mornings this year! What you probably don't know is that since the original, I've been trying to improve on the recipe. One of my earliest trials was trying to pack fresh raspberries into them, which was a gooey (and not in a good way) failure. I did not forget the dream flavour pairing however, which sparked something in my brain when a big box of their new ganache chocolate bars landed on my doorstep from the guys at Lindt.
Easy Raspberry Ganache Chocolate Brownies

Monday, 13 October 2014

Cookbook Corner: Honey & Co. Cookbook + Prawns in Orange, Tomato & Cardamom Recipe

I think I was just about the only food writer in England who did not own a copy of the Honey & Co. cookbook until their wonderful publishers, Salt Yard Book Co. sent me a copy to review. I knew all about it though; I'd read all the press coverage of their publishing story, and marvelled at the massive advance they managed to get on it over dinner and drinks with my literary agent friends. But honestly, I did not think owning a copy would bring me anything new to my collection; I've got a much loved copy of Claudia Roden's The Book Of Jewish Food and all the Ottolenghi books up until Plenty More came out (I'll probably get my hands on it in my Christmas haul), for starters. I've got a lot of options to turn to when it comes to Middle Eastern food. 
Prawns with Orange, Tomato & Cardamom