Friday, 31 October 2014

Places To Eat In London: Roast, Borough Market

I had been feeling that a Mummy Daughter London lunch trip was long overdue, so when Roast in Borough Market asked me along to sample their lunch menu I decided that it would be the perfect opportunity for a bit of a girls day trip with some good English ingredients and white tablecloth service. I'd been wanting to eat at Roast for ages, both because I'd heard really good things, and because I always see the diners up above me in the restaurant when I'm shopping and working on my column in the market below. 
Desserts & Bubbles at Roast, Borough Market

Wednesday, 29 October 2014

Recipe: How To Make Fried Green Tomatoes with Sriracha

Today I thought I'd share one of my recent food obsessions: Fried Green Tomatoes. A staple from the American South, up until this years experiment they only existed in my mind as something I'd remembered seeing on Love & Olive Oil and How Sweet It Is. They popped into my mind when we were clearing out the greenhouse of all the end of season, dying tomato plants and had lots of unripe, green fruit leftover. Through several batches I've learnt some important Fried Green Tomato lessons. Don't worry, though, if you don't grow your own tomatoes. You can find the green ones at any good farmers market, and in some supermarkets. 
How To Make Fried Green Tomatoes

Monday, 27 October 2014

Places To Eat In London: Señor Ceviche, Soho

Last week was a bit of a nightmare to be honest, so yesterday instead of working, as I pretty much do every single day of the week, I decided I needed to take the day for myself. So, after a leisurely breakfast perusing the foodie pages of The Sunday Times I hopped on the train to London to meet up with Sherin for some much needed girl time; lunch and cocktails followed by a much needed gossip fuelled shopping trip. 
Señor Ceviche, Soho

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

Friday, 10 October 2014

Weekly Love: Week 138

I've spent the last week at the French house really unplugging from it all. The weather switched from Summer to Autumn, so I got to enjoy all of the things that make the season so lovely in rural Brittany, including long walks in the forest to gather chestnuts, and collecting up the walnuts from beneath the tree in front of our house. I also spent the week shovelling sand and mixing cement! It was a lot of hard work, but we were laying the patio (a mixture of slate and the local stone that was taken out of our massive walls to make more windows in our stone barn) in front of the house, and it is so satisfying to know I was a part of creating it.
1. Greeting the locals in Brittany. | 2. The other weekend I headed to Trafalgar Square with my friend Natasha and her photographer/ boyfriend Callum for a Malaysian cooking class with Norman Musa ahead of Malaysia night. We cooked up a storm of delicious food, and it was such a great entry to Malaysian food for me; look out for a Quick Malaysian Salmon Curry I have planned for one of my columns soon! For more photos, head over to Natasha's post. | 3. Traditional Breton savoury Galette made with buckwheat flour stuffed with creamy leeks and scallops at my favourite local in Combourg. | 4. A divine Laksa Natasha ordered for me at Malaysia Night. | 5. Gathering chestnuts in the forest. No idea what I'm going to make with them though, recipes and suggestions would be greatly appreciated; I have 2 kilos! | 6. Picking up prawns at the French fish counter. Just look at the size of those whoppers!

The Only Curry Recipe You'll Ever Need
A few more of my recipes from around the web, I just wanted to draw your attention to my new column I'm writing for the new education, student and graduate site WOZEDU. While I will still be posting the odd student recipe over here, it is the new home of my 'Student Suppers' column where, weekly, I'll be posting quick, cheap and easy student recipes. Be sure to head over there now for my Warm Honey-Mustard Chicken Pasta Salad and 'The Only Curry Recipe You'll Ever Need'. I can't wait to share the other recipes planned!
7. We seem to have done very well growing pumpkins this year! The one in the back on the left, is big enough to fit a small child inside! | 8. The simply delicious breakfast Roti Canai and Chicken Curry we made at the Malaysian cooking class. | 9. Curling up on a rainy day in France with a cup of berry tea, my favourite French food magazine, and Hotel Chocolat's new #supermilk chocolate. It is their new bar which has less sugar than dark chocolate and with a splash of milk, that makes it something in between. You only need a little to satisfy chocolate cravings, and it is unlike any chocolate I'd had before. | 10. Picking out treats at the patisserie. | 11. Prawns in Orange, Tomato and Cardamom from the Honey & Co. cookbook. Full recipe and book review to follow on Monday! | 12. Roasted duck legs with rosemary roast potatoes from Claudia Roden's Food Of Italy for Sunday roast.

What have you been enjoying this week, and what do you have planned for the weekend? I'm going to catch up with everything that I did not do when I had my week off, as I have a busy week ahead of travel, meetings and London adventures! 

Wednesday, 8 October 2014

Celebrating the San Mateo Harvest Festival in Logroño, La Rioja

Before leaving for San Sebastián, we spend the morning exploring Logroño, the pretty, historical city that serves as the capital of the La Rioja region. We were out and about in the build up to the San Mateo Harvest Festival celebrating the beginning of the wine harvest (most of the people who live in Logroño are involved in the industry in some way), and you could feel the excitement and the energy for the celebrations building as we walked around the historic streets of the old town, which looked very different from how they did the night before when they were full of throngs of people enjoying glasses of Rioja and little plates of tapas outside bars, chatting, singing and watching the bull fighting at the bars that had televisions in their windows.
Streets in Logroño, La Rioja

Monday, 6 October 2014

A Tapas Tour of Logroño City, La Rioja

I've already written a fair bit about La Rioja tapas culture in my piece for Great British Chefs, but I just wanted to write a bit of an add on post with a few more dishes and notes than I had space to include in my article over there. I'll save the tapas I ate the afternoon I was in San Sebastián for my post on the city, but I here are some of my notes and photos from Thursday and Friday nights eating out in the streets of Logroño.
Tapas in Logroño City, Rioja

Friday, 3 October 2014

Recipe: Giant (Israeli) Couscous with Pomegranate & Pistachios

I've had a lot of love for my sides and side salads in your comments, Tweets and emails recently, but as most of my offerings are on the Summery side, I thought I'd try my best to come up with a few more sides that were suitable for Autumn. Think not as heavy and warming to go with Winter foods, but still a little bit comforting, and full of bright flavours. Sainsbury's recently sent me some of their Giant Couscous to try (I'd never used it before), and the guys at Salt Yard sent me over a copy for the Honey & Co. book to review (I will be writing a full review post from this brilliant book soon!), and the two came together in my head to create this slightly adapted recipe which is great to serve 4 as a side salad, or two of you as a main dish.  
Israeli Couscous with Pomegranate & Pistacho

Wednesday, 1 October 2014

Places To Eat In Canterbury: Salt [Now Closed]

After walking past it on the way to other destinations for a solid 15 months, I finally made it to try Salt on the King's Mile the other week. After tasting the food I seriously regret not heading in there sooner, though really I ought to have known better. Not only has everyone been recommending it to me, but I've never had a bad experience in the building. I was a massive fan of The Hutch, the vegetarian restaurant that used to occupy the space, and Coffee & Corks, the coffee shop and wine bar which was there before that.
Sharing Plates at Salt, Canterbury