Friday, 29 July 2016

Weekly Love: Week 178

Why is it that every summer America stops all of our favourite TV shows so that there is nothing to watch over the summer? I've solved this by binge watching current shows that I never got around to starting, and re-watching some old favourites. At the moment, I'm really into Blindspot (I'm a sucker for a good FBI drama. A woman with absolutely sick combat skills is found naked and tattooed in a duffle bag in Times Square with her memory wiped, and the tattoos lead to crimes), and I have been re-watching Bones right from the beginning, which, given the absolute, blast from the past shocker in the season 11 finale, was a very good call of mine.
Weekly Love 29.07.6[1] 1. A Cucumber & Elderflower Collins on the (cloudy) Granary Square terrace of The Lighterman in King's Cross. | 2. Pork belly and prawn stuffed giant crispy pancakes with lettuce wraps, herbs and Vietnamese dipping sauce for lunch at Little Viet Kitchen in Islington - review to follow next week! | 3. Oh, and did I mention that the interior of the restaurant is absolutely dreamy? | 4. The only tomato salad recipe you'll ever need, again, something else that will be appearing in the blog next week. | 5. For a healthy treat that uses up the end of a can of coconut milk, whizz it together with a handful of raspberries and some vanilla bean paste before freezing in a lolly mould. | 6. My weekend greenhouse haul.

Wednesday, 27 July 2016

Places To Eat In Canterbury: The Corner House

On the list of local restaurants here in East Kent I have been meaning to visit for a while is this place called The Corner House in Minister. I'd heard very good things, but then I spied that the old Flying Horse pub on Canterbury's dreaded ring road (no, really, try getting out of the city onto it at 5pm!) was being re-painted. The Corner House were opening their second restaurant (they are going to be opening up rooms upstairs later this year) in the City Centre, and they were kind enough to invite me along to check it out. 
Fish Specials at The Corner House, Canterbury | @rachelphipps

Monday, 25 July 2016

French Photo Diary #9: Enjoying the July Heatwave in Brittany

My 'summer holiday' that I took last week at the Brittany house can really be summed up by several things: white peaches from the South of France, copious amounts of French rosé wine, the blistering heat, and the beautiful hydrangeas in every shade of blue, pink, purple and cream you could possibly imagine in full bloom in practically every single garden and car park. When I said, back in April that I wanted to go to France in July for a 'summer holiday' I don't think anyone could have predicted the freak heatwave that had me hiding, stretched out on a picnic rug with my book under the walnut tree practically all day, but god it was glorious.
Hydrangea | @rachelphipps

Friday, 22 July 2016

Recipe: Anchovy, Caper & Potato Salad with French Vinaigrette

I have just returned from the most relaxing week in Brittany, eating out, exploring some of my old favourite haunts and dealing with the unexpected heatwave (on Tuesday it hit over 30 degrees in the shade, and the thermometer on the wall by the kitchen door was climbing over 40!) by hiding under the walnut tree on a picnic rug, a good book and plenty of mint flavoured Badoit water and Côtes de Provence, loaded up with ice. 
Anchovy, Caper & Potato Salad with French Vinaigrette | @rachelphipps

Friday, 15 July 2016

Weekly Love: Week 177

Now the dust has started to settle and it has really sunk in that Britain will be leaving the European Union, on the political side of things I've been deluged in decent, thought provoking comment pieces to sink my teeth in. On what Brexit means for British food supply and policy, I wanted to use this space to highlight one long read and one policy paper that anyone interested in the future of what we eat should read: in The New Yorker food historian and Telegraph columnist Bee Wilson has given a great overview of what Brexit means for what appears on our plate. Referenced in Bee's article, Tim Lang is Britain's expert on food policy, and he has joined together with Victoria Schoen, who is in food research to write a fascinating policy paper on the topic; one to settle down to a piece of cake and cup of tea with. Sobering food for thought. 
Weekly Love 15.07.16[1]
1. The only thing better than California strawberries? Strawberry season in Kent. | 2. Celebrating with an aperitifo from Waitrose Food magazine: blood orange juice, Campari, Prosecco and fresh raspberries. | 3. Hotel Chocolat were kind enough to send me one of their new Raspberry & Caramel lollies. Obviously I took it to chill during my lunch break on the beach. | 4. Pork gyoza complete with spring onions and chilli oil from Koi Ramen at Pop Brixton. | 5. Crashing out on the beach in the sunshine after just a little bit too much champagne at The Sportsman. | 6. Pea Panna Cotta and Chapel Down Rose at The Corner House, Canterbury's newest foodie edition - a full review to follow soon!

Tuesday, 12 July 2016

Places To Eat In Kent: Rocksalt, Folkestone

I'll always be happy if you present me with gin and seafood, so needless to say I was rather pleased to find myself sitting out on the terrace overlooking the harbour at Rocksalt in Folkestone on Tuesday afternoon enjoying a specially put together tasting menu, paired with Gin Mare cocktails. I've already shared my love for this Mediterranean gin in my recent Short Southside Fizz recipe, and I've already stated my love for Mark Sargent's East Kent restaurants, so it was a match made in heaven. Also, while we did enjoy a special menu, I've eaten at Rocksalt before, and the dishes were very representative of the sort of food you'd expect visiting.
Lunch with Gin Mare at Rocksalt, Folkestone | @rachelphipps

Saturday, 9 July 2016

Places To Eat In Kent: The Sportsman, Seasalter

On Wednesday we went for lunch at probably the most famous grotty little pub by the sea in Britain. As a food writer, when I'm out for lunch with other journalists and they hear I live in East Kent, then they find out that I've never eaten at The Sportsman, they look at me like I'm crazy. So, to finally see what all the hype (and copious awards) is about, I worked on getting a table booked (and before the holidays, mid-week this still took several attempts!) for what turned out to be one of the best meals I have had so far this year. 
Lunch at The Sportsman, Seasalter | @rachelphipps

Wednesday, 6 July 2016

Cocktail Hour: Elderflower Mules

It is time for sunshine drinks, and my sunshine drinks mostly have booze in them. If I'm drinking gin I want to mix it with either elderflower tonic water, or freshly squeezed watermelon juice with fresh basil so that I can pretend that I'm still stretched out by the pool at The Line in Los Angeles. If I'm drinking vodka, I turn to the hedgerows. I'm either after a jug full of my Lavender Vodka Lemonade, or my new favourite since I made my first ever batch of Elderflower Cordial: Elderflower Mules, my English garden inspired twist on the classic. 
Elderflower Mules | @rachelphipps

Monday, 4 July 2016

Student Suppers: Penne with Walnut & Aubergine Pesto

My favourite thing to cook for myself is a big bowl of pasta. So much so that I have a special pasta bowl just for me. When it is cold and raining outside I like nothing better than to curl up with it on the sofa, but when there is even the littlest whiff of sunshine I like to dine alfresco with a nice cold glass of wine. While there are a few pasta recipes where a recipe is actually required (our family Pork and Pasta Bows recipe is never as good if we go off piste), most of the time I just like to take an idea and use what I've got to knock together a bowlful that should take no longer than half an hour from start to finish to knock together. 
Alfresco Penne with Walnut & Aubergine Pesto | @rachelphipps

Friday, 1 July 2016

Weekly Love: Week 176

I've been a massive Pinterest fan since the site was invite only way back when it was founded in 2010. So, I was really excited to find out that my Pinterest account, along with my blog post about how to make any delicious green smoothie is being featured along with the Hemsley sisters in one of Pinterest's new TV ads. You can check out the ad here, and as it is officially summer again I thought it would be a good opportunity to point you towards some of my sunshine boards to help you find seasonal inspiration: my Party! Party! board is full of ideas for summer gatherings, Life's A Beach will help you get prepped for your holidays, and Here Comes The Sun is just packed with summer bucket list inspiration. Get pinning!
Weekly Love 01.07.16[1]
1. Sipping Gin Mare gin and tonics on the terrace at Rocksalt in Folkestone. | 2. A strawberry and basil sabayon tart with micro basil and a sticky balsamic reduction for dessert when I took my Daddy for a Fathers Day lunch at The Good's Shed in Canterbury. | 3. Blue skies and poppies in the fields of East Kent. | 4. Seafood starters and more Gin Mare cocktails at Rocksalt. I took loads of photos at lunch, so look out for a full restaurant review and some gin inspiration on the blog next week! | 5. A fortifying Monday morning bowl of homemade granola, yogurt, berries and spinach with a big glass of orange juice. | 6. Sophie Mitchell's delicious Chicken Paillard with a honey, chilli and fennel marinade on the barbecue from her wonderful new book that I'm rather obsessed with, Chef on a Diet. I'm also really into griddling whole baby peppers and halved baby gem lettuces this summer, too!