Month: July 2008

Pea & Ham Soup

I have been going through a slightly obssessive ham and pea phase of late, buying fresh peas at the market and eating them in a variety of ways from speedy dishes like peas with parma ham, spring onions, fresh garlic and lemon, to last minute soups with bacon on top. Peas and ham are perfect partners in every way, from the flavour combination of intensely savoury hamand the sweet pea, to the coarse texture of the ham contrasting with the smoothness of the pea, and the colours, green and pink dancing in your bowl, begging to be eaten. I had seen a Heston Blumenthal recipe in the Times Online, and was keen to try it, but knew it wouldn’t be a quick affair. As much as I love what he does, I am not sure I have his dedication or stamina, at least with time being so limiting at the moment, amounting to, at most a rare evening or a weekend day. This particular recipe was from The Hinde’s Head, his gastropub, so I thought, …

Gooseberry Fool

Gooseberries are very much underrated and underused, fantastic on their own, with cream, in desserts or savoury dishes, they should be gracing every table at summertime. I’ve always loved them, my aunt used to grow them and I loved visiting so that I could indulge. I shouldn’t have liked them that much, they can be quite sharp and sour and they’re hairy when ripe, so, how could they be attractive to a child? Especially a little girl who doesn’t much like eating anything unless it’s almost all sugar? I suspect, the fact that hardly anyone liked them was attractive (there was lots more for me) but the flavour is something that I’ve always loved, that tart burst when you bite into a gooseberry is fantastic. When I was last home, a friend gave me a gift of some delicious elderflower cordial, so I thought it fitting to pair it with this delicious seasonal fruit and some whipped cream, to create that favourite dessert of mine – fool. I keep my fruit fools quite simple, usually …

The Providores – Turkish Eggs

Sometime in the future, I will blog about fine dining at the Providores (a very worthwhile experience if you’re curious!). For now, I want to dedicate a post to their Turkish Eggs. Sounds bizarre but if you had them you’d agree! I promise. Regular readers will know my fondness for Marylebone and my Sunday trips to the farmer’s market, the Ginger Pig and La Fromagerie. There’a a few other places I pop to on occasion and one from this list is the Providore’s. Lots of people I trust like it, Aidan Brooks is a fan and did some work experience there while training, indeed I shared a lovely meal with him there recently, and Krista at Londonelicious includes it in her London top 10. It should therefore come as no surprise, that the Providores features quite highly on my list on these Sunday jaunts, with my usual being their wonderful turkish eggs accompanied with a great latté, something that is rare in London these days. So, what are the turkish eggs? It’s a dish that …

Taste of Cork

Taste of Cork I do like to do nice things, and these often involve food, ok, mostly involve food. I can never pass up the chance to attend a food festival, so when a friend mentioned that Taste of Cork would be running for the first time this year in Ireland, I made sure that I would be there for it. Taste of Cork, like Taste of London, showcases the best food that the area has to offer. It was in a fabulous setting, in the old city gaol, and on a beautiful day. We went along to the evening session, and keen as ever, arrived early to join an enormous queue. Well, to be truthful, I thought I was late as I had the time wrong, but, just as well! Now, I’d done a little research, and some Cork restaurants that I really wanted to try were there, so I had already drafted a list in my head, determined to start first with Ballymaloe House and then the Ivory Tower, moving onto Bell Tower, …

Burrata with heirloom tomatoes

Every now and then, I like to treat myself to something nice to eat from Harrod’s Food Hall. I really like Selfridge’s and Harvey Nichol’s also, but Harrod’s is so vast and decadent and full of treats. On a recent visit I spied a buffalo cheese that I hadn’t seen before – burrata – of which there where two types, one normal and one with truffle. I was so intrigued but I didn’t actually buy any, I was on a mission that day and was looking for borlotti beans. I went back the following week, but, to my dismay, there was no burrata to be had. It’s delivered on a Tuesday and always sells out on the day. So, the following Tuesday, I made sure I got down there to buy some of this intriguing cheese, but there was none there! I waited impatiently for the lady behind the counter, just to check, and happily they had a box of it stowed away in a fridge. They didn’t have the truffle one so I got …