Month: August 2011

Comfort & Spice Preview in Sainsbury’s Magazine

The good folks at Sainsbury’s Magazine cooked some of their favorite recipes from Comfort & Spice and shot them to be included in October’s Sainsbury’s Magazine – which is in Sainsbury’s from today. They’ve done a terrific job and I was positively beaming when I saw it. They selected Chicken & Chorizo Pies, Blaas (those beautiful fluffy rolls), Halloumi & Pomegranate Salad and Orange & Cardamom Jelly. So, if you’d like a preview – hot foot it to your local Sainsbury’s today. Comfort & Spice is also available in book shops and on Amazon now.

Things Just Got Very Real! Comfort & Spice Now Dispatched

And if you were one of the folks to pre-order, you will likely have it tomorrow or very soon after. The first review is in already… This is another brilliant edition in the New Voices in Food series. Niamh Shields is an Irish food writer with a fresh and witty take on every- day cooking. The ‘spice’ in the title refers to the seven spices Niamh uses in her kitchen. She wrestles economical cuts of meat into dinner party-worthy dishes like lamb breast with persillade crust and slow-cooked pork cheeks in cider. There are plenty of worthy suggestions for ‘Tuesday night’ dinners but this volume shines with its ‘Eight Great Big Dinners … and what to do with the leftovers’ – who can refuse that kind of economy of gesture? So lovely, I really can’t tell you how amazing it was to read that. A book is heart and soul, and it really feels a little scary putting it out there. In other news, I am doing a demo at the wonderful Abergavenny Food Festival …

Announcing: Comfort & Spice Brunch Club, Starting this Weekend!

It’s 2.5 weeks to the launch of my first cookbook Comfort & Spice! *Nervous* *Excited* My publisher, Quadrille, have very kindly allowed me a preview for readers. So, from this weekend, I will be starting my Comfort & Spice Brunch Club on Saturday 20th & Sunday 21st. It’s a bit of a bargain, I think. A copy of the book, full brunch, bloody mary / bellini (made with my favourite Bisol prosecco), all for £30. I will also be serving my bacon jam. There will be two sittings on each day, at 10.30am & 1pm. It’s completely open right now but places are limited. FYI: I will need you to pay in advance too. The first weekend of brunch sessions will be near Camden, address details will be provided after payment. To book, email me on niamh@eatlikeagirl.com and I will get back to you asap. Can’t wait!

Recipe: Pimp My Piri Piri Poussin

Piri Piri Poussin. Say it. Fabulous, isn’t it? Also delicious, and one of my favourite things to make. I’ve pimped this traditional dish with my favourite n’duja sausage in place of chilli and it works a treat. Bling bling. There’s no great secret to great meat on the barbecue or roasted in the oven. On a basic level, all you need is a proper marinade and to marinade it for long enough. Vinegar works wonders with meat, and is terrific when balanced with sugars – whether molasses, sugar or honey. Piri Piri is a terrific vinegar and chilli based marinade with some herbs, often oregano, from Portugal originally, but most often now associated with South Africa. I’ve pimped my piri piri with some N’duja, that wonderful Calabrian spreadable sausage which I love, well you must be bored of it now. I have been writing about it for years. Did you miss my n’duja pig? (no?!). Anyway, this is a great dish. Piri piri poussin, spatchcocked to increase surface area, all chilli and vinegar and herbs …

Recipe: Naughty But Nice N’Duja Devilled Eggs

What, what, what? N’duja devilled eggs! What are those pray tell? Well, dear reader, I think the devilled egg is much maligned. I love it in every form from the most simple, to one that’s been pimped with anything from spices to pork (or pork and spices), as I have done with this n’duja one. I have written about n’duja many times, I even have an n’duja pig. It’s a spicy spreadable sausage from Calabria in Italy and is so utterly addictive, that I worry what is in it. This week, I have been working on some recipes that use it as an ingredient as I want to enter a competition (you know how I love them). So it’s been an n’duja kind of week. I had a little left over at the end of my n’duja frenzy, and fancied something brunch-like and snack-like, so I pimped my devilled egg. This is simple, spicy and meaty, and is in an egg. What’s not to love? Eggs love chilli and spices (egg curry, huevos rancheros), pork …

(Super Quick & Fabulous) Recipe: Burrata with Oak Smoked Tomatoes & Basil Oil

Sounds complicated, no? It really isn’t. This is the quickest most delicious dish you will make, and like all good things in food, it’s all down to the sourcing. Burrata is a magical cheese from Puglia in Italy. It consists of an outer mozzarella coat filled with mozzarella bits and fresh cream. Shaped still warm, it is tied at the top, traditionally wrapped in leaves as an indicator of whether the cheese was good to eat. If the leaves were brown, it was off. Today it is more common to wrap it in plastic. I still remember my surprise and delight the first time I cut into burrata and watched the cream sigh out. It is utterly decadent. It is also available truffled, which takes it to another level. Burrata must be fresh. I sourced this one from a new deli in London – Melograno Deli – and, disclosure, it is owned by my friend and fellow blogger Dino. Dino has an incredible knowledge of food and a finely tuned palate, so I was very …

Cooking Up A Riot

(This started as a food post, where I was going to share my recipes from the dinner I cooked for friends over the evening of the London riots and the evening after where we stayed in doors for fear of one. It became something else and I thought I would post it anyway) I arrived back from Dubai on Monday evening extremely tired and happy to be home. I wandered slowly through the streets of Dalston, jetlag dragging on my limbs like deep pools of treacle, noting quickly the intense sirens and many helicopters. A quick browse of twitter and I discovered that London was up in arms and there were riots happening and brewing. Living in East London, a lot of it was happening on my doorstep, although, thankfully not actually so. We could hear everything and stayed vigilant but as we live in a residential area with no shops or restaurants to loot, they didn’t trouble us. I followed poor Uyen’s trauma over twitter, hoping she would be ok with a car on …

Some Toronto Food Highlights: Part 2

My naming conventions for my Toronto posts are even confusing me now. But I wrote a Part 1 then – HAD TO, JUST HAD TO WRITE – that bacon post, which has screwed things up a little. I am back now with the second and final part of my Toronto food highlights round up. To re iterate, as it has been a little while, I was very impressed with the quality and variety of restaurants there and these are a few highlights. And their playlists! That’s a bit random I know but each one could have been playing from my iPod. There’s a strong indie buzz running through Tornto, both in fashion and music and I like it. Here you go! As soon as I get some time, I hope soon, I will publish a proper piece on my favourite places so that you can find them when you visit.

Tasting Toronto: Peameal Bacon at Carousel Bakery, St Lawrence Market

One of the many joys of travelling is discovering the hidden local food gems. Those foodstuffs that have developed there through local customs, locally grown or caught products or immigration. Everywhere has them, and Toronto has peameal bacon. The name alone is enough for me to want to take a bite – something I haven’t eaten yet – an unexplored food joy. I find I am constantly seeking new experiences and I always find that first bite a wonder. Almost always good, sometimes – and rarely – awful. Tuna Salami I am looking at you, please don’t darken my door again! It’s attributed to English influence – England at one point had a pork shortage and so imported bacon sides from Canada. I do wonder if we Irish had a hand in it though. Back bacon (which this is) is the favoured cut in Ireland, and it really reminds me of gammon. Toronto used to be called little Belfast too, and has a suburb which was once full of Cork people called Corktown. There is …