I am still absolutely thrilled as I type this, and a little stunned. Last night I was at the OFM Awards and was awarded Best Blogger. It was a great night and the awards themselves were a really positive celebration of good things in food. To say I was honoured is a massive understatement.
Lots of inspiring people were celebrated like Michel Roux for lifetime achievement in food, The Ethicurean in Somerset (only open a year but doing something wonderful and rightly being commended for it), Tristram Stuart for his work on food waste (including his book Waste: Uncovering the Global Food Scandal).
Johnny Pusztai from JT Beedham was best producer, and I really need to try his pork, the secret to the flavour is that he feeds the pigs smokey bacon crisps. I love it! Best restaurant was Dinner, to my great shame I have yet to eat there but must rectify that soon.
I was delighted to see some of my favourite regular haunts awarded too: Koya for cheap eats (I can’t get enough of their noodles, they really are the best in London and I go there all the time), The Bull and Last for their terrific Sunday lunches and Mark’s Bar at Hix for Best Bar. We finished our night there and hugely enjoyed it.
Maltby St Market also got a well deserved nod for best newcomer and Yotam Ottolenghi won Best Cookbook for his lovely vegetarian tome Plenty. Food Personality was Hugh Fearnley-Whittingsall for his brilliant work on his Fish Fight, and Young Chef was
Paul Foster from Tuddenham Mill, Suffolk who has spent time in the kitchen of Sat Bains, The French Laundry and WD-50 and seeks influence and ingredients from his local surroundings.
I also got to meet some of my food heroes that I have admired for a long time. I spotted Claudia Roden but was too shy to talk to her and was a little gobsmacked when she came over to congratulate me. What a lovely lady. Of course she got no sense from me, and all I could do was tell her repeatedly how much I love her books. But I really do.
That’s all from me for now, I have a hangover to nurse, but do head on over to the Guardian to take a look at the pics of the winners. And do make sure to buy The Observer on Sunday for more details on the awards in the OFM, as well as all of the lovely regular stuff.
Ps. thanks SO MUCH for the votes, and I am aware that I owe you all a chorizo jam recipe. Coming soon :)