"Ask not what you can do for your country. Ask what’s for lunch."

Month: October, 2012

Leisurely Breakfast

I’m not at work today so i’m having  a long breakfast in my dressing gown!

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This is the first time I have tried this marmalade from Marks & Spencers (it was a birthday gift) and it is very indulgent. Its caramelised orange & calvados peppered with chunky seville orange peel. A sweet treat on a slice of granary bread but I definitely couldnt do more than one slice.

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Ssh it’s Sunday…

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Making Blueberry Muffins!

Chocolate Orange Cookies

On Sunday I was chomping at the bit for the latest installment of Homeland, I had done nothing but laze all day and was thankful for the hour long tv programme as a guarantee of raising my heart rate for a brief period (who needs exercise?). Anyway ten minutes before the start I had an overwhelming (and infuriating for house mate) desire to bake cookies. Stupid I know but with Carrie paused and ready for action I whipped these up. They take max 20 mins.

Image courtesy of @fabricofmylife

225g caster sugar 225g butter 200g self raising flour 1 medium egg 1 tbsp cocoa powder 1 tsp orange extract to decorate: 300g candy coating in orange handful of dark chocolate shavings

Preheat the oven to 180c and line a large baking tray with baking paper. Cream the butter and sugar together until it becomes light and fluffy. It’s easier if the butter is room temperature but if, like me, you forget it’s no biggy you will just have to work it for a bit longer. Add the egg and orange extract to the mixture and stir it in well. Then slowly sift in the flour and the cocoa until a firm cookie dough is created.

Pinch palm sized amounts of the dough, roll into a ball and gently squash it flat and pop it on the baking tray. To be on the safe side and not have your cookies grow into one giant connected monster biscuit, space them apart well maybe 3 cms inbetween. Place them in the oven and bake for just seven minutes. They will come out looking severly wobbly but do not fear, this will just ensure a chewy soft centre.  Leave to cool on the tray for a good few minutes and then further cool on a wire.

To decorate I melted the candy coating and then covered half of some of the cookies and sprinkled on chocolate shavings. The other lot I simple drizzled on the candy in zigzag patterns. The coating is really vibrant so there’s no need to add jazzy extras really.

Timer to get a new one..

I’m on the hunt for a new timer after overusing my cheap plastic one. I’m lusting over these currently. The Aubergine colour of the Joseph Joseph Pie timer from Amara is just delicious.

1. Anthropologie

2. Amara

3. John Lewis

The Draft House – Tower Bridge

The perfect place to catch up with a friend who has spent the last million-zillion months traipsing round Vietnam and Bali. A healthy dose of British quirk and humble, homely food with a luxe note.

They say:

“We love beer. We love it because it tastes good and makes us feel better. We also love that the very best of beers need not cost the earth. The finest wines may be delicious, but they can cost thousands. Beer is democratic, and always has been through its rich history.”

Fish & Chips w/ Minted Peas

The Smoke Burger with Beer Battered Onion Rings

The English Pork Bap w/ Crackling, Stuffing & Star Anise Apple Sauce

I foolishly agreed to do a swapsie (half my pork bap for half the burger) and after my first bite I was more than reluctant to hand over 50% of the succulent bap. Admittedly, I have been far more enchanted by a burger than I was here but the bun was a soft and sweet brioche and I liked the flavour combination of smoked cheddar and hickory cured bacon. The fish was the length of my arm, which for a mere £10ish is pretty amazing value.

The menu handily pops a beer suggestion next to each meal so for us ale novices we didn’t feel too outta the loop, although the waiters are more than happy to divulge their knowledge and suggestions.

www.drafthouse.co.uk

Danger of Death on Brick Lane

It’s super small and members only but don’t be put off by those facts, oh and that it’s called Danger of Death!

This diddy drinking den has one of the coolest and deadliest looking drinks menu. These double up as your Death book or hand guide as it were, hold onto it because if you’re brave enough and make it through the entire cocktails list you’ll be rewarded with a £50 bar tab!

The cocktails have been split into four sections: Vodka, Rum, Gin and Whiskey/Tequila/Cognac. Each drink in this section is then giving a rating on their Liquid Blast Intensity scale from one (no structual damage) to five (ground zero). Its all a bit Fall Out (for you gamers) without the “wasteland” surroundings and inhospitable survivors, naturally.

Not ready to settle down and become a member? No me neither, but they now offer an open house Wednesday where non members can mooch on down and taste the wares as it were. You do have to book nonetheless and its pretty small so plan ahead.

http://www.dangerlondon.com/home.php

Fake Away Take Away

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Prawn Tom Yum Soup with noodles

50ml tom yum paste 350ml stock 100ml coconut milk 250g chesnut mushrooms
handful chopped coriander handful chopped spring onions 2 nests dried noodles precooked

Mix Tom Yum paste with 350ml of vegetable/chicken stock bring to a gently bubble.

Add 100ml of coconut milk and mix. Throw in the mushrooms and prawns.

Cook till the prawns are pink. Take off the heat.

Throw in the noodles, stir in some chopped coriander and sprinkle with spring onion.

If you are feeling particularly greedy (as I was) serve with a side of blanched Pak Choi and lashings of fish sauce.

In-N-Out

Courtesy of @ibizo

If you have no plans (or job) you should get a wiggle on and get to Hendon (random right?) to snag an In-N-Out burger. I will be ludicrously jealous as I am desk bound all day. It’s only open till 3pm and there is “limited quantities available” but knowing us Brits we will try and act cool as cucumbers and queue whilst impatiently wringing our hands and staring down queue jumpers.

Bread Street Kitchen

Baked Scallops Main with Blood & Sand cocktail

30 sec review on @breadstkitchen.

What: International

Where: St Pauls, One New Change

Atmos: Gatsby meets Steampunk

Eat: always order the chips, these are the best I have EVER tasted

Drink: Bread Street Martini – perfect winter cocktail

Do: sip cocktails and natter for as long as you want before ordering. The service is the best I have encountered in so long. Attentive without ever asking me if “everything was ok?” whilst I was mid-chew.

£: £40

Bread Street Kitchen Website

Ssh it’s Sunday…

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…im having huevos rancheros.