May, 2010

May 10

Milkshake madness


It is not without some sense of irony that I sit down to write this as the sun disappears! Over the few scorching days I’ve been enjoying my favourite thing, ice cream, until I can eat no more.  Sorbets, ice cream cones, tubs, sandwiches, wedged between cookies, in sundaes and in milkshakes – I’ve done some serious cramming!

Milkshakes are really the best of all worlds – you get to eat your pud while you’re having your main course – which I did the other day at my local burger joint, Byron, in Islington. They do a killer Oreo milkshake, the (shockingly easy) recipe I managed to swipe off them for your slurping pleasure.

Click here for the Byron Oreo Cookie Milkshake recipe

May 10

French Fancy


I’m off for a few days to France and can’t wait to get stuck into some French fare. The cuisine of our neighbours is hugely diverse and much of what we think of as ‘French food’ is only a very small picture of a dynamic and varied food culture.

The people of France are fiercely proud of their regionality and this, in many cases, is showcased most clearly through their food, from the rich, warming cheese-based dishes of the Savoie (any skier will be familiar with these) to the light, fresh, Mediterranean influenced dishes of the South.
I can’t wait to visit the markets, shops and producers, getting ideas and inspiration from a whole new food scene, cooking across long afternoons in a roomy French kitchen.

I’m rather covetous when it comes to food – I tend to save things for rainy days. I’ve still got a jar of honey my sister bought me from Bergerac last year that comes out on special occasions – to garnish thick, Greek yogurt or to be spread, thickly, on toast with lashings of butter.

So watch this space for some Franco-themed food, coming your way!

May 10

Cheesed off with cheesecake


Are there any foods that no matter how hard you try you can’t seem to master? The elusive dish, seemingly simple for others, that proves impossible to get right?

I don’t mean the likes of the roast potato or Yorkshire pudding – we all know that every time we cook them they strangely seem to end up different.
For me, this troublesome dish is the cheesecake. I’ve tried different recipes, different cooking times, different ingredients and somehow just keep managing to get something wrong.

Rather embarrassingly, last time I made one, everything went to plan and then as I popped it into the fridge I knocked a plastic tub straight into the top of it, creating a rather unattractive trough across its smooth, ivory surface.

Still – at least it tasted delicious – flecked with vanilla seeds and studded with purple popping blueberries – so all was not lost.

Click here for the recipe for a delicious Dulche de Leche cheesecake from Argentinian experts, Gaucho

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