Scallop & Sesame Noodles to make your heart sing…

Hands up anyone out there whose eating habits go like this:

1.. Try something new.

2. Think ‘well hey now, that is freakin’ delicious!’

3. Make it again.

4. And again.

5. Confess to yourself that fully fledged addiction has set in.

6. Realise that you’ve got to the point where you’ve had it six times in three days, there are crumbs of it on your clothes, your sofa and every surface of your kitchen and you actually can no longer bear to even think about it let alone spoon it into your mouth yet again…FYI kids, I’m still at stage ‘6’ of this process with Lorraine Pascale’s Glam Macaroni Cheese; made for four and eaten by two? You do the uncomfortable, cheese-sweats math. Read More

Flavouring your world Japanese for an evening…

If there’s one thing I love, it’s eating food.

Ok well, it’s actually eating food and cooking food, my bad.

And learning about food…ok, so if there’s three things that I love, it’s learning about and cooking and eating food.

Divertimenti is a cook shop in the beautiful beating heart of South Kensington, an area of London whose museums and galleries and restaurants make up some of the prettiest streets in the capital. As well as being the sort of store that makes you want to buy things you never even knew you needed until you saw them – FYI that is the entire range of cookie cutters – its basement is also home to some of the hardest working staff in London’s cooking schools and it was here that I recently found myself swept away to the Far East courtesy of a Japanese canapes workshop and the very talented Reiko Hashimoto.

Kyoto born Reiko has been teaching Japanese cooking to students in London for over a decade following time spent travelling the world with the airline industry and living in the global melting pot that is Hong Kong. Setting up her own cookery school ‘Hashi’ thirteen years ago has allowed her to inspire both novice & experienced food lovers and her first book was released in 2011 with a sibling on its way. Normally based in Wimbledon, it was absolutely delightful to spend a few hours in the company of her and four fellow food enthusiasts as we learnt a little about the ingredients, the dishes & the cooking techniques of Japan in Reiko’s first Divertimenti class.

My favourite food of the night was this incredibly warm, comforting & moreish take on the traditional Italian ‘arancini’ using miso and mozzarella. Cooking everything – rice, mushrooms, leeks & sauces – together in the same pot made it reassuringly simple and I can’t tell you how delicious the savoury, earthy flavour of the miso was when paired with the freshness of the leeks and the nuttiness of the rice.

Panko breadcrumbs should be in every home cupboard; try them once and lament at how many years you spent using the pale imitation churned out by other brands. Bigger & flakier & sturdier than their counterparts, these are breadcrumbs that give you a gorgeous crunchy texture on anything you coat them in and deep fry and, word to the wise here, you will want to coat & fry everything you can get your hands on once you start…you have been warned.

A crispy, golden crumb exterior that gives way to soft & yielding umami flavoured rice with a nugget of molten mozzarella at its core…that my friends, is how you take a classic and flip it to reveal something pretty delicious underneath. Read More

Good food + gimmicky ordering = totally underwhelming dining at Inamo…

Eating out in London is incredibly fun. It’s exciting. It’s fresh. It’s diverse. It can also be expensive so when an offer comes along for 50% off food at the opening of a restaurant which already boasts a very popular, sister Soho location, you jump at it. This is exactly what I did with Inamo in Covent Garden during its recent ‘soft service’ preview however if you asked would I be in any hurry to jump back, I’d have to say ‘hmm…’ Read More