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Friday, 24 February 2017

Rose Harissa Dal

Exam results are supposed to come out today but no one seems to know when so I thought I'd distract myself with a new post. Other than that, my week has gone well. I've finally put pen to paper on my dissertation (a comparison of French and English food magazines) and am looking forward to seeing where it goes. I went to an amazing pizza place in Manchester last week, Rudy's, which I cannot recommend enough. I'm beginning to visit the last places on my "to review for the top 10 piece" list that I've been working on since 2013! I plan on uploading it before I graduate (which is scarily soon; I only have 15 weeks until my time in Manchester is over) and then I can start one for London in my new Moleskine travel guide.

Saturday, 18 February 2017

Classic Chocolate Cake

Get your chocolate fix with this strikingly simple chocolate cake. 

Who doesn’t love cake? This is a great basic cake recipe that everyone should know. I remember the first time I made a cake, my mum helped but didn't know what to do when the eggs curdled, so we rang my dad (who was at work) and badgered him to instruct us remotely. That cake turned out well and ever since I've remembered the mantra four, four, four, and two (4oz sugar, 4oz butter, 4oz self-raising flour and 2 eggs)  or six, six, six, and three (6oz sugar, 6oz butter, 6oz self-raising flour and 3 eggs) for a sandwich cake, ever since and it has proved invaluable when a cake is needed in short order.

Topping the cake with a simple ganache elevates a simple cake to a whole new level and will impress anyone.

Saturday, 11 February 2017

Mix up your mince

This is another post that was originally published in The Mancunion and has been adapted for you all.  If you ever make bolognese but want to do something different to spaghetti or cottage pie then this is for you. I've taken a family staple and suggested different ways to serve it. If you've got a family or are cooking for a group then you could always make a double batch and try a few different options. The bolognese on its own is good for freezing and you can add more vegetables to your taste, I often add diced peppers at the same time as the carrots or frozen peas for the last 10 minutes of cooking.

Do you ever make a big pan of bolognese (the English kind, not the proper Italian stuff, I've yet to make rag├╣) and then realise you’re bored of eating it all up before it goes bad? Well, never fear, here are some ways to switch things up.

This is my basic recipe for bolognese
Serves 4

Saturday, 4 February 2017

The Perfect Temperature

Here's my review of 63 Degrees in Manchester's Northern Quarter. It's a great little place with an interesting set menu. This review was first published in my student newspaper, The Mancunion, of which I am now co-editor of the Food and Drink section. The student newspaper is the largest of its kind in the country and comments on everything from politics to films to food. If you want to keep up with what I write there then make sure to check out this link. If you're Manchester based then the paper comes out weekly on a Monday and is available from the Student Union and other locations around campus.

Photo credit: 63 Degrees
Any time a family member drops by Manchester for a visit it turns into a food extravaganza. I look at my restaurant wish list, pick one or two that are out of my price range and hope they’ve got a table free. Last weekend was no exception. Mum arrived on Friday to homemade mac and cheese (a guilty pleasure) before ramping up to The Day of Food. Saturday was to involve lunch at 63 Degrees, supper at El Gato Negro (chef’s table no less, although that did mean eating at the unfashionably early time of 6.15pm) and to top it all off, drinks at The Refuge. Believe you me, if I could have fitted brunch in there I would have! Instead we made do with croissants and homemade jam. Between all of this bounty, we explored the Christmas markets, nibbling on Dutch baby pancakes sprinkled prettily with icing sugar and shopped to our hearts content (ok, about 30 minutes before the crowds beat us).