Monday 25 March 2013

7 things for 7 days...#6

Continuing my regular series of blogposts recounting my favourite foodie moments plus other random musings from my past week...

Grilled lobster at Burger & Lobster in London

1. During the past fortnight I've been enjoying some much-needed downtime from work in an attempt to recover from the exhausting Eastleigh by-election campaign. As you can see from my Instagram feed, it's basically been one massive "Eat Week", including trips to Honey & Co, Tonkontsu, Caravan King's Cross and Pix-Bar...lucky me!

I've definitely polished off more than my fair share of delicious dishes, but I think the plat de résistance was this gigantic grilled lobster served with skinny fries, salad and a jug of garlic butter at Burger & Lobster. Next time I'm asking for one of their plastic bibs...

2. This article sums up perfectly the mental battle I sometimes face when it comes to writing, and provides some useful suggestions for beating "blogger burnout"...does anyone else have any good tips for staying motivated?

Beef and chickpea koftes with Harissa tomato sauce

3. All this crazy winter weather we've been experiencing lately is making me crave sunshine, so I've channeling the Middle Eastern vibe with some more home-cooking inspired by Ottolenghi's beautiful book Jerusalem. My pot of Gourmet Spice Company's Ras-el-Hanout has been getting a lot of action this week; the complex Moroccan blend literally translates from Arabic as "head of the shop", so its components can vary between sellers and it may contain as many as 30 different spices! Most versions include ground aromatics like cinnamon, cumin, coriander, cardamom, clove and chilli, so it's perfect for creating deeply scented dishes with an enduring kick of heat.

First up were these spiced beef and chickpea koftes, which I served with a super-hot Harissa tomato sauce, sun-dried tomato couscous and roasted aubergines. Then I conjured up a tray of Moorish terracotta roasted vegetables, balancing spicy notes with sweeter tones by sprinkling over a handful of Ras-el-Hanout before cooking and drizzling on a dollop of Olive Branch's apricot jam for the final few minutes in the oven.

So if you're looking for ways to recreate the radiance of the riad in your own kitchen, I can recommend these two simple suppers!

Sticky Ras-el-Hanout vegetables

4. These pictures of hipsters taking pictures of their food really brightened up my week, especially this one...I've been to some dinners like that!

5. I'm on the lookout for a new handbag; my faux Mulberrys are looking more battered than vintage these days and sadly a real Bayswater is way more than my meagre budget will allow. I've always been tempted by a "geek chic" satchel, but then I spotted this cute coral and cream tote from Fossil with the same name as my boyfriend (Austin)...surely a sign that this is fate?!

6. Tonight I attended a fantastic food blogger event organised by Edible Experiences and there any better way to survive Monday than with #wineNcanapes?! Asma Khan's Calcutta tasters were fantastic, so now I'm even more determined to book my seat at her pop-up lunch at The Cinnamon Club next month. The clever ladies from A Grape Night In took us on a wonderful spice route with their innovative wine pairings - I'll definitely be tweeting them next time I need tips for which tipple to match with my dinner menu!

#littlecat and KitchenAid

7. Annoyingly I haven't yet had time to bake anything with my new Ice Blue KitchenAid mixer, but luckily this is a toy that all our household can enjoy...

No comments:

Post a Comment