Month: February 2010

Making Dim Sum with Angela Malik

My first cookery school experience took place on Thursday at Angela Malik in Acton. I turned up not knowing what to expect but arrived to an array of smiling faces, a glass of wine and a taster of Angela’s Indian Pesto’s. Angela’s cookery school is based in her and her husbands old shop unit in Acton. As you walk in, you enter into the deli area where Angela sells a range of her own chutneys and pestos along with sweets, tins and bottles of her favourite asian food brands. Go further back and you enter a long, narrow cookery school with 8 benches. We were asked to sling on our aprons and wash our hands before we were given an introduction to the cookery school. Angela really has a knack for teaching – I was enthralled as she passionately talked about the 5 taste sensations. Armed with a white board, the guests shouted out ingredients that came under each sensation category. Angela is a firm believer that every food that we eat should be a …

Monsieur M, Shoreditch

I am new to Vietnamese food, somehow. I pride myself on being adventurous when it comes to food but i’m sad to say that i’m only just branching out of the more common cuisines that I eat so often. My trip to Melbourne, Australia in January did not really make me love Vietnamese food. A couple of DJs who ran the night that my boyfriend was DJing at took us out to, in their words ‘one of the best restaurants in Melbourne.’ I was excited, especially as when we turned up the place was packed. We sat down in a tiny room upstairs as the downstairs area was full. The restaurant itself was rickety but it reminded me of a little Japanese restaurant that I love in Soho. When the food came I couldn’t believe it – MSG ridden gloop was the only thing on my mind all of the way through. Not a fresh piece of food in sight and all I could do was grin and bear it. Meeting two guys that you …

Fernandez & Leluu baking and Ottolenghi Sunday brunch

I love weekends, they allow me time to get stuck into some good old baking. I haven’t touched a mixing bowl since before I went to Australia so it was great to get back behind the whisk. Fernandez and Leluu, a London underground restaurant shouted on Twitter last week that they were looking for a baker for their restaurant. My eyes opened wide and I promptly asked what kind of baking they were after. It was 20 baton baguettes but since there were only two days to go and I had never tried my hand at baguettes before, I said that I wasn’t able to offer a hand but I would love to be considered if there was an opportunity to bake cakes. Some lovely correspondence later and I was booked in to take samples to their new unit on Columbia Road behind the StART SPACE gallery. My brief was something not too creamy but with quirky ingredients so I put my thinking cap on. I decided on a wonderfully light and dairy free Lime, …

Francesco Mazzei for Pizza Express launch

“What is your favourite cuisine” asked my colleague the other evening. I had a confession to make; my favourite cuisine is Italian, more specifically a good old pizza. Ironically, the next day I was delighted to receive an invite to the new Francesco Mazzei (L’Anima) range launching at pizza express this week. Pizza Express was a real treat when I was a child growing up in my hometown of Nottingham but having lived in London for 4 years, I have grown to realize that there are a plethora of Italian restaurants serving fantastic pizza so I no long rely on establishments like Pizza Express to satisfy my needs. The original menu also doesn’t particularly contain my favourite flavour combinations so it is refreshing to see their recent celebrity chef collaborations. The evening’s affair was bustling, the wine and fizz flowing and the new Francesco Mazzei range doing the rounds, which consists of two starters, Insalata Semplice and Tricolore and four mains, Mia Sofia, Calabrese, Rustichella and Tagliolini Funghi. Unfortunately the only dish that we didn’t …