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Posts Tagged ‘Wahaca’

After a busy couple of days Izzy slept until 8.15 this morning which was pure bliss – I was actually up before her and feeling refreshed. In the weekend I like to make something different from the usual cereal or toast for breakfast and with the weather turning chillier by the day I was thinking porridge. Flicking through a Bill Granger book I came across a recipe for porridge but not of the oats variety rather with rice. Interesting perhaps? Well you never know until you try so thought I would give it a shot.

Vanilla Rice Porridge with Caramelized Bananas (courtesy of Bill Granger – Everyday)

Ingredients:-

1 litre milk

3 Tbsp caster sugar

1 tsp vanilla bean paste (I don’t have this and a quick google search told me I can substitute vanilla extract)

180g arborio rice

2 bananas, thickly sliced on the diagonal

1 Tbsp soft brown sugar, plus extra to serve

1 Tbsp butter, cut into pieces

Put the milk, sugar & vanilla bean paste in a large saucepan and bring to a simmer over medium heat. Add the rice and stir occasionally to prevent it sticking to the pan. Cook for 30 minutes, or until the rice is tender. Remove from the heat and leve for 5 minutes.

Meanwhile, preheat the grill to high. Put the bananas in a shallow ovenproof dish, sprinkle with brown sugar and dot with butter. Grill for 2-3 minutes, or until golden and caramelized.

To serve, spoon the rice pudding into bowls, top with banana and sprinkle with a little brown sugar.

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Izzy turned her nose up straight away, without even tasting (2 year olds huh?!), in favour of Weetabix – fair play – can’t refuse that request! Even the delicious grilled bananas couldn’t tempt her!

I don’t know if I will be making it again for breakfast – it tastes good but it just feels too pudding like for breakfast. Bill even describes it as rice pudding in the body of the recipe. Saying that it would make a nice dessert so it might make a future appearance in that form!

After thunder and downpours yesterday we woke to a clear sky today and so decided to head out for lunch. Wahaca opened at Canary Wharf this week and I have been desperate to introduce it to James so we headed over for some delicious Mexican street food. Can’t tell you how much I love this place at the moment! There were loads of people with kids in tow and the restaurant itself is very child friendly. Plenty of high chairs and a supply of crayons. The only thing I would like to see that is missing is a few items added to the menu that are child friendly, and I am not talking a token portion of chicken nuggets & chips – just a few modified (keep the garlic and lime but tone down the chilli) items on the current menu. I had ordered the chicken tortilla soup to share with Izzy and I had forgotten that it has quite a bite to it that was too much for her – beware that ‘lightly spiced’ on the menu does not translate to child friendly. I then tried her on the chorizo & potato quesadilla but this also had a little too much heat for 2 year old taste buds.

From Canary Wharf we took a drive to Primrose Hill on a cupcake pilgrimage to the Primrose Bakery – the book is gorgeous so let’s see if the cupcakes themselves live up to it! Izzy chose 2 pretty mini cupcakes, whereas I opted for Vanilla with Lime & Coconut Icing which was sooooo good! I will definitely be trying out this icing at home. The cake itself was a little on the dry side, still nice, but not as light as I expected. James went for the chocolate and his feedback was much the same. Still worth the trip!

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From there we took a stroll to visit Aunty Amy at work and bring her a cupcake. On the way back to the car I did some celeb spotting and saw Jools Oliver with her 3 daughters – so I guess that is almost like seeing Jamie himself!

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Dining out London style!

Thursday was a particularly delicious day that was more about eating than cooking!

My team mate Jo turned 24 (am feeling so very very old) and as Jo is a complete cheeseaholic but has never visited the holy grail of dairy – Neals Yard Dairy at Borough Market. It’s a cheese lovers paradise and I can never walk out empty handed!!! Came away with a divine blue cheese with the intention of making a pear, pecan & blue cheese salad tonight but as luck would have it I have left it in the fridge at work!! ggrrr….Monday night then!

My favourite place in London

My favourite place in London

So one of the things I always see (and smell) at Borough is the Raclette stall. I have never tried Raclette and so Thursday seemed like the perfect day to give it a go.

According to our friends at Wikipedia Traditional Raclette is a semi-firm, salted cheese made from cow’s milk. However, varieties exist made with white wine, pepper, herbs, or smoked. The cheese originated in the Swiss Canton of Valais and it is usually fashioned into a round of about 6 kg (13 lb).

The Raclette cheese round is heated, either in front of a fire or by a special machine, then scraped onto diners’ plates; the term raclette derives from the French racler, meaning “to scrape”. Traditionally, it is accompanied by small firm potatoes, gherkins, pickled onions, dried meat, such as prosciutto, sliced peppers, tomato, onion, mushrooms, pears, and dusted with paprika and fresh-ground black pepper.

Our serving at Borough was served with just potatoes, small gherkins & pickled onions and it was comfort on a plate. Such a treat!

Raclette under the grill

Raclette under the grill

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Louise digs in!

Louise digs in!

Cheesy Jo enjoys her toasted cheese sandwich!

Cheesy Jo enjoys her toasted cheese sandwich!

So from one yummy meal to another! In the evening I headed into Covent Garden to meet my dear friend Meredith for a long overdue catch up. It is such a joy to enjoy a long dinner with a fellow cook and food lover! My current favourite restaurant is Wahaca (opening in Canary Wharf in Nov – awesome!!) – its amazing and so reasonable for the quality of food and the location! Wahaca serves Mexican food but no Taco Bell style food. Check out the menu on their website – I guarantee you will be salivating in seconds!! Similar to Wagamama there is a no booking policy (so there can be a queue), close tables, open kitchen and general chaos!

We had a selection of Street Food to start – Pork Pibil, Shrimp Ceviche Tostada, Chorizo & Potato Quesadilla and Devon Crab Taquito, accompanied by a Margarita or 2……

An hour or so later we were ready for a bowl of Chicken Tortilla soup – it was so delicious but I just couldn’t fit anymore….. I loved the way his dish was served. All the ingredients were arranged in the bottom of the bowl and a hearty tomato soup is poured over this at the table. Oh, and there were a few more Magarita’s…..

A fab day full of a variety of culinary treats and great company!

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