It Just Has To Be Delicious

Archive for July, 2015

The Fox and Hounds Hunsdon

I went to the Fox and Hounds in Hunsdon which is a little village in Hertfordshire just north of Harlow. I didn’t expect much but was pleasantly surprised to find that it is a gastropub serving excellent steaks and seafood.

The atmosphere was warm and welcoming, a quaint village pub with a good sized car park at the rear.

Starters all seemed appetising and included

  • burrata (creamy mozzarella), tomato and rocket
  • smoked mackerel, beetroot, watercress and horseradish
  • lobster linguine with chilli, garlic and parsley
  • black pudding, mushroom and fried duck egg
  • melon and ham
  • veal, rabbit and bacon terrine, chutney, pickles and toast

I chose the delicious crab tacos with mango salsa, guacamole and sriracha chilli sauce

Crab Tacos

Crab Tacos

Mains included:

  • Skate with spinach and brown shrimps
  • Wild sea bass with pepperonata, borlotti beans and rocket
  • Rabbit leg confit
  • Chateaubriand
  • Scotch black Angus cote de boeuf

I chose half a lobster with garlic and herb butter and chips

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Chips

Chips

Some of my fellow diners had the steak

Steak

Steak

Everybody enjoyed their meals. The only difficulty was that one of our group is vegetarian and the vegetarian options were quite limited, but the chef very obligingly provided a vegetarian pasta dish.

The lobster was fresh, good quality and seasoned beautifully, the steak was delicious, well rested, and succulent.

For dessert I chose the chocolate and hazelnut torte which was like a chocolate brownie with whole nuts in it. The texture was a little dry on the outside but gooey in the middle and there were probably too many nuts in it. I would have preferred a chocolate orange version.

Chocolate hazelnut torte

Chocolate hazelnut torte

Some of my friends chose the strawberry sundae which by all reports was delicious

strawberry sundae

strawberry sundae

I loved the meal – the atmosphere was great and the food was top notch. The pub also has a comprehensive wine and beer menu. A great place which will see me returning very soon.

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Lima Fitzrovia – Rathbone Place London

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Lima is a Peruvian restaurant run by Virgilio Martinez. It’s not a cuisine that I am really familiar with and always keen to true new adventures, I decided to visit Lima on a Friday night. Nestling between Oxford Street and Tottenham Court Road on Rathbone Place, it’s not a restaurant that stands out and I almost walked past it. Inside the decor is modern and clean with mirrors everywhere. The wait staff are very helpful and explained every dish in detail.

I started with a cocktail called a Chilcano. This contained Luna Pisco (a Peruvian brandy), Lime, Sugar, Ginger Ale and Angostura Bitters.Very nice, refreshing and slightly bitter, it felt good on the palate.

cocktail

The delicious bread was made of corn and asparagus and came with a yoghurt, lemon and chilli dip.

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We were also served an amuse bouche of quinoa with creme fraiche, which was okay but not overly flavoursome.

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Starters were scallops with yellow aji pepper, muna mint and corn – a lovely flavoured dish but the scallops were thinly sliced and I would have preferred them to be left a larger size.

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We also had tuna ceviche with tigers milk (a citrus fish marinade). chilli and red onion – a real treat for the senses – this dish was a favourite.

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The best dish was main course Beef Pachamanca with Black Quinoa and Cusco Corn. The beef was really flavoursome with a lovely marinade, and the corn croquette topped with queso very tasty.

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Sea bass chalaca was perfectly cooked and came with olluco tuber root, yellow aji emulsion and avocado oil.

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Dessert included traditional alfajores (biscuits sandwiched together with dulce de leche), dulce de leche ice cream and chancaca honey.

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Chocolate Mousse (Cacao porcelana) which was rich and luscious with cinnamon cream and blue potato.

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What a wonderful introduction to Peruvian food. I can’t wait to return to Lima. It also has a Michelin star I note – well deserved.

Quick Singapore style noodles

sing noodles

I had a bit of a craving for Singapore Noodles the other day and decided to make something similar from pretty much leftovers.

I had some leftover roast chicken from a Sunday roast and some leftover greens which were ideal for the job. Sometimes the best dishes are made form leftovers.

You need:

3 tablespoons of Rendang paste (you can use any curry paste but this one gives it that authentic Singaporean flavour)

1 tablespoon coriander

Half a tablespoon cumin

Half a teaspoon turmeric

Some protein of your choice – tofu, chicken, beef, pork, prawns etc.

A bag of bean sprouts

A fresh chopped chilli (or some dried chilli that you can crush and flake into the mixture)

An onion finely sliced

A clove of garlic finely sliced

A few mushrooms sliced

Some cherry tomatoes sliced

Some ‘straight to wok’ thin Singapore egg noodles

Something green thinly sliced (I used a few leaves of spring greens, but pak choi or similar will be good)

Optional extras – chunks of omelette, capsicum, small slices of carrot, fresh coriander, crispy fried onions.

Method:

Fry the onion, chilli and garlic in a little groundnut oil until they begin to soften. Add the curry paste and dry spices and stir well. Cook for 2 -3 minutes. Add water if necessary to keep some sauce happening.

Add the protein and mushrooms. Stir fry for approx 5 minutes.

Add the tomatoes, half of the beansprouts and the noodles. Stir well and stir fry for another 2 -3 minutes to ensure that everything is coated in sauce. Stir in some fresh coriander.

When warm through, serve on a plate or in a bowl. Add some raw beansprouts and some crispy fried onions to finish.

YUM.

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