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Showing posts from July, 2012

The Tales Behind Your Tea A Talk With Tetley Farmers

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  July 2012   To support their commitment to Rainforest Alliance, Tetley has launched an innovative social media initiative, facilitated by popular social media site Facebook, to allow caterers (and consumers) in the UK to communicate directly with the very communities producing the tea they sell and consume.   The Facebook site already has over 65,000 ’likes’ and receives daily updates from tea producers in South Africa and Malawi who give an insight into their daily lives, the communities in which they live and what is involved in achieving and maintaining their Rainforest Alliance Certified™ status. Both caterers and customers can pose questions; respond to the posts left by the farmers and view photos and videos of life in and around a tea estate. This innovative communication platform re-enforces Tetley’s commitment to the very people who help to grow and sustain the heart of their business.  As a raw product, tea originates from areas all around the world and in doi

Beige food dominates British plates

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31 July 2012 Colourful diet? Beige food dominates British plates: New research reveals routine and a reliance on convenience foods is driving the UK’s eating habits and nutrition intake The monotony of eating the same range of foods could be taking its toll on the UK’s nutritional intake. According to new research, the majority of British people eat the same foods at breakfast and lunch every day, and nearly half (48%) rely on a small bank of evening meals such as spaghetti bolognaise and chicken tikka masala. In fact, 68% of people routinely buy the same foods from the supermarket each week, supporting the stereotype that the British really are creatures of habit. The survey of 3,000 adults conducted for PAGB, the UK trade association for over the counter medicines and food supplements, has revealed a distinct lack of variety in British diets and a marked preference for a ‘beige palette’. “Eating the same type of food every day is not only boring but could lead to def

Fabulous fungi forays in Mid Wales

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30 July 2012 The unspoilt Mid Wales landscape is a mecca for mushrooms of all kinds, and The Metropole Hotel is engaging the services of fungi expert, Daniel Butler, to run a foraging safari later this year, providing a unique experience to add to your UK family holiday in Wales. Fungi foragers can look forward to a special treat, as chanterelles, porcini, wood hedgehogs, giant puffballs and parasols are just some of the prized fungi that grow in profusion in the Mid Wales area. “Porcini, for example, sell for a great deal of money in London delicatessens, but most of the harvest goes to waste, as the vast majority of people are uncertain about which types of fungi to pick, and therefore leave them well alone,” explains Justin Baird-Murray, MD of The Metropole Hotel. “With such a fabulous wild harvest on our doorstep, it makes sense to make the most of this natural bonanza.  Daniel is a self-confessed fungi fanatic and his knowledge is extensive, so participants

Roast red pepper salad.

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There is something about roasted red peppers, they haves a real flavour impact in anything you put them in. This salad is one that you make and can keep in the fridge for a couple of days and it actually improves with keeping. You will need. 6 red peppers 2 red onions 2 cloves of garlic 3tbsp of olive oil 4 to 6 anchovy fillets Fresh ground black pepper to taste Fresh chopped oregano A handful of black pitted olives. So start by taking your pepper and garlic and placing them on a try in the oven and roast them until the skins are nice and black. You do not have to worry about taking the garlic out of the skin, once you have roasted it just squeeze it out and you have roasted garlic puree. Once the peppers and garlic have cooked take them and put them in a bowl. Then cover the bowl with cling film and just let the pepper sit in the bowl and cool. Once you can handle them remove the skin, stalks and seeds but save as much of the liquid that you can. It i

Fresh pea, bean and bacon salad

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Now as we have all of this veg right now that is in season why not try and make this salad with it. All you have to do is cook the veg refresh it and then mix it together, that and cook the bacon and chop the herbs, well you know what I mean and it is worth it in the end. You will need 750g/1lb 10oz broad beans, podded 750g/1lb 10oz fresh peas, podded 50g/1ld 10oz Green beans 200g/7oz mangetout 3tbsp extra virgin olive oil 1tbsp cider vinegar 4 or 6 spring onions 1 small bunch flat leaf parsley A small sprig or two of fresh mint 180g/6oz cooked crispy smoked bacon Salt and freshly ground black pepper   Now all you have to do really is be careful as to how you cook your vegetables. For me you need to have two large saucepans and lots of cold iced water. First bring one of the large pans of water to the boil. The other leave on the side with a colander over it. Now what you do is add the broad beans to the water and cook for two minutes. Then st

Crab and leek quiche

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I love crab and I love leeks so this is a perfect combination, set in a rich egg custard. Also good for picnics and eating out side. So while we are actually having bit of a summer then make this and go out for the day. Now for this recipe I use both white and brown crabmeat as I think that gives the best flavour.    You will need 225g/8oz short crust pastry 100g/4oz leeks 15g/½oz unsalted butter 25ml/1fl oz white wine The juice form half a lemon Salt A pinch of cayenne pepper 4 eggs 120ml/4floz full fat milk 120ml/4fl oz double cream 88g/3oz white crabmeat 88g/3oz brown crabmeat   So start by rolling out your short crust pastry, prick the pastry, cover with greaseproof paper and fill with baking beans. Then in a preheat set at 190c/375f and bake for 10 minutes the remove the beans and paper then pop back in the oven for another 3 to 5 minutes to finishing cooking the pastry and leave to cool.   Now take your leeks and dice them and giv

Food Business Start-up Boot Camp: London, 15-16 September 2012

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27 July 2012 PRESS RELEASE – 27 JULY 2012 LONDON: FOOD BUSINESS START-UP BOOT CAMP A brand new workshop for people dreaming, or at the early stages, of running their own food business comes to London on September 15-16, 2012. Led by food industry expert Monique Borst, the Food Business Start-up Boot Camp is touring the country this year and comes to Wallacespace Covent Garden at the end of September. London is home to many innovative and entrepreneurial food businesses from individuals making cakes, pickles and jams to sell at farmers markets to success stories like Neal’s Yard Dairy and The Monmouth Coffee Company. But starting a food business can be a daunting task ... you need to be aware of all the rules – environmental, health, licensing and insurance – competition is fierce and profit margins are small. You also need a marketing strategy to give your business the best chance of being seen and heard and a realistic business plan. For anyone starting that journey, or

South Indian style Cuttlefish Kedgeree

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Kedgeree is a dish consisting of flaked fish, boiled rice, eggs and butter. It originated amongst the British colonials in India hence was introduced to the United Kingdom as a popular breakfast dish in Victorian times, part of the then fashionable Anglo-Indian cuisine. Here we have modified the original recipe to feature cuttlefish instead of a regular fish. Ingredients Cuttlefish 200gms (cleaned weight, the ink reserved) Red Onions 1 medium sized Green Chilli 1 Ginger 20gms Curry leaves 5 leaves Lemon ½ a lemon Mustard seeds ½ teaspoon Turmeric Powder ½ teaspoon Butter 50grams Tomato 1 medium sized Cream 100ml Coconut cream 100ml Coriander leaves 2 sprigs Oil 20ml Salt to taste Basmati rice 200gms Process Dice the cuttlefish into approximately ½ inch dices. Finely chop the red onion Finely chop the green chilli Finely chop the ginger Finely chop the tomato Boil the Basmati rice Heat oil in a pan to smoking

Dev Biswal to showcase sustainable cuttlefish at Hasting Seafood & Wine Festival

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Press Release   Horrified that local fisherman are discarding unwanted cuttlefish, Dev   Biswal, chef patron of The Ambrette @ Rye restaurant –   is to give live cooking demos of a specially created   recipe throughout the Hastings Seafood & Wine Festival (15th and 16th September) to help boost its popularity.     Throughout the weekend, he will encourage visitors to try cuttlefish and less popular types of fish, whose stocks are at healthy levels.   The Michelin-rated chef has created a ‘South Indian style Cuttlefish Kedgeree’ dish. Originating amongst British colonials in India , Kedgeree which was part of the then fashionable Anglo-Indian cuisine , was introduced to the UK as a popular breakfast dish in Victorian times.   “Speaking to local fisherman, it appears there’s very little local demand for cuttlefish, one – who catches them is special pots with no by-catch – exorts them to Italy, where they are prized as a delicacy,” said Biswal, adding, “It’s a grea

Cheeseboard Theatre Tips

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1.        Add some flavoured texture to your cheeseboard by dropping plain bread in favour of a fruit & nut bread such as apricot & walnut or prune & hazelnut and serve it slightly stale, cut into thin wafer slices 2.        Fruit and cheese are a classic combination but give your grapes some extra character by serving them frozen – simply wash a bunch of grapes and shake off any excess water, place on a plate and pop in the freezer, serve directly once frozen onto the cheeseboard giving a more interesting texture with extra bite 3.        Add a simple twist on the traditional by pairing your cheese with fruit that has a sharp acidity such as: cherries, raspberries, gooseberries, redcurrants, nectarines and tangy plums – these work well frozen too 4.        Turn your cheeseboard into a visual feast by serving long celery stems in a vase of ice water. Team with a small bowl of rock salt too for dipping 5.        Radishes are a tasty substitute to celery

Crispy granary bruschetta, poached egg, spinach and a Port Salut glaze.

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Port Salut recipes with Jean Christophe Novelli Ingredients 4 eggs (free range, large) 2-3 tablespoons of white wine vinegar 4 thick slices of ciabattas bread 25ml olive oil 1/2 tsp dried herbs 400g washed baby spinach leaves 100ml double cream 4 egg yolks 100g Port Salut (grated) 50g butter (optional) Sprinkle of ground nutmeg Method On a baking sheet place the slices of ciabattas, brush with olive oil and season with dried herbs, salt and pepper. Place in a hot oven and bake until crisp and golden brown. Place on four plates or a serving dish. In a large sauce pan heat plenty of water to boiling point. Add a couple of tablespoons of white wine vinegar and season to taste with salt Once boiling stir with a whisk to start a circular motion in the water and crack in the eggs one at a time, bring to the boil and immediately turn down to a simmer, cook for 3-4 minutes if a soft egg is required, a little longer for a firmer egg and 5-7 minut

Char grilled chicken, leek, Port Salut and button mushroom fricassee, whole meal crouton

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Port Salut recipes with Jean Christophe Novelli Ingredients 4 x skinned and boneless chicken supreme's (cut into thin strips) 2 leeks, trimmed, washed and cut into thin slices 2 x spring onions (trimmed and chopped into thin roundels) 1 clove of garlic (peeled and crushed) 100g chestnut or button mushrooms (sliced) 100g grated Port Salut 50g breadcrumbs 50g grated Port Salut 75ml double cream 25g butter 1 bunch of chives (chopped) 4 slices of wholemeal bread (cut into fingers) 25ml olive oil 1/2 tsp dried herbs 1/2 glass white wine Method Heat a char grill skillet until very hot, brush the chicken strips with some of the oil and season with salt and pepper and your favourite spice, paprika is good as is cumin or garam marsala. Quickly char grill the chicken pieces until well coloured and cooked through remove from the skillet and keep warm. In a large saucepan melt the butter over a low heat. Add the leek and spring onion and sweat

Malmaison refurbishing Dundee listed landmark to create new hotel

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26 July 2012 Malmaison has announced that it is to refurbish the vacant Tay Hotel, a listed city centre landmark constructed in 1889 in the Scottish coastal town of Dundee. Interserve, the international support services and construction group, has been appointed as main contractor on a refurbishment project to create the new Dundee Malmaison hotel. Works commenced in June and completion is scheduled for twelve months later. The project forms part of the £1 billion Dundee Central Waterfront Development, an integral phase in the city's multi-billion pound regeneration of its historic waterfront, which will include the new £45 million Victoria & Albert museum. Around 150 full and part time construction jobs have been created thanks to the £15 million development, with a further 120 new jobs to be made available once the hotel opens. In keeping with the prestigious Malmaison brand, the structure is being redeveloped to create an international standard lifestyle bouti

Shahrukh Khan Attends Chak 89 Owners Event

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25 July 2012 The award winning Chak 89 Restaurant and Banquet hall owner Frank Khalid was all smiles when his special guest Shahrukh Khan turned up at the owner’s event. Frank who had invited Shahrukh a few weeks earlier was not convinced that Shahrukh would be able to make it because of his work schedule, but was very happy and surprised that Shahrukh Khan the king of Bollywood was able to be there. Frank, who had organised the event in celebration of the achievement of Chak 89 over the last year, was only too pleased to greet Shahrukh Khan, who is now a regular client and is associated with Chak 89. Chak 89, based in Surrey, just round the corner from Tooting, it is known for its connection with the one and only king of Bollywood actor Shahrukh Khan and it was not long before Shahrukh let his hair down, making Chak 89 his home. After enjoying his banquet meal of traditional Indian food that Chak 89 is renowned for, Shahrukh was in the mood to have his own way on the dance floor.

Alcohol brands must take social marketing seriously

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25 July 2012 Alcohol brands must take their social media marketing seriously and not be tempted to just dabble, or they could risk their reputations and a run-in with regulators. That was the overriding message from a seminar staged by Birmingham-based communications agency Seal, which was attended by representatives from 10 brewery and alcohol brands and the Advertising Standards Authority.  Initiatives such as the recently announced ‘Responsible Marketing Pact’ show the sector is aware of the need to act responsibly. However, the situation at the coalface shows that social media marketing is more complex than many marketers appreciate. The power and the pitfalls of Facebook, Twitter and YouTube, when it comes to complying with strict rules on the marketing of alcohol, were outlined at the seminar at which delegates were advised that it was easy to be seduced by the low cost and huge reach of social media channels and its value in engaging and interacting with consumers. Jason Nav

HUMOUR ME! A FAKE LAUGH A DAY KEEPS THE BOSS AWAY

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25 July 2012 • Faking it – 75% of Brits use a fake laugh • Comedy starts at home – two thirds of Brits prefer to laugh at their own jokes • Men top the comedy confidence polls Three in every four people rely on fake laughs to get them through the day, a survey has revealed, with bosses, work colleagues and friends most likely to trigger our guilty giggles. Where women use fake laughter to fill awkward silences, men are far more likely to use it to make themselves look good in front of their peers. And, when it comes to the age groups, it’s the younger generations (those 18-34) that are most likely to fall back on their fake laughs rather than admitting they don’t get the joke or find it funny. What people do find amusing, however, is themselves with over two thirds of people admitting to laughing at their own jokes and almost half believing that they’re the funniest person in their social circle! The findings have been released as part of a nationwide study on British humour conduc

Smoked salmon and pasta salad.

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This is a nice light and rather filling salad that is perfect for a sunny day, when you go for a long walk and want to stop for something to eat. Also take away the pasta and you have a really good dressing for a salad that goes really well with roasted beef. You will need. 170g/6oz pack of smoked salmon 170g/6oz fresh or dried pasta 3tbl spoons of extra virgin olive oil 1tsp whole grain mustard 1tsp horseradish cream Small bunch of chives Small bunch of fennel or dill Small bunch of flat leaf parsley 3tsp lemon juice. Salt and ground black pepper to taste. First get a pan of water on ready to cook the pasta. Once the pasta is cooked get it of the heat and into some cold water to refresh it as soon as you can. As to what pasta you want to use it is up to you. Personally any shell shaped pasta is best as it holds on to the dressing better. Now add your oil to a blow along with the lemon juice, mustard and horseradish. This salad dressing goes we

Innovate Services announces partnership with Mary’s Meals charity

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24 July 2012 Innovate Services Ltd, the innovative catering facilities operator to the education sector, has announced it is supporting Mary’s Meals as its designated charity.  Mary’s Meals is a global movement that sets up school feeding projects in some of the world’s poorest communities, where poverty and hunger prevent children from gaining an education. The idea behind Mary’s Meals is a simple one that works. The charity provides one daily meal in a place of learning in order to attract chronically hungry children into a classroom, where they receive an education that can, in the future, be their ladder out of poverty. Mary’s Meals began by feeding just 200 children in Malawi in 2002. Today, the charity is providing daily meals to over 650,000 hungry children every day in 16 different countries across the world, including Kenya, Haiti, Uganda, Liberia and India. It costs Mary’s Meals just £10.70 to feed a child for a whole school year. As part of its commitment to the charity,

Its ‘Party Time’ at New Forest Ice Cream!

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July 2012 New Forest Ice Cream, manufacturers of quality ice cream has added another exciting flavour aimed specifically at children, on the back of the recent success of the their ‘Party Push-Up’ product.    The Party-Time variant of New Forest’s ever growing Continental Range of ice cream, combines the distinctive sweet flavour of candy floss with the vibrant pink colour associated with the typically fairground snack. The Continental range, currently supporting 20 flavours is made without the need for eggs, is gluten free and as with all of New Forest’s products, suitable for vegetarians.   The success of the Party Push-Up, a duo of vanilla and strawberry ice cream on a clear plastic stick which is generously filled with candy covered chocolate pieces, just one of 15 varieties in the New Forest range of Ice Creams Lollies and Wrapped-Goods range, over the past three years has led to the development of the new flavoured scoop ice cream. Christina Veal, Director at

Scotch eggs.

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Now I saw them being made on the television the other day and it reminded me that is was such a long time since I had had one that I had to make some. Scotch eggs are something that you can buy quite cheaply but you never know if you have a god one or not until you bite into it. That is normally when you are filed with disappointment and ask yourself why did you buy that for. And that is why I have not had a scotch egg in such a long time.   So here is my recipe for a good, I would not say perfect scotch egg. You will need 340g/12oz sausage meat Salt, ground white pepper, nutmeg and ground black to taste 4 eggs Plain flour 1 baton egg 5 or 6 good serving spoons of white bread crumbs Now if you are like e you do not want you egg completely hard boiled before you make your scotch egg.   Like to have the yolk in the centre still under cooked.   So I bring my water to the boil and then gently lower my eggs in and cooked them on a simmer for about 7minutes. Then

Olympic party ideas, menus.

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Now the hard thing to do is you are thinking of doing a party on the opening of the Olympics is to think of a theme.   The easy ones are stick to making everything in to the Olympic rings, use onions rings, apple rings, pine apple rings, burgers with a hole on the middle and doughnuts with the right colour of icings on each one. Or do you try and go for a theme of a Greek night , London night, International night or just use the gold, silver and bronze in you decoration and food. Personally I would try and do all of that. Here is my attempted at a Olympic menu, you will note there is no cheese cores as I think the menu is cheesy enough as it is. Chef Wise Olympic menu. Starters orders   ‘On your marks….’ The Olympic flame, deep-fried prawns in tempura batter with a wasabi dressing From mount Olympus itself    Greek salad, dressed salad leaves served with Mediterranean cous cous, mixed olives, cherry tomatoes Going for gold , Thai chicken meat balls, home made with fresh

Keeping up with consumers: the challenges for the alcohol sector and social

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20 July 2012 Seal PR and Marketing The recently announced responsible marketing pact from the big alcohol producers was a welcome initiative, however, research commissioned by communications agency Seal shows that consumers and brand marketing teams are way ahead of compliance. Some 79% of respondents to the survey of 1,000 Facebook users said they engage with alcohol brands across the social landscape. Although Facebook dominates Twitter, Google + and Pinterest were also used by the sample to engage with alcohol brands. The survey also showed: • 90% of respondents access the internet daily from home • 70% use mobile phones and social networks are part of daily life for this audience • 68% of Facebook users visit the site daily and 48% of Twitter users log in daily. Seal’s experience is that brands are entering into a number of social spaces with the best intentions but a lack of detailed guidance is leading to breaches of the relevant codes. Social media’s attraction to brands an

Malmaison launches new summer menu

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19 July 2012 Malmaison, the luxury boutique hotel brand in the UK, has announced the launch of a new Summer Menu at its brassieres. The menus have been created by Head Chef John Woodward and his team, who have added some seasonal delights and exciting new dishes, including a seared yellow fin tuna salad nicoise, Greek salad with grilled halloumi and watermelon and, in the mains, guests can enjoy Cajun swordfish, delectable grilled polenta and more. In addition to the new dishes, the Malmaison hotel restaurants still include Malmaison's heartily portioned favourite Mal dishes, including the Mal's prawn cocktail, 'from the shore' smoked salmon blini, crème fraiche and caviar, the legendary Mal Burger and the delicious Cornish Crab fritters with avocado, as well as six different choices from the grill. In keeping with the overall quality of the menu, all of the beef on offer is naturally reared, grass-fed and dry aged on the bone for a minimum of twenty eight days. The