Archive for August, 2009

Grumpy old Gastro

Friday, August 28th, 2009

I’ve got to state initially, I am not a food snob. I will eat anything, anywhere, whether its  fried calves brains eaten in the dank streets of Bruges, “Pattie Buttie” (colloquial Hull term for “hand raised potato and sage cake, infused with wild sage, lightly floured in local artisan flour and gently fried in a home made organic batter”) eaten in the equally dank and violent streets of my home port or pigs trotters, ill eat it. No bones about it mate, “what’s that, deep fried custard? Yeah slap it on” (true story). Everything and Anything.

Anthony Bourdain said the body isn’t a temple, but an amusement park…if my body was an amusement park it would certainly be one of those provincial death trap hell holes on my native east coast…Pleasure Island? …Food wise its had everything.  The worst things though (and I’ve had some shockers) are pasta dishes, chilis and stir fry’s I’ve had at my mates houses while at uni. What is it with students and dried herbs! All these dishes have been destroyed by the inclusion of these flaky portents of doom, come on kids, it’s like adding sawdust to your dishes.

Its a pretty common to see in most student kitchens vast armies of faded little  jars, hand me downs from parents and friends, their contents long since void of flavor and character, they are detritus, redundant…yet people still use them.  At least buy some new jars, actually, no don’t bother, pay seventy or ninety pence and buy some FRESH herbs.

Newsflash! They taste amazing, they are cheap, they look amazing, a handful of chopped flat leaf parsley, a sprig of thyme or a few mint leaves will transform your dish into something pretty special.

A Guide to Your Fridge

Thursday, August 27th, 2009

When you’re an all round athlete, training for the London Marathon, you need to be at the peak of your health.  You need a dedicated mindset, training every day and taking care of your diet, repeating the wise words of Gillian McKeith-’you are what you eat.’  Or take skier Joe Munroe’s more relaxed approach.  When your fridge contains nothing more than toothpaste, a loaf of mouldy bread and a skidmark, we think Joe’s taking the piste.

With the marathon approaching faster than a visit from Loughborough council’s health and hygiene department, stepped in and did the only thing best for Joe’s fridge.  Pimped it out.

So here’s our guide as to what Debbie put in there and why.

Full of protein and so easy to cook.  Just whack it in the oven at 200°C for about an hour and half.  No other preparation needed (other than removing the packaging…)  To check if it’s cooked, push your knife into the thickest part of the chicken.  If the juices run clear, it’s cooked.  If not, keep it in for another 15 minutes.  We got our chicken from Loughborough Market.  The butcher there will know exactly where the chicken’s come from, the farmer who reared them and the conditions in which they were reared.  If you’re concerned about battery farmed chickens or eggs, go to your local butcher.

One of the healthiest foods you can eat,  fish is amazing for you.  Most people don’t buy fish because they don’t know how to cook it though.  An easy way is to squeeze some lemon juice, salt and pepper over it then grill it.  If you want to know more, go to your local fishmonger, they’re the experts and they’re dead friendly.  They’ll be able to tell you the best way on how to cook any type of fish and if you ask nicely, will probably give you a student discount.

Fresh vegetables
Again, all from the local market.  We went there at the end of the day and got some real bargains.  The last thing traders want to do is take loads of produce back home with them, so they’ll sell it at a really low price, just to get rid of it.  You can use vegetables in loads of dishes, but possibly the easiest is a stir fry.  Simply chop everything up, a drop of oil in the pan, get the pan hot and then just stir and fry.  Serve with rice or noodles, it’ll taste great.

Have you got a fridge that’s in need of a pimpin?  Then let us know, get in touch by hitting the Feedback button on the Contact Us page.

Guide to Market Shopping

Wednesday, August 26th, 2009

The market is your best friend when it comes to food shopping. Markets have got much more flexible pricing than supermarkets and can offer discounts and round down prices where supermarkets can’t. Supermarkets are ruled by a nationwide company pricing structure, but independent shops and stalls are their own bosses-they can decide what to sell and what price to sell it at.
A lot of market stalls and independent shops do student discounts, but often don’t advertise them-don’t be afraid to ask them!
Independent butchers, fishmongers and other market traders are also likely to have more knowledge about cooking and be better trained than most staff in supermarkets. So, when you want to have fish for dinner, but have no idea how to cook it, or if you’re not sure how to make perfect roast potatoes, ask the traders and shopkeepers for their expert advice.

Ophirs Korean Experience

Wednesday, August 26th, 2009

The food I cooked with Joey has really opened my mind to try and experiment with other Korean dishes. I really like to cook for people so I re-created the recipe from the film recently for a group of my friends. Like me they hadn’t really eaten Korean food before and also like me really liked it!

I’ve actually started cooking a lot more Asian food. I like cooking it because ingredients are used in such different ways to most western cooking so it can be a challenge but it also teaches you a lot about how diverse some ingredients are. I think it’s nice to cook my own Asian food as it’s so different to the Asian food lots of takeaways sell. The flavours are far more prominent and the grease is kept to a minimum.

Experimenting with other cuisines is something I think everyone should try – generally I think you find that it isn’t as hard as it seems at first. Even if it is really hard it doesn’t matter if you mess up – just make sure you do that on a practise run, NOT when you’re cooking for friends!.

Doing the Right Thing

Thursday, August 13th, 2009

On Doing The Right Thing? We’ll look at everything about food and what it means to you. From what we choose to eat to what we choose to throw away, we want to hear your views.

Whether you’re passionate about veganism or angry with issues around recycling, Doing The Right Thing? is your place to have a say in what goes on with the food you eat. If you’ve got a view, we want to hear it!