Eat well - travel often

Month: September 2015

London: Hotel Review – Novotel London Heathrow

London: Hotel Review – Novotel London Heathrow

Flying from London Heathrow airport to exciting destinations or coming in from afar and want a hotel with easy access to West London? There are a number of the big name hotels within a 5 minute drive of Terminals 1, 2 &3., I recently stayed […]

London: A Tourist In My Own City

London: A Tourist In My Own City

Mr R and I had a day off together recently. Sometimes you are so busy running around your own city you forget to take the time to be a tourist.  We took some time today to have a trip into Central London. The weather was […]

Black Diamond Knife Block, Knife Collection and a Giveaway

Black Diamond Knife Block, Knife Collection and a Giveaway

 A good knife is a very personal decision and I think most people have their favourites however there is nothing wrong in pointing out a good knife or set of knives, giving the other person a chance to try it.

I was sent Edge of Belgravia’s new Black Diamond Knife Block along with their Precision Knife Collection for review.

The knife block is an avant-guard design which will look sensational on any kitchen work surface unlike the traditional knife blocks this one will elicit comments from anyone visiting your kitchen.

Their Precision Knife Collection consists of four knives, all with soft handles which are really comfortable to use with a nice weight in the handles.  They are non-stick which makes cleaning easy however, like any other good knife, are not dishwasherable.  They only need a wipe with a soft, wet cloth and left on the side to dry.

The four knives in the Precision Knife Collection are:- Bread Knife, Chef’s Knife, Deba and Paring Knife.

The knives fit effortlessly into the knife block which will hold up to another seven knives.

Edge of Belgravia are giving one lucky reader the chance to win the Black Diamond Knife Block along with their Precision Knife Collection. To be in with a chance to win follow the Rafflecopter instructions below.

a Rafflecopter giveaway

Terms and conditions:
Only open to entrants from UK and USA, over the age of 18.
There is one prize of a Black Diamond knife block and Precision knife collection RRP £169.00 in total. There’s no cash alternative and the prize is not transferable. No part or parts of the prize may be substituted for other benefits, items or additions.

Great British Spiced Chocolate Challenge 2015

Great British Spiced Chocolate Challenge 2015

I attended the launch of The Great British Spiced Chocolate Challenge earlier this year when the gauntlet went down inviting participants to create a chocolate using over 300 spices supplied by the artisan spice company ‘Seasoned Pioneers’ and a fantastic prize offered by sponsors British […]

Travel Tip 1: Clear Glasses Cases

Travel Tip 1: Clear Glasses Cases

An idea I picked up for keeping small, essential things in your suitcase or hand luggage when flying. Mr R and I were handed some clear plastic spectacle cases one Saturday when we were going into the town. The following Saturday we were handed a […]

Mexico: With VeeTee Rice

Mexico: With VeeTee Rice

VeeTee rice have challenged some bloggers to come up with
a recipe using one of their new range of four microwavable rice packs.  Having just returned from Mexico City I chose
the Mexican rice (a spicy Mexican style rice with adzuki beans, sweetcorn, tomatoes and jalapeno peppers) and received a hamper with the rice and some items based on
the Mexican theme.
VeeTee’s new rice range is so easy to heat up in the
microwave in just 2 minutes. The new varieties are Spicy Mexican, Thai Jasmine, Peri Peri and Pilau.

I made some quick and easy enchiladas stuffed with
the rice and covered with a left over pasta sauce from the night before.  Here is what I served to Mr R for his
Saturday brunch:-

Mexican rice stuffed enchiladas served with guacamole,
roasted sweet corn salsa, mango and chili yoghurt and crispy tortilla pieces.
I prepped my salsa, yoghurt and guacamole first letting
the flavours enhance.
Roasted Sweet Corn
Salsa:
2 cobs of sweet corn
1 Tbsp cold pressed rapeseed oil
2 Tbsp unsalted butter
Small piece of red chilli
Rind of 1 lime
Juice of ½ lime
Salt and pepper to taste
Take the kernels off the corn cob and fry in a small
frying pan with the oil and butter already heated, stirring whilst the kernels
cook and brown slightly.  Add S&P to
taste before turning the heat off.
Put in a small bowl and grate the zest of one lime and
add the juice of ½ lime.
(this salsa was so nice I will be making it on a regular
basis!)
Chunky Guacamole:-
1-2 avocados, peeled and the flesh removed. (keep the
stone)
Tabasco sauce as per taste – I used the Smoked Chipotle
Juice of ½ lime
Salt and pepper to taste
Peel the avocados and remove the stone.  Put the flesh into a bowl and roughly mash
with a fork.
Add the Tabasco sauce and salt & pepper to taste.
Sprinkle with the juice of ½ lime.
Put the avocado stone in the bowl and leave it until
serving as this will help the colour to stay green and not go brown.
Mango and Chili
Yoghurt:-
¼ ripe mango (peeled)
4 Tbsp plain Greek style yoghurt (I used Total Greek)
Tabasco sauce as per taste – I used the Smoked Chipotle
Small piece of red chilli
Chop the mango slice and put into a bowl.  Add a small piece of red chilli finely
chopped, Tabasco sauce to taste and 4-5 Tbsp Greek style yoghurt.  Mix thoroughly and put aside.
Crispy Tortilla
Pieces:-
Take a packet of Mexican style wraps.
Cut two or three wraps into four pieces each and lay out
flat on a baking tray or stone.  Brush
lightly with cold pressed rapeseed oil, sprinkle with sea salt flakes, lime
rind and brush with lime juice.
Bake 10 minutes in a hot oven (around 190o-200o) until
getting brown and crisp.
Mexican Rice
Enchaladas:-
(using VeeTee Microwaveable Mexican Rice)
Heat the two packs of VeeTee Microwaveable Mexican Rice
for 2 minutes in the microwave.
Lay the tortilla wraps out one at a time and fill the
middle with the rice.

Roll up tightly
and lay seam down in an ovenproof dish. 
Roll each one up and place side by side.

Spread some tomato sauce over the top (I used some
leftover pasta sauce with garden vegetables).

Top with grated cheddar cheese
Bake in a moderate oven (around 180o) for 10-15 minutes
until the cheese has melted.
Serve on a plate with the crispy tortilla pieces and small
bowls of the side dishes.
Serve as a Sunday lazy brunch and think of Mexico!  Enjoy.
I was sent a hamper from VeeTee to create the
recipe.  All opinions and photos are my
own.
Mexico City: Contemporary, Vibrant and Colourful City -Part 2

Mexico City: Contemporary, Vibrant and Colourful City -Part 2

After all of the sights and sounds of Mexico City I had experienced it didn’t seem possible that we were only half way through our stay!  If you want to catch up on Part 1 click here. It was Saturday and the place to go […]

W Hotel London – Afternoon Tea with a Twist

W Hotel London – Afternoon Tea with a Twist

Afternoon Tea is one of my favourite indulgent pleasures – so quintessientally British! I was pleased to be invited by a blogger colleague Fiona who writes an extradordinary blog about London called London Unattached to join her for afternoon tea at W Hotel in London’s […]

Borderfields Cold Pressed Rapeseed Oils

Borderfields Cold Pressed Rapeseed Oils

I get excited when I see the produce I am growing in my allotment (half plot size) so try to imagine the sight of the 15 acre Innovation Garden on the Hammond Food Oils and Hammond Produce’s trial garden!

I was taken to a marquee in the middle of this 15 acres thinking this was a sort of Great British Bake Off but with veggies! I was there to learn about their cold pressed rapeseed oil branded as Borderfields.

At their Innovation Gardens, a 15 acre site they grow vegetables on a small scale trial basis to see if they are the sort of plant they want to grow commercially.  We were shown around the rows of beautiful and colourful vegetables.
But we were really there to learn all about their range of cold pressed rapeseed oils.
Rapeseed oil can be used instead of any oil for any purpose such as frying, baking, stir frying except deep fat frying.  It has a high smoke point allowing its use with higher heats before it burns.  It has half the saturated fat than olive oils, is high in Omega 3 & 6 (vital for good health and brain function) and high in Vitamin E.
You can easily trade across and use cold pressed rapeseed oil instead of olive oil and trade up replacing vegetable or sunflower oils for cold pressed rapeseed oil.
Borderfields currently have 25% of the cold pressed rapeseed oil market but there is scope for a lot of growth in this area. They currently produce 1,500 bottles per hour and are enlarging their range of flavour infused oils which currently includes Chili, garlic, lemon, garlic and ginger (a stir fry’s best friend!), basil and original, pure cold pressed rapeseed oil.

I have rainbow chard on my allotment but these were amazing and beautiful.  Chef Philippe Wavrin demonstrated three recipes each using the Borderfields cold pressed rapeseed oil.

This mayonnaise was so easy to make that I will definitely be giving it a try.  Note the beautiful golden colour that comes from the oil.  You can add fresh herbs, lemon zest or other subtle flavourings.

I tried a vegetable I had seen but never tried before called kohlrabi.  It is a relative of the turnip family and I naturally assummed it would be bitter. It is really mild with a slightly sweet taste and perfect to cut into thin match sticks and dress with the rapeseed oil mayo above.

The winds were howling and the skies were grey but between showers we got out into the fields to find out just exactly what was growing.

Even the weather couldn’t keep us from the vegetable patch.

Wish my cabbages had grown so beautifully! I think the wind in the fields blew all the bugs away!

Phil the head gardener of this project picked samples and told us all about them before slicing thin strips for is to taste.  You cannot beat the taste of a radish just pulled from the soil!

The only rainbow wasn’t in the sky but the different collections of vegetables and in ths case the beetroot.

Or the cauliflower collection!!

After our brisk walk around the rows of vegetables we went inside the marquee for a colourful, healthy and delicious lunch all based on the vegetables growing outside and using Borderfields cold pressed rapeseed oil.

Jaipur Slaw

Baked Beets with Pomegranate, Orange, Basil & Feta

Fennel Risotto with Ricotta & Dried Chilli

Lemon & Garlic Rainbow Chard

Mixed Cauliflower Rice

Even the serviettes had vegetable on them!

After a delicious and healthy lunch we had Purple Carrot Cheesecakes! There is not a child on this planet that could detect this was made with carrots!  It was really creamy, tasty and beautiful.

A cup of coffee, wellies off and we were ready to get our trains home.  Armed with some fresh veg and a range of the rapeseed oils we left planning to switch to a healthier oil!

I was a guest of Borderfields and Hammond Food Oils to visit their Innovation Garden outside Nottingham.  I was not required to write a positive review.  All opinions and photos are my own.