Archive for March, 2009

Give us this day…

…the smell of freshly baked bread.


Lots of lovely people gave us John Lewis vouchers as a wedding gift and so today I strode into the kitchenware department of that fine emporium with a fat bankroll in my pocket and only one thing on my mind. A bread maker.

Having mootched about online we’d settled on the Panasonic SD-254 at 70-odd quid, but despite showing 9 on the shop floor on the computer the staff couldn’t fine a single one. I could have ordered it, but that would have taken four days, and in that time The Barn Store, Londis, la Fromagerie and Euphorium would have probably had another £20 of us for bread, ‘sides I wanted it now.  They did have the model up in stock though, the SD-255 the only difference being an optional raisin dropping mechanism (on further investigation it can also do rye bread, unlike the 245)

According to (yeah who’d have thought!) the SD-255 is ‘the Panasonic SD-255 breadmaker appliance is the dream of every one who makes bread.’  Dreams can come true it seems.  However I fear the review might be a translation as its editorial integrity slides off towards the end with lines such as ‘The ultra fast baking option is indeed a gift for those who wants to be fast in cooking’. If you’re still interested, there’s a more a more comprehensive review here, as well as Amazon, where it’s scored very highly indeed.

So, the dog’s twitchers of a machine, £7 on Dove’s various flours and yeast, knob of butter, pinch of salt and sugar, and we’re just 4:42 minutes from a loaf love in… Now, anyone know of a good electric butter churner?

The roast beef of old England

60 day ages beef from the Ginger Pig

I’ve been getting into beef lately, for a project I’m working on.  And so to get me in the mood I went the Ginger Pig in Hackney where I procured this beautiful bit of bovine. It’d been hung for around 60 days, for another customer who then changed his mind.. well now it’s mine.  Mwhahahahah!

Tuckin’ in at Tayyabs

After inviting Chris and Niamh to sample some legendary Italian (dis)organisation and (un)hospitality followed by death by Powerpoint in Italian (and the odd dribble of olive oil); they very kindly invited me to a foodie chin-wag and nosh at Tayyabs.

The great and the good of food blogging London was there, spread over two tables like a wordy marinade and included hollowlegs, cooking the books, worldfoodieguide (bigger list here) They’d all BYO’d, except for me, who snaffled three bottles of Peroni from the Good Samaritan pub. Josh from Cooking the Book had brought a rose ‘that Waitrose recommends for a medium spiced curry’.

What followed was the classic Indian restaurant who-ordered–what-try-a-bit-of-this-ooh-that’s-nice banter, with the telling of tales and the odd rant (from me). The other diners looked on in bafflement as we all got up to photograph the special leg of lamb the chef had made us. Thus ensuring that the locomotory limb of said ovine had its 15 minutes of posthumous fame.

Then it was back to the pub, where schemes where hatched, but more on that later. Photos on Flickr.

Five things I’m doing instead of writing my book…

1. Blogging this obviously

2. Despite living in one the hardest water areas in the land my kettle is limescale free thanks to my scrubbing, ditto the crumb tray from the toaster – immaculate.

3. Trying to write a post ’81 version of We Didn’t Start the Fire by Billy Joel… A project Will and I started in Liverpool last June. So far there’s….”Space Shuttle, Acid house, Transformers, Danger mouse”.

4. Googling ‘how to avoid procrastination’

5.Oh, and finally getting ready to get married this Saturday!

This blog is no longer being updated

I've left it here for historical purposes. Please visit my new blog at


These are my personal views and not those of Channel 4 or the BBC
March 2009
« Feb   Apr »