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society donor
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    North Yorkshire, sometimes La Flèche.

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  1. I am certainly aware of the Star Inn at Harome, ate there many years ago before Mr Michelin visited and had one of the most memorable dishes of my life: wild mushroom broth, a starter in those days. The ambiance is beautiful at Harome. Victor, manager of the White Swan at Pickering, was perhaps too anxious to learn about their plates rather than the quality of the food. His menu was also very good in those days. The problem with that corner of North Yorks is the traffic. During the summer months the line of vehicles heading for the coast makes life very difficult for ‘locals’. We passed through a few months ago and nothing had changed. Great to visit Ryedale in the winter but complicated otherwise which is a pity for us as we have extended family in that area. I look forward to trying some of the other suggestions. Today brought a recommendation for Brockley Hall at Saltburn-by-the-Sea; a little further north but perhaps also worth a visit.
  2. Dinner 2018 (Part 1)

    Beef Roghan Josh, cooked for me and delicious.: My husband has made enormous progress with creation of various curry recipes since he retired last July. It is always a pleasure to be cooked for and this tasted so much better than my poor photo indicates.
  3. I received a regular recipe email today proposing a chicken in red wine casserole. Nothing unusual until I read the list of ingredients and saw that ‘poire tapée’ was included. I had never before come across this way of preserving pears but very much want to try the result. I can’t share the original recipe, it can only be viewed in Europe; I did find a YouTube video on this process of preserving pears however so am sharing that instead: Has anyone tried pears this way, or attempted a similar process? In the original recipe the cook had a couple of entire pears that were diced and added to the mix. Dried raisins were proposed as an alternative but I’m craving those pears... The technique is traditional to a region close to where we will be staying in a couple of weeks so I’m thinking a search might be made.
  4. Ruby KitKats to make their appearance in the UK: https://www.theguardian.com/business/2018/apr/10/a-rosy-future-nestle-launches-pink-kitkats-with-ruby-chocolate
  5. Apple pie

    Would your green apples have been like the Bramleys mentioned up-thread? Odd that this topic should resurface after I saw my first Bramleys in years a few days ago! Entirely the wrong time of year for us in theory but they were huge and fresh looking and they reminded me of childhood apple pie never bettered. I need to go back and buy some, perhaps pie or a proper English crumble beckons.... The apples I saw were entirely green, I’ll take a photo if they are still there next time I shop.
  6. This is a fascinating thread, for readers in the UK I’m guessing that we will all be stunned at the sophistication of cooking ranges from decades when at best the average family here had four rings over an oven. The more modern might have enjoyed the luxury of an ‘eye level grill’, for US readers I think you would call our ‘grill’ a ‘broiler’ but I’m sure others will correct me if I am wrong. For us children of England in the 1960s / 1970s a division was whether your parents cooked with electricity or gas. Electric stoves had either solid heating plates or the snail shell style. The latter probably has a name more appropriate but I don’t recall it. My family cooked with a gas stove and in the early 1970s the country gradually shifted from manufactured gas, known as town gas, to ‘natural’ North Sea gas. Supply companies offered incentives to households to update their stove to suit the new ‘natural’ gas. We enjoyed a subsidised new stove: four burners, an oven with warming drawer below and, of course, an eye level grill. There were additional plate warmers either side of the grill I think. Our neighbours, perhaps anti-waste before such became a trend, refused the ‘upgrade’ insisting that their pre-WW2 stove be converted to suit the new fuel. My parents found that ridiculous at the time but with hindsight perhaps they had the right idea. Certainly my mother cursed the new stove on a regular basis but she cursed many things and not always with logic. I can still visualise that old stove, ‘cooker’ as we called it, on its curvy iron legs. Probably a masterpiece of early 20th century design. Today the size of homes in England limits most to some variation of a four burner hob with a single, or 2 ridiculously small, cavity oven. Only those fortunate to have a larger than average property might enjoy the comparatively expensive to buy and to run Aga or similar. The vast ranges that were apparently fairly widespread in the US would have been beyond imagination for the vast majority at a similar time here. Largely perhaps a result of the amount of space available per person. Rural England is crowded in comparison to many parts of Canada or the US (I do appreciate that I am generalising hugely here). A few miles south, across the English Channel, holiday makers have long been jealous of the Godin and similar ranges more common in France. Of course one needs to live there rather than simply visit for a couple of weeks each year to appreciate that for the average family a hob and small free-standing oven is more usual than a range. For the average urban living French family a UK style cooking set-up would, in my experience, be out of the ordinary. It is always fascinating to see to see how everyday objects have evolved, or not; and to appreciate regional differences. Good food can of course be made with the simplest of appliances. Toasters are a good illustration: toasted bread is equally good from a modern device or from a fork positioned over a fire. The former is no doubt more practical for families .
  7. Perhaps starting to get a taste for Suze, made White Negronis tonight using the recipe up-thread and, gradually, the mix became palatable. Very new flavours for us, a pleasure to explore.
  8. Aperol

    Hope you enjoy the Suze version more than we did! Off in search of alternatives for the rest of our bottle. Very inexpensive in Europe so have ended up with a lot to play with... Thanks @blue_dolphin for the direct link.
  9. Aperol

    I appreciate that this thread has been dormant for a while but as Aperol has become an essential ingredient for us of late I thought I would mention the Aperol Spritz again, a very easy to make cocktail available easily in France and England in the many recently opened cocktail bars (using that title in a wider sense than might be the norm elsewhere - these are often existing bars looking to attract new customers with special priced cocktails at early evening hours). I’m all but certain that I first found the recipe on eGullet, if not it would have been via Robert Hess: Aperol Spritz per person 60ml Champagne (sure it will also be good with other dry white that sparkles) 50ml soda water 40ml Aperol Served over ice in a long glass. We often double the wine for a longer drink at home. During our last Paris trip we noted that several bars were substituting other drinks in place of Aperol, no doubt to vary menus while keeping drinks relatively familiar. We saw Suze as a frequent offer, a Suze Spritz being as above but (I know it’s obvious) with Suze instead of Aperol. A bottle of Suze was acquired to give this a try. We had already found that we don’t like Suze on its own but then wouldn’t drink Aperol on its own either. Result? To us, not nice. I will be reading around for other ideas to use up the rest of the bottle.
  10. Best non-stick cookware?

    I realise this is a response to an old post but having recently been in contact with Le Creuset I thought others might find this information useful. We have a good number of Le Creuset cooking pots collected over more than 30 years. Some 20 years ago we noticed that the nom-stick surface of one of our ‘fait tout’ pans was chipping. These pots have an all cast iron body and the lid can be used as a small frying pan. The whole pot can be used on the hob and in the oven and we find it an ideal size for numerous meals for 2. Aware that Le Creuset offers a lifetime guarantee we contacted our local retailer, they sent it to Le Creuset and in due course we received a new pot, this time the pan is lined in enamel, it is only the lid/frying pan that has a non-stick surface, we understand the version with all non-stick was withdrawn because too many people experienced the same problem. We still have the replacement and it is used most days. Very many years ago I came across a Le Creuset milk pan in a clearance sale, also non-stick. I was a student at the time and money was in short supply but even then a genuine Le Creuset milk pan at £12 just had to be bought. This pan is also used most days and that has been the case for more than 3 decades. Recently I noticed that the non-stick was starting to disintegrate in the centre of the pan base. I certainly have no receipt but Le Creuset items are easily enough distinguished from other makes (some, much cheaper, are very good). Remembering the lifetime guarantee I contacted Le Creuset customer service to ask firstly (with little optimism) did the guarantee apply; if not could the pan be refinished and if so at what price and if neither of those options was possible I asked where I might find a replacement. I received a fast and detailed reply. Yes, Le Creuset cast iron pots with enamelled interiors are guaranteed for life on a fair useage basis. Non-stick coatings are guaranteed for 10 years so our pan is certainly not covered and Le Creuset no longer make pans like ours so a new replacement is not an option. Very sad about the last bit of information because I would now pay a lot of money for another pan like ours in new condition. Le Creuset assured us that even though the non-stick is breaking down the pan is still safe to use. I am yet to see any detached pieces of non-stick in our sauces so continue with this pan hoping that one day I will come across a replacement that someone has had stashed in a cupboard for years. I search eBay regularly but in general pans on sale via eBay are in worse condition than ours. In conclusion then, I was really impressed that Le Creuset responded promptly and in detail to my query. We at least know that the enamelled pieces are guaranteed and that one can go direct to the manufacturer rather than having to recall where items were bought and hope they are still trading.
  11. Satay from scratch

    About to try this again at home with the leftover seasonings from the first attempt. Only difference will be chicken thigh meat rather than chicken breast. Won’t be making any peanut butter sauce, the PB stayed in France, not something we eat at home so guess the result might better be called Thai style chicken rather than Satay. Had to come back here to see what I did last time as hadn’t noted elsewhere.
  12. Would the people selling the business you are interested in be willing to have you ‘shadow’ them for a while? That might allow you the insight to work out which skills you will need to prioritise to keep it going while not taking you away from your sushi restaurant entirely?
  13. Like @chromedome we enjoy non-alcohol beers on hot days. The 1664 variety is palatable and refreshing. Having said that we have a crate of the stuff that’s been in store for at least a year. Perhaps says more about recent summers than the quality of the drink.
  14. The Food Photography Topic

    Fot those without equipment to stabilise a camera the ‘live’ photo option on an iPhone (I have a 7+ but I think the same feature is on other models) can help where tremor is a problem. Going to ‘edit’ from a ‘live” photo allows you to see the series of images the iPhone camera recorded and to keep whichever you prefer as the key frame, that which would show if you shared your pictures. Live Photo’s appear to be very short video clips and while the iPhone software will pick a frame as the key you don’t have to keep it that way. I am fascinated by small growing things such as lichens and mosses and have been amazed at the definition possible through basic iPhone photos. I need to improve food photos, while I have stunning (to me) pictures of lichens I rarely manage to capture food with anything like the same quality.
  15. Hello Captain,


    thanks for acknowledging my question about your beautiful cheesecake.  My PM still shows below on my iPad browser, dated 11th Feb.  


    I hope you have a good weekend end also that you can track down that recipe in due course!


    kind regards