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Kim Shook

England Trip Report

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They were the typical convenience store packages – triangular shaped hard plastic with a sheet of cellophane to cover. But they looked different….kind of good. And we were starving. So we took a chance. And they were different – and good. Really SURPRISINGLY good. Mr. Kim got the ham, Cheddar and pickle (British pickle, remember) baguette. Mine was the most ordinary sandwich in the world – egg salad and ham – on white bread. But the egg salad tasted really fresh, the ham was REAL (not slimy deli ham), and the bread was firm and actually tasted of bread. Another interesting thing is that there was egg salad and sliced hard boiled eggs on the sandwich – I’ve never seen that before and I’ve been having my egg salad sandwiches like that at home lately. It seems ridiculous to go on and on like this about convenience store sandwiches. They weren’t the most amazing sandwiches ever. But they were good – if 7-11 had sandwiches like that, I’d probably have them once a week for workday lunches.

I DREAM about British convenience store sandwiches in the triangular plastic molds. They are so ridiculously good compared to anything you can get over here. Cheese and pickle, egg and tomato, ham and cheese, egg and cress, you name it. Just fantastic fast food.

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Clotted cream to die for. So jealous.

Thank you, Patrick! I almost didn't post that because it seemed so silly to rhapsodize about convenience store sandwiches! Nice to know I wasn't alone!

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We`ve a local dairy up here in Cumbria just started making their own clotted cream , its fantastic....and the way we do it up here is butter first...then the jam and then the whole pot of clotted cream.


CumbriafoodieCumbriafoodie

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Is that available round the north west, Alan? Or just in the county?

I see a scone with Lyth Valley damson jam and cream........


John Hartley

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Kim, I'm really enjoying your trip.

Scones, cream and jam - oh yes!

Keep 'em coming. I'm making notes for when I'm in London (39 days and counting), and I'm busting to hear how you got on in France.

It won't be long now - just a couple of days left in England :sad: . Hope you'll be reporting on your London trip!

Glad to see you put the cream on first (though you didn't use enough :laugh: )

Actually, there is more cream on there than it looks like from the picture - really piled up on the back side. I kept urging Mr. Kim - "that's cream, not butter - PILE it on!"

Kim your enthusiasm and love of dear old blighty is bursting from the page. Even though I live here, i'm enjoying your trip immensely.

I too second cream first on your scone, it's like putting on butter first. Unless you're actually using butter, then it's butter first then cream then jam! Yum yum.

Thanks so much, Prawn - that means so much coming from a native!

Jam first here - in the Cornish way. None of this new fangled Devonish stuff for me.

Oh, nearly forgot. Actually butter first. Then jam.

And it goes on a skon not a scown.

Yep, 'skon' - I was raised with that pronunciation!

:shock: A Pringles vending machine??????? Be still my beating heart!

Must

Find

One

My husband would adore potatoes with a side of potatoes. :laugh:

And that butter...no tea for me, but I'Ohll take a bowl of butter and a spoon please.

Oh, yes - tell me why the bars in the US haven't glommed on to a Pringles machine??? And it's not butter, Shelby - even better the thickest, richest cream you can imagine. You can actually make it at home with good (pasteurized, not ultra pasteurized heavy cream). You need to try this.

:shock:

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Yum.

Did you follow that cream feast w gateau?

How ever did you manage without a cooler in the car to carry apples and cheese and crisps, in case of need? And of course, a new chocolate bar variety for each new day.


"You dont know everything in the world! You just know how to read!" -an ah-hah! moment for 6-yr old Miss O.

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Hi Harters , its from a dairy called Mawsons in a village named Seascale , west cumbria(mawsonsofbaileyground). I prefer to use "Dykeback" ( Hedgerow) Jelly on my scones.Basically its any produce that can be found `back of the dyke` ( hedge ) Last year i made it with Damsons , Sloes , Rowanberry , Hawthorn , Bullace ( wild plums ) , Rosehips , crab apple , elderberry , blackites (blackberries) .....it was fantastic on the scones , crusty buttered bread and good for sauces , pates , meat etc.

Raspberry and strawberry are still amazing though.


CumbriafoodieCumbriafoodie

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KA – We didn’t have a little cooler, but we really should have had one – it would have made life much easier. The candy bars weren’t a problem because we found them everywhere and we ate room temperature cheese for days – it just kept getting richer and gooey-er! But it would have helped with the strawberries that we bought – they were SO ripe that they were mush by the next day. And we did NOT follow the cream feast with gateaux! I think I would have rolled right down into the sea :laugh: !

Days 10 & 11 The New Forest, Winchester and Back to London

The drive from Dorchester to Winchester is only about an hour and a half, but we took most of the day wandering. We had read about Corfe Castle and since we hadn’t seen a castle yet, we wanted to stop there. I am so glad that we noticed that little marker on the map, because the castle and the village were gorgeous and ended up being one of our favorite places. The castle is a classic ruin and we clambered around it for an hour or so. The village is picture-perfect. Just outside the gates to the castle was Dragon’s Bakery:

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23-78k by ozisforme, on Flickr

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There was also The Sweet Shop – selling tons of candies, many ‘penny’ types. Old fashioned ‘boiled sweets’ to the newest sour varieties.

We drove down to Swannage and then over the ferry to Bournemouth (the busiest place that Mr. Kim had to drive the entire trip – kind of crazy) and entered the New Forest. The New Forest is beautiful – windswept vistas, wild horses wandering around and tiny villages. So close to the seaside villages and resorts and so completely different. We had lunch in Burley at the Old Farmhouse. The building was built in the 16th century and has been a tea rooms since 1904:

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OldFarmhouse008 by ozisforme, on Flickr

We started with the rustic pâté and red onion jam (served with a nice salad garnish):

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23-106k by ozisforme, on Flickr

The pâté was delicious. I need to learn how to make red onion jam, because I want to serve this myself.

I loved the sauce packets:

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23-105k by ozisforme, on Flickr

I had Tatchbury ham and eggs with chips:

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Perfectly gorgeous ham and another perfectly cooked egg.

And Mr. Kim had lasagna:

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This was our first taste of British lasagna. It was quite different than what we were used to, but very, very tasty. I now understand what my English stepdad was about when he made us spaghetti for the first time – I remember it was very meaty, but not very tomato-y! More of that goopy slaw there.

We stopped in Lyndhurst, basically the capital of the New Forest. Still a pretty small village, though. They do have a couple of food shops and we found these appalling things:

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23-119k1 by ozisforme, on Flickr

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I’m glad they have a ‘Customer Quality Guarantee’ :hmmm: . Seriously, who eats this stuff?

And what do you suppose this is:

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23-119k4 by ozisforme, on Flickr

We were a might raggedy and weary by the end of the day:

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Note the crazy woman hair.

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And the glazed stare.

So when we drove up this half mile long drive:

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Through these gates:

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And saw THIS:

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Well, we felt abashed and country mousey, indeed.

This is Lainston House – near Winchester and our last hotel in England. We have decided that our travel agent must have something on the owners because this absolutely gorgeous place didn’t cost us any more than any other place we stayed. It was truly luxurious – with a helipad, a spa, endless grounds, gardens, a chapel ruin and a resident falconer!!! As I sank my tired self into the 6 foot tub that night, I told Mr. Kim that I wasn’t leaving EVER.

Dinner that night was at the Old Chesil Rectory:

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23-177k by ozisforme, on Flickr

I have to say thank you to Mr_meanor for the recommendation. It was absolutely wonderful and the folks couldn’t have been nicer. We wandered in without a reservation and they accommodated us even though they had a large party coming in soon. We never felt rushed and had a beautiful meal.

I had steamed halibut, crisp ham hock, marrowfats, potato puree and red wine sauce:

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23-187k by ozisforme, on Flickr

Gorgeous, delectable fish. I am not sure that I’ve ever had halibut before and this was incredible. And I want to know how restaurants manage to serve such smooth, silky mashed potatoes HOT. By the time that I got mine that smooth, they would be at room temperature.

They were featuring a special menu of New Forest asparagus dishes, so Mr. Kim started with asparagus with truffle dressing:

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23-188k by ozisforme, on Flickr

I am not an asparagus fan, but the sauce was gorgeous and Mr. Kim said the asparagus was perfect.

His main dish was Blackmoor estate venison, potatoes fondant and creamed cabbage and bacon:

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23-189k by ozisforme, on Flickr

This dish was spectacular. From the delicious venison – perfectly cooked – to the supremely potato-y potatoes (never had them before, but I want to try to make them) to the gorgeous cabbage and the winey, rich, deeply flavored sauce.

We had the full English at the hotel the next morning – plus the cold buffet!

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The buffet was the usual things that we had come to expect – pastries, fruits, breads, juices, yogurt and the absolute best muesli I’ve ever eaten. There were at least 4 different blends and they were all fantastic with huge pieces of dried fruit and nuts:

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24-18k2 by ozisforme, on Flickr

Those are whole macadamia nuts and huge nuggets of granola – not the powdery stuff that usually passes for granola.

At Lainston House, a full English is bacon, sausage, black pudding, Portobello mushroom, broiled tomato and egg (no beans here, as Mr. Kim took pains to point out):

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24-18k1 by ozisforme, on Flickr

I still didn’t care for the sausage, though it was certainly better than the ones we got in London. But we both bravely tried the blood sausage:

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24-18k3 by ozisforme, on Flickr

And…we liked it. I think we were expecting something…well…clotty. But it was mealy and rich and well, dry-ish. Quite tasty, in fact. I think we’ll be ready for haggis if we ever get to Scotland.

Another perfectly cooked English egg:

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24-18k4 by ozisforme, on Flickr

As I said, Lainston House made us feel a little like we should be scurrying down the backstairs with a load of coal, but the staff was wonderful and made us feel welcome and comfortable. They went out of their way to make sure that we saw all there was to see. While we were wandering around one of the gardens, a gardener told us to make sure to go through the door in the wall to the kitchen garden and told us that since everything was organic to feel free to taste anything that appealed to us:

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24-28m by ozisforme, on Flickr

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While we were in the kitchen garden the falconer introduced himself and asked if we would be around for the falconry demonstration the next day. When we told him that we had to leave that morning, he told us all about the birds and suggested that we wander over to their cages to see them. He cautioned us that if we were squeamish, we might want to wait a bit since he’d just fed them. Nomming falcon:

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24-23k3 by ozisforme, on Flickr

We reluctantly left Lainston House and drove into Winchester to tour the cathedral. We had lunch at the Crown Anchor – fairly decent fish and chips:

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24-184k by ozisforme, on Flickr

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24-185k by ozisforme, on Flickr

This was our last night in England – we drove to Heathrow, dropped off the car and took the train back to London where we were again spending a night at our friend Craig’s. He took us to an Italian restaurant that he had been wanting to try called Stuzzico. It’s within walking distance of his flat (God, I hate living in the ‘burbs). It was good, but not fabulous. He says he’s found another place named Cristini that he likes much more.

I had the seafood and tomato sauce risotto:

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24-201m by ozisforme, on Flickr

Really nice seafood in it, but since I’m not a big fan of fish and tomato sauce, probably not my best choice.

Mr. Kim had chicken with a creamy mushroom and truffle sauce:

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24-200m by ozisforme, on Flickr

This was very good – tender chicken and a lovely sauce.

Craig had gnocchi baked in a creamy tomato sauce:

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24-202m by ozisforme, on Flickr

This was my favorite, actually. The gnocchi were tender, but not mushy and the sauce was tangy and smooth with cream.

Our last meal in England. I went to bed excited about Paris, but ineffably sad to be leaving this wonderful country that felt like home before I ever set foot on it.

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Kim, I'll never get there, barring a miracle, but one can always hope! In my dreams maybe? Did you see anything "witchy" in the New Forest? It's suppossed to be a hotbed of the Old Religion... :wink:


"Commit random acts of senseless kindness"

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I'm glad you enjoyed the blood sausage. We always call it black pudding. Due to my Grandfather loving it (it's popular in Trinidad too) I always loved it (before I was vegetarian of course). To me, a full english is a sorry sight if there isn't black pudding!

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To me, a full english is a sorry sight if there isn't black pudding!

You must have northern genes, Jenni.

A full English isn't a full English unless there's black pud. And a "proper" one doesnt have beans - tomato and mushroom, yes, but that's as much a contribution to your "five a day" as you expect at brekkie.


John Hartley

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I always find it odd how tourists are drawn into the Crown and Anchor pub in Winchester - it must be my least visited pub in the town (Nothing particularly bad about it mind you - just not a lot of positive either!)


I love animals.

They are delicious.

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Kim, I'll never get there, barring a miracle, but one can always hope! In my dreams maybe? Did you see anything "witchy" in the New Forest? It's suppossed to be a hotbed of the Old Religion... :wink:

Actually Burnley seemed to be a veritable center of 'witchy' activity - in a very commercial, showy way. That kind of stuff makes my teeth itch, so we stayed away. But driving through the quieter areas you could see how sincere folk (not 'folke' :wink: ) would be inspired by the atmosphere.

I always find it odd how tourists are drawn into the Crown and Anchor pub in Winchester - it must be my least visited pub in the town (Nothing particularly bad about it mind you - just not a lot of positive either!)

No - it was only 'fine' - not great. Honestly, we were SO tired and worn out and sad to be finishing up our time in England and we just needed to eat. It was on the way to the car park from the cathedral and handy. Not the best choice for our penultimate meal, I agree.

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Lovely report. Now I'm hungry again. :smile:


"You dont know everything in the world! You just know how to read!" -an ah-hah! moment for 6-yr old Miss O.

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Thanks, really enjoyed that but its streaky bacon for me and I'm now going to call my new dog Mr Kim (no resemblance)

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I'm still enjoying the report, but I just wanted to mention two things:

Florida chicken - think oranges, orange juice, orange rind (also onion, celery, pepper, zucchini, and baby corn).

And I'm pretty sure that was a field of mustard, not rapeseed.

Just my two cents worth.

Now back to your wonderful report! I'm loving it!

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