Ottolenghi is renowned as a high-end food chain with several London locations. Opened by Israeli chef and author Yotam Ottolenghi, its popularity make reservations a challenge. Wanting to try it, me and my wife finally managed to book at table at the Spitafields location. Situated down one of London's typically curvy alleyways, it offered wonderfully colorful, flavorful food amid a happily sun-lit setting. Here are some photos of the food.
Before returning home from my trip to Europe, my friend Sabino suggested I go see Princi, a London-based Milanese pastry shop. Besides having a pizza oven, it bakes great bread. During my visit, I learned that it was partnering with Starbucks to make some of their baked goods in America. Stay tuned. If you get to London before that happens, try the Princi breakfast, it's killer!
Visiting London's Covent Garden, we tried a Peruvian restaurant called Lima Floral. After my previous Peruvian find back in New York City's Williamsburg, I was curious to try Peruvian food across the pond. Here's what they offered, all good!
A brunch menu, short but filled with flavor and choices. From the balance of starters to the bolder main plates you weren't in England anymore.
Visiting London, after eating a terrible batch of fish'n'chips, a friend warned me about the signals that should have first raised alarms. "The peas should be steeped dried peas," she said. "Not luminous green ones out of a tin!" Well, just as bad as the peas was the mushy batter on fish.
I gave another chance to this iconic dish, this time getting "a proper Fish'n chips," one that passed the test at the famed Fish Kitchen at Borough Market!
Thanks to Executive Chef Nick Melmoth-Coombs who came out to say hello too!
Below are photos of a visit to meet bakers Ben Rogers and Aidan Chapman at Bread Ahead bakery. In the process, got to meet the famous doughnut wizard, Justin Gellaty. Besides hanging out, my new friends let me serve as "bin bitch" for a load of hamburger buns, and then they served tea and doughnuts. No recipe yet but we're hoping someday as they were great!
Wanting to try some English traditional steak, Bready Ben" suggested Hawksmoor 7 Dials. What a meal. Fully packed, we got front row at the bar and were taken care of by Henrick,the Danish bartender. Great, straight-forward food and satisfying drinks. Spot on!
We interviewed Sabino Spadaccino earlier this summer via email. It was a great pleasure to meet him in person. Meeting at a museum to see a Calder exhibit, we then went for a lunch served outside in a garden. Wonderful people, art, and food. Lovely day.
Stir the Pots is going to Cuba. To be precise, we're going to Santiago de Cuba.
We will be there for two weeks to research the local cuisine and ways that this island is adapting to an emerging tourist economy. If you have any suggestions on great local chefs, foods (from bread to drink) or anything culinary, let us know. In the meantime, Jeremy will keep the heat going in the NYC kitchen.