I saw a programme on TV where they were making Beetroot cake and was instantly intrigued. I like vegetables but beetroot is potentially one of my least favourite, far too earthy for me, however chocolate is one of my favourite things ever so I decided that a chocolate beetroot cake had the potential to be quite nice.
I’m really no baking queen so went for the easiest recipe I found which was the Blitz and Bake Beetroot cake on the BBC Good Food Website. It was really easy to make, I simply put all the ingredients together in a food processor, blitzed and baked in the oven for an hour. I didn’t actually have the right tin for it so it ended up a little over cooked but was still really delicious and there was no beetroot taste at all, just a great chocolate cake! I was tempted to say that it’s a healthier alternative but there is still quite a lot of sugar so it probably isn’t.
Beetroot cake is also quite a nice conversation starter too since most people don’t put veggies (other than carrots) in their chocolate cake! What other unusual cakes have you had recently?
I’ve also spotted a few more Blitz & Bake recipes which I’m tempted to try next…
It feels like a life time ago already but it was only last month that I was in Madeira. If you don’t know too much about Madeira it’s an island which is part of Portugal, but actually more off the coast of Morocco than of Portugal. I’ve been there a few times as my boyfriend’s family are originally from there and since his parents have a house there it’s a nice place for an easy and fairly affordable holiday. Although the tourists there are usually a fair bit older it’s actually a beautiful island and we always have a great time; consume far too much food and usually have some fabulous weather too.
I’ve done most of the touristy things in the past but there were a few things we never got round to ticking of the list. We went up to visit Pico Do Arieiro which involves is a bit of a scary but enjoyable (and safe) drive. It’s Madeira’s third highest peak which leaves you above the clouds and is potentially my favourite place in Madeira!
Another place I discovered this year was Santa Catarina Park, a fairly small but truly beautiful and free to visit park. We ended up here after visiting the CR7 museum (not my cup of tea), it was a really warm day but the perfect place to relax and have a leisurely stroll.
We also stayed a few days at the Porto Mare hotel and I’m so glad we did! The room we had was amazing: large sitting room, a good size kitchen, a perfect bathroom, balcony and a huge comfy bed. We spend the whole day by the pool, drinking cocktails, relaxing on our pool floats and playing games. We made the most out of the pool loungers and inside pool, although we didn’t get round to trying the outdoor hot tub.
For dinner we went to Kyoto Da Ilha which we were recommended to by some of Mike’s family. They serve some of the best sushi I’ve ever had, in a beautiful location too. It’s a little expensive compared to other restaurants out there but pretty cheap for sushi. I think this has joined O Lagar with being my favourite restaurant in Madeira.
The following day, after a great nights sleep at Porto Mare, we had a great breakfast outside in the hotel’s gardens where we had choice from a huge breakfast spread and then went on to enjoy the pool some more. We had such a lovely stay that I hope to be able to book there again for the next time we go.
Boy did this post give me the holiday blues but check out my YouTube channel where I’ll be sharing my Madeira vlog once it’s been edited.
Last week I was invited down to Yeah! Burger in Kings Cross for a meal which naturally I said yes too, I simply find it too hard to say no to burgers!
It’s located short walk from Kings Cross station and the beautiful Granary Square in The Star Of Kings which currently serves Yeah! Burger. The menu is pretty standard; burgers, hot dogs, sides and fries plus the pup serves great cocktails too.
I had looked at the menu before hand and was set of getting a hot dog so I was pretty disappointed when I was told they were all out of hot dog buns, instead I went for the Yeah! Burger and the boyfriend went for The O.G. We ended up halving both so I could share my thoughts on the menu better.
Both burgers were really delicious, probably the best I’ve had this year (and I eat a lot of burgers) but I would say the O.G was potentially the superior burger, especially if you like avocado like I do!
For sides we went for the Tough wings and Yeah! fries, the wings were average at best but the fries were possibly the best fries I have ever had, it’s worth the journey just for the fries!
Dessert was a little disappointing as I wanted something like a chocolate brownie (I like to go all out when I eat out, no dieting here) but they only really offer the banana and ice cream one which we shared or ice cream on it’s own. Since I’m not a huge ice cream but love banana that’s what we went for but I know I’m the minority, most people love ice cream and would be more than happy with it as a dessert.
With prices of the burgers and hot dogs starting at just £6.50 it’s super affordable and I’m already planning to go back, the burgers are delicious but the chips are just absolutely dreamy!
Best. fries. ever.
I had been meaning to go to Sketch for a while and was very excited to have finally gone earlier this week. Sketch has a few restaurants and bars but we dined in The Gallery, which is decked out in a beautiful pink interior and is showing David Shringley’s work. It’s a really unique room and I love all the attention to detail, I didn’t get to see much of the other rooms but the toilets were pretty interesting too but I don’t have photos of it so we’ll save it as a surprise should you choose to visit there.
Although I knew that the decor was amazing, I wasn’t too sure what to expect from the French cuisine menu but I loved everything I ate whilst sitting in the lavish pink chair.
Now for me this isn’t a day-to-day restaurant but more of a special occasion, you can dress up and the menu is quite pricey, especially once you counter in alcohol. The starter menu was great, anything from salad, crabmeat and foie gras. I went for the escargots which came beautifully presented, especially if you aren’t one to usually try something like snails as they didn’t come in shells and were fairly well disguised.
Picking a main was quite difficult but after deciding I didn’t want fish or pasta I went for meat more specially the Filet mignon of Duroc farmhouse pig with sage, black pudding and brandy cream, pig ear and chicory salad which sounds so much scarier than it really was. I admit I really do like to try new and usual things but once again it was presented and cooked beautifully, no real sign of pigs ear or black pudding but tasted delicious. I also had creamed spinach which was pretty damn tasty, you have to order it!
If you don’t think that pigs ear and black pudding isn’t for you than I’ve heard they also serve a mean fish & chips.
For dessert I went for Sketch Chocolate which was nice but probably not the best chocolate pudding I’ve had. The macaroons also looked delicious and not quite as heavy, the perfect way to finish a three course meal.
The service was really amazing and I can’t fault it. Although quite a luxury restaurant the atmosphere was still quite relaxed and not pretentious at all. They also have the cutest tableware!
I then went home (after all it was a school night) feeling fuller than I’d like to admit and having had a really lovely night! I already want to take all my friends for a birthday or special occasion, I might also check out some of the other bars/restaurants.
If you are thinking of going Sunday-Wednesday then they have a great £50 offer online making it much more affordable and which we made the most of.
Would love to hear your London restaurant recommendations below.
A few weeks my boyfriend & I were invited down to try Turtle Baym a new restaurant in Walthamstow with chains also in not only in London but nationwide (Location list here). Turtle Bay is a Caribbean restaurant and since I have never tried much Caribbean food I was really looking forward to it.
When we first arrived we both ordered Cocktails, they were really delicious and I would highly recommend checking them out. The list of starters or ‘Cutters’ is pretty good too; Pulled Jerk Pork, Fried Squid, Garlic Flatbread, duck rolls and more. It was quite difficult to chose but we went for Garlic ‘n’ Herb Flatbreat and Chilli Fried Squid, which were tasty and I loved the Caribbean twist.
For main course we had Jerk Pit Burger and Double Dipped Steak both of which were nice but not really anything very special with the burger actually being a little dry. Looking back on it I wish I had gone for something a little more traditionally Caribbean such as one of the One Pots or Jerk Chicken. The portions were all quite generous, reasonably priced and we left feeling satisfied.
Overall I think Turtle Bay serves nice food, with great cocktails and starters however you could probably find somewhere a little more authentically caribbean in London as I did feel it was very much adapted to be quite commercial (as you would expect from a chain).
Have you ever visited any of the Turtle Bay Restaurants? What is your favourite Caribbean restaurant?