Sunday, 31 March 2013

The Wick At Both Ends - Review

Sadly, an orb floated over the "Ends" bit.
I'm perilously close to falling off the wagon with this food blogging malarkey. The horse is racing away and I'm hanging onto the back of my clunky wagon, perhaps with both hands but possibly only one. My legs are certainly flailing though.

I've had an awful cold, a super new job (hello any bosses reading this!), the search for a new flat and it's all meant that I've become a bit more relaxed about writing and cooking.

What am I still doing though? EATING OUT, that's what.

Anyway, don't panic because I'm far too greedy to ever stop eating and as soon as I get my mind back, I'll be on at you all again. In the meantime, you may now read about the time I was invited to road-test the new Spring menu at the Wick At Both Ends on West Street.

GOING UP WEST TO THE WICK
Food Review: The Wick at Both Ends
Address: 151 West Street, Sheffield S1 4EW

Visit Laura's blog at www.meanmuncher.blogspot.com
It really is refreshing to visit The Wick At Both Ends (henceforth TWABE, for the sake of my word count) with a clear head. The last time I was here, I was treated to a flambéed lemon cheesecake shot which also doubled up as a Men in Black ‘Neuralyzer’, causing me to lose all memory between the hours of 11pm and 6.30am.

This time though, sober and strained from work, I stumbled into TWABE to sample the new menu and was immediately tranquilized - not by the alcohol – but by the dreamy low-ceiling, the nooks and crannies strewn with entwined fairy lights and ivy, the muted candles and dark wood flooring. I thought to myself “Wow, it’s good at night and it’s great in the day…I wonder where they get the name from?”

TWABE is more Division Street than West Street but I’m glad it’s chosen the latter as its home. It’s a bit like Caitlin Moran writing for the Times: she doesn’t just take the easy Grauniad route and preach to the converted. TWABE is the same sort of thing and West Street is all the better for it.

My guest ordered a selection of 3 small plates for £10: welsh cockle pies, mini cottage pies and a carpaccio of duck. I decided to gallantly sample the mushroom burger (£6.95) with an extra helping of Y-Fenni mustard and ale cheese.


Now, I don’t want to get too brown-nosey about the burger but this one does beat almost all of the offerings from dedicated burger restaurants. I’ll try to tell you why because after all, that’s why I’m here, isn’t it? It’s the bun – which is so soft and brioche-like, it’s the chips which – shock horror – are included in the price and it’s the piece of information, underneath the burger selection, that doesn’t just say “add cheddar” but permits you to add ANY cheese from the cheeseboard to your burger.


We were similarly impressed by the Welsh cockle pies which, once you broke through the delightful crispy pastry on top, were full of creamy sauce, bacon, leeks and fairly obviously, cockles. These were the pinnacle of the show and are highly recommended. The cottage pie was, well, a cottage pie and it would be silly to expect anything other than a homemade-tasting pot of beef and peas in a gravy sauce (the rich, red wine element being slightly lost) topped with mash. Nothing bad about that though and certainly a safe choice.


And finally was the carpaccio of duck, which was delightful in itself with the port and cherry reduction but - and now I’m being really picky - didn’t need the extra garnish of glacé cherries; a bit like a supremely good-looking bloke wearing too much expensive aftershave.


To finish off, we took 2 of the 3 desserts (which can cleverly be used as 1 of your 3 small plates for £10): cheesecake with a raspberry coulis and freshly baked cookies with ice cream. The other option is baked chocolate fondant served in a teacup, which for me completes perhaps the most faultless trio of desserts on offer in any restaurant, any where.

The fair prices, the quiet, the warmth, the good music, the service and the quality and choice of the food mean that, for me, TWABE is a Sheffield meal you can’t afford to miss out on.

The Wick at Both Ends on Urbanspoon

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Saturday, 23 March 2013

Wagamamas - Review

Itame Yasai - £8.65

I don't really think there is any point in writing introductions to my Mercury reviews anymore. First of all, my reviews introduce themselves and second of all, posting them on here, a few days after they have been published on the site is such a, well, routine. And routines exist, I suppose, so pointless explanations like this don't have to.

FULL OF EASTERN DELIGHT
Food Review: Wagamama
Address: 2 Leopold Square, Sheffield S1

Visit Laura's blog at www.meanmuncher.blogspot.com
As much as I try to concentrate on local, independent operations in Sheffield, you sometimes just want to sack off all the risk-taking and run along to the old-faithful. It’s a bit like Sunita’s affair on Coronation Street – in the end, she just wanted to be back with solid and dependable Dev. Sometimes familiarity is the nicest thing.

After being seated at one of the large canteen-style benches at the Leopold Sqaure branch, a friendly waiter came over to ask whether we had been to Wagamamas before.

Now, if the restaurant worked in an unconventional way like, I don’t know, you had to write your menu choices on your forehead and recite the lyrics of Food Glorious Food for someone to come and take your order then it might make sense to explain it. Wagamamas just works like any other restaurant though and so I think what they’re trying to say here is that it’s possible that not all your dishes will arrive at the same time.

If you’re a bit wary about Japanese food, thinking it’s all uncooked fish and weird, salty tasting sauces, you should definitely order a katsu curry. You will be fed either healthy chicken or obese chicken (the chickens are, as far as I know, uniformly farmed but the fried stuff will make you obese and the grilled stuff might make you thin) covered in chip shop curry sauce (£9.40). There is also a deep-fried veggie option (obese) which I ordered (£8.45). Katsu curry is so cutting edge that I don’t think the Japanese have even discovered it yet. The fools!

The traditional Japanese dish: Yasai Katsu Curry - £8.45
My fellow diner ordered Itame Yasai (£8.65), which is also newly available with prawns (£10.85) or chicken (£9.75). The itame contains a ton of fresh ingredients for the price you pay: beansprouts, chillies, red and spring onions, bok choi, pepper and mushrooms.

Wagamamas are perhaps the only company I know to suffer from reverse Creme Egg syndrome. What I mean by this is that usually, everyone complains that manufacturers make their products smaller (whilst simultaneously increasing the price “to take account of inflation” aka to buy a new company car).

Now, ruling out the fact that I have unwittingly become Benjamin Button, I believe that over the years, the portions have expanded. This is a company policy that should be applauded and applied to boobs, wine bottles and Jammy Dodgers; wouldn’t THAT be a party you’d want to be invited to?Having said all that, when you go to these chains you do hope that the economies of scale are paying off. In return for sacrificing any hint of passion or individuality, you should expect to pay less than, say, a family-run noodle bar.

What makes me sad about Wagamamas is the price of the desserts. A slice of (admittedly, very tasty) white chocolate and ginger cheesecake costs a whopping £5.10. They’re just pushing their luck a bit, aren’t they? Let’s conservatively assume that there are 12 slices per 1 mass-produced cheesecake. Do a bit of maths and you will soon discover that this cheesecake is worth £61.20.

A 'taster' dessert (white chocolate and ginger cheesecake) with a double espresso. This is a new thing they do that I didn't mention in the review because I ran out of words. Very good though. 
Shave a quid off the desserts, keep making the portions bigger and I’m yours, Wagas.

Wagamama on Urbanspoon

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Sunday, 17 March 2013

The Rainbow Cake



One of the greatest annoyances I bestow on anyone who knows me is that I never live in the present. I either wallow in the past or worry about the future. If we go on holiday, instead of being excited on my last day at work, I worry about how shit I’ll feel when I get back in the office after the holiday.

It’s very annoying for everyone concerned because it means that even the most exciting parts of life are made ordinary; I suppose I am the John Coffey of happiness.

Anyway, this personality deformity obviously applies acutely to birthdays and it was my birthday the other day. I didn’t want to have the annual farce of dreading the feeling of having had the birthday and therefore not looking forward to the birthday, even though the birthday hadn’t happened and I never properly looked forward to it in the first place because I was too sad about it being over.

And so I thought that in the two weeks leading up to my birthday, I would make a terrific song and dance about it. I don’t like imposing songs and dances on other people because sometimes, when certain people insist that I attend a song/dance on behalf of them, I dread going. And I would hate to think that someone was dreading attending something I’d got myself into such a frenzy about organising (so much so that I’d briefly considered getting sectioned).

So yes, I decided to make my own personal song and dance and then tell everyone about it so they could pretend they were there. And if they were dreading being there, they could, like, not read this post.

I decided to make the most labour-intensive, disgustingly sweet, embarrassingly kitsch, fashion-foody cake I could find: The Rainbow Cake. YUCK. I am a total hypocrite, by the way; if you admit to that, does it assuage the hypocrisy?


 So, happy bloody birthday to me. The weeks of planning and eBay ordering and visits to Tesco and sourcing of egg whites and researching how to do this and how to do that have meant that for me, at least, my birthday has been SUCH an event (briefly scuppered when I saw a magazine in the newsagents telling the world how to do a much easier and probably better-tasting version of this cake but whatever, I was too far down the line to change).


 I got the original recipe from Whisk Kid who, as far as I can tell, invented this cake. It’s not for the fainthearted: 19 egg whites (NO YOLKS!), just under a kilogram of butter, too much sugar to comprehend, enough e-numbers to see you safely off to the ozone layer and the most ridiculous, notoriously temperamental icing (Swiss Meringue Buttercream).  

The lazy-man's alternative to a life-sentence of egg separation.
Surprisingly, everything went….well….okay. If my kitchen was a person, it would have been packing its bags and making its way down to the Priory for a long stay. Thankfully though, it’s a room in a house.


 I won’t go into the ins and outs of this but I found this tutorial very useful, the food colourings were bought from this ebay seller, which was recommended to me by Alice. Alice’s post was also extremely useful…with a cautionary tale that saved my bacon!


 Luckily, I found a lot of helpers to eat the cake for me. This is not my kind of cake…it’s too sweet and Amercian-y tasting. I also didn’t really like the flavour of the buttercream, which was flavoured with lemon extract….and I love lemon! This was made purely for the challenge and the photos! Enjoy!

This is ME! On my BIRTHDAY!

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Saturday, 16 March 2013

Silversmiths - Review

Here I am! Better late than never! Or maybe that isn't true. Some things would be better if they never happened. Anyway, here is my review of Silversmiths:


WORTHY OF MORE THAN SILVER
Food Review: Silversmiths
Address: 111 Arundel Street, Sheffield S1

Visit Laura's blog at www.meanmuncher.blogspot.com
After last week’s little jolly into the world of takeaway, I’m now back in the zone and perhaps most crucially of all, back in a restaurant. I wanted the best: service, ambience, food and company and so I plumped for what can only be described as a celebrity restaurant. Silversmiths is a celebrity because it once played host to a celebrity chef (the sweary one, not the school dinner one), who shouted a lot and told them what to do.

I had booked my table earlier in the day and toyed with the idea of giving myself a pseudonym. This is what restaurant critics sometimes do, you see, so they don’t get superior treatment when the restaurant works out who they are.

Now, unlike those idiots, I would actually love to get preferential treatment and so I considered such false names as “Beyonce” and (to make it a bit more realistic) “Sean Bean”. However, my friend wisely reminded me that I had a duty of care as a reviewer and that I should therefore retain my own name to ensure total anonymity.

Silversmiths is located just behind the Sheffield Hallam students’ union and very near to the train station. The restaurant itself is unusual. There is a long, lone bench, split up into black leather sofas. This means that you dine very publically and very close to others. A man next to me, having just been shown to his seat, exclaimed “This isn’t what I imagined at all! I don’t like it...”

I do like it though. Too many times, I have wrongly assumed restaurant booths to be soundproofed, private chambers where unremitting gossip cannot be overheard by others. Too often, this has not been the case and I would say that restaurant booths are almost entirely responsible for my depleted social circle.

We chose to sample 2 courses for £14.90, which is a deal available on Wednesdays and Thursdays. Both of us decided on mains and desserts - not because there was anything wrong with the starters - but simply because we love a cake.

I went for the cauliflower pie and my friend enjoyed some ‘loose birds’ (I’m too into womens’ lib for the joke in your head). This dish consisted of free-range chicken terrine and Wentworth pheasant terrine, sticky cabbage and creamed leeks. We were both impressed with our mains, although you will need a side or two to share (£2.95 each) to pad it out.

The pie! And peas!

Lads! Loose birds just 4 U!!!
I then had a bit of a Sliding Doors fiasco with the desserts. After spending an age debating between baked vanilla cheesecake and flourless dark chocolate cake, I decided on the chocolate. As if there was some mighty force laughing at my gaffe, the waitress mistakenly brought out the cheesecake and I wish I had accepted it. There was nothing wrong per se with the chocolate cake (apart from the beetroot sorbet, which I think I am too much of a barbarian to ‘get’) but the cheesecake had looked incredible. My friend took a honey and lemon panna cotta and we both agreed that this was a perfect palette-cleanser, wonderfully textured and a sure fire winner.

I would have happily settled for raspberry sorbet but this stuff is BEETROOT!

Silversmiths on Urbanspoon

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Monday, 11 March 2013

An Italian dinner party in York

An amuse-bouche // hors d'œuvres (I can never remember the difference) of artichokes, peppers, these delicious cheesy bite things, olives and riiight over there in the distance, sundried tomatoes.

York has always been a weird one for me. I have tried to live there twice now but it just never works out. The first time round, I lived at the university, in accommodation that was so dilapidated and awful-looking that it was nicknamed “Cell Block C”. It has since been demolished and rebuilt.

Here is a quote from “Barny” on the Student Room forum: Yep, theres (sic) no denying cell block c is a hell-hole, its (sic) called cell block for a reason. Was voted worst uni accommodation (sic) for 3 years in a row I think!?”

Anyway, that’s enough from you, Barny. I stayed there for 10 weeks and then decided mid-Christmas holiday that I was done. So my mum, brother and I drove furiously up to York and packed everything up into bin bags. Belongings included my duvet, which was covered in sick because I’d puked up a few days before we broke up for Christmas and hadn’t bothered to wash the sheets and a 4-way plug also covered in sick (in hindsight, a very vomity hazard). We drove home, relieved.

I think the problem with York is that it’s not a city. I mean, it IS a city but it shouldn’t be. The mentality of a lot of the people there is one of small-town. Why did the Vikings settle there? I have no idea; maybe they didn’t care about being cosmopolitan, decent nights out and having a cool youth culture. I mean, it can’t be a city just by virtue of having a Minster because Rotherham has a Minster and well, yeah – I needn’t say anything more.

But now – now I don’t live there – I’ve started to like it a bit more. I go up there every now and then because one of my most wonderful friends lives there (the Italian). She is the most talented chef (she will deny this) and she knows exactly where in York to go to buy the most wonderful ingredients. Perhaps she is the love child of Antonio Carluccio and that other famous Italian chef Nigellissima. She almost MAKES me want to live in York again – third time lucky?

So last Friday evening, I popped up for a night of sophistication, deliciousness, good company and astonishing generosity from the Italian. I might bully her into writing out one of these recipes for the blog because when I ask “HOW DID YOU DOOOO THIS?” she names a cheese I have never heard of and then says: “I made it into a quiche!”


Starter #1 - a homemade mushroom (and loads of other nice stuff) sort of pate wrapped in filo pastry.



Starter #2: Asparagus and burrata quiches (sooooo good).



Starter #3: Brie on bread, drizzled in truffle oil, mmmmm.


Main course: Homemade saffron gnocchi (sooo good, never eaten properly-made gnocchi before) and a creamy sauce with some nice herbs, I forget which.


And then....a TRIO, yes a TRIO of desserts! L-R: white chocolate and caramelised walnut semifreddo (WOW), a chocolate brownie recipe ("which I just adapted") with cherries and finally, a superb pistachio cheesecake.


And then, the morning after, I was treated to a special edition hazelnut espresso. For me, a weekend doesn't really get much better. 

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Sunday, 10 March 2013

Chocolate fondant pudding



Back in the 15th Century, we were ‘treated’ to the War of the Roses - where Richard was dumped in a car park and Henry gave birth to a psychopath  (well, his wife did – he waited outside the room praying for a knob) who ingeniously created his own church. Or did Cromwell do that? Or Anne? I’m not sure but whatever happened, the Pope was very pissed off.

More recently, though, we have enjoyed such delights as the Lord of the Flies, Stig of the Dump, Planet of the Apes, Dawn of the Dead and Night of the Living Dead.

Keeping well within that dynasty, I am now proud to present my own offering: Steak of the Puddings.

It’s not that this pudding is made out of steak or anything; that would be silly, wouldn’t it? Although there is steak and kidney pudding but that’s not ACTUALLY a pudding is it? It’s all very confusing, this pudding malarkey.

So, here is my guide to the Steak of the Puddings:

Steak tartare
I’m not into tartare but my mum is a big advocate, so I thought I should include it. This is where you don’t even consider heating up, let alone cooking, the cake mixture. Instead, you take a spatula and shovel (all of) the raw mixture into your mouth.

Verdict: An acquired taste but this method does have a small group of staunch devotees. Perfect for a break-up.

Blue
Blue is something that, for me, is still a bit extreme. You cook the chocolate only until the outside (the top of the cake) has formed a thin crust. Underneath this crust will lie luke-warm/cool chocolatey mixture.

Verdict: Yum. It’s good – it’s real good but it’s not hot enough and you feel like you might be on the verge of food poisoning.

Rare
Now. NOW. This is where it starts to get good. We’re still not talking about much cake – maybe 2 tablespoons of cake? The rest is a combination of warm chocolate sauce and warm cake mixture. This is my mum’s favourite.

Verdict: You would still look weird if you served this on Come Dine With Me.

Medium
We’re now getting to the point that, when you tip your cake out of the ramekin, there is a sort of cake. It collapses (because there is still too much hot chocolate sauce) but there IS the outline of a cake there. This is where it all starts getting a bit too ‘done’ for my liking.

Verdict: Most people will probably favour this stage because it’s cakey enough to be called a cake. If you’re serving this in public eg: not sitting on your sofa watching back-to-back episodes of Girls, you should perhaps serve it in the ramekin to avoid the splodge.

Well-done
If you tip your cake out and it stands tall, containing its sauce (think M&S advert), you’ve cooked it for too long in my opinion. Your cake to sauce ratio will be all out, resulting in a dry, chewy fondant pudding. No fun at all.

Verdict: Some people insist on having it well-done but only because they’re scared of dying and stupid stuff like that.

I would say that the optimum line of attack with this pudding is medium-rare (see picture).

Unfortunately, I can’t remember where this recipe was from. If any chefs and stuff read my blog (HA HA HA) and this is their recipe, please let me know, ta.

Serves 2

50g butter
A bit of butter, to grease
2 tsp cocoa powder, to dust
50g dark chocolate (you should use dark but I didn’t have any so used milk, which doesn’t give it such a choccy taste or look)
1 egg
1 yolk (massive pain, I know)
50g caster sugar
50g plain flour OR 25g/25g plain/self-raising works well too

  1. Preheat your oven to 160c fan or if your oven is very efficient, perhaps 150c fan. If you don’t have a fan oven, add on 20c to each of these temperatures.
  1. Butter 2 large ramekins (10cm diameter) and dust liberally with cocoa.
  1. Melt chocolate and butter in a bain-marie (or to be honest, the microwave would probably be fine too). Leave to cool for 10 minutes.

  1. Whisk egg, yolk and sugar until pale, thick and able to hold a trail.

  1. Fold in the chocolate mixture.

  1. Sift the flour over the mixture and fold in.

  1. Divide the mixture between the ramekins.

  1. Bake for 7 minutes (blue), 10 minutes (rare), 12 minutes (medium rare), 14 minutes (medium) – although all times vary according to ovens, so experiment plenty of times to find your optimum style. 

  1. Turn out into warm bowls and serve immediately. 

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Thursday, 7 March 2013

Chico-Chile - Review




IT'S CHICO (-CHILE) TIME
Food Review: Chico Chile
Address: 1 Orchard Square, Sheffield S1 2FB

Visit Laura's blog at www.meanmuncher.blogspot.com
This week, I went rogue, becoming a bit like a gastronomic Jack Bauer: I took the brief (“to review restaurants”), spat on it, trod on it and brutally hurled it into the green recycling paper and cardboard compartment at work. Yep, I went wild.

You see, instead of sauntering out one evening to a restaurant, to take pleasure in the service and the vibes, I decided to review Chico-Chile, a takeaway counter located at the bottom end of Orchard Square.

This place has been around for ages; first called Pirates Pastys and presumably selling pasties, then called Pirates Pastys but selling Mexican chillis and wraps and finally, the owner told me to come back this week for the latest renaissance, where the name finally bears some resemblance to the product. You might call this place the Snoop Lion of the culinary world.


I plumped for the Quorn chilli fajita (£4) and my friend took a diablo chicken burrito (£5). Now, Mexican purists might take issue with these dishes because ‘fajita’ generally refers to grilled slices of meat, served with cheese, onions and peppers, while burritos generally contain refried beans.

However, my chilli fajita (wonderfully outlandish in itself) was stuffed with lovely fresh lettuce and wonderful crunchy pieces of tortilla chip - not traditional, exactly, but both welcome additions.

The burrito was huge and was filled up with rice and (un-fried) kidney beans. We were so bewildered by the size of this wrap that we decided to place it on some postal scales, just to see how much weight we could expect to put on post-consumption. Impressively, it weighed in at just under three quarters of a kilogram.


Just to put that into perspective, 750g is (possibly, sort of) the same weight as a 6-month-old unborn baby and using Royal Mail, it would cost £2.70 to post first class within the UK. Don’t do that though because I’ve heard that posting foetuses is not regarded as particularly PC.

Now, where was I? Oh yes, at the takeaway counter. If you listen carefully, whilst waiting for your order, you will be sure to hear a gentle hum, followed by a distinctive "PING!" I feel I should mention this because some people will immediately and perhaps slightly snobbishly, dismiss these burritos as Subway-in-a-sombrero.


You know what though? Even Heston has claimed that microwaves are the best way to cook some foods (fennel) and if you want your hot food in a matter of minutes, then short of a blowtorch, you're going to have to suck it up. Just make sure you wait for 45 minutes before consuming, to let all the radiation settle down.

Is £5 is a bit steep for a takeaway wrap in Sheffield?  Not really. Because as you start to munch on this beast, you begin to wonder - much like the re-paving of the Moor - whether it will ever end. Unlike the re-paving of the Moor though, you really don't want it to.

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Sunday, 3 March 2013

Guacamole and tortilla chips



In 2010, when I graduated* from university with a degree in arguing hypothetical points without coming to any discernible conclusion, I thought that the world was my oyster! Three years of studying and pretending to enjoy going out meant that I was definitely owed a high-powered, thinking man's role with a generous salary and bountiful benefits in an ethical, forward-thinking and trendy but established and well-respected firm.

I fired off the job applications and refused to sign on at the JobCentre ("It'll just be a massive hassle when I have to sign off again in a few days, so I won't bother!")

After a few weeks of silence, I called my mobile phone network and asked my mum to send a couple of "test emails" to my email address, just to make sure that everything was in working order. I carped on about the recession a lot and angrily complained that I wouldn't be able to get any experience if no one would give me a job. But then someone did see my potential and after a depressing interview, they decided to give me a job. In a call centre, selling gas and electricity.

Selling is something that I'm not very good at. It's not that I can't sell...I'm sure, if you do everything correctly and act a bit cheeky, you'll get sales. The problem I had was that it required effort and if you sounded like you didn't care about the dual fuel saving and the direct debit discount, the customers wouldn't care either (not all of those propaganda-laden training sessions were a waste!). And I didn't care.

Laziness, though, is never very well respected at work and so I cleverly devised a little disguise by exaggerating my leftie views and embarking on a Marxist moral crusade.

"If people don't want to switch providers then I'm not going to force them into it just so I can line my pockets"

"I'm not gonna kill myself working just so those fat cats at the top can give me a couple of extra quid whilst they compensate for their tiny dicks with Bentleys"

And all these sentiments were based on thoughts that I did actually have but this agenda also suited my comatose state perfectly. It allowed me to become possibly the least successful employee at the company (an accolade I was awarded at a couple of other jobs too) until I was eventually and unceremoniously forced to hand my notice in after receiving a tip off that I was about to be sacked.

A lot of my colleagues sold hard. They said that whilst they were sitting in this hell hole for 8 hours a day, well into the evening, they might as well make some money out of it. And they did.  Their productivity was rewarded when they received significantly fatter pay packets than I did.

And although I couldn't be one of them, I did sort of admire their attitude; financially, at least, it made sense not to toss it off.

In cooking, it also sometimes makes sense not to toss it off. Some things are worth that little bit of extra effort. Guacamole is a dip that most people don’t consider making because it’s so available in its little plastic tubs in the hummus department and so why would you?

It’s really easy though and by making it yourself you a) know what has gone into it and b) can make it superbly chunky.


You will need…

2 ripe avocados
Half a red onion, chopped fairly small
5 or 6 cherry tomatoes, chopped into quarters
The juice of half a lime
Small handful of coriander
A pinch of salt

1. Scoop out your avocados and tip the flesh into a bowl. Don’t discard the stones just yet.


2. Using a fork, mash the avocados. This can be tricky as they are slippery little buggers. Use another utensil to hold them in place if necessary. Don’t mash too much – you don’t want your guac to be smooth. Or maybe you do!

3. Mix in everything else!


I also made some oven-roasted tortilla chips. You get some tortillas and cut them into triangles. Lay them out flat on a greased baking tray and sprinkle a bit of salt, chilli flakes or whatever over them. Place in an oven at fan 160c for 5 minutes and hey presto! Leave them to cool so they go crunchier.



TOP TIP: To keep your guacamole from going brown, you can pop the stone in and this should do the trick. 


* I did get a degree but never actually graduated due to my aforementioned breakdown, which resulted in me having to take an exam after everyone else had graduated. All very embarrassing. Here is a photo on the day of my supposed graduation. 


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