perfect banana bread

Recipe: Perfect Banana Bread

We’ve been on a bit of a health kick this week, buying only fruit and veg from the Grainger Market in an effort to cut down on the norm of pasta/bread every single day. The veg bit went well, but as for the fruit, well the bananas, despite a smoothie here and there, always outstay their fruit bowl brethren – and end up in one of my favourite easy bakes.

There’s always a few hanging around, this takes less than ten minutes to prepare, and I’ve made it so many times, this is absolutely a perfect  version for me.

(more…)

Read More

chefs' academy newcastle college

Newcastle College Chefs’ Academy

A quick one on Newcastle College Chef’s Academy. Perhaps not your first choice of dining destination, but the quality of the food the students are putting out there on a daily basis is better than I’ve experienced in some restaurants, and bloody incredible value.

We went on their Thai-themed night – pitched as “a Thai inspired sharing evening consisting of six Thai dishes and deserts” more out of curiosity than anything – expecting at best, good home cook calibre food. Wrong. (more…)

Read More

sausage emporium

The Sausage Emporium, Newcastle

It seems like there’s now an awareness/celebration week for everything these days, but surely British Sausage Week is one worth giving some time to? An absolutely British classic, perfect comfort food for these colder autumnal days, it should be about supporting British farmers and their quality produce. I know it is easy to give the supermarkets a kicking, but it’s usually their meat offerings which are weakest. Duchy by Waitress or not, they all seem to miss the point on what i want for my cooked breakfast/massive sandwich/pile of mash. It’s really not that hard to find a good local farm shop or butcher nearby, and my undisputed favourite at the minute is Knitsley Farm shop. Go and try it; thank me later. (more…)

Read More

summer 2014 (featured)

Summer 2014

With these 5oC mornings lately, it seems as though the sun has finally gone down on summer 2014, and my those depressing dark early starts and finishes will soon be back. While I don’t understand people who prefer the autumn, or it’s bastardised name “fall”, there’s something to be said for autumnal food – and no, that doesn’t mean Starbucks patented “pumpkin fucking spice” in everything. It’s stews, risottos, celeriac and kale, all things gamey and fungi. That’s all to look forward to, but for now, here’s a quick snapshot of some of my summer highlights in eating.

(more…)

Read More

jesmond dene house afternoon tea

Afternoon Tea in Newcastle

If I had a quid for every time I’ve been asked, “where is the best afternoon tea in Newcastle”…I’d have a few quid to spend on another afternoon tea, of course. Can’t get enough!

It’s a hard life, but over the past few years, we’ve tried most of them.  Here are links to some of my favourites, as well as some pics from some of the others too. Prices indicate “traditional afternoon tea per person” or thereabouts. (more…)

Read More

Hop & Cleaver (featured)

Hop and Cleaver, Newcastle

We went down to Hop and Cleaver during it’s opening last week. All things aside, it’s really great to see loads going on down the Quayside. H&C is the latest case of Newcastle going crazy over something which elsewhere has been, everyone has got tired of, and moved on from, but I guess it’s better than another vacant quayside restaurant. The marketing hype train is powerful at the Ladhar leisure group though, so as the heaving launch night proved, people just can’t get enough of this sort of stuff. Serve it on a tray, use more hyperbole on the menu than Jamie Oliver, be just “quirky” enough, win-win, right?

(more…)

Read More

Semibreve Supperclub (Featured)

Semibreve Supper Club

Supperclubs – all the rage, yeah? Skip the pricey “same-old” restaurants with their rarely-changing menus, go to someone’s house/unique special venue and eat food from relatively unknown but passionate chefs – sounds good right? They’ve gone from fresh idea to done-to-death quicker than Newcastle has gotten sick of “artisan” burgers.
(more…)

Read More

raby hunt (featured)

Lunch at The Raby Hunt, Summerhouse

Our visit to The Raby Hunt (DL2 3UD) was long overdue. For the past couple of years, it has been, and still is the region’s only Michelin star restaurant, with rave reviews from foodies all over the country.

Last week we finally got there, wahey! We had the three course lunch menu, which was good value at £28.50 and although the final bill came to nearly quadruple that,  to be fair, there’s no better way to try Michelin star dining locally without spending ~£80 each (+ extras +wines) on a tasting menu. I’ll not delve too much into the intricacies of  each dish, but here’s what we had on the day.
(more…)

Read More