Thursday 27 February 2014


Last week Me and the OH went off on one of our food tours across the country, usually our destination is London but instead to break from tradition we headed North to our second favourite city, Edinburgh. Now when we go on holiday or go anywhere in fact, it is all about where we eat and drink, I tend to plan this very far in advance and then read menus up until the day we go. This post is about what we got up to and the excellent things we had to eat
The Hanging Bat

A new find and a lovely craft beer and gin bar. Below is the epic beef po'boy sandwich with mac and cheese and burnt beans and chorizo

The Bow bar/Queens Arms
Two of the finest whisky bars in Edinburgh. Many many whiskies were drunk.

Bramble Bar
Another new place, cracking well priced cocktail bar in a hidden location. If you find the laundrette, you've found it.


Vesper Martini

The Dogs

This place is amazing, simple food done incredibly well without fuss. plenty of offal for the more adventurous but 'safe options if you ain't, also one of the waiters reminds us of Richard o'Brien from Crystal Maze.

Devilled Ox liver, onions bacon and mushrooms

Pork belly with Skirlie (oatmeal, liver and kidney)

The Kitchin
A return visit to arguably Scotland's finest restaurant. This wasn't on the original plan having previously visited, but my dad was joining us for the day and there was no where else I'd rather take him. The lunch menu is a bargain, 3 course plus appetiser and bread for £28. I ordered a second pudding because I'm greedy and like puddings.

Pheasant Jelly with quail egg and Confit pheasant leg

Bouillabaisse with mussel and cod cheeks
Ox Leg with cannelloni of ox tongue and vegetables
1st Pudding - Pistachio Souffle
2nd pudding - Vanilla cheesecake with Yorkshire rhubarb

Circle Cafe
Epic breakfast at Circle Cafe

Under the Stairs
Another 'hidden away bar' serving one of the best meat and cheese boards I've seen.

Castle Terrace
Our final meal in Edinburgh, the sister restaurant to The Kitchin run by Dominic Jack.
We were very impressed with this place and it gave me the dish of the week with the absolutely stunning pork dish below, I've never eaten a pork dish as good. This was again £28 for 3 courses.

Manhattan (not much of a wine drinker, me)

Tartare of Gurnard with Yorkshire rhubarb

Selection of Pork with Apple
The selection: Pork fillet, Pork cheek, Breaded trotter, Pork belly, Bacon, Black pudding and Chorzio. Unbelievable value for a set lunch option. I would have happily paid £28 for this alone.
Creme Brulee

Mini Cheese course
Petit Fours

Wednesday 26 February 2014

Salted Chocolate Lime Mousse

One month I will not leave these blogger challenges to the last minute. I have had this recipe picked out since the start of the month with plenty of free weekends to carry it out in a leisurely manner but instead I end up cooking it right before the deadline, I'll never learn.

This month at Belleau Kitchen HQ our Lord Commander of Random Recipes as teamed up with Choclette over at Chocolate Log Blog with the always excellent We Should Cocoa blogger challenge. So as you can probably figure it out, this months challenge is a random chocolate challenge.

Also, the monthly Tea Time Treats Challenge, hosted by Karen and Janie and in residence this month at Karen's stunning blog; Lavender and Lovage has the theme of Chocolate, so I am entering this recipe to that as well. 3 birds with one stone if you will.

The book I chose is not random but it is a book I have not yet used and it is Our Hugh's River Cottage Fruit Everyday, the follow up to the brilliant Veg Everyday. The recipe I randomly chose was a Salted Chocolate lime mousse.

I was very pleased to land on this for a few reasons. I have never made a mousse before and I am keen to give it ago and the fact that it was salted chocolate was the other reason.

Salted chocolate is not a new thing, it's been around awhile but it is a fascinating piece of food science in which the actual salt does not make it salty (unless you pour it on) but instead suppresses the bitter notes of the chocolate and enhances the sweet notes, good eh?

The recipe itself was very simple but make sure you have three bowls ready as scrambling (not even sorry for that pun) around for a bowl whilst holding an egg yolk is a bit tricky. The end result was a bit unexpected and I think I may have gone wrong at some point, the picture in the book shows a dark chocolate mousse but as you can see, mine looks a bit different. Anybody got any tips?

The mousse, aesthetic qualities aside, was lovely, light and fluffy, very chocolaty combined with tangy lime. Rich but refreshing in a strange way.

The recipe is available here on the Guardian website, about halfway down, if you fancy giving it a go.