Category Archives: Food glorious food!

Nigella’s Brownies :)

Original recipe with only Amurican measurements here.

Ingredients

  • 300g unsalted butter (I bought salted so used that instead and omitted the salt)
  • 340g best-quality bittersweet chocolate (I used 2 big bars of Spanish cooking milk chocolate. Not a big fan of dark)
  • 6 eggs
  • 1 3/4 cups superfine sugar (395g)
  • 1 tablespoon pure vanilla extract (I didn’t have any in the house)
  • 1 1/2 cups plus 2 tablespoons all-purpose flour (265g)
  • 1 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 cup white chocolate buttons, chips, or morsels
  • 1/2 cup semisweet chocolate buttons, chips or morsels
  • Approximately 2 teaspoons confectioners’ sugar, for garnish
  • Special equipment: Baking tin (approximately 11 1/4 inches by 9 inches by 2 inches), sides and base lined with baking parchment. (I bought a disposable cooking tray, for ease of transport to the party)

Directions

Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F. (180)

Melt the butter and dark chocolate together in a large heavy based pan over a low heat.

In a bowl or large measuring jug, beat the eggs together with the superfine sugar and vanilla extract.

Allow the chocolate mixture to cool a little, then add the egg and sugar mixture and beat well. Fold in the flour and salt. Then stir in the white chocolate buttons or chips, and the semisweet chocolate buttons or chips. Beat to combine then scrape and pour the brownie mixture into the prepared tin.

Bake for about 25 minutes. You can see when the brownies are ready because the top dries to a slightly paler brown speckle, while the middle remains dark, dense and gooey. Even with such a big batch you do need to keep checking on it: the difference between gooey brownies and dry ones is only a few minutes. Remember, too, that they will continue to cook as they cool.

To serve, cut into squares while still warm and pile up on a large plate, sprinkling with confectioners’ sugar pushed with a teaspoon through a small sieve.

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Bilbao: Casco Viejo Top Picks

Here’s a selection of images from my favourite bars in the Casco Viejo.

Mellila y Fez (Calle Ituribide)

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Morocan kebabs. The best tortilla I’ve ever eaten in Spain. Music. Welcoming staff. This is my favourite bar EVER. And it’s very affordable.

 

Gatz (Calle Santa Maria or Andra Maria Kalea)

Award winning pintxos. Never fails to please and really affordably priced.

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Motrikes (Calle Somera)

There are a lot of bars in Bilbao that are famous for their grilled mushrooms, but Motrikes beats the competition. According to urban legend, the recipe is a closely kept secret, and is worth a vast amount of money. All I know is that I love me some mushrooms fresh from the griddle!

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Urban Legends: Keeping the bubbles in with a spoon?

Compendium of internet research

Scientific American:

Says no

http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/sparkling-wine-teaspoon-myth/

Lifehacker

Says yes

http://www.lifehacker.com.au/2009/12/keep-your-champagne-bubbly-with-a-spoon/

Grubstreet says Yes

http://www.grubstreet.com/2013/06/how-to-keep-open-champagne-bubbly.html

El Portal, The Best Restaurant in San Pedro Sula, Honduras

After the espectáculo, the founder of the home took us out to a nice Argentinian restaurant as a thank you and a farewell.

Inside the restaurant was wide and spacious, with a tiled floor and a waterfall coming down an ornamental wall. The restaurant was packed with people celebrating Christmas in large groups, and the waiter took us into a small back room. We were the only people there and it was the perfect intimate setting for our farewell dinner.

 

We had a lovely broth to start with. This is really good to keep out the winter chills (it was only 15C outside…)

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Randomly, there were coffee beans in the salt, as opposed to rice (for absorbing moisture).

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Then we all shared a mixed grill from their own wood fired barbecue, which had a delicious selection of sausages, ribs, and rib eye steak. Yet another time I was in a restaurant where I was glad that I wasn’t vegetarian anymore.

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As we were leaving, this sign was a reminder of the dangers of the city.

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Nuevo Leon: YUM!

1515 W 18th St
(between Ashland Ave & Laflin St)
Chicago, IL 60608

Quality 5/5

Price * (of 5)

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Nuevo-Leon-Restaurant/141812145839662

Have you ever had a dream that you were sat at Mexican mother’s kitchen table, and she was serving you the best comfort food in the world because she’s been honing her skills as a cook for a lifetime? Welcome to Nuevo Leon, where every dish is prepared with love, bringing you excellent home cooked food. This is a great place to grab lunch after visiting the National Museum of Mexican Art.

Frontera: Mexican High Dining

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Address: 445 North Clark Street, Chicago, IL 60654

Experience: 5/5

Price: 5/5

http://www.rickbayless.com/restaurants/grill.html

Sumptuously decorated with vibrant paintings on richly coloured walls that seem to go on forever, Frontera is not your average Mexican restaurant. I love a bargain, but sometimes you really do get what you pay for, and this restaurant is excellent, with a price tag to match. Opened by a TV chef, it could be said that you are paying for dining at a restaurant with his name attached to it, maybe the food quality has suffered, but this isn’t the case. As soon as you open the menu you are given such a dizzying array of options that you are left with no option but to ask the friendly waiter for help. As someone who is environmentally conscious, it was nice to see that they also try to source their ingredients locally.

The drinks are also an delight in innovation. If you like spicy drinks, why not try their Michelada Moderna.