One of the benefits of living near Smithfields is access to a wonderful range of butchers offering fantastic cuts of meats at very affordable prices. If you get up early enough, you can find any sort of cut of most types, as well as plenty of other products made from them including black puddings and various smoked meats.
Tonight I got to finally try some sticky maple ribs that looked fantastic. Here it is served with honey spiced squash, mashed potatoes and romaine heart leaves.
The picture above is what I woke up to (very late) this morning. It looks like we may still have a summer yet. Thanks to the rain clouds for seriously pouring down yesterday so that today ended up just as nice. Now I need to get out of the house!
This weekend’s weather has been very poor though apparently representative of classic English spring weather. Dreary grey skies, moderate to fairly heavy down pours put a damper on wanting to actually get out and do some stuff. Being slightly inspired to do something I thought I’d whip up a batch of some lime and coconut friands I used to make back home, and since I couldn’t find the recipe I previously used, adapted one found on the ABC website.
I had to improvise since I didn’t have a friand tin, though a small muffin tin worked out well. According to wikipedia, friands are popular in Australian cafes though I have seen a few in a number of French stores and cafes here in London.
Read on for the recipe. Read more “Lime and Coconut Friands”
You have no idea how hard it was for me to finally locate a store near me that sold desiccated coconut, but when I finally did I managed to whip up a couple of batches of chewy Anzac biscuits much to the same recipe I did last year.
I brought a bunch to work and it was nice being able to explain Anzac biscuits, and more importantly Anzac Day and the tribute to all of the people who were a part of ANZAC. Amazingly not many people had tasted these biscuits and even though some people didn’t really like coconut still found them very tasty.
I’d seen a couple of these around, but had no idea they were part of an art movement around the world. This one is starting to deteriorate as people peel off tiles one by one.
Others like the following seem a little inconspicuous to thieves and vandals or maybe just a little bit too high up for them.
I’m now a member of the Scotch Malt Whisky Society.
Being a member gives you access to their private tasting room located in the middle of Farringdon as well as invites to their tasting nights. It also gives you discount to rooms and suites available in Edinburgh. Better yet you get to sample a wide variety of whiskies from around the world at very reasonable prices. Let us know if you ever want to visit since it’s a pretty nice experience even if you’re not a big fan of whisky.
Just like Japanese food, London doesn’t do Mexican cuisine very well with only a handful of places around London serving a pitiful Tex-Mex selection and a few others that are either poorly themed or otherwise over priced. Thankfully a new place opened up that I read about via an entry in one of my current favourite blogs, Londonist.
I thought it would be good to support a new venture whose goal is to establish more accessible and authentic Mexican cuisine. If you follow the link above you can find out more about what the owner (Joel Henderson) is trying to accomplish.
I’m lucky enough that my current client is just a few streets away from Daddy Donkey’s current location in Leather Lane so I arranged a small outing with a group of us from work. Finding Daddy Donkey is easy – it’s the white cart playing Mexican music that helps make it stand out amongst all the other stalls. After ordering, they even have a couple of tables where you can eat your food at. These worked out well for us since the London’s lunchtime weather actually stayed shining for our entire lunch.
The choice of foods are simple at Daddy Donkey with £5 giving you either a burro, a fajita burro or a burro bowl (salad bowl) with the choice of chicken, meat or vegetarian fillings. All their ingredients are obviously very fresh and although £5 seems expensive for a meal without a drink or side dish, the size of each offering is enough to keep you full for the rest of the day. Levels of “hotness” seem properly adjusted for the English palette (i.e. hot is not really that hot) so make sure you ask for extra chillis if you really want some heat.
All of us who went out for lunch really enjoyed it and I think everyone would highly recommend it to anyone dropping into Leather Lane. One person did point out it could be made even more perfect if they sold Coronas.
Details: Daddy Donkey
Found on: Pitch 102 Leather Lane Market, Farringdon, London
Highlights: Fresh ingredients, large filling serve with simple offerings that hit the spot.
Room for improvement:Slightly more expensive for a standard lunch out compared to other places and could benefit from serving some beer as well.
The Kua Rating: 7.5 out of 10