All posts filed under: Food

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Giraffe, Portsmouth

Situated on the Waterfront at Gunwharf Quay, about as close to the Spinnaker Tower as is possible without physically touching, sits Giraffe.  With its outdoor seating area overlooking the boats and birds of Portsmouth, the location is rather picturesque, as well as undeniably convenient. Having never visited a branch of Giraffe previously, I wasn’t quite sure what to expect but was immediately pleasantly surprised by the vibrant interior colours and art work.  We were greeted by the charmingly ebullient manager who seated us at a gorgeous round booth in a prime location.  The children were given activity sheets and crayons to occupy them whilst we ordered and awaited our starters. I opted for chicken tacos whilst James chose the hua boa, which he stated were “every bit as good as in China”.  The tacos were full of flavour with tender chicken and plenty of accompaniments. The food was all delicious; James’ main was a beautifully presented lamb tagine whilst I had chicken escalope with a side of topped potatoes; these were so good!  Jasmine enjoyed …

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Drake and Morgan at King’s Cross

Towards the end of the summer holidays, we spent a day in London. It was a mixed bag with strange weather and slightly (very) hyperactive children; we visited the Tower for the first time, then headed to King’s Cross for lunch. Drake and Morgan is a short walk from the tube station; bright, open and airy, arranged over two floors. We were seated in the corner of the ground floor, by the window. On a humid day, the open kitchen on this level offered no relief, which was a little uncomfortable. On the lower ground floor, where the spectacular toilets were also situated, it was much cooler, seemingly air conditioned. We chose drinks whilst perusing the food menu, my friend and I opting for cocktails from Drake and Morgan’s extensive range.    The children’s menu appeared to be a little lacking in the vegetable department (though salad was available in place of chips), not that this bothered my two! They both chose sausages, one with mash and one with chips – it would have been …

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Bella Italia, Baker Street

Italy is home to a number of my very favourite meals, and pizza restaurants are some of the few that we can eat at as a family (the boy is still limited by his hugely fussy palate). However, when we were invited to review the newly refurbished Bella Italia in Baker Street, London, I was a little unsure as to how well they would cater to us as a foursome, having never visited before. I needn’t have worried; from the moment we arrived, the children were addressed directly and catered for amply. The treats began with a free funky straw with each individual bottle of squash, which I found a lovely touch, and the children thought was brilliant.    Another pleasant surprise was the range of dishes on the children’s menu; all too often, we find the same meals again and again, but the Bella Italia menu was a delight. Not only were there lots of foods to choose from but there was also a variety of sizes to suit children of all ages and …

Meat-Free Mealtimes with Quorn

We have been making a conscious effort to eat less meat and dairy at home, but without blindly inflicting our choices on our children, which means I regularly make more than one dish at a time. Throw in a fussy eater and there is literally one meal that we all eat – Toad in the Hole, made using Quorn sausages. I found this recipe for Quorn toad in the hole recently and will be making it tonight. I love that it includes root veg, which I can distribute over one side of the baking tray meaning that my fussy boy can still just have sausages and “Yorkshire cake”, as he calls it. I intend to serve it with pesto mash and broccoli. The ingredients for the main dish are as follows: 1 pack Quorn sausages 300g of mixed root vegetables, peeled and diced ½ red onion, sliced 2 tbsp of oil 6 heaped tbsp of plain flour (50g) 3 large eggs 200mls skimmed milk 2 tsp baking powder    For the method, simply make a batter …

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Review Round-Up: Little Treats for all the Family

We have been very lucky to receive a number of yummy products to try out over the past few weeks and I thought it best to group them into one review post.  First up, we were sent a gorgeous box of truffles and a hot chocolate spoon from Cocoba chocolate.    Cocoba have a great back story – Australian-born founder Darren grew up sharing equisite homemade hot chocolates with his grandfather. When he moved to the UK and could not find a chocolate drink that matched the one from his childhood, he decided to create it. I must say he did a great job as the hot chocolate spoon is the nicest chocolate drink we have ever tasted. I shared it with the boy; he actually didn’t give me a choice and would have happily eaten it straight off the spoon! The truffles were also delicious. At £2.75 and £3.50 respectively, these products are very good value and would make a lovely token gift for Mother’s Day, birthdays or even as stocking fillers. Cocoba products can …